Installation From Scratch With ROS, Orion Context-Broker and catkin

To Install Firos you first need to follow this Installaion Instuctions. ROS is needed for FIROS, since it imports ROS-messages and uses other specific ROS-Executables like rospy or rostopic. You need to create a catkin-workspace to be able to create a ROS-Node out of FIROS.

You might also consider to set up a contextbroker, so that FIROS can publish and subscribe on it. If a contextbroker is not available you can quickly set one up via Docker and use a docker-compose.yml as here to start one.

Cloning this Project

After you have set up ROS and created a catkin-workspace you can finally clone this repository, install its dependencies and create the FIROS-Node as follows:

# Clone Repository
cd "catkin_workspace_base_directory"/src
git clone --recursive
cd "catkin_workspace_base_directory"/src/firos

# Install Dependencies
pip install -r requirements.txt

# Make Node
cd "catkin_workspace_base_directory"


  • FIROS uses git submodules (which is required to run properly). Newer versions of git can clone submodules via the --recursive option
  • Also check whether your local submodule-folder (currently in firos/include/FiwareObjectConverter and firos/include/genpy) contains files to be sure that everything was cloned.

Basic Configuration of FIROS

FIROS won't start if you just run the node. Some basic configuration need to be set prior. You can find an example-configuration-folder in config. The config.json-file should contain something like:

  "environment": "local",

  "mobile": {
    "server": {
        "port": 10100
    "contextbroker": {
        "address"   : "",
        "port"      : 1026,
        "subscription": {
          "throttling": 0,
          "subscription_length": 300,
          "subscription_refresh_delay": 0.5
    "log_level": "INFO"


You need to specifiy, which environment you want to use. In this example the environment-configuration "mobile" is shown but the environment-configuration "local" (also somewhere in this file) is used. Specify your own environment-configuration, or edit one to your needs. The values for "contextbroker->adress" and "contextbroker->port" need to be set for this example to work. The Information from the contextbroker can be retrieved by its configuration.

This is the absolute minimum configuration you need to do in order to be able to start up FIROS. To actually publish and subscribe to ROS-Topics you should checkout Configuration-Files or the Turtlesim-Example.


Just execute:

rosrun firos


python firos/

to execute FIROS with Python2

Firos should function via Python3. You can try it via:

python3 firos/


Dependency XY is missing

FIROS uses e.g. requests which is not a standard python package (ref). In this case you might already have it installed. If not use your package-manager like apt, pacman, pip , ... to add it to your machine. Usually all needed packages are inside requirements.txt

Installation via Docker

There exists a FIROS-Docker-Version which currently can be build locally. This installation only requires Docker.

Cloning this Project

During or after the Docker-Installation you need to clone this repository via:

git clone --recursive

Please check whether the folders firos/include/FiwareObjectConverter and firos/include/genpy contains any content. If not, the submodules were not initialized successfully and you might need to take a look at this

After you cloned this repository you have two options to start up FIROS:

Using docker build

Beginning from the base of this repository, FIROS can be built via docker using:

docker build -f ./docker/Dockerfile --tag firos:localbuild .

This will create an image with a pre-configured config.json which requires the Orion-ContextBroker. Before running this image, you need to specify a topics.json. Information on how to create the configuration-files can be found in Configuration-Files or in the Turtlesim-Example. An example-pre-configured configuration for docker can be found in firos/docker/docker-config

Assuming you have a network finet (-> "firos-net"): You need to start a roscore, MongoDB, the Orion-ContextBroker and afterwards FIROS like this:

# Starting roscore
docker run -it --net finet --name rosmaster ros:melodic-ros-core roscore

# Starting mongodb
docker run --net finet --name mongodb mongo:3.4

# Starting Orion-ContextBroker and link to mongodb
docker run -it --rm --net finet --name orion --link mongodb -p 1026:1026 fiware/orion -dbhost mongodb

# Starting firos (Set the paths for the needed Configuration-Files here!)
docker run -it --net finet --name firos \
    -p 10100:10100 \
    --env ROS_MASTER_URI=http://rosmaster:11311 \
    -v CONFIG_FILE_TOPICS:/catkin_ws/src/firos/config/topics.json \
    -v CONFIG_FILE_WHITELIST:/catkin_ws/src/firos/config/whitelist.json \

After this FIROS is ready to publish data and subscribe onto the local Orion-ContextBroker.

Using docker-compose

The docker-compose.yml can be located inside the docker-folder at the base of this repository. Before executing the compose-file you need to configure the configurations-files, which this docker-image uses in firos/docker/docker-config. Please have a look at Configuration-Files or the Turtlesim-Example. The folder contains a basic example with turtlesim and can be used as is.

If everything is set up, execute inside the docker-folder:

docker-compose up

This launches the Orion-Context-Broker (named orion), a roscore-Instance (named rosmaster) and FIROS (named firos) with its specific configuration inside docker-config with a netowrk (like docker_default). The Ports: 10100 and 1026 are also exposed to the host-machine.

Adding another ROS-Application into this Environment

In order to add another ROS-Application into this environment you can either write another docker-compose.yml which includes the environment-variable "ROS_MASTER_URI=http://rosmaster:11311" with its correspoding network net: "docker_default" or call the correspoding docker run command:

docker run --net docker_default --name YOUR_NAME --env ROS_MASTER_URI=http://rosmaster:11311 YOUR_IMAGE:NAME_HERE