Foxglove Studio can load local and remote ROS 2 (
.db3) files, or connect directly to a running ROS stack using a Rosbridge (WebSockets) or native (TCP) connection.
You can use the
mcap CLI tool to help with this conversion:
$ mcap convert ros2_input.db3 ros2_output.mcap
mcap will search the path stored in your
$AMENT_PREFIX_PATH environment variable to locate the ROS message definitions on your hard drive. You can also specify a colon-separated list of directories for the CLI tool to search using the
$ mcap convert ros2_input.db3 ros2_output.mcap --ament-prefix-path=/your/first/directory;/your/second/directory
Once you have your MCAP (
.mcap) files, you can open them from your local filesystem or a remote cloud storage solution.
Once you have your MCAP (
.mcap) file, double-click it from your file manager, drag-and-drop it directly into the app, or Open local file via the Data source dialog:
Foxglove Data Platform
Once you convert your ROS 2
.db3 files to MCAP (
.mcap) files, you can upload them to Foxglove Data Platform's web console and stream them directly into Foxglove Studio.
Check out the Data Platform docs for more information on how to export and visualize your robotics data.
Remote ROS 2
.db3 files are not supported, but you can convert them into MCAP files for remote file support.
To load a remote MCAP (
.mcap) file, select Open file from URL in the Data source dialog, and enter the URL to your remote file.
Check out the Setting up CORS page for more details on loading your remote data files into Foxglove Studio.
For live connections, you must be on the same network as the robot. While we support multiple options, we recommend Foxglove WebSocket as the easiest option to get started.
Connect directly to your running ROS stack using a Foxglove WebSocket connection. This connection uses a standard protocol to connect Studio to your ROS master over WebSockets. While it does require running an extra ROS node (
foxglove_bridge), we recommend this option if you have a network firewall between ROS and Studio, as it requires your ROS host to have only one port open.
Connecting to data
Open connection in the Data source dialog, select Foxglove WebSocket, then enter the URL to your Rosbridge server:
Resetting the connection
To reconnect to a Foxglove WebSocket in a different context, you must first clear out your most recently visualized data in Foxglove Studio.
To clear the state and reset your visualizations, resend the
serverInfo message with an updated value for its optional
sessionID field (string value). This lets the Foxglove WebSocket connection know that you are initiating a new connection, instead of trying to reconnect to a dropped one.
Foxglove WebSocket connections support publishing back to your ROS stack, but not reading or setting ROS parameters.
NOTE: For performance reasons, we recommend using the Foxglove WebSocket connection instead.
Connect directly to your running ROS stack via WebSockets using a Rosbridge connection.
rosbridge connection uses a standard protocol to connect Studio to your ROS master over WebSockets. While it does require running an extra ROS node (
rosbridge_server), we recommend this option if you have a network firewall between ROS and Studio, as it requires your ROS host to have only one port open.
# For Galactic (ROS 2) $ sudo apt install ros-galactic-rosbridge-suite
Next, start the WebSocket server, and review the command printout to determine the port it is listening on (e.g.
$ ros2 launch rosbridge_server rosbridge_websocket_launch.xml
Click Open connection in the Data source dialog, select "Rosbridge (ROS 1 & 2)", then enter the URL to your Rosbridge server:
You are now connected to ROS!
To test your connection, add a Raw Messages panel to your layout, and see a list of available topics populate the dropdown. Check out the
/connected_clients topic to see information
rosbridge is publishing about your connection.
Rosbridge connections support publishing back to your ROS stack, but not reading or setting ROS parameters.