Installing Orocos KDL in Debian

WARNING: This tutorial will soon be deprecated because we are going to migrate to ARCOS-KDL.

  • Set a xstow environment Using xstow for local installations
  • Orocos-KDL needs gcc 8 to compile. Please make sure that you have gcc 8.
  • Download configure and compile arcoslab version of orocos-kdl:
cd ~/local/src
git clone
cd orocos-kdl
make install-python


This is a tutorial for running some interactive examples. Do not follow this if you just want to install orocos-kdl.

If you want to play with kinematic chains and visualize them in real time, do the following:

  • Install the Humanoid robot Simulator
  • Checkout examples branch in pyrotivo
  • Reinstall pyrovito
  • in a shell execute the yarp server
  • in another shell execute pyrovito
  • open another shell:
cd local/src/pyrovito/examples

once you are in IPython:

import numpy as np
import iexample as ix
import json
# load the kinematic configurations
with open("kinematics_conf.json", "r") as conf_file:
    conf = json.load(conf_file)
    kuka = conf["kuka"]
    simple = conf["simple"]
# start the handler
handler = ix.InteractiveHandler()
# Create a tiny box
box = handler.create_object("box", scale=[0.1, 0.1, 0.1])
# Create the kuka arm
arm = handler.create_chain(kuka)
box.update_twist(np.array([0.0, 0.0, 0.0, 0.0, 0.0, 2.0]))
  • tutorials/installing_orocos_kdl_in_debian.txt
  • Last modified: 2019/10/09 13:08
  • by dgarcia