NWS: licensed version due to launch; tutorials start being released

My Fallingwater OAR file loaded into New World Studio on my PC as a part of a Host you own region / megaregion at home using NWS: my own initial set-up featuring 16 regions and using an OAR of my Fallingwater build
Host you own region / megaregion at home using NWS: my own initial set-up featuring 16 regions and using an OAR of my Fallingwater build

I recently reviewed the free version of Olivier Battini’s New World Studio, which allows anyone to to run their own single or multiple-region OpenSim environment on their own computer at home.

Currently, the free – or Community – version is very much as standalone version, although Olivier has indicated that connectivity will be possible in the future as a part of the manual configuration capability. This capability, which requires the editing of an .INI file, already allows users to define the number of regions their NWS installation supports, whether or not these are to be treated as a megaregion, the default starting OAR file (and avatar IAR file, if applicable), specify a preferred viewer rather than the default Imprudence viewr, and so on.

The Community edition of NWS is fully configurable - but requires editing an INI file (original shown left, and my own updated version, right)
The Community edition of NWS is fully configurable – but requires editing an INI file (original shown left, and my own updated version, right)

Due to be released later this week, the licensed version of NWS (currently starting at a 50% off 15 Euros / $20 for a home licence) does, among other things, take away the need to edit the INI file by allowing access to simple selection panel which can be accessed via the Access Advanced Features button on the NWS Launcher.

This panel allows users to configure NWS quickly and easily through a series of option fields and drop-downs. Using it, you can set your avatar name and default look, define the number of regions you wish to run (1, 4, 9, or 16), the default region name and whether or not the regions are to be treated as a megaregion, and set the default OAR file.

The licensed version of NWS includes a configuration panel for easy-of-set-up (image courtesy of Olivier Battini by way of Hypergrid Business)
The licensed version of NWS includes a configuration panel for easy-of-set-up (image courtesy of Olivier Battini by way of Hypergrid Business)

Currently, the control panel doesn’t include an option to select your own preferred viewer. However, this is coming with future updates, together with a number of other options, such as automatically network and firewall configuration for public access, public 3D worlds searches, and so on, as defined on the NWS Features page for the website. In terms of functionality and features, these will take time to develop, which is why licensed versions are being discounted and there is an active Early Adopter Programme, as Olivier explained when we discussed NWS recently.

“People must know and should understand that all will not be functional right now. This project requires a huge amount of work, especially as it’s multi-platform (Win, Mac, Linux),” he said, emphasising the effort involved in putting it all together before highlighting the benefits, “People can experience how easy to use NWS is, and they may not realize the cost of simplicity. This is why there’s an Early Adopter Programme that will allow people to, not only get lower prices, but also be able to vote for the features they want to see implemented first.”

In preparation for the wider availability of NWS options, Olivier has also been working on documentation and tutorials, the latter starting with an introductory video to NWS 2.1 Community Edition.

Again, if you’re looking for a “home studio” OpenSim capability for design / building work, whether your products are for use on OpenSim or Second Life, New World Studio – with a few caveats in the case of use with SL – might be just what you’re looking for as a fast, clean, easy-to-install option.

Related Links

With thanks to Maria Korolov at Hypergrid Business and to Olivier Battini.

New World Studio: self-hosting a region made easy

Note: New World Studio is no longer functional.

New World Studio, which is currently in beta testing, is designed as a quick-and-easy means of setting-up an OpenSim environment on any Windows, Mac or Linux computer.

The brainchild of Olivier Battini, New World Studio (NWS) is designed to provide home users, educational organisations and businesses a “one stop” means of establishing a self-hosted OpenSim environment, complete with a choice of region designs and with licence options (starting for 30 Euros / $40  – and subject to a 50% discount at the time of writing), which include automated network / firewall / access configurations.

NWS supports all current OpenSim commands, and can be quickly and easily configured to run as a single region or as an estate of multiple regions or megaregion, accessed by either the supplied viewer (Imprudence) or an OpenSim-compatible viewer of your choice. While the free version currently only supports a standalone capability, Olivier is re-working things so that installations can be opened-up for public access when online. Even so, and as a standalone option, NWS already offers home users a quick and easy way of establishing a private sandbox environment which content can be created and / or tested ready for export to other OpenSim environments and – to a degree at least – to Second Life.

To say NWS is exceptionally easy to set-up is an understatement. From download to running in its default mode takes less than five minutes. I had it downloaded, installed and customised to suit my requirements (avatar, my own OAR region file & choice of viewer) in under ten.

Installation

Installation is a matter of downloading the required ZIP archive (obtained directly from Olivier at the time of writing) and extracting it to a nominated location / folder. Linux and Mac users will also need to install Mono, otherwise everything is ready to run NWS in a default configuration.

However – if you want to customise the installation in any way (use your own region OAR or preferred viewer, for example), you will need to do so before you run NWS for the first time.

Custom Configuration

Configuring NWS requires editing the NewWorldStudio.INI (contained in the application folder) file using a suitable plain text editor (such as Notepad). Generally speaking, the [World], [Owner] and [Software] sections of the file will need to be updated.

[World]

Sets your region details and type.

Name: the name of your region (Default “New World Studio”) – can be anything you want

Initial Region: the region loaded on start-up. This can be one of the five supplied regions, or your own OAR file. The supplied regions are:

    • OpenVCE – a conferencing region with open and enclosed meeting spaces
    • Flat 21 – a complete flat grassland region 1 metre above sea level
    • Business District – a built-up region with roads, high-rises, a plaza, etc., supplied by Linda Kellie.com
  • Mountain Retreat – a mountain / snow region with house, chair lift and various activities, again supplied by Linda Kellie.com
  • Undersea Observatory supplied by Justin Reeves.

To use any of the supplied regions, replace the existing region name “OpenVCE” with the name of the region you wish to use exactly as it is listed in the REGIONS folder in your New World Studio installation (e.g. “Business District (LindaKellie.com)”).

If you want to use your own OAR file with NWS:

  • Create a folder in the REGION folder of your NWS installation & give it a suitable name
  • Copy the required OAR file to the folder you just created and rename it “region.oar”
  • Replace “OpenVCE” in Initial Region with the name of the folder containing your OAR file.
The deafult region with New World Studio and the (just visible) default male avatar
The default OpenVCE region supplied with New World Studio under a Creative Commons licence

SizeX and SizeY: define your region size. The default is a single 256m x 256m region. However, you can create multiple regions by entering suitable values here (3 and 3 will create a block with 3 regions on a side, for example).

IsMegaregion: If you create multiple regions, determines whether they should be treated as individual 256mx256m regions (FALSE) or whether they should be treated as a single megaregion (TRUE).

PosX and PosY: Define the global starting co-ordinates for your world. The default is 7000 for each, which is fine if you’re intending to have your world purely as a private environment. However, if you want your world open to the public, you should consider changing the co-ordinates to something more unique – the hypergrid system doesn’t allow moving directly between destinations with the same co-ordinates.

ShowOsWindow: Determines whether the system console is displayed when starting-up NWS. TRUE (default) = console will be displayed; FALSE = console is not displayed. Allowing the console window to open means you have access to OpenSim’s server-side commands, such as saving any region you build as an OAR file, etc.

[Owner]

This section defines your user name, password and default avatar.

  • Change FirstName and LastName  and Password to suit your requirements
  • InitialAppearance: enter the name of your preferred default avatar here (Benjiro, Benjiro2, Cara, Cara2)
The four avatar styles
The four default avatar styles: Benjiro, Benjiro2, Cara and Cara2

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