Multimedia Systems

, Volume 20, Issue 5, pp 451–470 | Cite as

Dissecting the protocol and network traffic of the OnLive cloud gaming platform

  • M. ManzanoEmail author
  • M. Urueña
  • M. Sužnjević
  • E. Calle
  • J. A. Hernández
  • M. Matijasevic
Special Issue Paper


Cloud gaming is a new paradigm that is envisaged to play a pivotal role in the video game industry in forthcoming years. Cloud gaming, or gaming on demand, is a type of online gaming that allows on-demand streaming of game content onto non-specialised devices (e.g. PC, smart TV, etc.). This approach requires no downloads or game installation because the actual game is executed on the game company’s server and is streamed directly to the client. Nonetheless, this revolutionary approach significantly affects the network load generated by online games. As cloud gaming presents new challenges for both network engineers and the research community, both groups need to be fully conversant with these new cloud gaming platforms. The purpose of this paper is to investigate OnLive, one of the most popular cloud gaming platforms. Our key contributions are: (a) a review of the state-of-the-art of cloud gaming; (b) reverse engineering of the OnLive protocol; and (c) a synthetic traffic model for OnLive.


Cloud gaming Online games OnLive Protocol  Reverse engineering Traffic modelling 



This work was partly supported by the projects: TEC 2012-32336, TEC 2010-12250-E and S-2009/TIC-1468, and by the Generalitat de Catalunya through the research support program project SGR-1202 and AGAUR FI-DGR 2012 grant. Also, this work was supported by the research project 036-0362027-1639, by the Ministry of Science, Education, and Sports of the Republic of Croatia, and Ericsson Nikola Tesla, Zagreb, Croatia. The research leading to these results has also received funding from the European Community’s Seventh Framework Programme under grant agreement no. 285939 (ACROSS).


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Manzano
    • 1
    Email author
  • M. Urueña
    • 2
  • M. Sužnjević
    • 3
  • E. Calle
    • 1
  • J. A. Hernández
    • 2
  • M. Matijasevic
    • 3
  1. 1.Institute of Informatics and Applications (IIiA)University of GironaGironaSpain
  2. 2.Department of Telematic EngineeringUniversidad Carlos III de MadridMadridSpain
  3. 3.Faculty of Electrical Engineering and ComputingUniversity of ZagrebZagrebCroatia

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