2019 SL User Groups 38/3: TPVD meeting

HollyWeird, Hotel California – August 2019 – blog post

The following notes are taken from the TPV Developer meeting held on September 20th, 2019. A video of the meeting is embedded below, my thanks as always to Pantera for recording and providing it. This was a relatively short meeting, with the majority of topics covered in the first 20 minutes.

SL Viewer News

There have been no further updates to the official SL pipelines since the updates at the start of the week, leaving them as follows:

  • Current Release version, formerly the Umeshu Maintenance RC viewer, dated September 5th.
  • Release channel cohorts:
    • Vinsanto RC viewer, version, September 17th.
    • Ordered Shutdown RC viewer, version, September 16th. This viewer has changes intended to make crashes on shut-down less likely, but does not have any changes to existing features.
    • EEP RC viewer, version, August 19th.
  • Project viewers:
    • Legacy Profiles viewer, version, September 17th. Covers the re-integration of Viewer Profiles.
    • Project Muscadine (Animesh follow-on) project viewer, version, September 11th.
    • 360 Snapshot project viewer, version, July 16th.
  • Linux Spur viewer, version, dated November 17th, 2017 and promoted to release status 29th November 2017 – offered pending a Linux version of the Alex Ivy viewer code.
  • Obsolete platform viewer, version, May 8th, 2015 – provided for users on Windows XP and OS X versions below 10.7.

Note: Bakes on Mesh introduced an at-login crash that some viewers are experiencing. This has been the subject of a bug report and a fix will be making its way into a maintenance viewer.

Brief Viewer-Related Notes

EEP Viewer

EEP progress has been slowed down for the time being – but for good reasons. The Lab has hired two new rendering system experts, one of whom has already started. They are due to work on EEP related rendering but they will both take time to be introduced to the Lab’s working environment and the EEP project as a whole. This expertise will also be put to work on general rendering work through projects such as the Love Me Render pipeline.

Voice Viewer

The long-awaited Voice viewer update should be appearing in week #39 (commencing Monday, September 23rd), containing assorted fixes for the viewer side of voice.

  • In particular, it is hoped this update will fix the (predominantly Mac-related) issue of disconnects as a result of a user speaking too softly / having the microphone set too low / pausing for extended period when speaking.
  • However, there are some issues believed to be server-side that are still being addressed (such as users appearing to be on a separate voice channel to the region of a region, requiring a relog).
  • It is believed the version of SLvoice.exe in this viewer will function OK with TPVs, although the Lab has obviously not tested this.

Once out, this viewer will likely be pushed through to release status as soon as progress / lack of issues allow.

Viewer Caching / Texture Memory Use

This work is again getting attention, but it will still be a while before it received “substantive” attention once more, in order for a project /RC viewer to make an appearance.

Viewer Build Related Notes

Viewer Build Manifest Updates

From a development perspective, the Voice viewer also includes change to the viewer build manifest, so it accurately reflects viewer build library requirements and correctly reports on missing libraries. Those who self-compile should listen to the video between 10:30 and 14:00.

Viewer Build Tools Project

The work to update the viewer build process to use Visual Studio 2017 and Xcode 10.3 for OS X is still progressing. It is anticipated that results from this work will be visible in the next few weeks.

Mercurial to Github Migration

Bitbucket, used to manage viewer repositories) will be sunsetting support for Mercurial; Linden Lab will therefore be switching to git on bitbucket for their repositories.

  • Currently, the Lab is experimenting with converting come of their internal repositories from Mercurial to git to see if it is possible to do code merges in both directions via the same tool.
  • If successful, LL will document the tool and process, then move to try the same procedure against their build repositories, then run things in parallel before finally switching over.
  • The process is expected to be measured in 2-3 months rather than weeks, and the documentation the Lab produces will be made available to TPVs to allow them to migrate where required, and efforts will be made to keep TPVs informed on overall progress.
  • Overall, it is anticipated that the overall process will not be quite as “scary” as has been feared.