Week 2 Deployments – Recap
- On Tuesday January 7th, the Main channel received the server maintenance project that had been on the RC channels for the past few weeks. It contains a single bug fix, related to vehicles becoming stuck in the ‘sat upon’ state (which prevents parcel auto return)
- On Wednesday January 8th, all three RC channels received a new server maintenance project, which contains some crash fixes and the new LSL functions for uniformly scaling linksets, all of which are immediately accessible using current viewers (see part one of this week’s report for details). This project also contains updates related to STORM-68 and STORM-1831, both of which require viewer-side updates which have yet to be released by the Lab.
LSL Syntax Highlighting Updates
Related to STORM-1831, these updates, which were deployed to the RC channels as noted above, will eventually see the viewer able to fetch LSL syntax highlighting rules directly from the simulator. However, there are currently some errors in the syntax file as deployed to the RC channels this week (repeating text, bad whitespace, or inaccurate definitions of functions), which require further corrective work. As there is currently no publicly available viewer which can use this new capability, it is unlikely this issue will prevent the server maintenance project from being promoted to the Main channel in week 3.
The file is designed to be cached by the viewer (once the viewer-side updates are released), and is around some 600KB in size. This means that the file should only ever be downloaded and updated if the LSL editor is open, and the viewer detects a version number difference between the file it has cached and the file held by the simulator to which it is connected.
It is unclear when the viewer-side updates for this work will appear. While planned to arrive in a release candidate viewer containing a number of Snowstorm updates, it appears there are still a few bugs in the STORM-1831 code, such as with function arguments being presented in an incorrect order in the tool tips, which may delay its inclusion.
Week 3 Deployments
It is likely the server project currently on the three RCs will be promoted to the Main channel in week 3 (commencing Monday January 13th). However, it is also likely there will be no RC updates for the week, as there are no server maintenance updates ready to go, and no other projects (such as group ban lists) are in a position to be deployed.
Thursday January 9th saw the PackageFix viewer (dated January 2nd, 2014) promoted to the de facto release viewer. As per pervious notes in this blog, this viewer has no SL-related functional updates. Rather, it corrects an issue introduced with the 3.6.12 code base whereby the Windows executable name was changed from “SecondLife” to “SecondLifeViewer”, without removing any executable using the “SecondLife” name from the installation folder. As a result, any shortcuts pointing to the “old” executable would allow it to run if used, thus potentially triggering further auto-updates.
With this fix, any executables using the old name (“SecondLife”) are removed from the installation folder, so any shortcuts created to them will cause Windows to display an error message, and the user can then remove them or modify them to point to the correct executable.
Fitted Mesh Progress
Oz Linden is anticipating a release candidate of the Fitted Mesh viewer Real Soon NowTM. There are currently no open issues at present, and work is underway to move it to a release candidate status. Exactly how soon “Real Soon Now” might be, however, is a little up in the air, as Oz went on to note at the Open-source Dev meeting on Wednesday January 8th, saying, “there are a bunch of steps [still to be taken] and I don’t know how long they’ll end up taking.”
The Mystery of the Vanishing Breedables
There were reports over the Christmas period of issues being encountered with certain breedables – notably a cat – whereby they would mysteriously disappear or users found they were not able to drop them when attached. However, these reports appeared to stop on January 2nd, 2014 – coincidentally the day most of the Linden staff returned to work. ” We’d still like to hear about any ways to reproduce it,” Maestro Linden said at the Server Beta meeting on Thursday January 9th, “But for now we don’t know how to trigger the bug.”
his own thinking is that the problem was / is related to bad performance within the asset server. ” attaching an in-world object causes a copy of the object asset to be uploaded,” Maestro added when discussing the matter, “and I do notice, for example, [that] if I make an object with 1000 scripts and wear it as an attachment, the asset takes a long time to upload. During this time, I see the same symptoms as the bug: 1) object doesn’t appear in inventory; 2) drop button is greyed out. By ‘long time’ I mean 1-2 seconds. It’s not clear if anything was done to clear the problem, hence why the Lab would like to hear details of any situation where it might still be occurring.
On a similar, but likely unrelated note, in week 51 of 2013, I reported on Judy Chestnut and Spectre Dante attended the Simulator User Group meeting that week to highlight a worrying problem of Dwarfins (and potentially other breedables) vanishing from regions / parcels. Of those that were disappearing, around 10% would show-up in people’s Lost and Found folders and around 10% would show-up somewhere in the region where they should not in fact be, while the rest simply vanished.
Dwarfin Rock, home of the Dwarfins, was cloned on Aditi to allow Spectre to carry out further investigations. While investigations are continuing, the latest update from Dante is that disappearances seem to be correlated with a ‘move to random position’ behaviour. The thinking at the Lab is that the issue is not too widespread, as otherwise they would be inundated with JIRA on the matter.
Back in early November 2013, the question was asked about the possibility of improving scripted sound functions (such as, and among other things, being able to use a single sound loop for a vehicle’s engine and using LSL to change the pitch of the loops when the vehicle is accelerating or slowing down). At the time the Lab said they’d look into the idea.
While not directly related to the above, but on the subject of scripted sound capabilities, Maestro Linden pointed to llSoundPreload for scripters looking for an alternative to llPreloadSound, with its forced 1.0 “sleep” cycle. Although technically a deprecated function, Maestro noted, “llSoundPreload does the exact same thing as llPreloadSound – the only difference is that the deprecated one does not have a forced delay!”
The return of [L4L]-Gestures & Walkers (Freebies) <3?
I originally reported on this issue back in November 2012, whereby a self-replicating griefing object in the form of a “freebie gift” started circulating in-world. Called ”..::ExDepart::.. Gift Package 2012, the objects was intended as a region crasher, with the nasty aspect that when rezzed would cite the recipient as the owner, potentially leading to someone receiving and rezzing an object being accused of attempting to crash a region. One of the most common forms of the object was called “-[L4L]- Gestures & Walkers (Freebies) <3″
At the time there were several warnings on the item in circulation, and some of these have apparently re-surfaced – although whether the objects themselves are back in circulation or not is unclear. During the Simulator User Group meeting on Tuesday January 7th, it was the note card warnings which were the focus of discussion, rather than the objects themselves – although it appears there has been at least one report of it – or a similar device – being used.
As a note of caution, it is worthwhile taking care in receiving unexpected items, particularly from people you do not know.