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run gazebo in virtualbox

asked 2012-09-28 13:31:37 -0500

nkoenig gravatar image

I have a project that I'm working on which I will use Gazebo to model robots. I have installed VirtualBox on my Macbook (Mac os x) and installed two different ubuntu distributions, and installed Gazebo on each of them, on both installations, I have faced with problems and was not able to install in one step although I followed every step in the instructions for ubuntu.

I would appreciate if you can let me know of the version(and the bit, 32 or 64) of Ubuntu which works best with the Gazebo so I can install that version and install Gazebo on that. I have tried the last version of Ubuntu which is 12.04 and 11.10. ( I think both of them were 64 bit distributions)

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answered 2012-09-28 13:32:48 -0500

nkoenig gravatar image

The biggest problem is running Gazebo in a virtual machine. I've never had any luck with this kind of setup.

The best solution is to setup a dual boot where your second OS is the latest Ubuntu. Then you'll be able to run Gazebo just fine.

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answered 2013-07-24 13:30:03 -0500

Carlos Agüero gravatar image

updated 2013-07-24 13:59:19 -0500

That's not a recent topic but I just let you know that gazebo works in Ubuntu 12.10 under VirtualBox. However, I was not able to make it run with a decent performance in Ubuntu 12.04.

Some extra notes:

  • Enable 3D Acceleration (On your host VirtualBox settings->Display->Video).
  • Install VirtualBox Oracle VM VirtualBox Extension Pack.
  • Install the gnome-session-fallback package on your guest. Make sure you select this desktop when you log in the next time. The performance will be better compared with Unity.
  • Do not install the guest additions.

I've tried with Gazebo 1.9.x and it is usable.


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answered 2014-01-06 11:34:47 -0500

scpeters gravatar image

This is slightly off-topic, but I noticed that you are using a Mac laptop, and we have been improving native Mac OSX support for Gazebo in case you are interested in that option.

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answered 2014-01-04 06:04:03 -0500

JanBrogger gravatar image

updated 2014-01-04 06:04:49 -0500

FWIW, Gazebo works like a charm with the following setup:

  • Host OS: Windows 7 Premium 64-bit

  • Host machine: 32 Gb RAM, Intel i7 2.8 GHz, CPU 4-core, 8-thread, SSD disk

  • Virtualizer: VMWare Workstation 9

  • Virtual machine: 8 Gb RAM, 20 Gb storage, 2 processors x 2 cores, 3D acceleration on

  • Virtual OS: Ubuntu 13.10.

  • Gazebo version: 2.1.0

Just followed the instructions.

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answered 2012-10-11 12:07:00 -0500

marcomurk gravatar image

Talking about Gazebo and virtual machines, it worth noticing that (at least) the stand-alone version of Gazebo 1.0.1 for Ubuntu 12.04 32-bit works SLOWLY but (as far as I know) fine in a VMware Player environment.

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answered 2012-10-25 15:14:42 -0500

Sameer Parekh gravatar image

I have a 4-core Mac with 10.7 and VMWare Fusion 5, Ubuntu 12.04 -- it works fairly well on 32-bit, but I haven't gotten it to work on 64-bit. Every now and then the gazebo or rviz window doesn't show me graphics (just a black window) and sometimes gazebo just crashes on startup. Performance is reasonable.

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answered 2012-10-25 00:47:49 -0500

tkoolen gravatar image

updated 2012-10-29 11:34:28 -0500

Our experience with using virtual machines is as follows:

  • Ubuntu 12.04 on VirtualBox with Windows 7 host: works, but choppy graphics; well below real-time simulation rate on recent HP Envy laptop (don't remember exact number)
  • Ubuntu 12.04 on Parallels with OS X host: works, but choppy graphics, 0.4 real-time rate on latest 15 inch Macbook Pro with DRCSim

No trouble installing on either system. By the way, the VirtualBox image found at http://www.ros.org/wiki/ROS/Installation did not work for me (error on import with OS X host).

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Yes. The virtualbox image does not work. It should be scrapped in my opinion.

nareshshah139 gravatar imagenareshshah139 ( 2012-10-31 11:29:34 -0500 )edit

answered 2012-10-09 20:50:34 -0500

SL Remy gravatar image

updated 2012-10-25 13:23:47 -0500

Running Snow Leopard on dual core MBP, I use VirtualBox 4.1.20 (kinda slow to upgrade), Ubuntu precise 32 bit, I live in ROSland so my current install is from debs, but I did test an install from source a couple of versions ago.

This is also running on a Kubuntu guest, and on a Windows 7 host (VB 4.2.0) on a Dell Optiplex 755.

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answered 2013-11-22 18:44:02 -0500

I have NOT had success running Gazebo under the following configuration:

  • Gazebo 1.9
  • Ubuntu Desktop 12.04.3 64-bit (guest)
  • List item
  • VirtualBox 4.3.0 r89960
  • Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit (host)
  • VirtualBox 3D acceleration enabled

I get error messages similar to the following:

eOpenGL Warning: glFlushVertextArrayRangeNV not found in mesa table

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Asked: 2012-09-28 13:31:37 -0500

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Last updated: Jan 06 '14