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Modifying GAZEBO_RESOURCE_PATH causes null pointer crash

asked 2016-08-29 14:06:41 -0600

updated 2016-09-19 16:59:46 -0600

Last week, my plugins were working. Without having changed anything, this week the visual plugin crashes. Does anyone have any insights into what's going on or how to fix this? Does anyone else get the same error on compiling the plugin and using it with the world file below?

[Edit Sept. 19 '16: I did change something, which I had forgotten about. As alluded to in the edited title of the question, I attempted to add a directory to the GAZEBO_RESOURCE_PATH in .bashrc -- see the issue URL in the comment below. This problem had nothing whatsoever to do with my visual plugin.]

Here's the error:

gzclient: /usr/include/boost/smart_ptr/shared_ptr.hpp:653: typename boost::detail::sp_member_access<T>::type boost::shared_ptr<T>::operator->() const [with T = gazebo::rendering::Camera; typename boost::detail::sp_member_access<T>::type = gazebo::rendering::Camera*]: Assertion `px != 0' failed.
Aborted (core dumped)

Here are the only files necessary to reproduce the crash:

Visual plugin:

#include <gazebo/gazebo.hh>
#include <gazebo/common/common.hh>
#include <gazebo/rendering/rendering.hh>
#include <stdio.h>

namespace gazebo
{ class SpacenavVisualPlugin : public VisualPlugin
  { public: 

      // Constructor
      SpacenavVisualPlugin() : VisualPlugin()
      { printf( "SpacenavVisualPlugin started\n" ); // DEBUG

      // Destructor
      ~SpacenavVisualPlugin() // : ~VisualPlugin()
      { printf( "SpacenavVisualPlugin stopped\n" ); // DEBUG

      void Load( rendering::VisualPtr _visual, sdf::ElementPtr /*_sdf*/)
      { // === Turn off the SpaceNavigator's default camera control
        rendering::ScenePtr scene = _visual->GetScene();
        rendering::UserCameraPtr cam = scene->GetUserCamera( 0 );
        cam->SetJoyPoseControl( false );
        cam->SetJoyTwistControl( false );

  // Register this plugin with the simulator
  GZ_REGISTER_VISUAL_PLUGIN( SpacenavVisualPlugin )

World file:

<?xml version="1.0" ?>
<sdf version="1.5">
  <world name="default">



    <!-- model just to hold plugin that turns off spacenav camera control  -->
    <model name="dummy_model">
      <link name="dummy">
        <collision name="collision">
              <size>1 1 1</size>
        <visual name="visual">
              <size>1 1 1</size>
          <plugin name="spacenavVisualPlugin" filename="/home/jason/"/>


The commands I run are gzserver and, in a separate terminal window, gzclient. The abort back to the prompt happens almost immediately after the second command, just a split second after the gazebo splash screen and the main window are drawn. Then I can quit the first command in its terminal window with CTRL-c.

Here is the question where I describe the need for the visual plugin. The problem seems to be related to this question; i.e., the plugin is somehow running before the rendering engine is initialized, but I don't know of any other way to turn off the Space Navigator other than the visual plugin.

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I am not able to reproduce your problem, what Gazebo version are you using? The world loads fine and I see the "SpacenavVisualPlugin started" and "SpacenavVisualPlugin stopped" messages. You could try running it through gdb.

chapulina gravatar imagechapulina ( 2016-08-31 17:13:12 -0600 )edit

Thank you! It'll probably be next week before I can follow up, but I'll get back to you.

JasonMel gravatar imageJasonMel ( 2016-08-31 17:47:00 -0600 )edit

@chapulina Actually, I've realized that Gazebo doesn't even work when running `gzserver` with the presupplied and running `gzclient` in another terminal. The gzserver seems to work, but the gzclient loads the spash screen and the main window border, outputs the error I quoted in the question, and quits. Then I CTRL-c out of the gzserver. Gazebo works fine if launched via the launcher, however. The major version is 7, but I'm not sure what the minor and patch versions are.

JasonMel gravatar imageJasonMel ( 2016-09-06 09:26:54 -0600 )edit

That sounds like a bug... You could ticket an issue at Bitbucket detailing your computer specs and how you installed Gazebo.

chapulina gravatar imagechapulina ( 2016-09-06 10:51:12 -0600 )edit

This is an odd error. The `gazebo` command just runs gzserver and gzclient in separate processes. If `gazebo` works, then separate invocations of `gzserver` and `gzclient` should as well. You might see this type of error if you have multiple (and different) versions of Gazebo installed.

nkoenig gravatar imagenkoenig ( 2016-09-07 09:25:13 -0600 )edit

Did anyone manage to solve this problem? I'm still seeing it.

Omer gravatar imageOmer ( 2016-09-10 07:32:27 -0600 )edit

@Omer Yeah, there's a fix at that worked for me. I haven't typed up an answer here because I'd like to see how the issue discussion plays out.

JasonMel gravatar imageJasonMel ( 2016-09-12 11:57:19 -0600 )edit

1 Answer

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answered 2016-09-20 12:24:46 -0600

updated 2016-09-20 14:49:02 -0600

As I indicated in my edit, this problem has nothing to do with any plugins. It was caused by attempting, in .bashrc, to modify environment variables, GAZEBO_MODEL_PATH and GAZEBO_RESOURCE_PATH, that had never been set. As Steven Peters pointed out in the bug tracker issue, this entire problem can be fixed by putting the line

source /usr/share/gazebo/

above any lines that customize the Gazebo paths, such as


in .bashrc. The Getting Started tutorial mentions the need to do this.

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Thanks!, this helped.

Kapil gravatar imageKapil ( 2019-10-07 22:11:38 -0600 )edit
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Asked: 2016-08-29 14:06:41 -0600

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Last updated: Sep 20 '16