Firestorm 5.0.7: tight and tidy

On Tuesday, June 20th, the Firestorm team released Firestorm 5.0.7.52912.

This is something of a maintenance update than a major feature release, covering as it does the more recent updates from Linden Lab – the improved region and parcel access controls, updated Trash behaviour to try to help control risks of inventory loss, custom folders for uploads, the avatar complexity updates, and a host of smaller fixes and tweaks.

Most of these have been adopted directly from the Lab’s code, others  – such as the avatar complexity updates – have been folded-in to existing capabilities in Firestorm. There are also numerous updates and improvements from the Firestorm team as well.

In keeping with my usual approach to Firestorm releases, what follows is  not an in-depth review of everything new  / updated in version 5.0.7.52912, but rather an overview, highlighting some of the more significant / interesting changes, updates and  fixes, which I feel will be of most interest to users.

For details of all changes, and all due credits to contributors, etc., please refer to the official release notes.

The Before We Begin

  • There is no need to perform a clean install with this release if you do not wish to.
  • Do, however, make sure you back-up all your settings safely so you can restore them after installing 5.0.7.

Major Lab Derived Updates

Firestorm 5.0.7 brings the viewer up to parity with the Lab’s 5.0.5 code base. So, as noted, this release supports the updated region and parcel access controls, the latest avatar rendering updates, custom upload folders, etc..

Updated Region / Parcel Access Controls

The updated region / parcel access controls, introduced by Linden Lab in May 2017  mean that when a region holder / manager explicitly sets a region for open access to visitors (via the Region / Estate floater), parcel holders on the region can no longer override the setting at the parcel level and create ban lines around their parcel (although they can still use the parcel ban list and scripted security systems if they wish and subject to any covenant).

These updates mean that both the Estate tab in the Region / Estate floater has been updated, and the behaviour of the Access tab in the About Land floater has changed.

In the case of the Estate tab in the Region / Estate floater, the check box Allow Public Access has been removed, and a new option, Parcel Owners Can Be More Restrictive, has been added (see below).

The new Parcel Owners Can Be More Restrictive option on the Region / Estate > Estate tab and its Apply button. Used to determine whether or not parcel owners can set parcel access restrictions through the About Land floater

By default, Parcel Owners Can Be More Restrictive is checked, which means that parcel owners should see no difference in behaviour for their parcels unless an estate holder / manager opts to make changes at the estate level.

Should the option be unchecked, the estate holder / manager making the change will receive a warning that they are about to make a change that could affect parcel settings in the estate:

The new warning estate holder / managers will see when changing the new access settings

To set the change, the region holder / manager must then clear the warning (OK) and click the Apply button on the Region / Estate floater – failure to do so will leave the option unchanged.

UNCHECKING the option will result in two things happening at the parcel level:

  • Parcel owners will receive a new system notification for every parcel in the region they hold which has been affected by the change:
The new system notification displayed to parcel holders for every parcel in the region they hold which has been affected by a change to the region’s access settings at Estate level
  • Any previously active banlines around affected parcel will be removed, and parcel owners will no longer be able to set parcel access restrictions via About Land > Access, as the options to do so will be greyed out:
When the Parcel Owners Can Be More Restrictive option is checked, the parcel-level access options in the About Land floater will be greyed out for parcel holders, preventing them from overriding the region-level access

If a region which previously allowed parcel holders to set their own access restrictions is set to public access (by unchecking Parcel Owners Can Be More Restrictive and clicking APPLY), and then is reverted again (by checking Parcel Owners Can Be More Restrictive and clicking APPLY), all parcels on the region will revert to the access settings applied to them before any changes to region access were made at the estate level.

Trash Behaviour Changes

To try to help with inventory losses through accidental deletion of objects which have mistakenly been moved to Trash, the Maintenance RC viewer has the following Trash related behaviour changes:

  • The prompt displayed when you have over 5K items in Trash is amended to show the trash folder when you’re ready to purge it, and before you can purge it.
  • Backspace will now only delete on Mac systems (as it’s the only option available), it will no longer delete on windows.
  • The purging Trash notification now gives a count of items in Trash.
The Trash purging warning now gives a count of the items about to be permanently deleted from the Trash folder – one of the new behaviours in the Maintenance RC viewer designed to help combat accidental inventory loss through Trash deletions
  • The “Are you sure you want to delete this thing” warning will be seen at least once per session.

Note: Firestorm have included a debug setting to disable the trash purging warning – FSDontNagWhenPurging. This is set to FALSE by default (the warning will be displayed). It is recommended you do not change this setting unless you have complete confidence that you are unlikely to accidentally purge wanted items from trash / you viewer is unlikely to incorrectly move folders to your Trash.

Continue reading “Firestorm 5.0.7: tight and tidy”

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SL project updates 25/1: server, viewer

SL14B Stage Left; Inara Pey, June 2017, on Flickr SL14B Community Celebrationblog post

Server Deployments Week 25

As always, please refer to the server deployment thread for the latest updates.

  • On Tuesday, June 20th, the Main (SLS) channel was updated with a new server maintenance package (#17.06.12.327066), containing fixes to help with the caps (capabilities) router, particularly with reference to trying to teleport to regions which have a heavy avatar load (see here for details),. These were essentially the same fixes as deployed to the Main channel on June 6th (server maintenance package #17.05.26.326655), together with additional internal fixes.
  • On Wednesday, June 21st, the RC channels should be updated as follows:
    • BlueSteel and LeTigre should receive the same server maintenance package (#17.06.19.327206) containing internal fixes
    • Magnum should receive a server maintenance package (#17.06.19.327192) intended to fix BUG-100830 (“HTTP_CUSTOM_HEADER no longer works on RC 17.06.13.327111”) and BUG-100831 (“Lelutka Simone bento head spits a script error when attached on 17.06.13.327111 regions (Magnum & Cake)”).

SL Viewer

The Asset HTTP RC viewer, version 5.0.6.326593 dated May 23rd, was promoted to de facto release status on Tuesday, June 20th.  This viewer includes avatar rendering updates – see my RC overview for more.

The snapshot viewer updated to version 5.1.0.506488 on Monday, June 19th. This version should include all the necessary metadata in 360-degree shoot to play them as 360 images on suitable websites. However, in testing, it does not appear to work with Flickr.

Otherwise, the current viewer pipelines line-up as:

  • Release channel cohorts:
  • Project viewers:
    • Project Alex Ivy 64-bit viewer version 5.1.0.505089 dated May 11th
  • Obsolete platform viewer version 3.7.28.300847 dated May 8th, 2015 – provided for users on Windows XP and OS X versions below 10.7.

2017 Viewer release summaries week 24

Logos representative only and should not be seen as an endorsement / preference / recommendation

Updates for the week ending Sunday, June 18th

This summary is published every Monday, and is a list of SL viewer / client releases (official and TPV) made during the previous week. When reading it, please note:

  • It is based on my Current Viewer Releases Page, a list of all Second Life viewers and clients that are in popular use (and of which I am aware), and which are recognised as adhering to the TPV Policy. This page includes comprehensive links to download pages, blog notes, release notes, etc., as well as links to any / all reviews of specific viewers / clients made within this blog
  • By its nature, this summary presented here will always be in arrears, please refer to the Current Viewer Release Page for more up-to-date information.

Official LL Viewers

LL Viewer Resources

Third-party Viewers

V5-style

V1-style

  • No updates.

Mobile / Other Clients

  • No updates.

Additional TPV Resources

Related Links

SL project updates 24/3: TPV Developer meeting

Le Sixième Sens, Les Reves Perdus; Inara Pey, June 2017, on Flickr Les Reves Perdusblog post

The majority of the notes in this update are taken from the TPV Developer meeting held on Friday, June 16th, 2017. The video of that meeting is embedded at the end of this update, my thanks as always to North for recording and providing it. Timestamps in the text below will open the video in a separate window at the relevant point for those wishing to listen to the discussions. Note that the timestamps may not be in chronological order, reflecting the fact that some topics were discussed more than once during the course of the meeting.

Server Deployments, Week 24 – Recap

As always, please refer to the server deployment thread for the latest information.

There was no deployment to the main (SLS) channel on Tuesday, June 13th. Nor, as the channel was updated in week #23, was there a restart.

On Wednesday, June 14th, two of the server RC channels were be updated as follows:

  • LeTigre received a new server maintenance package (#17.06.12.327066), comprising additional internal logging and features and improvements to region start
  • BlueSteel received a new server maintenance package (17#17.06.13.327122) containing internal fixes

[15:20] The Magnum RC was initially updated with a newer version of the new operating system update (#17.06.12.327060), which included a fix for BUG-100737 “Shoutcast receivers unable to relay on RC Magnum” (see part 1 of this report for more on this issue). However, this deployment had to be subsequently rolled-back as the corrective intent of the BUG-100737 didn’t work as expected. This update will likely be re-deployed to Magnum ion week #25 (commencing Monday, June 19th).

SL Viewer Pipelines

Asset HTTP Viewer

[1:39] The Asset HTTP viewer should be promoted to release status at the start of week #25 (week commencing Monday, June 19th). The promotion has been delayed while the viewer goes through a complete regression test (something the Lab does every X number of viewer releases).  This viewer sees delivery of all remaining asset types (wearables, gestures, animations, sounds, etc) over HTTP via the CDN.

[11:39] This viewer should hopefully see faster first-time playback of sounds and animations, as these will be obtained via the CDN, which should be faster than being obtained through the simulator. It also means obtaining assets should also be a lot more reliable when you’re in a busy region, because – again – the assets are not coming via the simulator, but through a CDN node.

The Lab will – several months hence from now – remove the server-side UDP messaging support for these asset types. This will in turn mean that any viewers not updated to the HTTP support at the time the messaging is removed from the simulator will no longer be able to receive these asset types.

Maintenance RC Viewer

[5:25] The Maintenance RC viewer updated on Thursday, June 15th to version 5.0.6.327125. This includes an update to prevent the viewer crashing if it receives a UDP message from the simulator that it doesn’t recognise, by having the viewer ignore all unrecognised messages.

Voice RC Viewer

[5:04] The Voice RC viewer has been updated, but the update has a high crash rate and so the update is unlikely to see the light of day.

Alex Ivy 64-bit Project Viewer

[2:23] The next version of the 64-bit project viewer is completing testing. This includes the new Windows SL Launcher and updater, together with a 64-bit version of the Havok sub-libraries. As noted in my last TPV Developer meeting update, the launcher is essentially a 32-bit executable that checks a Windows system to see if it is 32-bit or 64-bit, and then endeavours to download the correct version (32- or 64-bit) of the viewer if an update is available, install it and then launch it. SL Launcher is only required for Windows as the Mac version of the viewer will only be provided in 64-bit once the Alex Ivy viewer reaches release status.

A follow-up build for RC release has apparently been built, and this should appear soon after the project update, and work has commenced on updating the wiki build instructions for building the viewer to match the 64-bit build process.

[38:26] The wiki instructions are being updates to reflect the requirements of the 64-bit build, so care should be taken when following them for other builds.

360-degree Snapshot Project Viewer

[6:21] The 360-snapshot viewer is now up-to-date and includes code to generate a 360 equirectangular images and their metadata, which can then be uploaded to suitable websites supporting 360-images. The update will appear once it has cleared the Lab’s QA testing.

There is still further work to be done on this viewer – the UI is going to be updated to allow integrated uploads of 360-images to SL Place Pages (and this may be done for Flickr, etc), and SL Place Pages will be updated to accept 360-degree images from the viewer.

TP Throttle

[13:28] The Lab is still looking at throttling the speed at which teleport requests can be re-tried when trying to access a busy region. An initial change is currently on the LeTigre RC, and further changes are liable to be made. As previously noted, these updates shouldn’t impact manual teleports, but may affect teleport HUDs which are scripted to repeatedly re-try teleports in rapid succession until one is  successful (requiring the scripts running them to be modified so they don’t exceed the throttle).

This change is being made because a high incidence of failed teleport requests hitting a busy region places an additional load on the region’s simulator, adversely affecting performance for those already in the region.

Other Items

Uploading Meshes Rigged to Attachment Points

[17:48] This subject came up at the Content Creation User Group meeting as a part of the discussion on animating weapons to follow hands. There was some confusion on whether mesh objects rigged to attachment points could be uploaded, after it was reported that the LL viewer supported it, and Firestorm didn’t (see FIRE-21000 – which now has a fix).  While there is a server-side validation error which can cause some issues when uploading meshes (fix in progress) which might cause upload problems, it is believed that the current behaviour here should be that new objects rigged to attachment points should be blocked from upload, but existing items rigged to attachment points previously uploaded to SL will still work.

Supplemental Animations and Animation Priorities

[24:17] The question was asked if there was any historic reason for not being able to change the priority of an animation post upload (see SVC-8094). It is thought this might be because the priority is set within the animation asset, which cannot be edited. However, it is hoped the forthcoming server-side supplemental animation updates will help eliminate some of the conflicts created by priority clashes.

Providing a Means to Compile Experience Scripts in the User’s Inventory

[35:21] Some people working collaboratively on experiences are finding it problematic when having to update scripts used by the experience, but which are contained in another user’s objects for that experience, as it requires a lot of swapping and changing, rather than simply editing the script in question (see BUG-8180).

While the Lab understands these difficulties, it was a conscious decision to have experience management work as it does, and while at some point in the future they might revisit things, doing so isn’t on the short-term roadmap.

Resetting Scripts in No-Mod Objects

[36:47] This is a request the Lab is unlikely to implement, because it would violate the expectations of the script authors.