This function starts the device. It allocates the relevant resources and starts the attach process and makes the device accept connections. When the future resolves the context has been started but the device has not been attached to servers yet. All configuration functions (such as nabto_device_set_device_id) must be called prior to invoke this function.


nabto_device_start(NabtoDevice* device, NabtoDeviceFuture* future)


[in] The device instance to start
[in] The future which is resolved when started. Future error codes: NABTO_DEVICE_EC_OK on success NABTO_DEVICE_EC_INVALID_STATE if device does not have public Key, private key, server URL, device ID, or Product ID. NABTO_DEVICE_EC_IN_USE if a resource cannot be allocated because it is already used. NABTO_DEVICE_EC_ADDRESS_IN_USE if a socket cannot be bound to an address/port beacause it is already in use.




#include <nabto/nabto_device.h>

#ifdef _WIN32
#include <Windows.h>
#include <unistd.h>
#include <stdbool.h>
#include <stdio.h>

// Configuration parameters

// The product ID, device ID, and server URL picked here are not
// configured in the Nabto Basestation. Therefore, the basestation
// will reject the device when it attempts to attach to the
// basestation. This example will still work if the client is able to
// discover the device on the local network. Alternatively, replace
// these values with valid values from the Nabto Cloud Console. The
// private Key is set to NULL, this causes this code to generate a new
// private key (see function "start_device"). If the device should be able to attach
// to the basestation, the private key here should be set to a valid
// private key, and the fingerprint of the key must be configured in
// the Nabto Cloud Console.
const char* productId = "pr-abcd1234";
const char* deviceId = "de-efgh5678";
const char* serverUrl = "";
char* privateKey = NULL;

// CoAP endpoint data
const char* coapPath[] = { "hello-world", NULL };
const char* helloWorld = "Hello world";

// State variable
bool readyToStop = false;

// Helper functions
bool start_device(NabtoDevice* device);
void handle_device_error(NabtoDevice* d, NabtoDeviceListener* l, NabtoDeviceFuture* f, char* msg);
void do_important_work();
void handle_coap_request(NabtoDeviceCoapRequest* request);
void request_callback(NabtoDeviceFuture* fut, NabtoDeviceError ec, void* data);

int main(int argc, char** argv)
    NabtoDeviceError ec;

    // First allocate a new device
    NabtoDevice* device = nabto_device_new();
    if (device == NULL) {
        handle_device_error(NULL, NULL, NULL, "Failed to allocate device"); return -1;

    // We have to configure a few things before starting the device,
    // so we make a function not to clutter the example.
    if (!start_device(device)) {
        handle_device_error(device, NULL, NULL, "Failed to start device"); return -1;

    // We need a listener to handle incoming CoAP requests. First we
    // allocate one.
    NabtoDeviceListener* listener = nabto_device_listener_new(device);
    if (listener == NULL) {
        handle_device_error(device, NULL, NULL, "Failed to allocate listener"); return -1;

    // Then we initialize it for CoAP requests for our hello world
    // path. The listener is now locked for this purpose only, and we
    // must not reuse it in other listener initialization calls.
    ec = nabto_device_coap_init_listener(device, listener, NABTO_DEVICE_COAP_GET, coapPath);
    if (ec != NABTO_DEVICE_EC_OK) {
        handle_device_error(device, listener, NULL, "CoAP listener initialization failed"); return -1;

    // Now that our listener is listening for CoAP requests, we need a
    // future so we can query the listener for CoAP requests. First
    // the future must be allocated.
    NabtoDeviceFuture* future = nabto_device_future_new(device);
    if (future == NULL) {
        handle_device_error(device, listener, NULL, "Failed to allocate future"); return -1;

    // This CoAP request pointer will be our reference to incoming
    // requests.
    NabtoDeviceCoapRequest* request;

    // example 1: blocking wait future approach

    // Query the listener for a new coap request. This call cannot
    // fail as any failures will be reported through resolving the
    // future.
    nabto_device_listener_new_coap_request(listener, future, &request);

    // We wait for the future to resolve. Since we are now in our own
    // thread, blocking is ok.
    ec = nabto_device_future_wait(future);
    if (ec != NABTO_DEVICE_EC_OK) {
        handle_device_error(device, listener, future, "Failed to get new CoAP request"); return -1;

    // Now that wait has returned, the future is resolved. This means
    // request now points to the received request. We will handle a
    // few requests, so the request is handled in a seperate function.

    // example 2: poll future approach

    // Now the future is resolved and ready to be reused, and we are
    // done using the request reference. This means we can now query
    // the listener for a new CoAP request. If another request has
    // arrived while we were processing the previous request, the
    // listener will resolve the future in the next cycle of the Nabto
    // core thread. Otherwise, the future resolves when the next
    // request arrives.
    nabto_device_listener_new_coap_request(listener, future, &request);

    // By polling the future we can continue to do other stuff, and
    // not worry about the concurrency issues of callback functions.
    while (nabto_device_future_ready(future) == NABTO_DEVICE_EC_FUTURE_NOT_RESOLVED) {

    // The future is now resolved. If OK, we can respond to the new request.
    if (ec != NABTO_DEVICE_EC_OK) {
        handle_device_error(device, listener, future, "Failed to get new CoAP request"); return -1;

    // example 3: call back future approach

    // Again the future is resolved and the request pointer is freed,
    // so we can reuse.
    nabto_device_listener_new_coap_request(listener, future, &request);

    // We set a callback on the future to be called when the future
    // resolves. The callback will be invoked on the Nabto core
    // thread, so to be able to handle the request in our callback, we
    // pass the request reference as context for our callback.
    nabto_device_future_set_callback(future, &request_callback, request);

    // On second thought we don't wanna do this anymore. Let's stop
    // everything and exit. First we stop the listener. Stopping can
    // only return OK, so we ignore return value.

    // Stopping the device directly here would also work as that would
    // block untill all futures are resolved. However, we want to
    // showcase listeners, so we wait for the future callback to tell
    // us it is okay to free the listener.
    while (!readyToStop) {

    // We close the device before stopping to nicely close outstanding
    // connections. It is okay to reuse futures for new purposes and
    // since we know our future to be resolved, we reuse it to close.
    nabto_device_close(device, future);

    // If the core takes too long to close we get impatient and stop
    // it.
    ec = nabto_device_future_timed_wait(future, 200);
        // we got a timeout, and the future is not resolved.

    // since the future may not be resolved here, stop the device
    // before freeing the future. Stop blocks until it is okay to free
    // everything.


void handle_coap_request(NabtoDeviceCoapRequest* request)
    // We do not expect a payload in this request, so we simply build
    // a response for the client. First we set the status code and
    // content format. These can only return NABTO_DEVICE_EC_OK, so we
    // ignore the return value.
    nabto_device_coap_response_set_code(request, 205);
    nabto_device_coap_response_set_content_format(request, NABTO_DEVICE_COAP_CONTENT_FORMAT_TEXT_PLAIN_UTF8);

    // Setting the payload can fail if CoAP cannot allocate memory.
    NabtoDeviceError ec = nabto_device_coap_response_set_payload(request, helloWorld, strlen(helloWorld));
    if (ec != NABTO_DEVICE_EC_OK) {
        // On failures, we make an appropriate response for the
        // client. Since set_payload could not allocate memory, we do
        // not provide a message, as this function would likely also
        // not be able to allocate memory for the message. If this
        // call fails, we will give up trying respond nicely, so the
        // return value can be ignored.
        nabto_device_coap_error_response(request, 500, NULL);
    } else {
        // send response to the client.
    printf("Responded to CoAP request\n");

    // The response is most likely not sent yet, however, freeing the
    // request lets the core know we are ready for the request to be
    // freed. The core will not actually free the request before it
    // too is ready for the request to be freed.
    // Now that we have released our ownership of the request, we are
    // free to reuse the pointer for the next request.

void request_callback(NabtoDeviceFuture* fut, NabtoDeviceError ec, void* data)
    // data is the request pointer we provided as context, let's cast
    // it.
    NabtoDeviceCoapRequest* req = (NabtoDeviceCoapRequest*)data;
    if (ec == NABTO_DEVICE_EC_STOPPED) {
        // We expected this as we stopped the listener
    } else if (ec != NABTO_DEVICE_EC_OK) {
        // An unexpected error occurred
    } else {
        // We unexpectedly received a CoAP request before we stopped
        // the listener. We must handle it. When freeing the request
        // directly, the core will send a generic error response to
        // the client.
        printf("Got unexpected CoAP request. Freeing makes auto-reply\n");

        // we did not get our expected error code. We can query the
        // listener again, which will give us a new callback with the
        // error code set. Our context only contains the request, so
        // we do not have access to the listener here and will,
        // therefore, not query the listener

        // nabto_device_listener_new_coap_request(listener, fut, &req);
        // nabto_device_future_set_callback(future, &request_callback, data);

        // We cannot get a sencond unexpected request as this only
        // happened because the future was scheduled to be resolved
        // during the `nabto_device_listener_new_coap_request()`
        // call. When the listener is stopped, any additional requests
        // in the listeners queue will have been cancelled.
    // Now that we are sure the listener does not have any outstanding
    // futures, we can signal our main thread that it is now okay to
    // free the listener.

    // We are now in a new thread! so we must be carefull not to
    // create concurrency issues. We simply switch a boolean, so
    // hopefully it is okay to access the shared memory without safe
    // guards.
    readyToStop = true;

bool start_device(NabtoDevice* device)
    NabtoDeviceError ec;
    char* fp;

    // If a private key was set in the top, use that. Otherwise we
    // create one. The fingerprint of the device must be registered in
    // the Nabto basestation before it is able to attach.
    if (!privateKey) {
        ec = nabto_device_create_private_key(device, &privateKey);
        if (ec != NABTO_DEVICE_EC_OK) {
            return false;
        ec = nabto_device_set_private_key(device, privateKey);
    } else {
        ec = nabto_device_set_private_key(device, privateKey);

    if (ec != NABTO_DEVICE_EC_OK) {
        return false;
    ec = nabto_device_set_product_id(device, productId);
    if (ec != NABTO_DEVICE_EC_OK) {
        return false;
    ec = nabto_device_set_device_id(device, deviceId);
    if (ec != NABTO_DEVICE_EC_OK) {
        return false;
    ec = nabto_device_set_server_url(device, serverUrl);
    if (ec != NABTO_DEVICE_EC_OK) {
        return false;
    ec = nabto_device_enable_mdns(device);
    if (ec != NABTO_DEVICE_EC_OK) {
        return false;
    ec = nabto_device_set_log_std_out_callback(device);
    if (ec != NABTO_DEVICE_EC_OK) {
        return false;
    ec = nabto_device_start(device);
    if (ec != NABTO_DEVICE_EC_OK) {
        return false;
    ec = nabto_device_get_device_fingerprint_hex(device, &fp);
    if (ec != NABTO_DEVICE_EC_OK) {
        return false;

    printf("Device: %s.%s Started with fingerprint: %s", productId, deviceId, fp);
    return true;

void do_important_work()
  #ifdef _WIN32
  usleep(100*1000);  /* sleep for 100 milliSeconds */

void handle_device_error(NabtoDevice* d, NabtoDeviceListener* l, NabtoDeviceFuture* f, char* msg)
    if (d) {
        // if we already have a future we reuse for device close.
        if (!f) {
            f = nabto_device_future_new(d);
        nabto_device_close(d, f);
    // we are now after device_stop(). Even if we had some unresolved
    // future or unstopped listener, they cannot be invoked, and it is
    // okay to free.
    if (f) {
    if (l) {