As part of a broader organisational restructure, data networking research at Swinburne University of Technology has moved from the Centre for Advanced Internet Architecture (CAIA) to the Internet For Things (I4T) Research Lab.

Although CAIA no longer exists, this website reflects CAIA's activities and outputs between March 2002 and February 2017, and is being maintained as a service to the broader data networking research community.

L3DGEWorld 2.3

Screen shot
L3DGEWorld 2.3's new map "hierarchy-demo.


L3DGEWorld 2.3 is a data visualisation utility based on Open Arena, a GPL'd game that makes use of the Quake III Arena (Q3A) game engine. It was initially designed to be a network monitoring and control application, but can be easily used for other purposes by developing other input and output daemons [1]. The daemons provided with L3DGEWorld 2.3 allow monitoring and control of a live network to take place from within a virtual world created by the L3DGEWorld engine.

L3DGEWorld is the product of a research project aimed at simplifying two key network management tasks [2]:

  • The identification of anomalous traffic patterns within IP networks, and
  • The control of network elements (such as routers and firewalls) to block anomalous traffic.

L3DGEWorld 2.3, with the provided input and output daemons, creates a virtual world in which objects spin, jump, grow and change colour to represent a number of different metrics related to the greynet [3] host addresses. By using in-game techniques (in version 2.3 this involves 'shooting a gun at the spinning object') a network operator can initiate an ACL update to block undesired traffic. Our implementation allows multiple participants to view and interact with the spinning network entities, and can require multiple participants to concurrently trigger ACL updates.

L3DGEWorld 2.3 introduces a new map exploring the use of a hierarchy to hide unnecessary detail until it is needed, as previously described in [2]. On this map, touching an entity will teleport the user to a room "inside" the entity allowing them to see the more detailed information about it. The map presents a 3-level hierarchy with 6 top level entities being used to summarise the information of 144 bottom level entities.

L3DGEWorld 2.3 includes 8 visual characteristics that can be applied in many combinations to the in-game entities, enabling many pieces of information to be conveyed to users simultaneously.

L3DGEWorld 2.3 defines 10 unique entity types that map and model makers can use to intuitively represent a number of distinctly different devices on the same map.

L3DGEWorld should run on any platform to which Open Arena has been ported, and the provided source code should make it easy to compile both the server and clients for unsupported platforms.

Included in this release is the Greymatter 0.2 input daemon, a FreeBSD-based application that monitors 'greynet' network traffic [3] and feeds real time information to L3DGEWorld, and the LRCD 0.2 output daemon, which accepts actions from the server and uses them to place ACLs on the configured Cisco router. Both these daemons utilise the new UDP based protocol to communicate with a L3DGEWorld server, allowing multiple daemons to run on multiple hosts, all independently feeding or receiving data from the server. L3DGEWorld itself does not specifically require Greymatter or LRCD, and may be fed real time traffic information from other external sources [1].

What's New?

New features since L3DGEWorld 2.2 include:

  • Map Config files are now automatically selected based on map name.
  • New hierarchical map the allows users to "go inside" entities for more detailed views
  • Room Reuse functionality, which was required to achieve large hierarchies [4].
  • New UDP message that causes the server to re-read specific entity positions, allowing complete external control over entities spatial movement.
  • L3DGEWorld server now logs connecting IP addresses and timestamps to gather statistics who is connecting.
  • A number of bug fixes.


Screen shot Screen shot
The network overview. Another Administrator marking a greynet host
to have an ACL Placed.
Screen shot Screen shot
Getting detailed information about the traffic to a particular
greynet host. The traffic shown came from nmap and scp.
Many different visual characteristics being used simultaneously.

Additional screenshots and videos depicting the visual characteristics that can be applied to entities in L3DGEWorld 2.3 can be found here.

System Requirements

L3DGEWorld and it's demonstration utility, Fakematter, have been verified to run in some way, shape or form, on FreeBSD 6.2, Mac OS X 10.4.9, Linux (Ubuntu 7.04) and Windows XP Platforms (with the addition of cygwin). At this stage Greymatter only runs on FreeBSD.

[Update 5 July 2010: L3DGEWorld 2.3 client will run as-is under Mac OS X 10.6.4 Snow Leopard, and the win32 binary will run under FreeBSD 8.x using Wine 1.2-rc4. The native FreeBSD binaries (server and client) must be recompiled to run under FreeBSD 8.x (as currently built they look for older versions of and Recompilation instructions are in the tarballs.]

Client Requirements:

  • L3DGEWorld 2.3 distribution
  • libSDL and libOpenAL are required on Linux and FreeBSD
  • Q3A (and hence OpenArena) capable PC
  • Supports FreeBSD, Linux, Mac OS X and Windows.

Server Requirements:

  • L3DGEWorld 2.3 distribution
  • Q3A dedicated server capable PC
  • Supports FreeBSD, Linux, Mac OS X and Windows.

Fakematter 0.2 (demonstration input daemon) requirements:

  • cygwin (on Windows)
  • Supports FreeBSD, Linux, Mac OS X and Windows.

Greymatter 0.2 (input daemon) requirements:

  • FreeBSD PC
  • libpcap

LRCD 0.2 (output daemon) requirements:

  • FreeBSD PC (should work on other unix-link platforms, but untested)
  • expect (
  • telnet (if using telnet to control the router)
  • tip (if using a direct serial link to control the router)


Please see the files included in the tarball (available below) for further documentation.


L3DGEWorld is copyright (C) 2007, the Centre for Advanced Internet Architectures, Swinburne University of Technology

L3DGEWorld is distributed under version 2 of the GNU General Public Licence.

Authors and Acknowledgments

  • Support for the development of L3DGEWorld is provided in part by a grant from the Cisco University Research Program Fund at Community Foundation Silicon Valley. The URP project, titled "Anomalous traffic detection and collaborative network configuration using 3D multiplayer game engines", is led by Associate Professor Grenville Armitage (CAIA) and supported by Fred Baker (Cisco).
  • L3DGEWorld 2.3, Greymatter 0.2, Fakematter 0.2 and LRCD 0.2 were developed by Lucas Parry
  • We have received feedback and testing by Grenville Armitage, Warren Harrop and Adam Black.


  1. L. Parry "L3DGEWorld 2.3 Input & Output Specifications", CAIA Tech Report, February 2008.
  2. W. Harrop, G. Armitage, "Real-Time Collaborative Network Monitoring and Control Using 3D Game Engines for Representation and Interaction," in VizSEC'06 Workshop on Visualization for Computer Security, Virginia, USA, October-November 2006.
  3. W. Harrop, G. Armitage "Defining and Evaluating Greynets (Sparse Darknets)", IEEE 30th Conference on Local Computer Networks (LCN 2005) Sydney, Australia, 15-17 November, 2005.
  4. L.Parry "L3DGEWorld 2.3 Room Reuse & Hierarchy Documentation", CAIA Tech Report, Febrary 2008.


  • L3DGEWorld 2.3 for Windows, FreeBSD, Linux Download (87MB)
  • L3DGEWorld 2.3 for Mac OS X Download (98MB)
  • MD5SUMS Download

Previous Versions

Listed below are links to previous versions of L3DGEWorld.

Go back to the L3DGE project main page

This page was lovingly hand-crafted in vim :P
Last Updated: Monday 5-Jul-2010 15:10:41 AEST | No longer maintained. Pre-2018 was maintained and authorised by Grenville Armitage,