Firestorm: of releases and springing into Spring

firestorm-logoAs noted in a recent TPV Developer meeting summary, things are in a state of flux with regards to Firestorm updates.

Originally, it had been hoped the team would have an update released during March; however, there have been numerous projects coming through the Lab which have encouraged the team to delay their release. These include things like fixes for the assorted issues of attachments either dropping off following region crossings (notably teleports) or failing to attach, and also with the upcoming Viewer-Managed Marketplace updates (VMM).

In addition, testing of the current pre-release beta has resulted in a very mixed bag of feedback from users involved in the beta process. Some have reported significant issues which may be linked to HTTP pipelining or the recent AIS v3 updates from that Lab, while others have indicated they’ve encountered very few issues, up to and including the attachment loss / failure issues mentioned above (although somewhat limited due to PC issues, my own use of the 4.7.0 pre-release versions of Firestorm has given me almost no issues whatsoever).

Because of this, it now seems likely that the Firestorm team will be handling the next release as follows:

  • Two initial preview releases, issued to the Firestorm preview group. One of these will have the latest AIS v3 updates and HTTP pipelining updates from the Lab enabled by default, and the other will have them disabled by default. The hope is these will help determine how many users may be impacted by any AIS v3  / HTTP pipelining issues, and how things should be defaulted for the follow-up releases
  • A public beta release will follow these two preview releases, which will see Firestorm brought up to par with the current LL viewer code
  • A “full” release will follow some weeks after the beta release, which may include any additional updates from the Lab (e.g. the attachment fixes and / or VMM, depending on the overall status of these updates from the Lab).

No precise time scales are available for any of these releases, but it seem likely (based on comments passed at the TPV meeting linked-to above), that there will likely be an initial call for users to join the Firestorm preview group to assist with the preview testing. The public beta then many still appear later in April.  So, keep an eye on the Firestorm blog for any call that may be made, and for news on upcoming releases.

Seth Regan (Mankind Tracer in SL) will be headlining Firestorm's
Seth Regan (Mankind Tracer in SL) will be headlining Firestorm’s “Fed up with Winter” party, with Firestorm’s Ed Merryman spinning the discs afterwards

In the meantime, the Firestorm has announced a “Fed up with Winter!” party – or as I’ll prefer to call it, a “spring into Spring” party.

Headlining the event which will start at 12:00 noon SLT on Saturday, March 28th, will be Seth Regan, known in-world as Mankind Tracer. After his set, Firestorm’s own Ed Merryman will be providing the music in his usual style of spinning the discs until he (or everyone else) fall over from exhaustion!

The party is open to all – or at least, all who can get into the region, and will take place in a party area overhead on the Firestorm Support island.