Get set for Viewer 3.0

It appears that Viewer 3.0 is about to arrive on our doorsteps.

Now, before you all start jumping up and down, it’s not another new version of the Viewer – well, not exactly – nor is it in any way an admission that Viewer 2 has “failed”.

Rather, it is all part of the arrival of mesh across the Main grid and not indicative of any major overhaul of the Viewer.

Opensource Obscure was the first to notice the change, and his digging got the following comment from Oz Linden, the transition to the version number of 3 points to support the introduction of ‘import of 3D models’” (i.e. mesh).

Interestingly, the version number is on the latest development Viewer (3.0.1 (238085), dated 9th August) which does not support mesh; whereas the latest mesh project Viewer issued earlier the same day retains a 2.8 release number (2.8.2.(238103)).

Speculation is that the new version number will be officially announced at this weekend’s SLCC, ahead of the planned completion of mesh roll-out, which is due at the end of August.


At 14:48 PDT, Linden Lab announced a Beta release of “Viewer 3.0.0” with mesh support was available for download and trial.

8 thoughts on “Get set for Viewer 3.0

  1. Well, the so-called Snowstorm “stable development version” 3.0.1 seems to be much, much faster than whatever else I’ve tried so far (I believe I have 5 or 6 versions of the SL Viewer around 🙂 ). But that was just a very short first impression, because, like most of the Snowstorm “stable” versions, it almost immediately crashed on my old Mac after a few minutes 🙂

    The latest Mesh Project Viewer (2.8.4 I think) sadly has some weirdness turned on because I get 1/5th of the performance with it than the one-before-last, which I regularly use if I wish to play with meshes. Hopefully someone catches that nasty bug until it trickles down to 3.0.X.

    Also, mmmh, calling this “3.X” is really stretching the point, as there is no new functionality, no new interface, nothing — just an “evolutionary” route.

    There is an old theory in software development that says that the biggest jump is always from version 1 to 2; from 2 to 3, the changes are sometimes not even cosmetic. This has been true in most of the industry — except for Microsoft, who definitely make huge changes to their Windows operating system look & feel, once in a while (e.g. Win 95 had nothing to do with 3.0; Vista and 7 look completely different than XP; and so forth). So, well, I was expecting a bit more. For example, having an alternate skin would go a long way to get this “feeling” that we were actually seeing something new 🙂

    And I agree that this is definitely going to be “announced” (if not “launched”) at the SLCC. There have been cartloads of new features recently released. At least this year we cannot complain that LL isn’t doing anything; even the fast-paced changes are more reminescent of 2006/7 than of 2009/2010… good work, Rod 🙂


    1. The racking of the version number purely for mesh does seem a bit of a stretch, agreed; then again, it could have been worse, mass confusion could have resulted have it been dubbed “Viewer 3D” to “support the introduction of ‘import 3D models'”. Especially considering Kirstenlee does have an experimental 3D version of S21 available!

      There’s a lot going on at SLCC relating to mesh, so I’ll be surprised if the Viewer fails to get a mention – but I’ll also be cringing somewhat if it is done in terms of presenting a shiny “new” Viewer…


  2. Went back to 2.7.1 (until they ban it, then I’ll have to choose a TPV I guess). 2.8 and up have totally ruined picture taking for me and that’s my main pasttime in SL. The new WindLight configuration is crappy enough to be rage-worthy, but even worse, sections of the screen (like all the water, sky, and 1/2 the prims) disappear entirely when I try to take anything but a very low-rez shot. (sigh) No amount of tweaking (and I’ve tried them all) or driver configuration makes any difference. It’s definitely the viewer code.

    And don’t even get me started on the 3-second delay now affecting every inventory click. Uh uh.


    1. It’s curious how the Viewer iterations impact different people / hardware. V 2.6, for me, was the fastest version I’ve run on my primary machine; I had amazing frame rates, rapid rezzing, no crashes – it was the first issue of V2 that may have tempted me away from Kirstenlee’s S21 as my “secondary” Viewer (I’m a confirmed Firestorm user). When V2.7 initially came out, that performed equally was well for me until an update resulted in a HUGE drop in fps & a lot of rezzing issues. 2.8 in its various iterations has been fine for me personally, although I’ve only really used it around mesh sims, and not driven it in anger.

      That said, I’m running Firestorm, and have been since it came out, and have witnessed a deterioration in performance over the last week +; the Viewer is crashing more regularly when I attempt to use certain functions (teleports frequently result in a crash, for example; over the last few nights taking snapshots has become almost impossible as I get a force log-out after the 2nd or 3rd picture. Why this should be, I have no idea – but given I’ve done nothing to either the Viewer or my PC, I do tend to look at the server end of things and wonder.


      1. Yes, I have FS installed hoping it would solve some issues but, alas, it’s very crashy. Logs me out periodically even if I’m sitting quietly doing next to nothing but chatting or fussing with inventory. Just Blink! -> Desktop. Bye bye.

        I’ve liked Viewer 2 up to 2.8 but it’s definitely now the enemy of my fun. And I don’t give a single hoot about mesh, or “social profiles.” Just taking pictures and stability, both of which are now undoable. Oh well.


  3. Rebranding the toxic Viewer2 as Viewer3 isn’t going to make people start liking it. Mesh will get rolled out and will immediately flop as it’s not supported by the only V2 worth anything at all (firestorm) and in all likely hood wont be supported in the biggest TPV till much later in the year.


    1. Jessica has indicated that Firestorm will have the capability to view mesh as soon as the code is stable – that’s liable to be reasonably-shortly after the code is formally released in Viewer “3.x”. Uploading mesh is another issue altogether, admittedly, given the tie-in with Havok.

      That said, it’s probably fair to say most people will be looking for the ability to see mesh, warts and all, rather than wanting the ability to upload it.

      Not sure what you mean about “won’t be supported in the biggest TPV”; the comment seems divorced from your comment on Firestorm. Were you still referring to it, or did you mean Phoenix? If the latter, I understand Jessica and the team have no plans to attempt and backport mesh-related code into Phoenix.


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