Livelink protocol in TD

Live link - Live Link Plugin Development in Unreal Engine | Unreal Engine 5.1 Documentation

im not entierly sure if the protocol is OS or not but i am sure that this protocol is used in 100s if not 1000s of hardware preiphirals and softwares.

would be really cool to be able to open a client or even send to a client, woudl give the ability to talk to unreal super fast and the major benfit of being able to talk to all these hardware devices.

in that doc it covers how to send livelink, i wonder what it would take to recieve it and if possible to make it a chop :D!!

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Please correct me if I am wrong, but Live Link has multiple different roles and wide variety of use cases. Developers utilize UE by developing custom C++ plugins - making use of Live Link roles and its networking capabilities (which come very handy when one wants to perform data interpolation on non-genlocked data or matching genlocked data based on timecode). However since each Live Link Plugin is highly custom, there is no generic protocol as such. Each developer is free to design their communication & plugin just the way they want / need.

What exact data would you like to send to UE using Live Link?

So from what I understand live link is a network protocol that as you said is easy to code modules and data senders/receivers for.
And the other things you mentioned for sure.

In saying there are a lot of devices out there that use this protocol to communicate with unreal.

Why not build or have a module in touch that can receive this protocol, into chops.
You’d have built In 1000s of devices…

And then the ability to send would be great as a communication tool between touch and unreal, especially as you said it can look clocks and ticks…

Well this is much more complex than this… Since every Live Link plugin is designed to do specific thing, I believe there is no way to generalize it for use in TD. Lets say one plugin uses data structure designed to send single transformation data as 4x4 matrix and is relying on floats, other is sending array of transformations using vectors to describe positions and quaternions in doubles. The only way to correctly use these data in TD is to know what exactly is happening in given communication and implement it accordingly. There is basically no limit in what developer can do with Live Link. He could write any kind of custom C++ code to process and use the data in UE. Therefore Live Link isn’t any kind of “standard”, that could be implemented to other software.

At the moment you can definitely receive / send any sort of network communication (including those used for all sorts of Live Link plugins) in TD. This means you can (usually) reverse engineer some Live Link communication and implement it in TD. I have done it in past and it works, there is no magic to it. :slight_smile: It just takes quite a bit of time (depending of communication complexity and availability of source code of given Live Link plugin).


I geuss I’m just looking at it from the perspective of unreal…
It can receive a “live link” protocol, what that is I guess I didn’t think about how varied it could be.

I do understand that it would be hard to implement it, but just like unreal doesn’t have to re-write the live link every time a new data structure is in place and the “magic” happens in the module of the developer and outputs a “simple” live link , I would imagine we could grab it, and as you mentioned you can, with a bit of fiddling and going into the structure of said live link plugin.

I dunno I feel like having a way to catch the data stream of livelink is super powerful.
Like the point of it is, is it’s just variables, all the heavy lifting is done outside of the protocol…so if it’s just variables couldn’t it be pharsed into a channel or dat?
Isn’t it just a type of udp multicast, meaning it’s like OSC?

Maybe I’m not fully understanding what this protocol is, but Im looking at it like a ARKit, its just a packaged up protocol that helps devs have there softwares talk easliy to hardware…so livelink is like a reverse, you have multiple hardware devs wanting to talk to software, but my analogy is that you as the software integrated doens have to integrate 10000s of softwares you just need to integrate ARkit.
Obviously this is super lamen…

I spent some time looking at this today, and I don’t think livelink offers what is being discussed here. Sure, lots of hardware have plugins for unreal that offer the livelink workflow, but those are using their own protocol → UEPlugin → livelink interface. If they were just using a general livelink network protocol, then they wouldn’t need their own UE plugin, they’d just be using a standardized livelink actor in UE.


To elaborate more after talking to some UE devs: Livelink is a workflow within UE. It is not a generalized network protocol for arbitrary apps to communicate.


Intresting, thanks for clearing this up.
it always seemed like a protocol that the plugin was using, like an api of sorts…but i geuss not haha.
thought it would be a quick easy way to connect with lots of devices.

thanks as always malcolm!!!