Server Deployments – Week 30
As always, please refer to the week’s forum deployment thread for news, updates and feedback.
Second Life Server (SLS Main) Channel
On Tuesday 23rd July, the SLS Main channel received the server maintenance package previously deployed to BlueSteel. This comprised a further package of under-the-hood changes related to the experience tools.
Release Candidate Channels
On Wednesday July 24th, the three main Release Candidate channels should receive the following updates:
- BlueSteel should receive the same server maintenance project that was on LeTigre in week 29, and which additionally includes the experience tools updates deployed to the Main channel
- Magnum and LeTigre should both see Server-side baking / appearance (SSB/A) enabled, and should both receive the experience tools updates deployed to the Main channel.
Viewer Updates and Release Process
The second release candidate viewer was made available on Friday July 19th. Version 126.96.36.1998609 comprises the long-awaited Vivox updates. This was followed on Monday July 22nd by the third release candidate, version 188.8.131.528615, which contains Google Breakpad updates.
Commenting on the first two release candidates to be deployed (the Beta Maintenance RC and the Vivox RC), Oz Linden said at the Open-source Dev meeting on Monday July 22nd that, “they each got as many users as we asked for, and we’re getting good data on them.” However, this doesn’t mean that either one will is likely to become the de facto release viewer yet, as Oz went on to note, “we configured both of these for a relatively small number of users just in case… we might want to raise it before we make a release decision.” Given that the Google Breakpad RC has been added to the mix, any decision on which get promoted to release status may well be held over even longer as numbers are crunched.
Release candidates are now also listed on the Official Alternate Viewer wiki page, where they can be downloaded manually. In light of this, I’ve updated my overview of the new viewer release process to include notes on manually downloading and installing release candidate viewers.
Server-side Baking / Appearance
As noted above, following the RC channel restarts due on Wednesday July 24th, both Magnum and LeTigre should be running with SSB/A enabled. Overall, the response to SSB/A deployment both on LeTigre (week 28) and Magnum (week 29) has been good, with few issues being reported.
Of those which have, some may be tied to the way in which some TPVs have implemented the Current Outfit Folder (COF). To help determine whether this is the case, Nyx Linden issued an e-mail on Monday July 22nd, outlining how the Lab anticipates the COF should be set-up within a viewer, and has asked all TPVs to verify that they’ve met the requirements.
More on COF Mismatch Issues
In week 29, I referred to the issue of COF Mismatch Issues. These tend to occur when your viewer and the baking service disagree on the COF version number on which your appearance should be based, resulting in “COF version mismatch” errors appearing in the viewer. Part of the problem is due to the inventory protocol relying on both HTTP and UDP messages, some of which have failure callbacks and some which the viewer may wrongly assumes completes successfully – and the “COF version mismatch” results.
To eliminate this, the Lab is working to update the Agent Inventory Services (AIS), which will see the most error-prone operations related to the COF converted to use AIS rather than UDP. The hope is that this work will both remove the most prominent causes of COF mismatch errors and reduce the number of network calls needed to update the COF. This work has been ongoing for a while, and will form part of the next phase of SSB/A work once the current deployment has seen SSB/A go grid-wide. These updates will involve further viewer-side updates, and include a range of additional improvements, although as yet there is no time scale for their release (particularly as the Lab is only just starting discussing them with TPVs).
Group Ban List
There is not a lot to report here. Baker Linden is still working on the viewer-side code. Giving a brief update at the Simulator User Group meeting, he said, “I’m currently deciding on the format of the data coming into the viewer, and adding it to the group manager subsystem in the viewer. That’s about it :).”