Accelerating R with high performance linear algebra libraries

Bogdan Oancea (
“Nicolae Titulescu” University of Bucharest and National Statistics Institute of Romania
Tudorel Andrei (
National Statistics Institute of Romania/Bucharest University of Economic Studies
Raluca Mariana Dragoescu (
The Bucharest University of Economic Studies


Linear algebra routines are basic building blocks for the statistical software. In this paper we analyzed how can we improve R performance for matrix computations. We benchmarked few matrix operations using the standard linear algebra libraries included in the R distribution and high performance libraries like OpenBLAS, GotoBLAS and MKL. Our tests showed the best results are obtained with the MKL library, the other two libraries having similar performances, but lower than MKL.
Keywords: R, linear algebra, BLAS, high performance computing.

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Romanian Statistical Review 3/2015