Error: gdal-config not found while installing R dependent packages whereas gdal is installed


Please point out the point that I am missing:

openSUSE 11.3

[email protected]:~/Desktop/R> sudo R CMD INSTALL rgdal_0.7-12.tar.gz 
root's password:
* installing to library ‘/usr/lib64/R/library’
* installing *source* package ‘rgdal’ ...
** package ‘rgdal’ successfully unpacked and MD5 sums checked
configure: gdal-config: gdal-config
checking gdal-config usability... ./configure: line 1353: gdal-config: command not found
Error: gdal-config not found
The gdal-config script distributed with GDAL could not be found.
If you have not installed the GDAL libraries, you can
download the source from
If you have installed the GDAL libraries, then make sure that
gdal-config is in your path. Try typing gdal-config at a
shell prompt and see if it runs. If not, use:
with appropriate values for your installation.

ERROR: configuration failed for package ‘rgdal’
* removing ‘/usr/lib64/R/library/rgdal’

[email protected]:~/Desktop/R> whereis gdal-config
gdal-config: /usr/local/bin/gdal-config

[email protected]:~/Desktop/R> gdal-config 
Usage: gdal-config [OPTIONS]
 [email protected]:~/Desktop/R>

> sessionInfo()
R version 2.15.1 (2012-06-22)
Platform: x86_64-unknown-linux-gnu (64-bit)

 [1] LC_CTYPE=en_US.UTF-8       LC_NUMERIC=C              
 [3] LC_TIME=en_US.UTF-8        LC_COLLATE=en_US.UTF-8    
 [7] LC_PAPER=C                 LC_NAME=C                 
 [9] LC_ADDRESS=C               LC_TELEPHONE=C            

attached base packages:
[1] stats     graphics  grDevices utils     datasets  methods   base     

[email protected]:~/Desktop/R> gdal-config --version

[email protected]:~/Desktop/R> proj
Rel. 4.8.0, 6 March 2012
usage: proj [ -beEfiIlormsStTvVwW [args] ] [ +opts[=arg] ] [ files ]

linux-y3pi:~ # $PATH
bash: /home/xx/qtsdk-2010.05/qt/bin/:/home/xx/qtsdk-2010.05/bin:/home/xx/qtsdk-2010.05/qt/bin:/home/xx/qtsdk-2010.05/qt/bin/:/home/xx/qtsdk-2010.05/bin:/usr/lib64/mpi/gcc/openmpi/bin:/home/xx/bin:/usr/local/bin:/usr/bin:/sbin:/usr/sbin:/bin:/usr/bin/X11:/usr/X11R6/bin:/usr/games: No such file or directory


You need the -dev package with headers and shared library links for development besides the normal package for deployment. Two different use cases as far as the distro is concerned.

On my distribution:

[email protected]:/tmp$ dpkg -l | grep gdal | cut -c-72
ii  libgdal1-1.7.0                                1.7.3-6ubuntu3        
ii  libgdal1-dev                                  1.7.3-6ubuntu3        
[email protected]:/tmp$ 

and R CMD INSTALL rgdal_0.7-8.tar.gz works just fine as you would expect from a CRAN package given all the build-time checks at CRAN.

Update late 2016: As @JoshO’Brien points out in the comment

Minor update: Here in 2016, running Ubuntu 14.04.2, libgdal1h seems to
have replaced libgdal1(though libgdal1-dev is still needed). At least
I get an error to that effect when I attempted to apt-get install libgdal1

For Ubuntu 16.04 the corresponding line would be
sudo apt-get install libgdal1i

Such renaming of upstream libraries is common; something such as apt-cache search libgdal can help locate the current package names. The important key though is that the “abstract” development package libgdal-dev is all that is needed to build as it pulls the “concrete” current run-time package (here: libgdal1i) in via a dependency.

Answered By – Dirk Eddelbuettel

This Answer collected from stackoverflow, is licensed under cc by-sa 2.5 , cc by-sa 3.0 and cc by-sa 4.0

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