Can’t rename columns that don’t exist, on this post, you’ll discover how to replicate and diagnose the R programming error “Error: Can’t rename columns that don’t exist.”
Two examples of error message debugging are included in the tutorial. To be more specific, the article will include the following:
Example Data Generation
For this R programming tutorial, we’ll start with the following data.
data <- data.frame(x = 5:1, y = letters[1:5]) data
x y 1 5 a 2 4 b 3 3 c 4 2 d 5 1 e
The structure of our example data is shown above– There are five rows and two columns in it. x1 and x2 are the names of the variables in our data frame.
Approach 1: Reproduce the Error: Can’t rename columns that don’t exist
I’ll show you how to recreate the “Error: Can’t rename columns that don’t exist.” in R in this example.
We’ll need to install and load the plyr package first.
#install.packages("plyr") # Install plyr package
library("plyr") # Load plyr
and now we can load the dplyr package:
#install.packages("dplyr") # Install dplyr package
library("dplyr") # Load dplyr
Let’s say we wish to use the rename function to rename the column names in our data frame. Then we may try running the R code below.
data1<- rename(data, c("x" = "name1", "x2" = "name2"))
# Error: Can't rename columns that don't exist. # x Column `col1` doesn't exist. # Run `rlang::last_error()` to see where the error occurred.
Unfortunately, the “Error: Can’t rename columns that don’t exist.” message appears in the RStudio console.
The reason for this is that both plyr and dplyr provide a rename function. Because we loaded the dplyr package last, the R programming language tries to use the dplyr package’s rename function.
The preceding R code, on the other hand, is designed to use the plyr package’s rename function and hence returns an error notice.
We’ll show you how to avoid this problem in the following example. So don’t stop reading!
Approach 2: Fix the Error
This example shows how to fix problems with the rename function, such as when R utilizes the wrong package’s rename function.
To ensure that we use the plyr package’s function, we must include the package’s name in front of the function, as seen below:
data1<- plyr::rename(data, c("x" = "name1", "y" = "name2")) data1
name1 name2 1 5 a 2 4 b 3 3 c 4 2 d 5 1 e
We built a new data frame with modified variable names, as shown above. There were no longer any error messages in the RStudio console.