SL project updates week 15/1: server, viewer, HTTP Inventory reminder

... and don't miss out on the merfolk's beach, complete with pier and fun fair!
Don#t forget you can plunge into learning about SL’s extensive merfolk and undersea community this week, thanks to the folk at Fanci’s Deep and the Safe Waters Foundation. There’s undersea tours, dances, dolphin rides, shopping opportunities, freebies and a whole lot more. You can even visit the mer beach and fun fair (above)! To find out more, read the blog post on the event, which runs through until April 11th

Server Deployments Week 15

As always, please refer to the server deployment thread in the forums for the latest information and updates.

  • On Tuesday, April 7th the Main (SLS) channel will receive the server maintenance update previously deployed to the three RC channels. This is primarily focused on trying to prevent  inventory loss issues, and sees UDP inventory messaging deprecated (see HTTP Inventory, below, for more important information)
  • On Wednesday, April 8th all three RC channels should receive a new server maintenance package comprising:
    • A fix for a server crash when rezzing an object
    • A minor change for CDN configuration
    • Adjusted internal server configuration.

SL Viewer Updates

A new release candidate viewer was released towards the end of last week. The HeatWave viewer, version 3.7.27.300424. This is essentially the maintenance RC viewer with an additional URI parser fix to prevent a viewer crash bug, but has retained a project name to differentiate the two RCs from one another.

 HTTP Inventory

With the Tuesday deployment (noted above), the main grid now only supports HTTP Inventory fetching. This means you must have the HTTP Inventory option enabled in the viewer (it can be found under the Develop(er) menu).

Should you disable it for any reason, you will encounter two issues:

  • Your avatar will not render, but will remain a cloud
  • Should you refresh your inventory for any reason (clear cache), your viewer will never complete the process of inventory fetching.

Unfortunately, and coincidentally, the Main channel deployment on Tuesday, April 7th came at a time when asset server / inventory issues were being experienced across the grid, and inventory database maintenance was carried out as a result.

Note that from Tuesday, April 6th, you must ensure HTTP Inventory is enabled in the Develop menu (sometimes called the Developer menu in TPVs) in order to help avoid inventory and / or avatar rendering problems
Note that from Tuesday, April 6th, you must ensure HTTP Inventory is enabled in the Develop menu (sometimes called the Developer menu in TPVs) in order to help avoid inventory and / or avatar rendering problems

These issues and the maintenance may have masked any problems some people may have been having purely as a result of HTTP Inventory being disabled in their viewer.

Therefore, if you are encountering problems with your avatar remaining a cloud, or your inventory failing to load, please try the following steps to see if they resolve your situation:

  1. Make sure you have the Develop(er) menu enabled in your menu bar at the top of the viewer. Press CTRL-ALT-Q if you cannot see it.
  2. Click on Develop(er) to list the menu options.
  3. Make sure there is a tick in front of the HTTP Inventory option.
  4. If HTTP Inventory does not have a tick in front of it, then it is disabled. Click on it to enable it (and display the tick).
  5. Closed the Develop menu and re-log.
  6. Hopefully, following your re-log, your avatar will render / your inventory load properly.

UDP Inventory Messaging Deprecated

The reason for this is that the Lab has now deprecated the “old” method of inventory messaging (referred to as UDP messaging). However, if you disable the HTTP Inventory option in your viewer, the viewer will still attempt to use the “old” method, and thus you’ll have problems.

There are plans in hand for the Lab to remove the HTTP Inventory option from the viewer, and some TPVs may opt to remove it ahead of any update from the Lab. Until that time, it is essential you keep the option enabled to assist with the smooth functioning of your inventory.

Experience Keys / Tools

Not a lot to report on this project. Simon Linden has been working on the Key Value (KVP) database store used by Experiences. This work appears to be related to the Lab working to ensure the when deployed Experience Keys / Tools can be properly scaled to meet the anticipated demand for them. Commenting in general terms on the work, Oz Linden said during the Simulator User Group meeting on Tuesday, April 7th, “if we are as successful as we’d like to be with Experiences being adopted, it would run into problems. So we’re trying to solve them before we get to that point.”

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6 thoughts on “SL project updates week 15/1: server, viewer, HTTP Inventory reminder

  1. ” ( with HTTP off) Should you refresh your inventory for any reason (clear cache), your viewer will never complete the process of inventory fetching.”

    Does this mean your items are gone for good?

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    1. No, it means you need to re-enable HTTP Inventory in order for your viewer to correctly communicate with LL’s servers so that it can receive your inventory data. Nothing is lost. It is simply that the viewer and the servers are unable to “talk” to each other properly WRT inventory.

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  2. All the viewers i use have the Http option enabled by default and since December i can say that inventory fetches amazingly faster now.
    Still is pretty easy to disable it if one accesses developer menu, even if the only reason i could think to do so is when using a tpv open sim compatible on some grids.
    So i do think disabling that option on dev menu can be a good choice for Sl viewers only but for sure not for open sim’s compatible viewers.

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    1. HTTP Inventory has been enabled by default for a good while, yes.

      Unfortunately, there was a time when it (and other HTTP-based services) didn’t seem to work so well for some users as the older UDP method. Therefore, one of the items of advice which did the rounds was, “if you have inventory issues, try turning off HTTP Inventory” (another was to try turning off HTTP Textures – and server-side UDP support for that will be vanishing in the future).

      As disabling HTTP Inventory did appear to assist some people back then, there are those who have since kept it manually disabled with each update to their preferred viewer, even though much work has been completed in the meantime to make HTTP functions a lot better and more robust (including inventory fetching via HTTP). Hence the problems people have had over the last two weeks when in regions on an RC channel.

      As to OpenSim, and HTTP Inventory, you raise a fair point. Those viewer which provide both OpenSim and SL support from a single viewer may well opt not to implement any change. Those that offer individual viewers to both may opt to remove in one and not the other. Similarly, those that are only focused on SL (due to something like the Havok library sub-licensing) may opt to that the Lab’s code as it appears.

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  3. As someone who had, accidentally – or on purpose but I really cannot remember – had the HTTP textures disabled and thus facing the loss of my complete inventory last week …I can only say I wished LL Support (who I have had only good experiences with for years!) for the first time disappointed me in getting my issue fixed: not once did they ask me to check this feature, they only focussed on me giving a list of missing objects (Duh, my WHOLE inventory!?).
    Anyway, I got my inventory back after enabling it again, but still missed around 2-3 K of stuffs.
    I only got those back when I logged in on another machine and let it fetch inventory. I know this may be a way not everyone can do, but apparently installing a viewer all fresh and new on a machine that had never had SL installed on it before, did the final trick for me.

    Like

    1. I did actually raise your experience (without naming names!) at one of the LL-led user group meetings (and if it is any consolation, you weren’t alone, a fiend contacted me in-world to relate pretty much the same experience). Hopefully the matter was noted and a poke given to LL’s support team ahead of the grid-wide deployment of the changes this week!

      Glad you got the rest of your inventory back. In testing things on an RC channel last week, I didn’t notice any losses myself. That said, I was using my Crash Test Alt, which has a limited inventory (just 10K of absolute junk), so I might simply have missed that aspect of the problem, or it might be that Sod’s Law decided to be unkind to you and hit you with another issue at the same time. Those with a deeper knowledge of the arcane ways of inventory handling than I might be able to shed light on things!

      Liked by 1 person

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