SL project news: week 48/2: RC issues, region performance and Aditi issues

Server Deployments Week 48

After a smooth deployment to the main channel on Tuesday 27th November, things got a little unsettled on Wednesday 28th November with the deployments to the RC channels. As noted in part 1 of this report, these were supposed to comprise a maint-server release to BlueSteel and LeTigre, with the same package and a few extras going to Magnum.

The problems started during the actual deployment on Wednesday, wherein after successfully updating Magnum and BlueSteel, the deployment team started noticing issues unrelated to the deployment which caused Coyot Linden to call off the LeTigre roll-out until things were sorted. However, as Maestro Linden takes up the story:

Then there were reports in the forums about offline IM emails from objects being broken; if an object sent you an IM and you were offline, the offline email would contain all the usual details *except* for the message. This bug affected both BlueSteel and Magnum since they both shared the responsible change. Then, after digging into offline emails a bit more, we noticed that the ‘To’ field of offline emails would show the object owner’s name instead of the recipient’s name … which was a little confusing … Anyway, these bugs were kind of bad, but we weren’t sure that they were worth the trauma and downtime of an emergency rollback …But then this morning, we became aware of a 3rd bug, from support. It turned out that deeding parcels to groups was failing.

It was this third bug which was deemed sufficiently serious enough to warrant a roll-back of the RC deployments, which took place on Thursday 29th November, with the result that all four channels are now running on the same release – 12.11.09.266804. Kelly Linden has fixes for all three issues, but they are currently in testing, and the plan is to try again next week with the RC deployments.

Region Performance / Memory Issues

The physics memory issues which I reported in week 47, and then provided an update on in Part 1 of this report have received further attention from Linden Lab. The problem has been with some regions experiencing severe physics memory bloat within a short time of being restarted, with the result being that they rapidly reach a threshold of memory use (~230MB for homesteads, ~920MB for full regions) which prevents rezzing of any objects, in-world or attached.

In investigating the issue, Simon Linden located a source of memory leak related to the Havok system which may address the issue, and is hopeful he has found a fix. Commenting on the matter at the Server Beta meeting on 29th November, “I’m in the midst of hacking a special test mode for a region … I’m going to make it continuously re-bake the navmesh and terrain data. I’ll let that run overnight and see what happens … I’m not going to claim victory quite yet … this is like that point where you hit the zombie hard, but you have to see if it comes back again.”

Aditi Grid Log-in Issues

It had been hoped that the Aditi situation, wherein problems with inventory-related data is preventing people from being able to log-in to the beta grid – would be discussed at the Server Beta meeting, but these were somewhat side-lined by discussions on other projects, most notably Interest Lists (work on which prevented Andrew Linden from digging into the matter following the Simulator User Group meeting on Tuesday 27th November).

While Maestro was able to confirm that a member of Linden Labs is, “Working on a script to help the Aditi inventory situation”, little more information was provided at the meeting due to other ongoing conversations. Hopefully, this matter will be picked up next week.

PATHBUG-183

In working on Interest Lists, Andrew Linden had hoped he’d sorted a fix for PATHBUG-183, which relates to offscreen physical objects flying across your in-world view. The code for the fix has been available on Ahern, on the Aditi grid, but there are reports that while the problem may have been somewhat reduced in scale, it is still very apparent. Andrew hopes to look into this during week 49.

Region “Flicker” and  Content “Warping”

There has been some issues related to viewing neighbouring regions and crossing region boundaries. These issues take a number of forms, and are related to both server and viewer issues:

  • The entire neighbouring region “flickers” if you are near its edge
  • After crossing between regions, the content of the region you have just left seems to appear in the region you’ve just entered, usually somewhat warped / deformed
  • “Cachable” objects (e.g. unscripted and non-physical) objects vanish from your view of a region on leaving it
  • A region appears to “reset” (re-renders) itself shortly after leaving it
warp-4
Sometimes on crossing between regions, objects from the region you’ve just left seem to appear warped and deformed in the region you’ve just entered…
...only to disappear after a few seconds / as you approach them
…only to disappear after a few seconds / as you approach them

The first two of these issues are considered to be viewer-related bugs which are thought to have been resolved in code currently in the viewer development. The final item in the list is related to a server issue which Andrew Linden believes to have been fixed as a part of his work on Interest Lists. The “cacheable” objects problem was also considered to be a viewer-side bug which has also been addressed in viewer development, but in considering the problem at the Server Beta meeting, Andrew Linden thought there might actually be more than one bug responsible and indicated he would be looking into this some more.