Getting started: Installing R and TreeSearch

Martin R. Smith


“TreeSearch” is an R package that allows parsimony search on morphological datasets.


Simple installation

To use “TreeSearch” you will first need to install R. RStudio (overview) is a popular front-end that makes several of R’s features easier to use.

The “TreeSearch” package can be installed as any other package. To get the latest stable version from CRAN, type


into the R (or RStudio) command line.

Once installed, load the “TreeSearch” package into R using


Activate the graphical user interface by typing EasyTrees().

In Jan 2022, some users are reporting issues after loading trees from Nexus files. These arise due to an issue in the underlying “ape” package. To install a patched version, close and re-launch R and run:

if (!require("remotes")) install.packages("remotes")

Windows users may need to install Rtools before installing from the GitHub source.

For advanced users

To get the latest development version from GitHub, type


What next?

You might want to: