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Python ROS Bridge library.

Project description

Python ROS Bridge library allows to use Python and IronPython to interact with ROS, the open-source robotic middleware. It uses WebSockets to connect to rosbridge 2.0 and provides publishing, subscribing, service calls, actionlib, TF, and other essential ROS functionality.

Unlike the rospy library, this does not require a local ROS environment, allowing usage from platforms other than Linux.

The API of roslibpy is modeled to closely match that of roslibjs.

Main features

  • Topic publishing and subscribing.
  • Service calls (client).
  • Service advertisement (server).
  • ROS parameter management (get/set/delete).
  • ROS API services for getting ROS meta-information.
  • Actionlib support for interfacing with preemptable tasks.
  • TF Client via the tf2_web_republisher.

Roslibpy runs on Python 2.7 and 3.x and IronPython 2.7.


To install roslibpy, simply use pip:

pip install roslibpy

For IronPython, the pip command is slightly different:

ipy -X:Frames -m pip install --user roslibpy

Remember that you will need a working ROS setup including the rosbridge server and TF2 web republisher accessible within your network.


The full documentation, including examples and API reference is available on readthedocs.


Make sure you setup your local development environment correctly:

  • Clone the roslibpy repository.
  • Create a virtual environment.
  • Install development dependencies:
pip install -r requirements-dev.txt

You’re ready to start coding!

During development, use pyinvoke tasks on the command prompt to ease recurring operations:

  • invoke clean: Clean all generated artifacts.
  • invoke check: Run various code and documentation style checks.
  • invoke docs: Generate documentation.
  • invoke test: Run all tests and checks in one swift command.
  • invoke: Show available tasks.

For more details, check the Contributor’s Guide available as part of the documentation.

Releasing this project

Ready to release a new version roslibpy? Here’s how to do it:

  • We use semver, i.e. we bump versions as follows:
    • patch: bugfixes.
    • minor: backwards-compatible features added.
    • major: backwards-incompatible changes.
  • Update the CHANGELOG.rst with all novelty!
  • Ready? Release everything in one command:
invoke release [patch|minor|major]
  • Profit!


This library is based on roslibjs and to a large extent, it is a line-by-line port to Python, changing only where a more idiomatic form makes sense, so a huge part of the credit goes to the roslibjs authors.


All notable changes to this project will be documented in this file.

The format is based on Keep a Changelog and this project adheres to Semantic Versioning.



  • The non-blocking event loop runner run() now defaults to 10 seconds timeout before raising an exception.


  • Added blocking behavior to ROS API methods, e.g. ros.get_topics.
  • Added command-line mode to ROS API, e.g. roslibpy topic list.
  • Added blocking behavior to the Param class.
  • Added parameter manipulation methods to Ros class: get_param, set_param, delete_param.



  • For consistency, timeout parameter of Goal.send() is now expressed in seconds, instead of milliseconds.


  • The timeout parameter of ActionClient() is ignored in favor of blocking until the connection is established.


  • Raise exceptions when timeouts expire on ROS connection or service calls.


  • Support for calling a function in a thread from the Ros client.
  • Added implementation of a Simple Action Server.



  • The non-blocking event loop runner now waits for the connection to be established in order to minimize the need for on_ready handlers.


  • Support blocking and non-blocking service calls.


  • Fixed an internal unsubscribing issue.



  • Resolve reconnection issues.



  • Add a non-blocking event loop runner



  • Unsubscribing from a listener no longer requires the original callback to be passed.



  • Fix JSON serialization error on TF Client (on Python 3.x)



  • Add support for IronPython 2.7


  • Handler on_ready now defaults to run the callback in thread


  • Rename run_event_loop to the more fitting run_forever



  • Minimal documentation fixes



  • Initial version

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