How to Set up a Unity3D Master Server on Amazon EC2

Hi everyone!

I want to write a short guide on getting a Unity Master Server set up on Amazon Web Services (AWS) on an EC2 Micro Instance. Firstly, Amazon Web Services are free for the first year as long as you are using a one micro instance (5GB image). As long as you do not have unassigned Static IPs or multiple instances running, you should not incur any charges. To get more information on what defines the free-tier you can go here: Amazon AWS Free. Let’s get started!

  1. Create an Amazon AWS Account
  2. Go to the EC2 Instances page by clicking “EC2” then when that loads, in the lefthand navigation going to instances.
  3. Click the blue “Launch Instance” button
  4. Create a new Redhat Enterprise Linux Instance under the free tier in the preconfigured AMI’s
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  5. After you select it, it should ask about what instance type you like. This is where you skip this step and click on step 5, “Tag Instance.” You will see that an entry already exists, Name. You can go ahead and set the value for that to Unity Master Server for your convenience.
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  6. Go ahead and click on step 6: “Configure Security Group”. We need to configure the instance so that we can access the URL. The easiest way to do this is to open the instance on all ports on TCP and UDP. You will see that the instance is open on port 22 for SSH access, now we need to click the Add Rule button and add access via ALL TCP to anywhere on the IP and same with UDP
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  7. You do not need to configure anymore options. You can click the blue Review and Launch button then once you’ve review the details, go ahead and launch the Instance.
  8. You should be prompted to create a security key pair or use an existing one. This is VERY important. Do not lose the file you download when/if you create a new key pair! It is imperative that you download this .pem file to a secure location. If you don’t have it, there is no way that you will be able to access your VM.
  9. Ensure that it’s running by checking it’s status in the Instances page. If the instance state is not running, you may select it, right click, and command it to start with “Start” in the “Actions” section
  10. Now that the instance is created, we need to give it a public IP Address. Go to Elastic IPs under Networking and Security in the lefthand panel and create a new elastic IP. After you create this IP is VERY IMPORTANT that it is assigned to a RUNNING EC2 Instance. If you create an Elastic IP that is unassigned you are billed $0.005 every hour until it’s assigned. To assign it, just select it, then right click and go to “Associate Address”
  11. OK. we have a public IP for our instance, and it should be running. Good. We need to set up a way to SSH into the VM and starting messing around with the files. The best thing to do is to download PuTTY and install it
  12. Open PuTTYGen and then open your download .pem file in it (by selecting *.* All Files in the load file dialog). You can then go ahead and hit generate to create a ppk for the key file. You can put a password on it if you like. Just remember this password for later you will need to enter that in the putty console when you connect.
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  13. Once that is complete you may open PuTTY and get your public DNS and place that in the Hostname box on the Sessions dialog.
  14. Before attempting to connect we need to navigate to the Connection section on the left and add our ppk into an SSH authorization section as you can see below:
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  15. Now go back to the sessions page and you can save this configuration by putting a name like “Master Server” in the box below the “Saved Sessions” text and then then hitting the Save button.
  16. You should be able to connect without a snag. You will be prompted with a user account to log in with. If you type “root” it will tell you the correct user for that vm which could be something like: ec2-user.
  17. Once you’ve logged in you can go ahead and download the Unity Master Server using wget:
    wget http://unity3d.com/files/master-server/MasterServer-2.0.1f1.zip
  18. You need to unzip the file.
  19. Then build it:
    make
  20. You can then run it:
    ./MasterServer
  21. Then you’re done!

 

I hope you learned something in this tutorial and if you have any problems, just comment and I’ll do my best to help you!

Tom

C++ Library Wrapping Weather.gov REST API

I’ve began creating a library that wraps the REST API offered by weather.gov. It’s not much right now, you can only input a latitude and longitude to get the highs and lows for the next 7 days, but it’s pretty neat nonetheless, and I had a pretty good time trying to get everything to work the way that I wanted it to.

Information

Why create a library for this? TO LEARN! I wanted to learn how to make a library in C++, and learn how to use the CURL library in C++, and then take these libraries and use them in a project. I don’t have a real project to use them in for now, but eventually I will use it, and add more to it.

Pro-Tips for C++ Libraries

In Visual Studio, you’ll see that there is a template for creating a Class Library in C++. This is for creating a library that uses managed code that is compiled with CLR (Common Language Runtime). This is not what you want. It’s a pain to get this set up if you plan on solely using C++ for your library. The best way to do it is to create an empty project then go from there.

Quick Tutorial:

First, create a new Empty Project, call it TestApp. Now, in the same solution, create a new project, and make it an Empty Project, this will be our library. You can call it TestDLL. The next thing we are going to do is create some classes to use in our library. Add in a header file called TestAPI.h. We will not be adding in any C++ Source Files (.cpp) because it creates issues in the namespacing. We are going to start it off really simple:

#pragma once //sorry, windows only. Too lazy to make ifndef

namespace TestAPI
{
	class Mathematics
	{
	public:

		Mathematics() {}

		int Multiply( int num1, int num2 )
		{
			return num1 * num2;
		}

	};
}

That’s all you need as far as code for the library. Now we are going to configure our TestApp project to use our library:

 

Resolve some dependencies
Add a reference to the TestDLL Library

Now, after that, you should be able to just reference your Mathematics class really easily. Now lets create the main function for our TestApp project that’s going to use our library. Go ahead and create a C++ Source File called main.cpp, and add the following code:

#include <iostream>
#include "TestAPI.h"

using namespace std;

int main()
{
	TestAPI::Mathematics math;
	int result = math.Multiply(3, 5);

	cout << "Results: " << result << endl;
	// Results: 15

	return 0;
}

That’s it!

Problems

In my implementation of the Weather REST API, I found that when I tried to use libcurl in my project, I had to include it in both my TestApp and my TestDLL. Other than that, everything went smoothly.

 

Download: C++ Weather REST API Wrapper

Flash Tutorial #2 – The Basics of Actionscript 3.0

Hey there. I just finished up another tutorial about the basics of Actionscript 3.0 (AS3). The video is about 36 minutes long and covers a wide range of topics, including: variables, conditionals, operators, functions, events, and other general basic ideas in Actionscript 3.0 (and many other languages). By the way, I talk about all those pretty much in that order, slipping in little bits of data about other things as I progress through the video.

I also finally got around to submitting SpaceFlyer online, so the project page is now updated with a playable link to the game, or you can click here. I’ll be straight about this game, it isn’t really pretty, and it doesn’t exactly have a great story line, BUT there are some sweet mechanics!

Hope you enjoy them both
-Tom

Video Tutorial #1 – The Basics of Flash CS4

Flash LogoThe Basics of Flash

In this awesome tutorial, I cover the basics of Flash  CS4, I mean, the BASICS. This is probably as simple as it gets for you,  so, don’t count on other tutorials being this simple.

 

SO, this is the future of my website. I will probably be doing tutorials for… the rest of my life. I feel like I made a real connection here.

Nah. But I will be making more tutorials in the future that will cover Actionscript 3.0 ideas in Adobe Flash as well as other programming languages, such as C# (for XNA), and C++.