Goby3  3.1.5a
Goby Underwater Autonomy Project

The Goby Underwater Autonomy Project aims to create a unified framework for autonomous marine vehicle collaboration, seamlessly incorporating efficient intervehicle (acoustic, satellite, etc.), flexible interprocess (ethernet, local sockets, etc.), and intuitive interthread (shared pointer) communications. In addition, Goby provides a variety of useful tools for interacting with other marine-related middlewares, as well as marine engineering and oceanographic data. The Goby libraries are licensed under the GNU Lesser General Public License and the applications (binaries) are licensed under the GNU General Public License.


Developer manual

Goby is comprised of several libraries:

  • Core library (libgoby.so)
  • ZeroMQ support library (libgoby_zeromq.so) - optional
  • MOOS support library (libgoby_moos.so) - optional

Along with each of those libraries, Goby provides a number of related applications.

Core library

The core libgoby.so is comprised of several conceptual components:

  • acomms - tackle the extremely rate limited acoustic networking problem. This part of Goby was designed with modules that can operate independently for a developer looking to integrate a specific component (e.g. just encoding/decoding) without committing to the entire goby-acomms stack.
  • middleware - (new for Goby 3) nested publish/subscribe middleware based on interthread, interprocess, and intervehicle communications.
  • util - provide utility functions for tasks such as logging, scientific calculations, string parsing, and serial device i/o. Goby also relies on the Boost libraries for many utility tasks to fill in areas where the C++ Standard Library is insufficient or unelegant.

ZeroMQ support library

  • zeromq - implementation of the Goby3 interprocess portal using the ZeroMQ transport library.

MOOS support library

  • moos - classes, applications (e.g. pAcommsHandler and iFrontSeat), and functions for interoperating between Goby and the MOOS middleware.


Download and Install Goby

Debian and Ubuntu

The only officially supported distributions are Debian (stable and oldstable) and Ubuntu (currently supported LTS releases). Packages for these releases are built for the amd64, arm64, and armhf architectures and uploaded to http://packages.gobysoft.org

To install release packages on Ubuntu, run:

echo "deb http://packages.gobysoft.org/ubuntu/release/ `lsb_release -c -s`/" | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/gobysoft_release.list

or for Debian:

echo "deb http://packages.gobysoft.org/debian/release/ `lsb_release -c -s`/" | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/gobysoft_release.list

In both cases, then run:

sudo apt-key adv --recv-key --keyserver keyserver.ubuntu.com 19478082E2F8D3FE
sudo apt update
# minimal
sudo apt install libgoby3-dev goby3-apps
# full
sudo apt install libgoby3-dev libgoby3-gui-dev goby3-apps goby3-gui goby3-doc goby3-test libgoby3-moos-dev goby3-moos

Instead of the release repository, you can use the continuous repository (every commit to the main 3.0 branch build) by adding to your apt sources:

deb http://packages.gobysoft.org/[ubuntu|debian]/continuous/ {release-codename}/


Other Linux and UNIX-like operating systems should work, but will require building from source and a bit of dependency searching. For all dependencies to build all parts of Goby, you can start by looking at the Build-Depends of the Debian package control file. Not all of these dependencies are required to build parts of Goby; a minimal build requires these Debian packages, from which you can hopefully find your release's equivalents:

# Compiler, CMake
build-essential cmake
# Boost
libboost-dev libboost-system-dev libboost-date-time-dev libboost-program-options-dev libboost-filesystem-dev
# Google Protocol Buffers
libprotobuf-dev libprotoc-dev protobuf-compiler
# PROJ Geodetic Projections
libdccl4-dev dccl4-compiler

Once you have resolved the dependencies, you can build from source using these steps:

  1. Download a release or clone the git repository

    git clone https://github.com/GobySoft/goby3.git

  2. Create an out-of-source build directory and change to it

    mkdir goby3/build && cd goby3/build

  3. Run cmake and build

    cmake .. && cmake --build .

Building Examples

Please visit https://github.com/GobySoft/goby3-examples to learn about the available code examples for Goby.


Goby is developed by GobySoft and a number of external contributers (https://github.com/GobySoft/goby3/graphs/contributors). The lead developer is Toby Schneider (https://github.com/tsaubergine).