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Are urdf, rviz and xacro packages required?

asked 2019-02-11 05:28:00 -0500

Elric gravatar image

updated 2019-02-11 05:38:23 -0500

I'm using ROS Melodic and Gazebo 9.6.0 on an Ubuntu 18-04.

I've just started to learn how to connect ROS with Gazebo.

To learn it, I'm reading the book Mastering ROS for Robotics Programming - Second Edition (Packt).

I'm on chapter 3 learning about URDF.

Now I'm going to create a package for robot description and the command to create it is:

catkin_create_pkg mastering_ros_robot_description_pkg roscpp tf geometry_msgs urdf rviz xacro

Is it required to add the packages urdf, rviz and xacro to my description's package?

I have created another robot's description packages without those packages and it works perfectly.

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answered 2019-02-11 05:37:21 -0500

gvdhoorn gravatar image

updated 2019-02-11 05:38:58 -0500

Is it required to add the packages urdf, rviz and xacro?

The reason you add those package names to the catkin_create_pkg invocation is to add those as run and (in this case: build) dependencies to the package manifest. We do that so that package managers and tools like rosdep and catkin can understand what your package needs in order to work correctly -- or at all.

I have created another robot's description packages without those packages and it works perfectly.

it may have worked, but that package does not state the runtime dependency explicitly (at least for rviz and xacro).

For a regular desktop or desktop-full installation that will not typically result in any problems, as you'll have those already installed.

But anyone who installed ROS from source, or used any of the "bare bones" installation types (ie: ros-core or ros-base), they could run into problems, as even after running rosdep check --from-paths .. --ignore-src .. (ie: the command that will make sure all dependencies of the ROS packages in a workspace are present on the system), they may not have RViz, nor xacro.

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Thanks. So, I need to add them to my robot's description package to avoid problems in other computers that don't have installed them (urdf, rviz and xacro), isn't it?

Elric gravatar imageElric ( 2019-02-11 05:40:22 -0500 )edit
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Yes. The information is required to make dependency management work.

gvdhoorn gravatar imagegvdhoorn ( 2019-02-11 05:41:42 -0500 )edit

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Asked: 2019-02-11 05:28:00 -0500

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Last updated: Feb 11