Difference between revisions of "Workstation Setup"

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(Step 2: Install ROS)
(Step 2: Install ROS)
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Current supported version: ROS Indigo
Current supported version: ROS Indigo
Install ROS Indigo
===Install ROS Indigo===
Configure Ubuntu repositories
Configure Ubuntu repositories

Revision as of 14:54, 21 October 2016

This tutorial describes the setup of a development workstation

Required Hardware

Step 1: Install Ubuntu

Current required version: Ubuntu 14.04

Follow the standard Ubuntu Installation Instructions for 14.04 (Desktop):

Step 2: Install ROS

Current supported version: ROS Indigo

Install ROS Indigo

Configure Ubuntu repositories

Configure your Ubuntu repositories to allow "restricted," "universe," and "multiverse." You can follow the Ubuntu guide for instructions on doing this.

Likely, they are already configured properly, and you only need to confirm the configuration.

Setup your sources.list

$ sudo sh -c 'echo "deb http://packages.ros.org/ros/ubuntu trusty main" > /etc/apt/sources.list.d/ros-latest.list'

Setup your keys

$ wget http://packages.ros.org/ros.key -O - | sudo apt-key add -

Verify Latest Debians

$ sudo apt-get update

Install ROS Indigo Desktop Full

$ sudo apt-get install ros-indigo-desktop-full

NOTE: You may get a prompt about 'hddtemp' during the installation. You can safely answer 'No'.

Initialize rosdep

rosdep enables you to easily install system dependencies for source you want to compile and is required to run some core components in ROS.

$ sudo rosdep init
$ rosdep update

Install rosinstall

$ sudo apt-get install python-rosinstall

Step 3: Create Baxter Development Workspace

Create ROS Workspace

$ mkdir -p ~/ros_ws/src
# ros_ws (short for ROS Workspace)

Source ROS and Build

ROS Indigo (Supported)

Source ROS Setup

$ source /opt/ros/indigo/setup.bash

Build and Install

$ cd ~/ros_ws
$ catkin_make
$ catkin_make install

Step 4: Install Baxter SDK Dependencies

="ROS Indigo (Supported)"

Install SDK Dependencies

$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install git-core python-argparse python-wstool python-vcstools python-rosdep ros-indigo-control-msgs ros-indigo-joystick-drivers

Step 5: Install Baxter Research Robot SDK

Install Baxter SDK

Using the wstool workspace tool, we will checkout all required Baxter Github Repositories into your ROS workspace source directory.

$ cd ~/ros_ws/src
$ wstool init .
$ wstool merge https://raw.githubusercontent.com/RethinkRobotics/baxter/master/baxter_sdk.rosinstall
$ wstool update

Source ROS Setup

'''You must use ROS Indigo to use RSDK 1.2.0. Use command below.'''
# ROS Indigo
$ source /opt/ros/indigo/setup.bash

Build and Install

$ cd ~/ros_ws
$ catkin_make
$ catkin_make install

Step 6: Configure Baxter Communication/ROS Workspace

This step describes the configuration and setup of your ROS environment. This section assumes an already configured Network Setup.

The current recommended environment setup: Baxter.sh ROS Environment Setup

"Baxter.sh ROS Environment Setup (Recommended)"

The baxter.sh script is a convenient script which allows for intuitive modification of the core ROS environment components. This user edited script will allow for the quickest and easiest ROS setup.

Further information and a detailed description is available on the baxter.sh page.

Download the baxter.sh script

$ wget https://github.com/RethinkRobotics/baxter/raw/master/baxter.sh
$ chmod u+x baxter.sh

Customize the baxter.sh script

Please edit the baxter.sh shell script making the necessary modifications to describe your development PC.

Using your favorite editor (gedit used for example)

$ cd ~/ros_ws
$ gedit baxter.sh

Edit the 'baxter_hostname' field

Baxter's hostname is defaulted as the robot's serial number. The serial number can be located on the back of the robot, next to the power button.

Alternatively, you can find your robot's hostname by plugging a USB keyboard into the back of Baxter and pressing Ctrl+Alt+F3.

# Specify Baxter's hostname

Edit the 'your_ip' field

Modify where 'your_ip' is the IP address of your PC.


Useful command for identifying your IP address:

$ ifconfig
# Result will be contained in the 'inet addr' field (Ubuntu) or 'inet' field (Gentoo Robot PC).

Alternatively, you may choose to use the hostname of your development PC rather than the PC's IP address. For instructions, press Expand on the right.

You may edit the 'your_hostname' field (only if not using 'your_ip'):


Important: This hostname must be resolvable to Baxter. To test if your hostname is resolvable to Baxter, please visit the development PC Hostname Validation page.

Important: Only set either ROS_IP *OR* ROS_HOSTNAME.

Setting of both ROS_IP and ROS_HOSTNAME will result in ROS_HOSTNAME taking priority, resulting in confusing environment setups. Comment out the unused method using the '#' as leading character.

Verify 'ros_version' field

Verify that the the 'ros_version' field matches the ROS version you are running:

This field will default to "indigo"


Save and Close baxter.sh script

Please save and close the baxter.sh script.

Initialize your SDK environment

From this point forward, your ROS environment setup should be as simple as sourcing the baxter.sh script from the root of your Catkin workspace:

$ cd ~/ros_ws
$ . baxter.sh

Step 7: Verify Environment

A useful command for viewing and validating your ROS environment setup is:

$ env | grep ROS

The important fields at this point:

ROS_MASTER_URI - This should now contain your robot's hostname.

ROS_IP - This should contain your workstation's IP address.


ROS_HOSTNAME - If not using the workstation's IP address, the ROS_HOSTNAME field should contain your PC's hostname. Otherwise, this field should not be available.

Next Step

We will verify your network setup in the next section. Hello Robot!