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hadley / pkgdown


Generate static html documentation for an R package



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pkgdown is designed to make it quick and easy to build a website for your package. You can see pkgdown in action at this is the output of pkgdown applied to the latest version of pkgdown. Learn more in vignette("pkgdown") or ?build_site.


pkgdown is not currently available from CRAN, but you can install the development version from github with:

# install.packages("devtools")


Run pkgdown from the package directory each time you release your package:


This will generate a docs/ directory. The home page will be generated from your package’s, and a function reference will be generated from the documentation in the man/ directory. If you are using GitHub, the easiest way to make this your package website is to check into git, then go settings for your repo and make sure that the GitHub pages source is set to “master branch /docs folder”.

The package also includes an RStudio add-in which you can bind to a keyboard shortcut. I recommend Cmd + Shift + W: it uses Cmd + Shift, like all other package development worksheets, it replaces a rarely used command (close all tabs), and the W is mnemonic for website.

To customise your site, create _pkgdown.yml and modify it as described in the documentation. Alternatively, you can also use pkgdown/_pkgdown.yml if you need other files to customise your site.

In the wild

As at last count, pkgdown is used by over 1300 packages.

Here are a few examples created by people contributors to pkgdown:

  • bayesplot [source]: plotting functions for posterior analysis, model checking, and MCMC diagnostics.

  • valr [source]: read and manipulate genome intervals and signals.

  • mkin [source]: calculation routines based on the FOCUS Kinetics Report

  • NMF [source]: a framework to perform non-negative matrix factorization (NMF).

Comparing the output with the source is a great way to learn new pkgdown techniques (particularly because ironically, the pkgdown documentation isn’t very good yet)

Code of conduct

Please note that this project is released with a Contributor Code of Conduct. By participating in this project you agree to abide by its terms.