SatNOGS Client Development

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This page describes the setup of a development environment for the SatNOGS ground station reference setup based on satnogs-client-ansible. It is assumed you have already setup your ground station as explained in SatNOGS_Client_Ansible.

gr-satnogs and gr-satnogs-package

The gnuradio Out-Of-Tree module gr-satnogs is packaged by gr-satnogs-package. The gitlab-CI automatically builds the package in docker containers as nightlies and on each release (git-tag, e.g. gr-satnogs_1.3-1_armhf.deb), configured by the .gitlab-ci.yml.

To use a modified gr-satnogs module on a SatNOGS ground station, it’s recommended to build it using the gr-satnogs-package scripts. Otherwise you can build gr-satnogs manually and adjust the installation paths to match the paths specified by gr-satnogs-package.

Building gr-satnogs with gr-satnogs-package can be automated via gitlab-CI, so that binary releases of your modified gr-satnogs module are available to download and install by the satnogs-client-ansible scripts (satnogs-setup).


  • Fork gr-satnogs
  • Fork gr-satnogs-package
  • Adjust the repository url of gr-satnogs in gr-satnogs-package/debian/debian/rules#L22
  • Adjust the repository url in the version detection in gr-satnogs-package/.gitlab-ci.yml#L13 ,#L30 ,#L47
  • Wait for the gitlab-CI to build your first version of gr-satnogs-package (~45 min)
  • Install your freshly built gr-satnogs-package by pointing the SATNOGS_RADIO_GR_SATNOGS_PACKAGE in satnogs-setup to the built artifact/debian package of your architecture (e.g. armhf, amd64). The build artifacts are available in your gr-satnogs-package fork by clicking CI/CD, selecting there the latest pipeline, the latest build-job and then in the right column Browse, path build/debian/output/$your_arch/gr-satnogs_$your_arch.deb


The satnogs-client is a python package, and gets installed by satnogs-setup in a python virtual environment using pip. The development branch for the current releases 0.x is named 0. It's the original client implementation and features a local web interface. A new implementation which aimed at a more modular architecture and doesn't include the local web interface anymore is developed in the master branch (currently stale as of 2018-07-13).

Please note that satnogs-client and gr-satnogs must be installed in compatible versions, due to (frequent) changes in the arguments available in the demodulation scripts, see Compatibility.