You're reading the documentation for an older, but still supported, version of ROS 2. For information on the latest version, please have a look at Foxy.

Distributions

What is a Distribution?

A ROS distribution is a versioned set of ROS packages. These are akin to Linux distributions (e.g. Ubuntu). The purpose of the ROS distributions is to let developers work against a relatively stable codebase until they are ready to roll everything forward. Therefore once a distribution is released, we try to limit changes to bug fixes and non-breaking improvements for the core packages (every thing under ros-desktop-full). That generally applies to the whole community, but for “higher” level packages, the rules are less strict, and so it falls to the maintainers of a given package to avoid breaking changes.

List of Distributions

Below is a list of current and historic ROS 2 distributions. Rows in the table marked in green are the currently supported distributions.

Distro

Release date

Logo

EOL Date

Galactic Geochelone

May 23, 2021

November 2022

Foxy Fitzroy

June 5, 2020

Foxy logo

May 2023

Eloquent Elusor

November 22nd, 2019

Eloquent logo

November 2020

Dashing Diademata

May 31st, 2019

Dashing logo

May 2021

Crystal Clemmys

December 14th, 2018

Crystal logo

December 2019

Bouncy Bolson

July 2nd, 2018

Bouncy logo

July 2019

Ardent Apalone

December 8th, 2017

Ardent logo

December 2018

beta3

September 13th, 2017

December 2017

beta2

July 5th, 2017

September 2017

beta1

December 19th, 2016

July 2017

alpha1 - alpha8

August 31st, 2015

December 2016


Future Distributions

For details on upcoming features see the roadmap.

There is a new ROS 2 distribution released yearly on May 23rd (World Turtle Day).

Distro

Release date

Supported for

Planned changes

Galactic Geochelone

May 2021

TBD

TBD

The expectation is to release new ROS 2 distributions once per year.

Rolling Distribution

The Rolling distribution of ROS 2 serves as a staging area for future stable distributions of ROS 2 and as a collection of the most recent development releases. Unlike most stable ROS 2 distributions which have an initial release, a support window during which they are updated, and a definite end of support (see List of Distributions above) the Rolling distribution is continuously updated and is subject to in-place updates which will at times include breaking changes.

Packages released into the Rolling distribution will be automatically released into future stable distributions of ROS 2. Releasing a ROS 2 package into the Rolling distribution follows the same procedures as all other ROS 2 distributions.

ROS 2 Rolling Ridley is the rolling development distribution of ROS 2 as proposed in REP 2002. It was first introduced in June 2020.

The Rolling distribution will receive frequent and possibly compatibility-breaking releases in core packages and we recommend most people use the most recent stable distribution instead. Since new stable distributions will be created from snapshots of the Rolling distribution, package maintainers who want to make their packages available in future ROS 2 distributions can do so by releasing their packages into the Rolling distribution.