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Ice - Comprehensive RPC Framework

Ice is a comprehensive RPC framework that helps you network your software with minimal effort. Ice takes care of all interactions with low-level network programming interfaces and allows you to focus your efforts on your application logic. When using Ice, there is no need to worry about details such as opening network connections, serializing and deserializing data for network transmission, or retrying failed connection attempts (to name just a few of dozens of such low-level details).

You can download Ice releases from ZeroC's website. Use this GitHub repository to build from source; see branches for more information.


Ice supports the following programming languages:

  • C#
  • C++
  • Java
  • JavaScript
  • Objective-C
  • PHP
  • Python
  • Ruby


Ice runs on a wide range of platforms:

  • Android
  • iOS with Ice Touch
  • Linux
  • Linux on embedded devices with Ice-E
  • Node.js
  • OS X
  • Web Browser
  • Windows
  • Universal Windows


  • Efficient, high-performance binary protocol
  • Supports a wide range of programming languages and platforms
  • Easy to use and type-safe API, with your own interfaces and types defined in a programming language neutral IDL, Slice
  • Supports secure, encrypted communications by taking advantage of your platform's native SSL/TLS stack
  • Familiar object-oriented programming model, with the ability to transmit proxies (references to remote objects) to remote applications
  • Supports synchronous and asynchronous calls, for both client-side invocations and server-side dispatches
  • Automatic discovery of remote objects through UDP multicast
  • Comes with a number of optional services:
    • IceGrid - a DNS-like service for Ice objects, with support for server deployment, replication, monitoring, load-balancing and more
    • IceStorm - a lightweight topic-based pub-sub service
    • Glacier2 - a sysadmin-friendly solution for routing Ice communications through firewalls
    • IcePatch2 - an efficient software distribution and patching service


  • master Primary development branch (unstable, frequently updated)

  • 3.6 Ice 3.6.x plus various patches (stable, frequently updated)

  • 3.5 Ice 3.5.1 plus various patches (stable)

  • 3.4 Ice 3.4.2 plus various patches (stable)

Copyright and License

Ice is a single-copyright project: all the source code in this ice repository is Copyright © ZeroC, Inc., with very few exceptions.

As copyright owner, ZeroC can license Ice under different license terms, and offers the following licenses for Ice:

  • GPL v2, a popular open-source license with strong copyleft conditions (the default license)
  • Commercial or closed-source licenses

If you license Ice under GPL v2, there is no license fee or signed license agreement: you just need to comply with the GPL v2 terms and conditions. See ICE_LICENSE and LICENSE for further information.

If you purchase a commercial or closed-source license for Ice, you must comply with the terms and conditions listed in the associated license agreement; the GPL v2 terms and conditions do not apply.

The Ice software itself remains the same: the only difference between an open-source Ice and a commercial Ice are the license terms.



Comprehensive RPC framework with support for C++, C#, Java, JavaScript, Python and more.







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  • C++ 44.9%
  • Java 21.2%
  • C# 15.8%
  • JavaScript 5.3%
  • Python 5.0%
  • Objective-C 4.1%
  • Other 3.7%