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Understand Runtime

Different developers build and manage software for devices differently. supports two primary ways for application developers to manage software on a device. This enables developers the freedom to use the current software with minimal changes if any, as well as choose to leverage an entirely new runtime for a new generation of software. defines these ways as device runtimes.


The preinstalled runtime is designed to support existing software that is already preinstalled on the device. The existing software may be delivered by the traditional system images, package manager, or by other means, additionally, this software is often managed by the custom solutions that software initialization. makes it possible for the developer to leverage the numerous innovative features of the platform composition, automation, management, and tooling functionality of the platform without having to rework an existing workflow.

Containerized: Docker Runtime

Containers offer a logical packaging mechanism in which applications can be abstracted from the environment in which they run. This decoupling allows container-based applications to be deployed easily and consistently, regardless of whether the target environment is the public cloud or a connected device. Containerization provides a clean separation of concerns, as developers focus on their application logic and dependencies. Hence, it is possible to offer critical features for distributed connected robotics like transactional software updates, rollback releases, and delivers content signed software to ensure consistent operation across multiple robots in multiple locations. has first-class support for containers on the device and the cloud. It strives to maintain identical workflows, tools, and interfaces while providing tools like the build engine that enables developers to leverage these new workflow patterns like gitops for robots.

To set docker-compose as the default runtime on a device select Use docker-compose as default runtime checkbox while adding the device.

Docker compose runtime for device

When a package is deployed on a device, each executable in the package becomes a separate docker container. If your application is a ROS package, a singleton ROS Master starts in an individual docker container different from that of the executables.

All docker containers that are deployed are configured to use the host network driver. With the host network driver, the container’s network stack is not isolated from the host. For example, if you run a docker container that uses port 80, the container’s application will be available on port 80 on the host’s IP address.

ROS_MASTER_URI on a device using docker runtime is http://:1234 and not <localhost/ROSNAME>:11311