ROS Kinetic on Slackware 14.1

Ok, what I am showing here is VERY experimental and is a sketch of how I got to the point of a working ROS on a Slackware … 14.2, because of cmake mainly.

The fully working version is covered in ROS Kinetic on Slackware 14.2, this is my trial (quite good despite messing up gazebo due to wrong qmake) on 14.1:

Honestly? Start by installing sbopkg if you by that moment don’t have one
sbopkg is in theory a gui application, but I will delibe… delibre…. debrli… by choice use it with console params. As of now, I am on a multilib 64/32bit system, but later on I will switch to a pure 64bit. Grabbing sbopkg right now is:

installpkg sbopkg-0.38.1-noarch-1_wsr.tgz

Note: for an easier install you can fetch some tools from Alien repository, especially Qt5. Now grab the pip and start pumping ROS into your system:

sbopkg -i pip
pip install -U rosdep rosinstall_generator wstool rosinstall
rosdep init
rosdep update
mkdir ~/ros_catkin_ws
cd ~/ros_catkin_ws
rosinstall_generator desktop_full --rosdistro kinetic --deps --wet-only --tar > kinetic-desktop-full-wet.rosinstall

Now time to donwload the packages: I went for a single download at a time with -j1 because it hanged at my first try at opencv, but if your net connection is normal you can go for -j8

wstool init -j1 src kinetic-desktop-full-wet.rosinstall

Umm, yay? Now the fun part

bash-4.2$ rosdep install --from-paths src --ignore-src --rosdistro kinetic -y
ERROR: the following packages/stacks could not have their rosdep keys resolved
to system dependencies:
rosconsole: Unsupported OS [slackware]
catkin: Unsupported OS [slackware]
image_view: Unsupported OS [slackware]
urdf: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rosgraph: Unsupported OS [slackware]
resource_retriever: Unsupported OS [slackware]
nodelet_topic_tools: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rqt_graph: Unsupported OS [slackware]
qt_gui: Unsupported OS [slackware]
roslib: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rosbuild: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rosclean: Unsupported OS [slackware]
tf: Unsupported OS [slackware]
convex_decomposition: Unsupported OS [slackware]
roswtf: Unsupported OS [slackware]
geometric_shapes: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rqt_web: Unsupported OS [slackware]
robot_state_publisher: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rqt_py_console: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rqt_topic: Unsupported OS [slackware]
opencv3: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rqt_top: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rqt_rviz: Unsupported OS [slackware]
pluginlib: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rqt_msg: Unsupported OS [slackware]
gl_dependency: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rqt_service_caller: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rosmaster: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rqt_pose_view: Unsupported OS [slackware]
pcl_conversions: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rqt_console: Unsupported OS [slackware]
depth_image_proc: Unsupported OS [slackware]
python_qt_binding: Unsupported OS [slackware]
laser_geometry: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rviz: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rqt_gui_cpp: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rqt_bag: Unsupported OS [slackware]
qt_gui_py_common: Unsupported OS [slackware]
eigen_conversions: Unsupported OS [slackware]
diagnostic_common_diagnostics: Unsupported OS [slackware]
camera_calibration_parsers: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rostime: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rospy: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rosunit: Unsupported OS [slackware]
python_orocos_kdl: Unsupported OS [slackware]
stage: Unsupported OS [slackware]
bondcpp: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rosconsole_bridge: Unsupported OS [slackware]
camera_info_manager: Unsupported OS [slackware]
roslz4: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rqt_bag_plugins: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rosmsg: Unsupported OS [slackware]
turtlesim: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rqt_robot_monitor: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rosparam: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rospack: Unsupported OS [slackware]
tf2: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rqt_runtime_monitor: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rqt_dep: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rqt_plot: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rostest: Unsupported OS [slackware]
cpp_common: Unsupported OS [slackware]
nodelet: Unsupported OS [slackware]
stage_ros: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rqt_robot_steering: Unsupported OS [slackware]
roslaunch: Unsupported OS [slackware]
genpy: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rqt_shell: Unsupported OS [slackware]
roscreate: Unsupported OS [slackware]
qt_dotgraph: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rqt_publisher: Unsupported OS [slackware]
cv_bridge: Unsupported OS [slackware]
gazebo_ros: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rosbag_storage: Unsupported OS [slackware]
octomap: Unsupported OS [slackware]
bondpy: Unsupported OS [slackware]
tf2_kdl: Unsupported OS [slackware]
class_loader: Unsupported OS [slackware]
collada_urdf: Unsupported OS [slackware]
pcl_ros: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rosmake: Unsupported OS [slackware]
image_proc: Unsupported OS [slackware]
roscpp: Unsupported OS [slackware]
collada_parser: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rviz_plugin_tutorials: Unsupported OS [slackware]
actionlib: Unsupported OS [slackware]
qt_gui_cpp: Unsupported OS [slackware]
eigen_stl_containers: Unsupported OS [slackware]
librviz_tutorial: Unsupported OS [slackware]
pr2_description: Unsupported OS [slackware]
roslisp: Unsupported OS [slackware]
message_filters: Unsupported OS [slackware]
random_numbers: Unsupported OS [slackware]
gazebo_plugins: Unsupported OS [slackware]
tf_conversions: Unsupported OS [slackware]
dynamic_reconfigure: Unsupported OS [slackware]
tf2_eigen: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rqt_tf_tree: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rqt_logger_level: Unsupported OS [slackware]
theora_image_transport: Unsupported OS [slackware]
urdf_parser_plugin: Unsupported OS [slackware]
orocos_kdl: Unsupported OS [slackware]
rosbag: Unsupported OS [slackware]

(Kentucky voice) Damn, lady, that’s some fiiiiineeee list you got there!

Let us … ignore that for a moment and go on to the compile phase (I will be using this command CONSTANTLY):

./src/catkin/bin/catkin_make_isolated --install -DCMAKE_BUILD_TYPE=Release

No empy? Oh, right:

pip install empy

And … first catkin was ok! 1/228 !

Up to the next point of compile it was good, then:

ImportError: No module named catkin.environment_cache

Quick look at the file where the error originated from…
you are looking for catkin in install_isolated/lib ? only?
I am on the 64bit system, it was build into lib64!
ok, screw it, no time for a pretty patch, I just copied the install_isolated/lib64/python2.7/site-packages into install_isolated/lib and went on…

cd install_isolated
cp -r lib64/* lib/
rm -R lib64
ln -s lib lib64
cd ..

Next one:

==> Processing catkin package: 'class_loader'
Could not find a package configuration file provided by "console_bridge"

oh, ok… maybe he really NEEDS it

(as root)
mkdir ~/ros_random
cd ~/ros_random
git clone
cd console_bridge
mkdir build && cd build && cmake ../ && make install

Ok, keep on console open with root login and in ~/ros_random, all external dependencies will be dealt with over there.

Poco was not found.  Set the Poco_INCLUDE_DIR cmake cache entry to the
(as root)
tar -xzf poco-1.7.5.tar.gz
cd poco-1.7.5
./configure && make &&make install

Cannot specify link libraries for target "test_urdf" which is not built by
git clone
cd urdf_parser_py
python install

Nope? Oh, scratch the last python, we need it inside catkin:

python install --prefix /home/anil/ros_catkin/install_isolated

At this stage I read the command line options for catkin_make_isolated:

./src/catkin/bin/catkin_make_isolated  --install -DCMAKE_BUILD_TYPE=Release --from-pkg pr2_description

Much better now, you just need to redo from the last error – and most commonly, before redoing, delete the build_isolated/pr2_description or whatever the last buggy package was.

Oh, I don’t have gtest! Time to head and grab googletest:

git clone
cd googletest
mkdir build && cd build && cmake ../ && make && make install

 Could NOT find TinyXML (missing: TinyXML_LIBRARY TinyXML_INCLUDE_DIR)

… because I don’t have any? story of my life

sbopkg -i tinyxml

But be prepared – this will work for now, but tinyxml is still missing a tinyxml.pc for package configuration – you can overcome this by installing tinyxml2

sbopkg -i tinyxml

copying /usr/lib64/pkgconfig/tinyxml2.pc to tinyxml.pc and modifying the entries – a ready-made version is in the Slackware 14.2 tutorial, just FYI.

Now, this is just for reference, I fixed it earlier on, but here it was shown first:

First, you can get an error like:

---> Processing catkin package: 'python_qt_binding'
TEST FAILED: /home/anil/ros_catkin/install_isolated/lib64/python2.7/site-packages/ does NOT support .pth files
error: bad install directory or PYTHONPATH

You basically fix it with moving lib64 to lib and linking directories, so this is a fixed issue.


ImportError: No module named PyQt5

Uff, I have qt5 (if you don’t: Alien Bob repository or sbopkg -i qt5 and lots of time), lets install the rest of the gang:

sbopkg -i "python3 python3-sip python3-pyqt5"

… and SCRATCH THAT ! Don’t do that !
I MUST build PyQt5 for python2, goddamit
so… upgrade your sip to 4.18 from slackware 14.2 (grab the file from or whatever)
grab PyQt5 from slackbuilds for 14.2 manually – both Slackbuild and source


usr/share/sip/PyQt5/QtCore/qregularexpression.sip:26:32: fatal error: qregularexpression.h: No such file or directory

what the flipping floppery fuck? well, that’s new
oh, wait, shiboken2 and pyside2? maybe?


sbopkg -i "shiboken pyside"

I need to clone repo:

git clone
cd shiboken && mkdir build
(by hand) MODIFY CMakeLists.txt and change min version of cmake from 3.0 to 2.8
cd build && cmake ../ && make && make install

yeah, dirty stuff with cmake, but … DONE!
now pyside2, same with pyside2.git, and … shit

[ 95%] Running generator for QtWebEngineWidgets...
Fatal error: line=26, column=66, message=Failed to parse: 'typesystem_webchannel.xml'

ok, i fetched older version of this .xml and it went through – you basically need to comment out one line, easier to go back a version with .xml
what? another error?

qwebenginedownloaditem_wrapper.cpp: No such file or directory
c++: error: /home/anil/ros_random/pyside2/build/PySide2/QtWebEngineWidgets/PySide2/QtWebEngineWidgets/qwebengineprofile_wrapper.cpp: No such file or directory

Ok, maybe:

touch qwebenginescript_wrapper.cpp
touch qwebenginescript_wrapper.h

I touched every file he wanted and poof! i have pyside2 (will be a little bit broken and finally I don’t think I really need pyside2)

ok, now this

/usr/share/sip/PyQt5/QtCore/qregularexpression.sip:26:32: fatal error: qregularexpression.h: No such file or directory

hmm, the file is where it should be:

locate qregularexpression.h

maybe qmake is bad?
Ok, for a test run I renamed qmake to qmake-qt4, linked qmake to qmake-qt5:

(as root)
cd /usr/bin
mv qmake qmake-qt4
ln -s qmake-qt5 qmake

and delete build_isolated/qt_gui_cpp (bad makefile, redo it)

btw. how to check if it is working?

qmake-qt5 -query QT_INSTALL_HEADERS

and now you know 🙂 and it works!

… until lz4 pops up

sbopkg -i lz4
sbopkg -i fltk

ooooh, player not detected – not critical, just a slight warning in the background, I’ll ignore it

now urdfdom:

git clone
cd urdfdom_headers
mkdir build &&  cd build  && cmake ../ && make && make install
git clone
cd urdfdom
mkdir build &&  cd build && cmake ../  && make && make install

assimp? assimp!

sbopkg -i assimp

==> Processing catkin package: 'geometric_shapes'

Eigen3 missing? huh? /var/log/packages shows me one, so wtf? oooooh, you mean no Eigen3Config.cmake
lets work around it:
go to src/geometric_shapes/CMakeLists.txt
delete: (or comment for safety)

find_package(Eigen3 REQUIRED)

and add:

find_package( PkgConfig )
pkg_check_modules( EIGEN3 REQUIRED eigen3 )
include_directories( ${EIGEN3_INCLUDE_DIRS} )

(the last one is different from the thingie down the road in the CMakeLists.txt file: EIGEN3_INCLUDE_DIRS vs EIGEN3_INCLUDE_DIR )

sbopkg -i qhull

’nuff said

==> Processing catkin package: 'camera_calibration_parsers'

no yaml-cpp

 sbopkg -i yaml-cpp

==> Processing catkin package: 'collada_parser'
sbopkg -i opencollada
sbopkg -i collada-dom

still lots of errors, starting with

'stod' is not a member of 'std'

Ok, I added to robot_model/collada_parser/CMakeLists.txt: (somewhere near find_package for example)

set(CMAKE_CXX_FLAGS "-std=gnu++11")

(I thought about set(CMAKE_CXX_FLAGS “-std=c++11”) but… gnu++11 should work)

oh, still an error, a serious one… std and boost types are off? what the….?
I took a glance into /usr/local/include/urdf_model/types.h and was amazed
who the hell would do that with std types when boost will be used later on?!
looking into github history of commits at urdfdom_headers… oh, in 2015 someone switched from std to boost
so I grabbed at this point the 0.4 branch of urdfdom_headers

git clone -b 0.4
cd urdfdom_header
mkdir build && cd build && cmake ../ && make && make install

… for now, I’m suspicious I’ve broken something badly, but nevermind my doubts, the bridges had been crossed, chopped and burned to ashes

==> Processing catkin package: 'pcl_conversions'

no PCL, go figure…
hmm, PCL needs flann … but >1.7.0 (sbopkg gives you an ancient 1.2)

cd flann-1.8.4-src
mkdir build && cd build && cmake ../ && make && make install
git clone
cd pcl
mkdir build && cd build && cmake ../ && make -j4 && make install

take a shitload of time, fyi, so at this point I said “screw the safety, lets go with -j4!”, or, more honestly “screw watching youtube in the background, lets max out all cores with -j4!”

no gazebo? ok, first the obvious requirements:

hg clone

oh, he needs a lot:

hg clone
hg clone
hg clone


sbopkg -i zeromq

… scratch that, zeromq from 14.1 repo is v2, i need higher (not too high since git master branch failed to compile for me):

tar -xzf zeromq-3.2.5.tar.gz
cd zeromq-3.2.5
./configure && make && make install

oh, not that … libzmq!

git clone git clone


inproc_lat.cpp.o: undefined reference to symbol 'pthread_create@@GLIBC_2.2.5'

erm… add somewhere in CMakeLists.txt:


ok, compiles, make install works and let me try ign-transport

-- checking for module 'libzmq>=3.2.0'
--   package 'libzmq>=3.2.0' not found
-- Looking for zmq pkgconfig file - not found
--      zmq not found, Please install zmq


ok, in libzmq/build i have a .pc file, just copy it:

cp libzmq.pc /usr/local/lib64/pkgconfig/
git clone
cd cppzmq && cp *.hpp /usr/local/include/

ign-transport done… done? whatever, gazebo:

hg clone
hg clone
--      HDF5 not found
--      Simbody not found, for simbody physics engine option, please install libsimbody-dev.
--      DART not found, for dart physics engine option, please install libdart-core4-dev.
--      Failed to find OGRE's plugin directory.  The build will succeed, but gazebo will likely fail to run.
--      Player not found, gazebo plugin for player will not be built.
--      GNU Triangulation Surface library not found - Gazebo will not have CSG support.
--      Bullet > 2.82 not found, for bullet physics engine option, please install libbullet2.82-dev.
--      Oculus Rift support will be disabled.
--      GDAL not found, Digital elevation terrains support will be disabled.
--      ronn not found, manpages won't be generated
--      Graphviz not found, Model editor's schematic view will be disabled.
--      OpenSource Virtual Reality (OSVR) support will be disabled.

-- BUILD ERRORS: These must be resolved before compiling.
--      Missing: Unable to find FreeImage.h
--      Missing: Unable to find libfreeimage
--      Missing: Google Protobuf (libprotobuf-dev)
--      Missing: Google Protobuf Compiler (protobuf-compiler)
--      Missing: Google Protobuf Compiler Library (libprotoc-dev)
--      Missing: libtar
--      Missing: TBB - Threading Building Blocks
--      Missing: Ignition msgs0 library.
--      Missing: Ignition Transport (libignition-transport-dev)
--      Missing: libqwt-dev. Required for plotting.

ooh, that’s a fine list…

sbopkg -i hdf5
git clone

GCC too old? >4.9? I honestly don’t think so… modify CMakeLists.txt to match 4.8.3 and go

git clone
git clone git://

oh, hey, fcl contains FindEigen3, might help with no eigen3 error somewhere earlier on
and… what the? still dart shouts about no fcl? oh… too new, he needs 0.4 at most, darn it

tar -xzf 0.4.0.tar.gz
cd fcl-0.4.0/
mkdir build && cd build && cmake ../ && make && make install

Dart dart dart, now I have:

SpecializedForAspect.hpp:61:11: internal compiler error: in use_thunk, at cp/method.c:338
   virtual ~SpecializedForAspect() = default;

time to go medieval with him and change all the “virtual ~… = default;” to ” virtual … {} ”
oooh, that’s a lot of virtual defaults to change! but not enough to write a script… yet, maybe tomoroow

and then, and only then, i realised… i need older dart

git clone -b release-4.3


The rest:

sbopkg -i OpenSceneGraph
sbopkg -i tinyxml2
sbopkg -i bullet
git clone
sbopkg -i ogre

ooh, errors in ogre package, i needed to download it and change the folder inside ogre.Slackbuild (should be fixed on Sbo by now)

sbopkg -i gts
sbopkg -i OpenCSG
sbopkg -i "proj geos gdal"
sbopkg -i graphviz

now errors:

sbopkg -i FreeImage
sbopkg -i libtar
sbopkg -i protobuf (hey, maybe it will work without all dependencies?)
sbopkg -i tbb
sbopkg -i qwt

and unto the breach!…. i mean, unto the gazebo?

…. fuuuuck! wrong ign-transport2 … i should do the transport1 !

hg clone -b ign-transport1

at last! cmake on gazebo done, now make && make install
at [100%] I got an eror:

/home/anil/ros_random/gazebo/gazebo/plugins/rest_web/ In function 'void DumpRequest(const char*, FILE*, unsigned char*, size_t, char)':
/home/anil/ros_random/gazebo/gazebo/plugins/rest_web/ error: expected ')' before 'PRId64'
     "%s, %10.10" PRId64 " bytes (0x%8.8" PRIx64 ")\n", _text, s, s);

you are kiddin’ me, right?


to look like:


catkin package gazebo_ros still complains about OGRE missing

 Could not find a package configuration file provided by "OGRE" with any of
  the following names:


huh? oh, in /usr/local/lib64/cmake/gazebo/gazebo-config.cmake he is searching for OGRE – in lib, not lib64, the line should be


ok, done, gazebo_ros is starting the compilation process – and it’s done!


  By not providing "FindEigen3.cmake" in CMAKE_MODULE_PATH this project has
  asked CMake to find a package configuration file provided by "Eigen3", but
  CMake did not find one.

  Could not find a package configuration file provided by "Eigen3" with any
  of the following names:


  Add the installation prefix of "Eigen3" to CMAKE_PREFIX_PATH or set
  "Eigen3_DIR" to a directory containing one of the above files.  If "Eigen3"
  provides a separate development package or SDK, be sure it has been

I have a deja-vu, the one of that sort that includes swearing in 7 different languages at once
ok, again in CMakeFiles.txt:

find_package( PkgConfig )
pkg_check_modules( EIGEN3 REQUIRED eigen3 )

At last!

<== Finished processing package [228 of 228]: 'xacro'

ok, for the bash setup on a single console:

source ~/ros_catkin/install_isolated/setup.bash


mkdir -p catkin_ws/src
cd catkin_ws/src


…but gazebo is broken and I think I know why – I forgot to return qmake to its former glory of Qt4 … damn