The Internet Communications Engine (Ice) is a modern alternative to object middleware such as CORBA™ or COM/DCOM/COM+. Ice is easy to learn, yet provides a powerful network infrastructure for demanding technical applications. Ice shines where technologies such as SOAP or XML-RPC are too slow, or do not provide sufficient scalability or security. For a comparison between Ice and CORBA, please see this page.
Ice is free software, available with full source, and released under the terms of the GNU General Public License (GPL). Commercial licenses are available for customers who wish to use Ice for closed-source software.
The Ice extension for PHP, IcePHP, provides PHP scripts with access to Ice facilities. IcePHP is a thin integration layer implemented in C++ using the Ice C++ run-time library. This implementation technique has a number of advantages over a native PHP implementation of the Ice run-time: