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Powerful RakNet Networking Library Open Sourced by Oculus

| by Jeff Martin Follow 16 Followers on Jul 16, 2014. Estimated reading time: 1 minute |

Newly acquired Facebook property OcculusVR, has announced that it purchased the RakNet library, and immediately turned around to release it on GitHub via a modified BSD license.  Oculus describes RakNet as a “comprehensive C++ game networking engine designed for ease of use and performance…”.   

RakNet offers developers a well-rounded set of features for those willing to take advantage of its offerings.  It includes an AutoPatcher, support for encrypted connections, object replication, remote procedure calls, and voice communication, among others. 

RakNet supports additional plugins through an interface defined in PluginInterface2.h to easily support extensions for your particular project.  A Command Console is provided to demonstrate how a server can be controlled via Telnet or RakNet’s protocol.  The AutoPatcher in the public release supports PostgreSQL in the default sample while a self-scaling version supports using Rackspace Cloud to additional servers as demand increases.

NAT Punchthrough allows projects not using Steam to connect despite the presence of firewalls and/or routers.  Other included abilities is a Crash Reporter which can allow your application to email or save a mini-dump of the last moments of its operation.

The author of RakNet, Kevin Jenkins, produced an overview video of the features included, but note this was produced in 2010 resulting in some differences from the public release.  

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