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I'm working my way through the urdf tutorials, specifically this one

On the first task it has me launch rviz to see the "r2d2" robot using the command: roslaunch urdf_tutorial display.launch model:=01-myfirst.urdf

I am in the proper directory, rviz launches just fine, but there is no robot visible. Just the grid map. This error appears under the Global Status in orange: No tf data. Actual error: Fixed Frame [map] does not exist

So I get that it's not getting transform data, but I'm not sure what to do about it. I have not modified any files, am running hydro on Precise.

Originally posted by richkappler on ROS Answers with karma: 106 on 2013-12-28

Post score: 0


1 Answer 1


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Ok, so the idea was that this was fixed in the most recent commits to urdf_tutorial (see urdf_tutorial/commit/8e0df6bc).

Apparently, the CMakeLists.txt install statement removes the directory prefix and installs the files into the package's share directory (ie: $ROSDISTRO/share/urdf_tutorial). The recent commits make RViz expect its config to be in urdf_tutorials/urdf_tutorials. The consequence of this is that RViz cannot find the configuration file and substitutes some defaults (which result in what you are seeing).

Short term work-around: remove the second urdf_tutorial from the last line in display.launch, so it reads:

<node name="rviz" pkg="rviz" type="rviz" args="-d $(find urdf_tutorial)/urdf.rviz" required="true" />

Depending on how you installed the urdf_tutorial package, you might need to use sudo for this.

Long term solution: I've submitted a ticket to rectify this (again .. mea culpa): see urdf_tutorial/issues/6.

PS: the TF errors are ok for the 01-myfirst.urdf file: it doesn't have any joints.

Originally posted by gvdhoorn with karma: 86574 on 2013-12-29

This answer was ACCEPTED on the original site

Post score: 3

Original comments

Comment by richkappler on 2013-12-29:
That did the trick, thanks!


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