PcapPlusPlus is a multiplatform C++ network sniffing and packet parsing and crafting framework. PcapPlusPlus is meant to be lightweight, efficient and easy to use. It's a C++ wrapper for popular engines like libpcap, WinPcap, DPDK and PF_RING
Clone or download



Build Status Build status

PcapPlusPlus is a multiplatform C++ network sniffing and packet parsing and crafting framework. PcapPlusPlus is meant to be lightweight, efficient and easy to use.

PcapPlusPlus web-site: http://seladb.github.io/PcapPlusPlus-Doc

Getting Started

Please visit the Tutorials in PcapPlusPlus web-site to learn about PcapPlusPlus and how to use it

What makes PcapPlusPlus different from similar C++ wrappers for libpcap/WinPcap?

  • Designed to be lightweight and efficient
  • Support for DPDK fast packet processing engine which enables packet capturing and transmition in line rate using kernel bypass
  • Support for ntop's PF_RING packet capturing engine that dramatically improves the packet capture speed
  • Support for parsing and editing of many protocols, including L5-7 protocols like HTTP, SSL/TLS and SIP
  • Unique implementation of TCP reassembly logic which includes support of TCP retransmission, out-of-order TCP packets and missing TCP data
  • Support for Remote Capture capabilities on Windows (using RPCAP protocol supported in WinPcap)
  • Support for reading and writing PCAPNG files (a lot more more than currently supported in WinPcap/libpcap)
  • Vast object-oriented filtering mechanism that makes libpcap filters a lot more user-friendly (no need to know the exact filter string to use)

PcapPlusPlus Is Multi-Platform!

PcapPlusPlus is currently supported on Windows, Linux and Mac OS X. It was tested on the following platforms:

  • Windows:

    • Microsoft Visual Studio 2015 (32-bit + 64-bit compilation)
    • MinGW32 (32-bit compilation only)
    • MinGW-w64 (32-bit compilation only)
  • Linux:

    • Ubuntu (12.04 LTS, 14.04 LTS, 16.04 LTS, 18.04 LTS)
    • Fedora 26
    • CentOS 7
    • It should work on other Linux distributions as well
  • Mac OS X:

    • Yosemite (10.10)
    • El Capitan (10.11)
    • Sierra (10.12)
    • High Sierra (10.13)

Supported Packet Capture Engines

PcapPlusPlus currently works with the following packet capture engines:

  1. libpcap packet capture (on Linux and Mac OS X)
  2. WinPcap packet capture (on Windows)
  3. Vanilla PF_RING (on Linux)
  4. DPDK (on Linux)
  5. WinPcap remote capture (on Windows)
  6. PCAP and PCAPNG files
  7. Raw sockets (on Linux and Windows)

Supported Protocols

The Packet++ library currently supports parsing, editing and creation of packets of the following protocols:

  1. Ethernet
  2. SLL (Linux cooked capture)
  3. Null/Loopback
  4. Raw IP (IPv4 & IPv6)
  5. IPv4
  6. IPv6
  7. ARP
  8. VLAN
  9. VXLAN
  10. MPLS
  11. PPPoE
  12. GRE
  13. TCP
  14. UDP
  15. ICMP
  16. IGMP (IGMPv1, IGMPv2 and IGMPv3 are supported)
  17. SIP
  18. SDP
  19. DNS
  20. DHCP
  21. HTTP headers (request & response)
  22. SSL/TLS - parsing only (no editing capabilities)
  23. Packet trailer (a.k.a footer or padding)
  24. Generic payload

Useful Packet And Network Utilities

  1. TCP reassembly logic
  2. IP reassembly logic (a.k.a IP de-fragmentation). Works for both IPv4 and IPv6
  3. Packet hash key creation (by 5-tuple and 2-tuple)
  4. Retrieve remote machine MAC address using ARP protocol
  5. Retrieve host IPv4 address by using DNS protocol
  6. Checksum calculation

Package Content

PcapPlusPlus consists of 3 libraries:

  1. Packet++ - a library for parsing, creating and editing packets
  2. Pcap++ - a library for intercepting and sending packets, providing network and NIC info, stats, etc. It is actually a C++ wrapper for packet capturing engines such as libpcap, WinPcap, DPDK and PF_RING
  3. Common++ - a library with some common code utilities used by both Packet++ and Pcap++

In addition it contains many examples, tutorials and utilities documented in the Examples and in the Tutorials pages in PcapPlusPlus web-site


In order to download PcapPlusPlus, please visit the github page.

You can also download it using these links:

Or clone the git repository by:

git clone https://github.com/seladb/PcapPlusPlus.git

Compiled Binaries

If you want an already compiled version of PcapPlusPlus chekcout the latest release: https://github.com/seladb/PcapPlusPlus/releases/latest

Compile Yourself

For compilation instructions of the various platforms please refer to the Download page in PcapPlusPlus web-site

PcapPlusPlus Documentation

PcapPlusPlus web-site includes all the relevant documentation.

Also, the entire API of PcapPlusPlus is documented using doxygen. You can find it here: http://seladb.github.io/PcapPlusPlus-Doc/Documentation/index.html

If you see any missing information please tell me

PcapPlusPlus Support

I'll be very happy to get feedbacks, so feel free to contact me in any of the following ways:

DPDK & PF_RING Support

PcapPlusPLus provides a C++ absraction layers over DPDK & PF_RING. For more details please visit PcapPlusPlus web-site:



I used Matias Fontanini's packet-capture-benchmarks project to compare the performance of PcapPlusPlus with other similar C++ libraries (libtins and libcrafter).

The results can eviewed in the Benchmarks page in PcapPlusPlus web-site

Creating Applications With PcapPlusPlus

Please refer to the Tutorials section in PcapPlusPlus web-site