What is BKGo?
BKGo is a system for playing Go (wei-qi) over the internet.
The system consists of:
- A server program which moderates the game and connects players
- A client program which allows a player to connect to a
The complete source-code to the system is available for download under the Gnu General Public License (GPL).
- Unlimited clients: server allows play between a black player and a
white player, and any number of observers can connect and watch
- Chat window: for discussion during gameplay
- SGF format: load and save games in SGF format
- Persistent storage: server can hold on to game even when
players are disconnected, allowing games to play out over long
periods of time.
- Authentication: server remembers passwords for the original black
and white players, so as to protect a game in progress
Client program running as standalone app
How to Get Started
BKGo can be used in two different ways:
As a standalone Java application
Assuming that you have some sort of Java 1.1 runtime environment on
your computer, you can download the program and play Go
head-to-head with someone over the internet. Instructions are in the
README file included with the distribution.
In this mode, both the client and server run as full-fledged Java
applications, giving you access to your filesystem for loading/saving games.
Note: an "appletviewer" will not suffice! You will need a full
JDK or JRE. Try downloading one from Sun.
As a web-based applet
Not everybody wants to bother downloading a Java Runtime Environment,
so why not use the one you have? Namely, the one built into your web
The web-based system allows a "surfer" to launch BKGo servers and run
a BKGo client applet completely within a web-browser. To set up
this system, see the WEB-HOWTO included in the
distribution. To try the system out, this site has a working demo. Give it a try!
Web System Demo
You can try out BKGo without ever leaving the comfort of your
browser.... just head on over to the
BKGo Web-System Page!
The latest version of BKGo is 0.7 (beta).
You can download this release here
(Includes the source code, compiled .class files, Makefile and
instructions on how to set up your own web-based system). Please read
the README on how to use.
Because this program is distributed under the terms of the GPL, we
encourage people to actively change and improve this program. Please
send us bugfixes, feature requests, and the like:
In the future, we may be setting a mailing list for managing the
evolution of this program.
The original authors of BKGo are Ben Collins-Sussman and Karl Fogel, (C) 1999 under the