Introducing drekar-launch

drekar-launch is a simple standalone process launcher/orchestrator. It is written in Python and has the following features:

  • Lightweight, single file Python program with minimal dependencies.
  • Standalone program that does not require ROS and can run any process necessary.
  • Various parameters available to control program execution including arguments, working directory, environment, restart, auto quit, etc.
  • Windows support using Job Objects and Windows Messages to provide graceful shutdown and avoid hanging programs.
  • Linux cgroupv2 to make certain tasks terminate correctly (on newer Linux distributions).
  • A simple GUI that can optionally be displayed to the user with a “Stop All” button. This is useful for when a launch is done interactively.
  • Jinja2 template support for configuration files with environmental variables, command line arguments, system information, etc.
  • Companion drekar-launch-process libraries used to catch signals and windows messages, to provide a graceful shutdown signal. The companion libraries are available for Python and C++ with more possible in the future.
  • Basic logging support.
  • Modular design can be embedded in other applications that require process management.

drekar-launch has similar goals to ros-launch, but has a different architecture and feature set.

Future work may include:

  • Improved log management and rotation.
  • Integration with Windows services.
  • Additional companion libraries for other programming languages.
  • Adoption of “pluggy” package for plugin support.

Contributions are welcome!

drekar-launch is developed and maintained by Wason Technology, LLC.

The development of drekar-launch was supported in part by the United States Advanced Robotics in Manufacturing (ARM) Institute. The ARM Institute is the nation’s leading Robotics and AI Manufacturing Innovation Institute. Operating as a non-profit consortium, the ARM Institute and its members accelerate the adoption of robotics and automation to increase U.S. manufacturing competitiveness. Learn more at


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