wiki:Getting started

Version 26 (modified by foehst, 8 years ago) (diff)


Getting started


Currently, the only supported way to install Finroc® is from source. Therefore, a few dependencies must be installed.

Notably, the build process requires either llvm clang 3.4 (or newer) or doxygen in a version not newer than

Furthermore, the development branch requires at least GCC version 4.8 or llvm clang 3.4 to compile.


If you use Ubuntu (>= 12.04), you may use the packages we created so far to install the required tools and libraries.

Ubuntu Version Supported Finroc® Versions
Version Short Codename 13.10 development
12.04 LTS precise
12.10 quantal
13.04 raring
13.10 saucy
14.04 LTS trusty

Become root for the next steps and add our package repository to your distribution, replacing <SHORT_CODENAME> from the table above accordingly:

~$ sudo su -
~# cat > /etc/apt/sources.list.d/ <<EOF
> deb <SHORT_CODENAME> main
> deb-src <SHORT_CODENAME> main

Then, update apt's database and install our keyring and dependencies.

~# apt-key adv --keyserver --recv-keys 5C9E0513
~# apt-get update
~# apt-get install --no-install-recommends finroc-dependencies
~# logout

Note for Ubuntu 12.10 and 13.04

Note that compiling Finroc® needs either doxygen not newer than or clang >= 3.4. In Ubuntu 12.10 and 13.04 the default doxygen package is newer and clang-3.4 is not available, yet. Therefore you must specify an pin the correct doxygen version while installing the dependency package:

~# apt-get install --no-install-recommends finroc-dependencies doxygen=
~# echo doxygen hold | dpkg --set-selections

Other Linux distributions

On other Linux distributions, please refer to our Dependencies List to install the required tools and libraries.

Non-Linux operating systems

There is currently no support for other operating systems than Linux.

Setup mercurial

The main source control management system used on is mercurial. You can skip this step if you want to just have a quick look at Finroc®. However, if you are going to check out more components, create or change code and want to commit your changes, it is recommended to create some configuration for mercurial first.

If it does not already exist, create the file ~/.hgrc:

username = Your Name <your@email.address>
merge = kdiff3

kdiff3.args = $base $local $other -o $output
kdiff3.premerge = true

finroc_org.prefix =
finroc_org.username = anonymous
finroc_org.password = your@email.address

Configuring the merge tool is optional, but our recommendation. The hostfingerprints are currently needed until the server gets a properly assured SSL certificate. If you already created an account on, you should, of course, replace the anonymous credentials by your own. As the file now contains your credentials, make it non-readable for others:

~$ chmod go= ~/.hgrc

Clone the Finroc® environment

Getting the source code of components, configuring, building, and execution is all conveniently done from within the Finroc® environment. Here, you also select if you want to use our development branch or a stable release, like version 13.10. Therefore, clone the according branch using mercurial.

~$ hg clone              # for our development branch


~$ hg clone -u 13.10     # for stable version 13.10

If you skipped the step Setup mercurial, you might be asked about your username and password. Just use anonymous together with a valid email address as password.

Setup environment

Each time you want to use Finroc®, some paths and other environment variables must be set.

~$ cd finroc
~/finroc$ source scripts/setenv
 FINROC Settings
 Home:          /home/$USER/finroc
 Project:       <unknown>
 Project Home:  <unknown>
 Language:      <unknown>
 Target:        i686_linux_debug

Get the core and main tools

In Finroc®, the source code of the single components (core, libraries, plugins, tools, projects) can be easily cloned/checked out using finroc_get. Use it to install the first components and their dependencies:

~/finroc$ finroc_get finroc_core finroc_tools_finstruct-java finroc_tools_gui-java

Questions for optional components can be answered with no for now.

Compiling with GCC (default)

To check if all dependencies are satisfied and all targets can be built, run makeSafeMakefile.

~/finroc$ makeSafeMakefile

This step is mainly for diagnostics and included in the main build command makeSafe.

Any programs and libraries that cannot be built due to missing dependencies are listed at the end of the command line output. Note: After installing missing system libraries, you need to run the updatelibdb command in order to make them known to Finroc's build system.

Use makeSafe to build the core and main tools:

~/finroc$ makeSafe -j4

This starts parallel building with 4 threads. If you have more CPU cores and enough RAM, you may increase the number of build threads.

Compiling with llvm clang (experimental)

The default compiler flags are stored in small files in etc/targets. Switch to one for llvm clang - e.g.:

~/finroc$ source scripts/setenv -m debug_clang

Now you can build the project using makeSafe

~/finroc$ makeSafe -j4

Note: Due to a bug in Ubuntu 13.10, clang cannot be used to compile Finroc® on 32-bit installations of Ubuntu 13.10. Ubuntu 14.04 works fine.

Next steps