Software Setup

Ian McCarthy | Emory University

Software Installation

  1. Download R
  2. Download Visual Studio Code
  3. Download Git
  4. Create an account on GitHub


  • Do you have the most recent version of R?
[1] "R version 4.3.1 (2023-06-16 ucrt)"
  • Have you installed the proper extensions in VS Code?
    • GitHub Copilot and GitHub Copilot Chat
    • Python and Jupyter
    • Quarto
    • R and R Extension Pack
  • If using R, have you updated all of your R packages?
update.packages(ask = FALSE, checkBuilt = TRUE, repos='')


  • Which version of Git have you installed?

  • Did you introduce yourself to Git? (Substitute in your details.)

git config --global 'Ian McCarthy'
git config --global ''
git config --global --list
  • Did you register an account in GitHub?

Practice with Git and VS Code

For the rest of today (and before next class)

  1. Download R
  2. Download VS Code
  3. Download Git
  4. Create an account on GitHub
  5. Start/clone/fork a repository for this class

Setting things up

Now we’re going to clone a GitHub repository (repo) using Git.

Some common mistakes for windows users

  • Windows folders are not files…there is no content without a file. You can’t commit or push changes without content.
  • If you’re working across devices on your own repo, be sure to pull before starting and push afterward.
  • Avoid spaces in file names. Avoid them at all costs. DO NOT PUT SPACES IN YOUR FILE NAMES.

“A space in a file name is a space in your soul.”

Ideal workflow

Until you are a Git(Hub) expert…

  1. Start project on GitHub (fork from another repo if needed)
  2. Clone to local computer with Git (or GitHub Desktop)