On Thursday, August 20th, the Alchemy team released version 220.127.116.11473 of their viewer in the first of their promised monthly updates.
This release brings the viewer to par with the Lab’s 3.8.2 code base – which means Viewer-Managed Marketplace support. Also, and interestingly, the windows version of the viewer is now built using Visual Studio 2015 (this will generate a VS2015 Redistributable message as a part of the installation process as core elements required for the viewer to run are installed).
Also with this release – and the Alchemy team are calling it a release, rather than a “beta”, as with recent updates – is support for up to 2 gigabytes of texture memory; improvements to the build floater and right-click context menu option; some tweaks to Preferences; and the arrival of OpenSimulator support as well.
So, as a quick look at the main updates.
The SL VMM support offers the expected Marketplace Listings panel, found under the Me menu.
I admittedly did not play with it extensively (i.e. I didn’t attempt to create an entirely new listing, as I don’t have anything not already listed via VMM), but everything did appear to be working quite happily while I poked at updating listings, etc.
In Preferences, the Sound and Media tab gets two new sub-tabs. The first of these is for media, and entitled Sounds; it also includes a toggle for enabling / disabling audio stream notifications.
The second sub-tab is called Voice, and does exactly what it says on the label: provides access to the Voice options.
A minor update to the Setup tab sees the Use Built-in Browser option re-labelled to be more generic in recognition of OpenSimulator support (“in-world” rather than “Second Life”).
A new tab in Preferences, called Grids, provides access to the viewer’s grid manager for adding OpenSimulator grid details, which can then appear on the log-in / splash screen grid selection. By default, both the SL main (Agni) and beta (Aditi) grids are listed, and adding further grids is the usual case of adding the appropriate URI, with the Grid Manager set to recognise the more popular destinations.
In testing I found everything working as expected, and I had no issues adding Kitely and logging-in. In addition to the new grid options, the OpenSim updates also include both hypergrid support, and support for OpenSim variable regions.
The build tool updates come in two parts. The first is an expanded build sub-menu available from the right-click context menu, which now includes the various script-related options (recompile, reset, set running, etc). The second is the addition of a check box to the build floater itself to automatically synchronise settings (repeats, offsets, etc), between materials layers on an object / object face.
All told a tidy update in which the OpenSimulator support could be very welcome. As always, for full information on updates, any known issues, etc., please refer directly to the release notes.