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Ros installation without root

asked 2013-01-21 21:05:32 -0500

2_socke gravatar image

I suppose that it happens quite often that people that are working in a closed environment without root access want to use ros. cf.

howto install w/o root priviliges

Installation of wstool and rosdep from source

In our case for ros fuerte for example we ended after 2 weeks of work with a big shell script downloading all the system dependencies (like for example BOOST, Log4cxx, PCL or OpenCV), installing it to $ROS_ROOT/usr and after that building ros form source while patching many CMakeLists.txt files.

I took a look at groovy and suppose that at least the building of ros with catkin should work quite fine due to the fact that building flags can be passed directly to cmake. Now the question:

Wouldn't it be nice for people working in such an environment to get a package manager installing packages from source? This could be then called by rosdep. With this it would be also possible to install ros on every Linux as the native package manager does not need to be called. If there is interest in something like that, I would like to work on such a software package.

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answered 2013-01-21 22:51:53 -0500

KruseT gravatar image

updated 2013-01-21 22:52:41 -0500

I assume you mean a new custom package manager written for ROS and any Linux. Similar projects exist such as pkgsrc, autoproj, jhbuild. Also e.g. see robotpkg. If you want a solution like that, it would be wise to look at either of these first.

The following is mostly my personal opinion:

The ROS community decided rather to avoid own tooling as much as possible, and rely on existing package-managers where possible. The main problem is the effort that it takes to maintain any toolset, dragging down ROS resoures that could work on something else instead. The catkin build system is geared towards making it much easier to package software for plenty of different *nix systems, and patches to CMakeLists and such to make a package more compatible will also be accepted.

So if you want to put effort into something, for groovy it would probably be more appreciated if you either created packaging for a not-yet supported Linux distro or maintained instructions for how to install no a not yet supported distro, see

PS: For a larger audience, this could be discussed at ros-users, maybe.

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Nice topic. Going on in the email.

130s gravatar image 130s  ( 2013-07-15 22:37:13 -0500 )edit

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Asked: 2013-01-21 21:05:32 -0500

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Last updated: Jan 21 '13