SL projects update week 42 / 1

Server Updates

The main channel deployment took place as planned on Tuesday 16th October. As previously indicated, this was the code deployed to the BlueSteel RC channel in week 41 (essentially an improved database query that should help with the back-end system load).

Of the Release Candidate channels, these are due to be updated on Wednesday 17th October as follows:

  • Magnum – will not receive an update, but will continue to run with the code deployed in week 41, probably in the same configuration
  • BlueSteel – will get code that’s almost the same as the main channel, with some OS-level configuration changes that shouldn’t be visible to anyone
  • LeTigre – will be getting a minor update to the Havok library which is mostly about getting our servers to build under Visual Studio 2010 on Windows and autobuild on Linux.

The LeTigre update will use “slightly newer” versions of the Havok libraries, so concerns were raised at the Server  / Sim meeting on Tuesday 16th October as to whether this may lead to a resumption of the problem with mesh vehicles being unable to travel between regions running different versions of Havok.Andrew Linden confirmed this might well be the case for mesh vehicles moving between LeTigre regions and other regions following the deployment.

To help reduce issues with situations like this arise, it was suggested that areas such as the Blake Sea regions are either removed from the RC channels, or placed on the same channel. While this would not solve the problem grid-wide, it would reduce the impact somewhat for people using mesh vehicles in these regions. A query was put to the LL deployment team on this by Andrew Linden, and they  agreed to try to make the Blake Sea regions more homogenous by ensuring they are all on the same channel.

SL Viewer

A further stability test build for the beta viewer was made on Friday October 12th, and reached the download page on Tuesday 16th (3.4.1.265898release notes) after being cleared by QA. This should be the last stability test release and should see the OK for code merges to resume. Merges and release priorities are still being looked at, and speaking at the Open Dev meeting on Monday 15th October, Oz indicated that there are “a few open source contributions in the pipeline that are in the mix”, as well as the anticipated LL merges such as the Steam code, Monty Linden’s HTTP library updates, Baker Linden’s Group Services project code, Apple OSX Mountain Lion support (including gatekeeper compatibility), etc.

Kelly Linden reports fixing SVC-7870 (Edit Linked Parts isn’t returning creator/owner), but given the current backlog, it may be a while before this makes it through to a beta  / release viewer.

Avatar Baking

The aim of this work (Project Sunshine) is to improve issues around avatar baking and to eliminate bake fail issues. It will primarily focus on moving the emphasis for the baking process from the viewer to a new Texture Compositing server. The viewer will retain some elements involved in avatar baking – the actual baking of the avatar shape (i.e. shape values and IDs) will still take place on the viewer side, for example.

As of Monday 15th October, no major news. Commenting at the Content Creation / Mesh Import meeting, Nyx Linden said, “Still plugging along at it :). It’s a complex project with many moving pieces, we’ll let you know when there are updates, and I will definitely be asking for beta testers here when we’re ready for feedback”.

Interest Lists and Object Caching

The focus of this project is to optimise the data being sent to the viewer, information already cached on the viewer and the manner in which that data is used in order to ensure it is used more efficiently so that things rez both faster and in a more orderly manner than is currently the case.

Interest lists and object rezzing: ironing-out the bugs, wherever they are

Andrew Linden continues to iron-out the bugs in the interests lists project, including one in the main viewer codebase wherein after crossing a region boundary the connection to the region you were just in will get reset after about 60 seconds. This is impacting the interest lists work and requires resolving, so Andrew is currently focused on trying to sort it out. A problem has also been reported with objects rezzing in the test regions on Aditi (e.g. Ahern) when moving through them in a vehicle, and will be looked into.

Pathfinding

A question was raised at the Content Creation / Mesh Import meeting on the 15th October as to why a 1-prim pathfinding character  has a land impact of 15. The reason for this is due to the increase physics load on the character. As previously covered, while this may seem harsh, it actually means that characters with a much higher prim count will also have a land impact of 15 (for example, a 30-prim character will still only have a land impact of 15), unless other factors (such as streaming cost) come into effect.

There are a couple of other issues with pathfinding characters which are being (or are about to be) looking at:

  • A bug whereby copies of single-prim characters only have a land impact of one (not 15). This problem is being addressed under PATHBUG-194.
  • A problem wherebypathfinding characters suddenly appear to “fly away” when adjusting your camera position, almost as if they are suffering from lag, and then reappearing there they should actually be (I gather this tends to happen when looking at a pathfinding character, which is following a set path then turning the camera away and then back again). Andrew Linden believes the problem is related to interest list updates, and will be looking into it.

Mesh

The patch to enhance the mesh uploader when dealing with rigged mesh items was discussed at the Content Creation Mesh Import group meeting on October 15th, with Nyx expressing interest in the idea, and agreeing with a suggestion that the patch needs to be formally submitted to LL’s bit bucket repo applied to a cloned version of the development viewer, supported by a JIRA outlining the patch and with a link to the repro.

Mesh uploda enhancement: suggested that it is submitted as a patch to LL

SH-3055 is a bug relating to mesh uploads which has been around for a while, but which appears to be affecting more people of late. With it, mesh uploads fail without any error message or warning on clicking CALCULATE or UPLOAD on the mesh upload floater. The issue is hard to track down (or even reproduce) as it doesn’t occur with any consistency. Either the upload works, or it simply sits as if waiting for something – whether it is waiting for data to be returned by the server, or whether it is receiving information and failing to action upon it.

Darien Caldwell and Nicky Dasmijn have been working with a debug viewer in an attempt to pin the problem down, but so far without success. One school of thought they are pursuing is that it is a problem with the viewer’s cURL wrapper (which is also thought to have been responsible for the recent crash issues being experienced in the beta viewer). The thinking behind this is that the problem appeared to come about with the introduction of a multi-threaded cURL in v3.2.5 of the viewer – with 3.2.4 having exhibited no major issues with uploading.Nyx Linden has stated he’ll take the problem to the team work on cURL to see if they can identify anything.

Materials Processing

No further updates. When talking to Geenz Spad and Oz Linden on Tuesday 16th October, Geenz could only say, “There’s not much to really report on materials for the time being unfortunately, but when there is something I’ll be more than happy to tell everyone.” Oz then added, “We’ll do more than tell you – we’ll give you something to play with :-)”.

Network Pile-on Test Update

Commenting on the thread for the pile-on test, Oskar Linden said: “All of the tests passed and the code will be going to RC next week. Thank you all for your help!”

With thanks to Baz deSantis for information on the Sim / server Group meeting.

One thought on “SL projects update week 42 / 1

  1. It’s awesome to hear that issue with mesh upload are being address by someone. I work with mesh a whole lot now. This is something that tends to occur far more often with third party viewers for me (basically, any viewer that uses HACD instead of Havok’s convex hull decomposition library), but certainly does happen occasionally in the official viewer. I’m hoping that getting this resolved in the official viewer will have an effect on mesh upload in TPVs as well.

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