UPPortable Space Engine

[Introduction] [Requirements] [Installation] [Releases] [Development]
[CVS Logs] [Mailing Lists] [Example Code] [Sites] [Links] [Download Summary]

This site has moved to e-space.org.uk

What is left here is just an old copy, and you may well come across broken links and sections that don't work.


In May 2002, my computer was stolen from work, and a lack of recent off-machine backups meant that much of the PSE information, mailing list archives and CVS history was lost. Copies of the latest source code can be found on the partially restored ftp site. Sorry for any inconvenience. I leant my lesson that a raid-5 array, with a spare disk for machine-internal backups doesn't help when the whole machine is stolen.


The Portable Space Engine is a source code add-on to a number of text based multi-user games. It provides a three dimensional event driven environment. The aim of this code is to enhance the role playing arena to include space travel, commerce, and the odd battle here and there.

The main source framework was written by Cameron Smith, and is based in part on previous work by Jason Skiles and Donald Bindner. The code is under the GNU General Public License, which more or less means it's free to use, so long as any modifications made to it are also freely available to anyone who wants them (though you should read the licence carefully).

Current development is being done by Cameron Smith and Mark Cooke, though any contributions are more than welcome.


The basic requirements for using the Portable Space Engine are as follows.

All of these requirements can be met at little to no cost, by downloading the appropriate files from the internet. See the links section for pointers.

PennMUSH support was added in 0.9.1, and is not available in earlier releases.


I will make the assumption that you have an installation of unix up and running, a working C compiler, and a working version of gzip and tar. The current step by step process is included in the Portable Space Engine distribution. A summary would run as follows.

Stable Releases

The stable releases will generally maintain backwards compatability with previous releases. Only bug-fixes and documentation updates will be made. This does mean that these releases will lag behind the development series for features.

The 1.0.x release information is online, as are the CVS logs.

The current stable release source code is available from the ftp archive. Documentation for it's use can be found in the archives.

A sample database generation script for the 1.0.x series of releases is available for download, and contains a basic example space. Our thanks go to Cameron and his band of testers for this script. Any additions, corrections and bug reports can be sent to Cameron or to the discussion mailing list.

The previous 0.8.x series of stable releases are archived should you wish to examine them.

Development Releases

The development releases are not guaranteed to be stable, nor to maintain backwards compatability with previous releases. If you want to follow the (sometimes) bleeding edge of development, detailed 1.1.x summaries and the CVS history is available.

The data on these pages is updated nightly. Please also note that a 1.1.x release is not available yet. You can track the current changes and additions via the CVS though. The CVS repository is accessible from :pserver:anon@pc24.sr.bham.ac.uk:/cvsroot with a password of 'anon'. You'll find documentation about CVS at sourcegear.com

The (now obsolete) 0.9.x development series of the Portable Space Engine, has detailed summaries with links to source code, and CVS revision data online. The following features were added during the 0.9.x series:

Prior to the official 0.9.x development phase of the Portable Space Engine, I had been extending the 0.8.x engine, and (now very obsolete) snapshots of this work, are available for the historically minded.

CVS Log Files

Since 0.9.x, the Portable Space Engine code has resided in a revision control system. For those of you that are interested in the latest changes, I have set up the following links.

PSE 0.9.x PSE 1.0.x PSE 1.1.x
Database 1.0.x

The data on these pages is updated nightly. Please also note that a 1.1.x release is not available yet. You can track the current changes and additions via the CVS though. The CVS repository is accessible from :pserver:anon@pc24.sr.bham.ac.uk:/cvsroot with a password of 'anon'. You'll find documentation about CVS at sourcegear.com

Mailing Lists

There are two mailing lists for the Portable Space Engine. To subscribe you should send a blank e-mail to:

To send a message to the discussion list you need to send your message to:

If you have a problem with one of the mailing lists, you can send a message to the owners of the list using the following addresses:

For newcomers to these mailing lists, archives of the posts are available at:

Source Code Examples

The example database provides a reasonable starting point for the budding space designer to examine the interface between the Portable Space Engine and the 'soft code' of the server. A repository of contributed example objects and helper widgets is also being developed.

Sites Using The Portable Space Engine

Legalese: Neither I, nor the University of Birmingham has any control over the sites listed here. You follow the links at your own risk!

Site AddressEngineTheme / Name
pc24.sr.bham.ac.uk 5555 TinyMUX 1.6 An example site running the 1.0 release.
llamas.org 7011 TinyMUX 1.5 Infinite Frontiers.
ivz.dhs.org 6250 TinyMUSH 3.0 Iggy's Virtural Zoo

Other Related Resources

Realm/9091 Official PSE Information Page maintained by Cameron.
TinyMUX Sources One of the supported engines.
TinyMUSH Sources One of the supported engines.
PennMUSH Sources One of the supported engines.
PSE Sources An archive of the current and previous releases of the Portable Space Engine.
Documentation Tree A copy of the 0.9 documentation tree.
PSE Logos Logos produced by me using The Gimp.
Old Patches My old patches / feature test releases for the PSE 0.8.x releases.
Win32 Binaries Nick Gammon produced executable files for Windows (some with PSE support).
Win32 Pennmush Nick Gammon's information for running Pennmush on Windows.

Valid XHTML 1.0! Maintained by Mark Cooke
Last Updated: 15-Oct-2006