Is ROS_PACKAGE_PATH really obsolete?

asked 2019-07-15 14:05:44 -0500

updated 2019-07-15 14:21:35 -0500

As mentioned in the ROS wiki,

With the introduction of catkin, ROS_PACKAGE_PATH becomes obsolete, and will be kept only for backwards compatibility with rosbuild packages.

From my understanding, ROS_PACKAGE_PATH is not obsolete as important tools like rospack will not work without it.

$ rospack find roscpp

$ export ROS_PACKAGE_PATH=""

$ rospack find roscpp
[rospack] Error: package 'roscpp' not found

Is my understanding wrong? Or is this sentence referring to the specific necessity of ROS_PACKAGE_PATH during the build process, which catkin no longer needs?

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I'm not sure, but I've understood this to (partly) mean: the manual updating of ROS_PACKAGE_PATH is no longer needed.

It's certainly true that many tools still need it.

gvdhoorn gravatar image gvdhoorn  ( 2019-07-15 14:35:13 -0500 )edit

Thanks @gvdhoorn, that makes a lot more sense, and I think is a valid answer. I've clarified the wiki with your wording.

BryceWilley gravatar image BryceWilley  ( 2019-09-13 08:18:46 -0500 )edit