2018 SL UG updates 39/1: Simulator User Group

Missing Melody; Inara Pey, August 2018, on FlickrMissing Melodyblog post

Server Deployment Plans

There are no planned deployments for week #39.

SL Viewer

The Bakes on Mesh project viewer updated to version 5.1.9.519785 on Monday, September 24th. Otherwise the start of the week sees the majority of the current official viewer unchanged:

  • Current Release version 5.1.8.518593, dated August 14, promoted August 20. Formerly the SL Voice RC viewer – No Change.
  • Release channel cohort:
    • BugSplat RC viewer, version 5.1.9.519462, September 10. This viewer is functionally identical to the current release viewer, but uses BugSplat for crash reporting, rather than the Lab’s own Breakpad based crash reporting tools.
    • Rakomelo Maintenance RC, version 5.1.9.519298, September 5.
    • Animesh RC viewer, version 6.0.0.518949, August 24.
    • Love Me Render RC viewer, version 5.1.8.518751, released on August 20.
  • Project viewers:
  • Linux Spur viewer, version 5.0.9.329906, dated November 17, 2017 and promoted to release status 29 November – offered pending a Linux version of the Alex Ivy viewer code.
  • Obsolete platform viewer, version 3.7.28.300847, May 8, 2015 – provided for users on Windows XP and OS X versions below 10.7.

Environment Enhancement Project

Those who have been testing EEP have been raising JIRAs on the test viewer, and Rider Linden is about to pass an updated version of the simulator code to the QA team for testing.

It will address some validation where FS had much larger ranges of values than the Lab did. [And] I’ve dealt with a cloud speed issue that had annoyed me and I forgot to get in before we sent out the preview. Internally no cloud motion was 10,10… it will now be 0,0 this means some clouds will suddenly appear to go faster

– Rider Linden on the EEP simulator update

Region Crossings

Joe Magarac (animats) continues to poke at the viewer side of region crossing issues, and has apparently come across a contributing factor to some crossing issues: essentially, on a double region crossing (ie briefly crossing into the corner of a region from another before moving on to the next region) the simulator seems to be sending the viewer an object kill message for the vehicle at the very beginning of region crossing. The viewer sees the message unexpectedly and reacts to it, causing the region crossing issue referred to as a half unsit (he avatar is stuck in the region, unable unsit, move or teleport, and requires a relog as a means to recover). The issue could be down to a race condition in messaging, but  Joe has been using additional logging in a version of Firestorm, and can consistently catch the kill message.

Region crossings currently aren’t being looked at by the Lab, although Simon Linden keeps hoping to get back to looking at the code in the future. In the meantime, Joe continues to log his findings on BUG-214653.

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2018 SL UG updates 38/1: Simulator User Group

Bellefleurs; Inara Pey, August 2018, on FlickrBellefleurs blog post

Not a lot to report.

Server Deployments

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

  • On Tuesday, September 18th, the SLS (Main) channel was updated with server maintenance package 18#18.09.04.519319, previously deployed to the main RC channels in week #37 and comprising Logging improvements.
  • The three main RC channels were not updated on Wednesday, but remained on release 18#18.09.04.519319.

SL Viewer

There have been no updates to the current round of official viewers in the various pipelines, leaving the list as follows:

  • Current Release version 5.1.8.518593, dated August 14, promoted August 20. Formerly the SL Voice RC viewer – No Change.
  • Release channel cohorts:
    • BugSplat RC viewer, version 5.1.9.519462, September 10. This viewer is functionally identical to the current release viewer, but uses BugSplat for crash reporting, rather than the Lab’s own Breakpad based crash reporting tools.
    • Rakomelo Maintenance RC, version 5.1.9.519298, September 5.
    • Animesh RC viewer, version 6.0.0.518949, August 24.
    • Love Me Render RC viewer, version 5.1.8.518751, released on August 20.
  • Project viewers:
  • Linux Spur viewer, version 5.0.9.329906, dated November 17, 2017 and promoted to release status 29 November – offered pending a Linux version of the Alex Ivy viewer code.
  • Obsolete platform viewer, version 3.7.28.300847, May 8, 2015 – provided for users on Windows XP and OS X versions below 10.7.

Region Crossings

Firestorm 5.1.7 introduced a workaround to better handle vehicle-based region crossings  viewer-side, largely as a result of Joe Magarac (animats) investigations into region crossing issues (see Experimental Region Crossing Code  in my Firestorm 5.1.7 review for more). It’s not a perfect solution, but it can help. Since then, Joe has been looking at similar issues relating to avatars being “half unseated” on region crossings, particularly when the avatar appears to “jump” between 25-100 metres into the air on a crossing, or get pushed sideways.The effect is akin to sitting on an object and the viewer sometimes briefly something you at 0,0,0 in a region before bouncing your view back to your actual seated position.

It’s thought this issue might be related to how the messaging for region crossings is handled: the avatar and vehicle data get packaged and transferred between regions separately to one another, and things can go awry in trying to put them back together if the messages containing the data are received “in the wrong order”. It’s one of several issues with regions crossings that might be improved through viewer-side updates, and Simon Linden suggest the viewer team would be glad to look at contributions aimed and fixing any of them.

 

2018 SL UG updates #37/1: Simulator User Group

Kekeland - Bardeco; Inara Pey, August 2018, on FlickrKekeland – Bardecoblog post

Server Deployments

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

  • There was no SLS (Main) channel deployment on Tuesday, September 11th.
  • On Wednesday, September 12th, all three primary RC channels should receive server maintenance package 18#18.09.04.519319, comprising logging improvements. This deployment should have been made in week #36, but never actually made it, due to a late-breaking issue with the code.

SL Viewer

The Bugsplat RC viewer updated to version 5.1.9.519462 on Monday, September 10th. All other viewers in the pipeline remain as per the end of week #36:

  • Current Release version 5.1.8.518593, dated August 14, promoted August 20. Formerly the SL Voice RC viewer – No Change.
  • Release channel cohorts (please see my notes on manually installing RC viewer versions if you wish to install any release candidate(s) yourself):
  • Project viewers:
  • Linux Spur viewer, version 5.0.9.329906, dated November 17, 2017 and promoted to release status 29 November – offered pending a Linux version of the Alex Ivy viewer code.
  • Obsolete platform viewer, version 3.7.28.300847, May 8, 2015 – provided for users on Windows XP and OS X versions below 10.7.

Other Items

BUG-7084 is a long-standing issue with prim properties reverting, which appears to be related to the Interest List and updates between the simulator and server being incorrectly handled. The matter was raised at the SUG meeting as now affecting hovertext, notably with objects requiring feeding / watering. For example, an object with a feed total of 45/100 could be replenished to raise the total – to, say, 47/100, but after moving the object outside the field of view (so culling it from the Interest List updates), camming back to it would revel the total has reverted to its early value (45/100). It’s not clear if this particular problem is related to BUG-7084, and the suggestion has been for a new Jira to be filed with a workable reproduction.

 

2018 SL UG updates #36/1: Simulator / Governance User Groups

Summers Wind; Inara Pey, August 2018, on FlickrSummers Windblog post

Update: server maintenance package, 18#18.09.04.519319 failed to make it to the RC channels. There have been reports that some were updated to 18#18.09.04.519222, for which I have no details.

Server Deployments

There is currently no server deployment thread, however:

  • On Tuesday, September 3rd, the Main channel received server maintenance package 18#18.08.24.519036, previously deployed to the RC channels, comprising a fix for the land auction system.
  • On Wednesday, September 4th, the three RC channels should receive a maintenance package, 18#18.09.04.519319, comprising logging improvements.

In week #35, there was a back-end update that should have fixed some problems people were having starting voice in groups.

Server OS Update

Work is in hand to update the SL server operating system version, however, Simon Linden noted the work in preparing for this update is taking longer than hoped.

SL Viewer

There have been no updates to any of the SL viewers to mark the start of the week (and allowing for Labor Day weekend in the United States), living the pipelines as follows:

  • Current Release version 5.1.8.518593, dated August 14, promoted August 20. Formerly the SL Voice RC viewer – No Change.
  • Release channel cohorts
    • Rakomelo Maintenance RC , version 5.1.9.519162, released on  August 31.
    • Animesh RC viewer, version 6.0.0.518949, August 24.
    • Love Me Render RC viewer, version 5.1.8.518751, released on August 20.
    • BugSplat RC viewer, version 5.1.8.518305, August 7. This viewer is functionally identical to the current release viewer, but uses BugSplat for crash reporting, rather than the Lab’s own Breakpad based crash reporting tools.
  • Project viewers:
  • Linux Spur viewer, version 5.0.9.329906, dated November 17, 2017 and promoted to release status 29 November – offered pending a Linux version of the Alex Ivy viewer code.
  • Obsolete platform viewer, version 3.7.28.300847, May 8, 2015 – provided for users on Windows XP and OS X versions below 10.7.

Environment Enhancement Project

There is a chance that the EEP project viewer could be appearing this week. Depending on the nature of the RC server deployments, if one does appear, it may only work on Aditi.

The Governance User Group will meet at the Havenhurst camp site

Governance User Group

A New Governance User Group has been announced, with meetings to take place on a bi-weekly on Tuesdays, commencing on September 18th. The function of the meeting is quoted as being:

Intended for discussion & education of issues involving Governance such as in-world abuse, Abuse Reports, Forum Reports, Marketplace Reports, etc.

The meetings will be held at the Havenhurst camp site. The currently published time for the meetings is 13:00-14:00 SLT; however, as a result of concerns about the meetings clashing with any over-run of the Simulator User Group meetings, the Governance team may change the time. Those interested in attending the meeting should therefore keep an eye on the User Groups wiki page for possible updates in lieu of any official blog post that might be forthcoming.

 

2018 SL UG updates #35/1: server, viewer, bugs

Black Kite; Inara Pey, August 2018, on FlickrBlack Kiteblog post

Server Deployments

Update: the RC channels received a new server maintenance package on Wednesday, August 28th. Maintenance package  18#18.08.24.519036, comprises an update for the new land auction system.

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

  • There was no SLS (Main) channel deployment on Tuesday, August 28th. Regions on the channel, however, were restarted.
  • At the time of writing, it is unclear as to the status of any deployment to the three RC channels, which are listed as “TBD” in the deployment thread. As nothing was mentioned at the Server User Group meeting, I’m assuming there will be no deployment.

It there is no RC deployment, it will leave all of the main grid channels om server release 18#18.08.10.518612.

SL Viewer

At the time of writing this update, there had been no viewer SL viewer updates at the start of the week, leaving the pipelines as follows:

  • Current Release version 5.1.8.518593, dated August 14, promoted August 20. Formerly the SL Voice RC viewer – NEW.
  • Release channel cohorts:
    • Animesh RC viewer, version 6.0.0.518949, August 24.
    • Love Me Render RC viewer, version 5.1.8.518751, released on August 20.
    • BugSplat RC viewer, version 5.1.8.518305, August 7. This viewer is functionally identical to the current release viewer, but uses BugSplat for crash reporting, rather than the Lab’s own Breakpad based crash reporting tools.
  • Project viewers:
  • Linux Spur viewer, version 5.0.9.329906, dated November 17, 2017 and promoted to release status 29 November – offered pending a Linux version of the Alex Ivy viewer code.
  • Obsolete platform viewer, version 3.7.28.300847, May 8, 2015 – provided for users on Windows XP and OS X versions below 10.7.

It is anticipated the Love Me Render and Bugsplat RC viewers will be updated this week to bring them to parity with the release viewer code base. It is also anticipated that the next Maintenance RC viewer could be appearing during the week.

EEP / BOM / AIS

As I’ve noted in my most recent CCUG and TPV Developer meeting summaries, it had been anticipated that a new AIS (Advanced Inventory Service) update would start to be deployed in week #35.This would include the necessary support for the new asset types to be used by both the Environment Enhancement Project (EEP) and the Bakes on Mesh (BOM) project. However, at the Server User Group meeting, Rider Linden had indicated that a last-minute bug had cropped-up with the AIS update, was has delayed its deployment. However, it does not appear that this is related to the server RC channels having a “TBD” status against them.

Bug Hunting

Sim Surrounds Issue

BUG-225295 “Sim Surrounds often fail to rez” indicates that some people are having problems seeing region / sim surrounds render in their viewer. The problem was first reported by Firestorm 5.1.7 users, but also reproduces on the SL 5.1.7 viewer code-base, and it is thought the issue might relate to changes made in the previous Love Me Render viewer.

“Bug of the Week”: Animations Issue

The superbly named Hexadeci Mole has raised a curious bug report in the form of BUG-225288, “llStopAnimation is stopping all animations on detach instead of only the one specified”. This occurs when a scripted object starts an animation when worn, and stops the animation when detached (as intended) also causes all other animations to stop, and stops animations played from inventory. The bug appears to be a duplicate of SVC-7596, and as Whirly Fizzle observes, only seems to reproduce when the attached objects instance key is lower than the wearing avatar’s own avatar key!

Simon Linden has had a look at this issue and commented:

Fwiw I did an initial investigation into that bug — and was surprised. It’s actually pretty simple code, removing the current animation and sending an update. It may be a more fundamental design problem … SL isn’t set up to cleanly stack and merge animations and then remove parts of it.

Retrieving Grid Statistics Page via llHTTPRequest

BUG-216320 has been causing problems for a while. Essentially, trying to retrieve grid statistics via a script results in a 499 error, although queries via web browsers will still succeed. Oz Linden summed-up the status of work on this thus:

It turns out that it was two independent problems. We’ve fixed one, but the other is still pending.

 

2018 SL UG updates #34/1: server, viewer, and mobile SL rumours

Erebos Harbor; Inara Pey, July 2018, on FlickrErebos Harborblog post

There was no Simulator User Group meeting for week #34 2018, so the project notes are pretty brief.

Server Deployments

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

  • On Tuesday August 21st, the SLS (Main) channel was updated with sever maintenance package 18#18.08.10.518612, comprising an update to the HTTP delivery of off-line IMs and notifications that should ensure group notices and Friend requests are correctly delivered. This release was deployed to the main RC channels in week #33.
  • There is no planned deployment or restart for any of the RC channels, also leaving them on server maintenance package 18#18.08.10.518612.

SL Viewer

  • The Second Life Voice viewer, version 5.1.8.518593 and dated August 14th, was promoted to de facto release status on August 20th, 2018.
  • A new Love Me Render viewer, version 5.1.8.518751, was released on August 20th, containing assorted viewer rendering fixes for the following issues / requests:
    • Applying planar texture alignment to prims with diffuse and normal maps fails.
    • Align Planar Faces does not work on normal or specular maps.
    • Handle dual-graphics systems more robustly.
    • Derendering Avatar type also derenders some rezzed mesh objects.
    • Selecting mesh objects make several HUD-related items invisible.
    • Negative horizontal & vertical offset values for normal & specular maps always revert when closing build floater.
    • Add info to text debug display for cache hit rate and fetch timing.
    • Grids.xml with a single grid instead of an array in LLSD can crash viewer.
    • Objects with Alpha Masking > 0 do not rendering correctly on avatar.
    • With transparent texture and alpha masking at cut-off 1, the underlying colour shows through in small patches.
    • [DRTSIM-383] Changing the horizontal offset value also changes the vertical offset while editing specular maps in the build floater.
    • Incorrect values of Rotation degrees field with checked Align Planar Faces check box in different tabs.

The remaining SL viewer pipelines are currently unchanged:

  • Release channel cohorts:
    • Animesh RC viewer, version 6.0.0.518579, August 13.
    • BugSplat RC viewer, version 5.1.8.518305, August 7. This viewer is functionally identical to the current release viewer, but uses BugSplat for crash reporting, rather than the Lab’s own Breakpad based crash reporting tools.
  • Project viewers:
  • Linux Spur viewer, version 5.0.9.329906, dated November 17, 2017 and promoted to release status 29 November – offered pending a Linux version of the Alex Ivy viewer code.
  • Obsolete platform viewer, version 3.7.28.300847, May 8, 2015 – provided for users on Windows XP and OS X versions below 10.7. This viewer will remain available for as long as reasonable, but will not be updated with new features or bug fixes.

SL iOS / Android Clients / Streaming SL

Speculation is running rife in some quarters that the Lab is developing a mobile client for iOS / Android following the publication of a job opportunity for a Second Life Senior Mobile Engineer.

The potential for offering a mobile (or even a streamed viewer experience through a browser) was most recently publicly discussed by both Ebbe Altberg and Oz and Grumpity Linden at the SL15B Meet the Lindens events in June 2018. I’m embedding the audio from those sessions here, together with links to the summaries of what was said, for those who prefer reading over listening: