Changes in R

We present selected changes in the development version of R (referred to as R-devel, to become R 4.4) and provide some statistics on bug tracking activities in 2023.

Tomas Kalibera (R Core Team) , Sebastian Meyer (Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg)

1 Selected changes in R-devel

R 4.4.0 is due to be released around April 2024. The following gives a selection of changes in R-devel, which are likely to appear in the new release. The summaries below include text contributed by authors of some of the changes: Peter Dalgaard, Martyn Plummer, Brian Ripley, Deepayan Sarkar and Luke Tierney.

See the NEWS.Rd file in the R sources for a more complete list; nightly rendered versions are available at with RSS feeds at

2 Bug statistics for 2023

Summaries of bug-related activities over the past year were derived from the database underlying R’s Bugzilla system. Overall, 186 new bugs or requests for enhancements were reported, 204 reports were closed, and 942 comments were added by a total of 120 contributors. The numbers of new reports and contributors were comparable to 2022, but comments increased by 8% and closures by 20%. Higher activity in 2023 was driven by a dedicated effort in reviewing and discussing open reports during the R Project Sprint at the University of Warwick, UK, 30 August to 1 September (Turner and Becker 2023).

Barplots of the number of opened bugs, closed bugs and bug comments by month.

Figure 1: Bug tracking activity by month in 2023.

Figure 1 shows the monthly numbers of new reports, closures and comments in 2023. Comment activity was relatively low in July and peaked in September due to the sprint.

The top 5 components reporters have chosen for their reports were “Low-level”, “Misc”, “Language”, “Documentation”, and “Accuracy”. 9% of the reports were suggestions for enhancements that were submitted either in the “Wishlist” component or in a specific component but with severity level set to “enhancement”.

H. Turner and G. Becker. R Project Sprint 2023. The R Journal, 15: 299–305, 2023. URL



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For attribution, please cite this work as

Kalibera & Meyer, "Changes in R", The R Journal, 2023

BibTeX citation

  author = {Kalibera, Tomas and Meyer, Sebastian},
  title = {Changes in R},
  journal = {The R Journal},
  year = {2023},
  note = {},
  volume = {15},
  issue = {4},
  issn = {2073-4859},
  pages = {292-294}