The following notes are taken from the Server Beta User Group (SBUG) meeting held on Thursday, January 15th, 2015, and the TPV Developer meeting held on Friday, January 16th. A video of the latter is included at the end of the article (my thanks as always to North for recording it and providing it for embedding), and any time stamp contained within the following text refer to both it and the TPV Developer meeting.
Server Deployments – Week 3 Recap
- There was no Main (SLS) channel deployment on Tuesday, January 13th.
- On Wednesday, January 14th, all three RC channels received the same server maintenance package comprising: a fix for BUG-8002 “Experience Tools Allowed & Blocked experiences are lost with parcel subdivision”; crash mode fixes and avatar-related region crossing code clean-up related to “clean-up and polishing” rather than to performance improvements.
The Experience Tools RC viewer was updated to version 126.96.36.1998091 on January 15th, bringing it up to parity with the current release viewer (the HTTP pipelining release).
[00:15] There is a new maintenance release candidate viewer that is being queued-up for the viewer release channel.
[09:52] The Lab now has both Windows and Mac versions of the viewer building successfully using the new tool chain (which among other things, used Visual Studio 2013 for Windows and xcode 6 for Mac), and may be “pretty close” to achieving the same with Linux, although that is still to be determined.
It is anticipated that project viewers using the new build process will start to appear soon, and the process gradually be applied to RC releases and the viewer release itself, but only after full regression testing has been undertaken to try to ensure there are no hidden issues remaining.
This work does potentially make it easier for the Lab to start producing 64-bit versions of the viewer, but there are currently no detailed plans for them to start doing so at this point in time.
Experience Key Tools
[01:20] The initial release of the Experience Tools is still on the horizon, with the release candidate viewer currently the only RC in the pipeline, and which has no further viewer-side changes waiting to be implemented (which doesn’t automatically mean it will be promoted to release status next). However, the Lab is still working on some back-end issues which must be fixed before the key can be turned and the capabilities formally released.
[01:24] The lab is continuing to push out changes intended to make group chat more robust. While happy with the overall improvements that have been made to performance in terms of reducing the noticeable amounts of group chat lag, the problems to the chat servers locking-up every so often and requiring a restart are still being worked on. Additional testing is continuing, and Oz linden indicates that the Lab aren’t about to give up on getting to the bottom of things.
Z-offset Height Adjustment
[02:52] This is intended to provide a means of on-the-fly adjustments to be made to an avatars height above the ground / objects and which can be used whether the avatar is standing or sitting, without the need to use the current Appearance hover slider. It will work in a manner similar to the old z-offset height adjustment found in some TPVs, and will likely comprise a slider access through the avatar right-click context menu. As well as working for individual avatars, it is thought the capability will also work against thinks like couples poseballs for dancing, although this has yet to be tested.
Vir Linden, who has been working on the project reports that the capability is now to be persistent across logins on a per-account basis (so you will be able to set it for each of your accounts, and have the viewer remember the setting for those accounts, rather than having a global setting in the viewer applicable to all accounts using that viewer).
The viewer code is about to go through internal QA testing with the Lab, and the hope is that it will appear as a project viewer during week 4 (week commencing Monday 19th January). This will be available for testing the capability on Aditi (the beta grid), where a number of regions have been set-up on channel DRTSIM-274 (notably regions Hover1 and Hover2). The project viewer will be released with notes on how to use it, and people will be invited to tes it both on these regions with the necessary server-side support and on regions without the server support (and when moving between the two), with a request that any issues found are reported via the JIRA.
Assuming no major issues are found, the server-side changes are already in the queue for release onto Agni (the main grid), and the viewer code will hopefully rapidly progress to RC status as well.
[05:21] A further server-side update which is forthcoming and will assist with this testing is the avatar attribute testing fix, about which I reported in part 1 of this update.