SL projects update: week 40 / 1

Update 3rd October: The RC roll-outs were somewhat different than indicated by Simon. Magnum apparently received the back-end configuration work for new and future hardware, and BlueSteel received the maintenance update. The Group Services code & maintenance release was targeted at LeTigre, however a showstopper issue means that these regions are now in a state of flux. A comment from Oskar Linden reads: “LeTigre regions exhibited issues that necessitated a rollback. The regions were rolled forward and are on the same code that is on BlueSteel. Affected regions are getting a simstate rollback” . 

Server Deploys

There was no main channel roll-out this week, as expected, following the cancellation of last week’s RC channel deploys.

Wednesday 3rd October will see the three RC channel deploys originally planned for last week:

  • Back-end configuration work designed to help SL run better on new and future hardware – this should be deployed to BlueSteel
  • A maintenance release, which includes has Baker Linden’s Group Services project – this will be deployed to Magnum
  • The third is described by Simon Linden as being, “Very similar to what we have today, with a fix for some future compatibility coming down the pipe. It’s nothing really exciting, but required so things won’t break.” – this should be deployed to LeTigre.

The order of the releases is not clear at the time of writing, and is based on Simon Linden’s comments at the Simulator User Group.Confirmation / updates to the plan should be made available via the Server Deployment thread in the forums.

SL Viewer Releases

Things remain slow due to on-going crash / possible memory leak issues, as reported in my last mini-update.

Group Services Project

The Group Services project is an attempt to improve the management and editing of large SL groups by replacing the current UDP-based service (which has capacity issues with the size of group lists it can comfortably handle) with a new HTTP-based service. The project viewer for this is already available (for Windows, Linux and OSX.). It had been hoped that the viewer code might reach a 3.4.2 beta release during this week, however due to continuing issues with the current beta viewer code, this now seems unlikely.

The initial server code for this will be deployed to the Magnum RC channel, as mentioned above, on Wednesday 3rd October.

Materials Processing

The final feature set for the first release of materials processing is now more-or-less complete, and it should hopefully be announced nearer the time for beta testing. A number of regions on Aditi have been prepared for beta testing, and details on these will be released when the initial project viewer is ready for release.

Options to be used by Normal and Specular Maps, which will need to be provisioned in the Build floater

The initial feature set will include the ability to set parameters (rotation, offset, etc.), for normal and specular maps as well as diffuse (texture) maps. Oz originally hinted this was the aim a few weeks ago, although Geenz indicated it was only hoped these capabilities would be included, rather than it being definite at that time. This means that the build floater for the project viewer will be somewhat different from most people who build are familiar with, as it must include a number of additional options (see right). However, what is being considered is not a complete rebuild of the Build floater.

Commenting on this aspect of the work at the Content Creators’ Improvement Informal User Group, Oz Linden said, “We’ve got a strawman design in internal review… will have a version to look at soon, I think.”

The design has had input from a number of builders. Some of these are from within LL, some of them users, and will probably be left unchanged until further experience is gained in its use. Whether this means the viewer remaining unchanged between the beta programme and the release of materials processing on Agni, or whether changes are made between the beta and the release, remains to be seen. As Oz went on to comment, “It’s a very difficult problem, and we tried to meet three sometimes-conflicting goals: do what needs to be done; keep things familiar; make the things you have to change better in the process. I think we did pretty well…”

Obviously, TPVs will have access to the build UI code once it is available in LL’s accessible repositories, and they’ll doubtless look at the code in terms of how best to integrate it into the look and feel of their own viewers.

There are still no firm dates for the project in terms of beta commencement, etc., but Oz reiterated that the project will follow the familiar course, with an Aditi beta, followed by a release to one of the RC channels on Agni, prior to an eventual full roll-out.

Related Links

With thanks to JayR for the simulator UG meeting transcript.

4 thoughts on “SL projects update: week 40 / 1

  1. Just as a corollary to your notes on the RC rolling restarts, the LeTigre debacle, and I cannot help but call it that, was one of the worst that I have suffered.
    Content damage was extensive, scripted items were either corrupted or simply broken and some items that moved (though not all, curiously) were either damaged, or in some instances, returned. Some items that were returned were found on re-rezzing to be damaged, though thankkfully that fate did not befall any of my items.
    It necessitated 2 further restarts to repair most of the damage, one to put our sim on the Bluesteel code, and another to roll-back the simstate to its condition prior to the start of the original roll. As Oskar pointed out, it was a slow, painstaking and manual job, with over 1000 sims to correct!
    It was NOT an experience that I would wish on anyone, or would wish to go through again. The main cause of concern to me, aside from the extensive content damage (to some no copy items), was that we were assured by Oskar (and I know he only told us what HE was told…) that this RC code had passed QA on Aditi. One has to wonder at LL’s QA process.

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    1. Sadly, you’re not alone. Just before I had to log from SL for RL last night, a couple of group chats were alive with messages from people expressing similar issues with scripted objects apparently non-functional. Several of us did zero-in on LeTigre rollbacks / restarts as being the potential culprits (as people were reporting getting restart messages as well). I’m sorry you experienced so much pain, wish I could say something more beneficial.

      Like you, will keep an eye on the Deploy thread to see if explanations are offered. I suspect tomorrow’s server group meeting might be a little stormy as well. As t the QA process, it seems to be two steps forward (given they have caught showstoppers ahead of time with the previous two planned deploys), and one almighty step back …

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  2. Oh, and as an addition, my AO was damaged by the original code, its animations warped and its ability to sense Linden waterlevel destroyed…That my account had been reset sometime prior to the final restarts by someone with “admin” privileges at LL was simply adding insult to injury.

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  3. Our sim at Corsica suffered from a lot of obejcts being returned, randomly!
    As they are all our creations (seems the no copy ones where intact and not returned nor damaged) we did manage to replace all that where retutned before the roll out to solve the problems!
    After all, we checked and all are working so our sim is running good again!
    Still this is a major blow on users faith on LL!
    Who will grant Us that this will not happen again in any region?
    By safety, we did a backup of all our homes that are open to all (zindra, Satori, Sansara, Corsica and Blake Sea) and i mean we link all mod/copy items and made a copy and placed it on a folder with the name of the region where they are.
    As we buld all in our regions from scratch and use almost all full perm objects made by us, is easy to do so and have a replacement if any goes wrong, but i wonder about most of the sims that are building using others creations!
    LL can’t do this for long, to use users as Guinea Pigs, My love jnoined as premium only 1 week ago and She was so upset by the live chat support answer (they where of course clueless about the problem and i didn’t wish to be on their place last night) that she almost closed her premium account (she was a free 1 for more then 3 years and just joined to be able to get abandoned land or auction land)!
    Its really to think if beta test is a reality or just if LL still thinks that All users are dumb enough!
    And i wonder how can i still say that SL has some advantages against other grids when this happens?!

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