Software installation

First, you have to install Ubuntu 18.04 (Bionic Beaver) either on your system or in a virtual machine.

Next, install our version of ROS packages from Just follow the instructions on the website (if you never used ROS before, you do not have to execute the first two commands). Then, install the required ROS packages:

sudo apt install python3-catkin-tools python3-pip ros-melodic-amcl ros-melodic-controller-interface ros-melodic-controller-manager ros-melodic-controller-manager-msgs ros-melodic-desktop-full ros-melodic-gazebo-ros-control ros-melodic-hector-gazebo ros-melodic-hector-gazebo-plugins ros-melodic-imu-sensor-controller ros-melodic-joint-state-controller ros-melodic-joint-trajectory-controller ros-melodic-map-server ros-melodic-move-base ros-melodic-moveit ros-melodic-moveit-core ros-melodic-moveit-resources ros-melodic-moveit-ros-planning ros-melodic-moveit-ros-planning-interface ros-melodic-plotjuggler ros-melodic-pointcloud-to-laserscan ros-melodic-robot-controllers ros-melodic-robot-controllers-interface ros-melodic-robot-controllers-msgs ros-melodic-robot-localization ros-melodic-ros-control ros-melodic-ros-controllers ros-melodic-rqt-controller-manager ros-melodic-rqt-joint-trajectory-controller ros-melodic-yocs-velocity-smoother ros-melodic-spatio-temporal-voxel-layer ros-melodic-rviz-imu-plugin ros-melodic-imu-complementary-filter ros-melodic-joy ros-melodic-ros-numpy

After that, create an account on and get team access to our organization ( Then, in a terminal, execute ssh-keygen and then cat ~/.ssh/ and copy the text. Go back to GitHub > Settings > SSH and GPG keys. There, click on New SSH Key and paste the result.


If you’re not part of our team, you can skip this step and use https in the next stept to clone the git.

Now, in a terminal, execute git clone to download our software meta package. Confirm the host key by typing yes. Then, go to the folder by executing cd bitbots_meta. Use make pull-init to download all of the software.


The script may tell you to install basler drivers. You can ignore this if you dont want to use the actual robot hardware.

We need to install additional python packages, that are not available via apt. To do this, run the following command:

Next, we need a catkin workspace. Execute mkdir -p ~/catkin_ws/src to create a workspace and go there with cd ~/catkin_ws. Execute export PATH=$PATH:$HOME/.local/bin to setup your path environment. Use source /opt/ros/melodic/setup.bash to source your ROS environment. Execute catkin init to initialize the workspace and catkin config -DPYTHON_VERSION=3 to set the correct python version. Now, execute ln -s ~/bitbots_meta src to link the source directory. Finally, build the software with catkin build -c.

To make the changes persistent, open your bashrc with nano ~/.bashrc and paste the following three lines:

export PATH=$PATH:$HOME/.local/bin
source /opt/ros/melodic/setup.bash
source $HOME/catkin_ws/devel/setup.bash