This document is about: SERVER 5

Photon Cloud or Photon Server?

Photon Cloud is a fully managed software as a service (SaaS) solution. You can completely concentrate on your application client while hosting, server operations and scaling is all taken care of by us.

Photon Server is a On-Premises server application that you can run and host on machines of your choice. Fully customizable and the authoritative control gives you the freedom to configure and set up your own multiplayer game backend.

Photon Cloud is running on Photon Server.

photon software layers
Photon Multiplayer Game Backend


  Photon Cloud Photon Server
Server Administration Zero server hassle anymore. Sit back and relax while our experts take care of running the servers. You gain full authority of running Photon for your applications. You run your own servers or rent fitting ones and make sure they are available for your users.

Photon's logs and performance counters provide all necessary information on performance and stability.
Scalability The Photon Cloud scales automatically to accommodate all your users.
Using our SDKs your client application is built for an efficient load balancing workflow.
Our load balancing power-up is available in source code. It is a solid foundation to scale across multiple servers.
Running the right number of servers for your customers is in your responsibility.
Game logic With Photon Realtime, Photon Voice, Photon Chat and PUN you get turnkey solutions for all multiplayer game types. Each of the client SDKs available for free download contains multiple samples in source to get you started really quick in using Photons APIs for synchronous and asynchronous games and applications. The server's logic can be fully customized in C#. Several demo applications are available in source with the free server SDKs and provide a high performance off-the-shelf framework for your application. Benefit from our protocols and abstraction of low level functionality and add any feature you might be missing.
Start instantly Photon Cloud lets you register and immediately run your application. No setup needed. No server needed. Once downloaded, start your Photon Server in less than 5 minutes. Photon is very easy to set up and runs locally as well as remote.
Licensing Choose between various subscriptions, matching your monthly active users count.
Whether you are an indie, startup or a AAA studio, you will find a matching plan. Photon Realtime has a free plan for up to 20 CCU.
Licenses are available as one-off purchases or subscriptions and provided as download.
Host any number of servers and applications using the enterprise licenses. The Photon Server requires a valid license to run.
  See Plans See Plans
Virtual Application
Name Server
Supported Products
Photon Realtime
Photon Chat
Photon Voice
Photon Bolt
Authentication Providers

Important Changes Since v5.0.12.24499

Photon Cloud constantly gets updated with fixes, enhancements or new features. Although we try to release new versions for Photon Server SDK to catch up with the Photon Cloud, the two cannot be in sync all the time.

Here, we list the important changes in Photon Cloud since the latest public release of the Photon Server SDK which is v5.0.12.24499. Besides, this list will give you the things that may break your game if you target both Photon Cloud and Photon Server environments at the same time or switch from one to the other. You may find workaround suggestions as well.

Missing Photon Cloud Features in v5.0.12.24499

  • Random cluster support on NameServer (wildcard, asterisk cluster '/*') is missing in RC1. By default, the C# client SDKs (including PUN) are appending a "/*" postfix to the cloud region string if the region string does not specify a cluster explicitly (does not contain '/'). This feature is used for cluster sharding. So if a client tries to connect to a self-hosted v5 RC1 server with a specific region without specifying a cluster, this will fail with 'InvalidRegion' error. This is because the client will request region code "{x}/*" while the developer only asked for "{x}". You can still use the Best Region feature when available to connect or comment out the code that appends the wildcard cluster in C# SDKs (in "LoadBalancingClient.cs", first three lines inside LoadBalancingClient.ConnectToRegionMaster). But the latter option is inconvenient especially when updating clietn SDKs. A workaround is to double the region entries in Nameserver.json by adding a duplicate per region but with '/*' suffix as name for each region you have. So, for example, if you have "eu" region only, you need to add and identical entry by with "eu/*" as name.
  • Sending Dictionary<string, object> as POST payload data in custom authentication request is not supported in RC1. You can still send string or byte[].

Known Issues in v5.0.12.24499

  • Setting GameServer IP via PhotonControl will result in an error. You need to set the GameServer IP manually in "deploy\LoadBalancing\bin\GameServer.xml.config" and the setting name is "PublicIPAddress".
  • A configuration error in PhotonServer.config's HTTPListeners' URLs makes it impossible to connect to the server via WebSocket protocol out of the box. Replace "/+" with "/*" and it should work.
Back to top