[ros-users] hydro on saucy vs. raring

Tully Foote tfoote at osrfoundation.org
Wed Jan 29 09:41:11 UTC 2014

Hi Ingo,

Although in the abstract it does seem like a relatively small upgrade. It
would actually be a lot of work for a lot of people throughout the
community. We've explicitly picked the distribution cycles and target
platforms to reach a balance between coverage and the effort required.
We've also received strong feedback from the community that they would like
fewer slower releases. This is both because it's more work as a maintainer,
as well as wanting more stability as a user just to keep up with upstream
changes. There was a lot of discussion last spring on this such as this

in the past we've added new Ubuntu distros in the middle of a ROS Distro
cycle and based on that experience we plan never to do it again. Doing this
sort of release into a new Ubuntu Distro is effectively creating another
ROS Distro. As all the 3rdparty dependencies must again be reviewed and all
source code patched for potential variations, such as the boost upgrade.
This requires a coordinated effort to rerelease every package in the
ecosystem. (~800 packages by ~ 200 maintainers) For reference this usually
takes a few months to get to coverage in a normal release cycle. So doing
it again mid cycle is very hard to justify.

As you mention generally recompiling from source is fairly easy. I believe
that we have coverage on the rosdep rules for 13.10, thus the toolchain for
compiling from source will work fine. The first users of packages on the
new platform will run into issues like the Boost version has changed, and
maintainers are usually receptive to patches being submitted back. We
relatively regularly test building all of desktop-full on i7 machines where
it builds in a few hours from scratch. As an optimization you can pick the
subset of the packages that you need saving both build time and the number
of packages which need to be verified.

At OSRF we have already been working hard on getting Indigo ready for many
weeks(working on things like getting python3 compatiblity as well as making
sure that upstream packages are released and available) , and if we were to
spend the next several weeks coordinating a new Hydro release we would have
to delay the Indigo release.

So with the above reasons, our recommendation for using ROS on 13.10 is to
compile Hydro from source patching where necessary. Or wait until Indigo
Igloo is available in binary format.


On Wed, Jan 29, 2014 at 12:45 AM, Ingo Lütkebohle <iluetkeb at gmail.com>wrote:

> Hi,
> given that support for Ubuntu 13.04 is just ending, would it be an
> option to move ROS's support target for Hydro to 13.10 instead?
> At the moment, the packages for Hydro do not even install on 13.10,
> largely because of the boost upgrade it seems, which should be a
> fairly trivial issue when recompiling.
> cheers
> --
> Ingo Lütkebohle, Dr.-Ing.
> Machine Learning and Robotics Lab, IPVS, Universität Stuttgart
> http://www.ipvs.uni-stuttgart.de/abteilungen/mlr/abteilung/mitarbeiter/Ingo.Luetkebohle
> +49-711-685-88350
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