stellarium  0.18.3
About: Stellarium is a planetarium software. It shows a realistic sky in 3D, just like what you see with the naked eye, binoculars or a telescope. Source code.
  Fossies Dox: stellarium-0.18.3.tar.gz  ("inofficial" and yet experimental doxygen-generated source code documentation)  

Instrument Neutral Distributed Interface INDI


INDI is a simple XML-like communications protocol described for interactive and automated remote control of diverse instrumentation. INDI is small, easy to parse, and stateless.

In the INDI paradigm each Device poses all command and status functions in terms of settings and getting Properties. Each Property is a vector of one or more names members. Each property has a current value vector; a target value vector; provides information about how it should be sequenced with respect to other Properties to accomplish one coordinated unit of observation; and provides hints as to how it might be displayed for interactive manipulation in a GUI.

Clients learn the Properties of a particular Device at runtime using introspection. This decouples Client and Device implementation histories. Devices have a complete authority over whether to accept commands from Clients. INDI accommadates intermediate servers, broadcasting, and connection topologies ranging from one-to-one on a single system to many-to-many between systems of different genre.

The INDI protocol can be nested within other XML elements such as constraints for automatic scheduling and execution. For a complete review on the INDI protocol, please refer to the INDI white paper.

Intended Audience

INDI is intended for developers who seek a scalable API for device control and automation. Hardware drivers written under INDI can be used under any INDI-compatible client. INDI serves as a backend only, you need frontend clients to control devices. Current clients include KStars, Xephem, DCD, and Cartes du Ciel.

Developing under INDI

Please refere to the INDI Developers Manual for a complete guide on INDI's driver developemnt framework.

The INDI Library API is divided into the following main sections:


INDI Library includes a number of tutorials to illustrate development of INDI drivers. Check out the examples provided with INDI library.


Simulators provide a great framework to test drivers and equipment alike. INDI Library provides the following simulators:

  • Telescope Simulator: Offers GOTO capability, motion control, guiding, and ability to set Periodic Error (PE) which is read by the CCD simulator when generating images.
  • CCD Simulator: Offers a very flexible CCD simulator with a primary CCD chip and a guide chip. The simulator generate images based on the RA & DEC coordinates it snoops from the telescope driver using General Star Catalog (GSC). Please note that you must install GSC for the CCD simulator to work properly. Furthermore, The simulator snoops FWHM from the focuser simulator which affects the generated images focus. All images are generated in standard FITS format.
  • Filter Wheel Simulator: Offers a simple simulator to change filter wheels and their corresponding designations.
  • Focuser Simulator: Offers a simple simualtor for an absolute position focuser. It generates a simulated FWHM value that may be used by other simulator such as the CCD simulator.
  • Dome Simulator: Offers a simple simulator for an absolute position dome with shutter.
  • GPS Simulator: Offers a simple simulator for GPS devices that send time and location data to the client and other drivers.


You can find information on INDI development in the INDI Library site. Furthermore, you can discuss INDI related issues on the INDI development mailing list.

Jasem Mutlaq
Elwood Downey