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What's new in Photon 4

Hive is the new Lite

In Photon 3 the core flow in the game server is implemented in Lite, in Photon 4 it is implemented in Hive. Lite is provided unchanged as part of the Photon Server SDK since it is still a good demo to introduce server side coding concepts. But Loadbalancing now inherits from Hive. Hive is backwards compatible for Client SDKs and extends the feature set:

  1. Active / Inactive Actors, PlayerTTL and Rejoin - how long should a player be allowed to return (rejoin) after disconnecting.
  2. EmptyRoomTTL - how long should a room be kept in memory after last player disconnects.
  3. Serialized Game State - allowing to save and load state.
  4. Check UserId - each actor in the room must have a unique UserId.
  5. Plugins.
  6. Event Cache Slices.


Plugins are the next big thing in Photon Server and especially for Photon Enterprise Cloud. Learn everything about the new Plugins SDK by reading the manual.

Custom Authentication

You can configure Photon Server with a custom authentication provider just like it was possible with Photon Cloud. Go to the custom authentication documentation page to know how to set it up for Photon Server.

IPv6 Ready

Photon Server is now IPv6-ready. For more information you can take a look at the IPv6 documentation page.

New Performance Counters

New performance counters are released for Photon Server. Check them out at the Photon Counters dedicated page.

Websockets support

Photon Server now supports websockets. To setup secure websockets read this "how-to" page.

Discontinuing Photon Dashboard

Photon Server Dashboard is no longer part of Photon Server starting from version 4.

Photon Control Updated

Photon Control changes from v3 to v4
Photon Control changes from v3 to v4

  • In v3, the "Default" Photon instance was starting "Lite", "LiteLobby" and "MMO" server applications. Since "Lite" is deprecated in v4, "Default" Photon instance was removed from Photon Control in version 4.x. "LoadBalancing" should be the logical replacement for "Default". Also, now you can start "MMO" instance separately.

  • Since Photon Dashboard is discontued the shortcut is removed from Photon Dashboard.

  • There is a new shortcut to get the free Photon Server license.

Ending support for Windows XP, Windows Server 2003 and earlier

Starting from version 4, there will be no support for Windows XP or Windows Server 2003 or earlier versions. Take a look at the specifications required to run Photon Server in the requirements page.

.NET Framework update from 3.5 to 4.0

All Photon projects now use version 4.0 of the .NET Framework. There will be no further support for 3.5.

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