Overview of Current Activity in MIDI Over IP

Significant current efforts include MWPP, DMIDI, NetMIDI, MIDIOverLAN+ and iMIDI:


MWPP - MIDI Wire Packetization Protocol - is the IETF effort to define a standard protocol for transporting MIDI using the Internet standard for streaming media: RTP. It is a serious and ambitious effort that is well advanced. The MWPP work is led by John Lazzarro and John Wawrzynek of UC Berkeley. Unlike other efforts, MWPP is designed for both LAN and WAN (wide-area Internet) applications.

Status: Well advanced, under active development
URL: http://www.cs.berkeley.edu/~lazzaro/sa/pubs/txt/current-mwpp.txt
Standards Body: IETF <ietf.org>
License: Open (standard IETF usage terms, per RFC2026)
Platform: Linux (others possible)


DMIDI - Distributed MIDI - is a networked MIDI protocol allowing the transmission and reception of MIDI data within a LAN environment. The IEEE has recently formed a Working Group to assess DMIDI as a standard for MIDI event transmission within local area networks.
Phil Kerr (philkerr at elec dot gla dot ac dot uk), the person behind DMIDI, is a well-known member of the Linux Audio Developers community. DMIDI is less ambitious than MWPP (and much simpler). Linux and Windows prototypes are available now; Palm and Mac OS prototypes are under development.

Status: Stable open-source protocol; recently submitted to IEEE

URL: http://dmidi.org
Standards Body: IEEE <ieee.org>
License: GPL (problematic for commercial use)
Platform: Linux, Windows (others possible)


NetMIDI was developed to support MIDI Show Control applications and is currently marketed by Richmond Sound Design as part of its E-Show product line. NetMIDI supports Windows 2000/XP. The underlying technology is similar to DMIDI.

Status: In commercial use for several years
URL: http://www.show-control.com/rsd4.html
Standards Body: none
License: none (author has stated use of protocol is permitted as long as author credit is given.)
Platform: Windows 2000/XP (NT4?)


MIDIOverLAN+ is an inexpensive ($39) utility which provides enhanced MIDI routing capabilities for one or more networked computers. It supports Windows 9x/ME/2000/XP. Reviews and anecdotal reports give it high marks for performance, flexibility and ease of installation and use.

Status: Commercial product for 1+ years (predecessor: MIDIReplicator)
URL: http://www.musiclab.com/products/rpl_info.htm
Standards Body: none
License: none (commercial product)
Platform: Windows 9x/2K/XP, including Windows 95.


iMIDI is a recent, experimental utility which provides MIDI over Ethernet capabilities for Mac OS X. It claims to support "MIDI synchronization and light MIDI traffic." While the other approaches generally use UDP, iMIDI uses TCP; since TCP has much more overhead and latency than UDP, iMIDI performance is likely worse than NetMIDI, DMIDI or MIDIOverLAN. (UDP and TCP are discussed further below.)

Status: Experimental; clear performance problems
URL: http://homepage.mac.com/grantedsw/StillLife/FileSharing3.html
http://www.versiontracker.com/dyn/moreinfo/macosx/17014 (freeware: developer unknown)
Standards Body: none
License: unclear (currently freeware)
Platform: Mac OS X (10.2)