2019 SL User Groups week #34/1: Simulator User Group

Hallig Norddeich, Nibbevegen 1; Inara Pey, July 2019, on FlickrHallig Norddeich, Nibbevegen 1, July 2019 – blog post

Server Deployments

Note: at the time of writing, the server deployment release notes had yet to be published. This article will be updated when they are available.

  • On Tuesday, August 20th, the SLS (Main) channel  was updated with server maintenance package 19#19.08.06.529800, containing internal fixes, and previously deployment to the RC channels in week #33
  • There was a change to the RC deployments in week#33.
    • Server maintenance update containing improvements for script performance and that had been due to be deployed to the BlueSteel and LeTigre channels, was found to have an 11th hour bug that prevented deployment.
    • Instead, BlueSteel and LeTigre received the same deployment as had been planned for Magnum –
    • server maintenance package 19#19.08.06.529800, containing internal fixes.
  • As a result, on Wednesday, August 21st, the RC channels should be updated with at least one server maintenance update, 19#19.08.07.529856, containing the script run improvements. However, at the time of writing, and pending the publication of the release notes, it is not clear if this update will be going to all of the RC channels or just a selection.
    • Should this deployment also go sideways for the script improvements updates, those interested can test performance on the Aditi DRTSIM-406 channel at the Jigglypuff region.

SL Viewer

The EEP RC viewer updated to version 6.4.0.530150 on Monday, August 19th, 2019.

The rest of the official viewer pipelines remain as follows at the time of writing:

  • 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:
    • 360 Snapshot project viewer, version 6.2.4.529111, July 16th.
    • Legacy Profiles viewer, version 6.2.3.527749, June 5. Covers the re-integration of Viewer Profiles.
  • Linux Spur viewer, version 5.0.9.329906, promoted to release status 29th November 2017 – offered pending a Linux version of the Alex Ivy viewer code.
  • Obsolete platform viewer, version 3.7.28.300847, May 8th, 2015 – provided for users on Windows XP and OS X versions below 10.7.

In Brief

  • Despite the lack of deployment of the script improvement code in week #33, some have reported that overall script performance on some regions appears to have improved. The Lab has picked-up on these reports, but has no explanation as to what may have happened to improve things.
  • At the CCUG group meeting on August 15th, it was stated that a Linden at a recent Web User Group (WUG) had hinted the SL wiki was to be gradually deprecated in favour of the knowledge base. However, at the SUG meeting, Oz Linden indicated that this isn’t necessarily the case:

If I proposed killing the wiki, there a Lindens who would show up with pitchforks…rest assured that it is well defended. One of our background-priority projects that is getting some attention is updating the wiki software, actually … no predictions when that might happen, but Someday™.

  • A major impact felt by regions is that of avatars teleporting into / out of a region. Some work was done to improve things a while ago, particularly around avatars leaving a region, but the Lab is aware of the issues of avatars coming into a region causing it to slow down / freeze – and this is now described as “moving up” in the Lab’s hit list of issues to tackle.
  • There was further discussion around the idea of limiting script use to the parcel level in order to prevent individual parcels taking up all of the script resources for a region. However, as noted in my week #33 summary, this is perhaps much easier said that done.
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2019 SL User Groups week #33/1: Simulator User Group

Otter Lake; Inara Pey, June 2019, on FlickrOtter Lake, June 2019 – blog post

Server Deployments

  • There was no deployment to the SLS (Main) channel on Tuesday, August 13th.
  • On Wednesday, August 14th the RC channel should be updated as follows:
    • BlueSteel and LeTigre should be updated to server maintenance update 19#19.08.07.529856, containing internal updates which should see improvements to the percentage of scripts running per CPU cycle (particularly for Full regions) and reduce the portion of a cycle given over to idle scripts.
    • Magnum should be updated to server maintenance update 19#19.08.06.529800, containing internal fixes.

SL Viewer

The Love Me Render viewer, version 6.2.3.527758, formerly the Rainbow RC viewer dated June 5th, was  promoted to de facto release status at the start of the week.

The rest of the official viewer pipelines remain as follows at the time of writing:

  • 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:
    • 360 Snapshot project viewer, version 6.2.4.529111, July 16th.
    • Legacy Profiles viewer, version 6.2.3.527749, June 5. Covers the re-integration of Viewer Profiles.
  • Linux Spur viewer, version 5.0.9.329906, promoted to release status 29th November 2017 – offered pending a Linux version of the Alex Ivy viewer code.
  • Obsolete platform viewer, version 3.7.28.300847, May 8th, 2015 – provided for users on Windows XP and OS X versions below 10.7.

In Brief

Scripts

  • Script usage is still seen as possible cause of contention (e.g. because one parcel owner is consuming all script resources within a region). A means has been suggested for changing (see BUG-225391), but the Lab see the issue as complex and so wanted to get improvements such as those being initially deployed to the BueSteel and LeTigre RC channels issued first before potentially digging more deeply into the question of script usage and allocation.
  • How clear a picture does the Full private region Top Scripts give for script usage in a region? Obviously, it can help, but as Mazidox Linden noted: “I do something similar all the time. It doesn’t give you the fine grained details you’d imagine for our set-up however. For that I use other (mostly internal) tools/techniques.”
  • It’s been suggested that script information could be extended to parcel level. This is something the Lab has indicated it is musing doing – but no firm plans to implement any changes if the Lab go in that direction have been indicated. It is also a complicated issue, as Simon Linden summarised:

So how would you treat someone with 1/4 of a region and a club [and] 50 avatars come to see a popular performer, and the other 3/4 are empty at the time? Give [the club] all the script time? Or leave 75% for the  …  other land?

Region Memory Bloat

As a reminder: a region can suffer significant memory bloat during repeated terraforming. Simply put, this is the result of the navmesh (part of the region’s physics) being reformed during the terraforming. This can have numerous impacts: overall performance can be affected, as can rezzing objects. Nominally,  if a Full region’s memory allocation hits approx 900 Mb, or a homestead 230 Mb, it will shut down rezzing (if the underpinning simulator gets within ~90% of its memory limit (256MB for a Homestead & 1024MB for a full region) it will disallow rezzing).

So, if you are running a region that starts reporting issues with rezzing and have been terraforming, consider a restart (or requesting a restart from support).

2019 SL User Groups week #32/1: Simulator User Group

Small Town Green; Inara Pey, June 2019, on FlickrSmall Town Green, June 2019 – blog post

Server Deployments

  • There are no planned deployments for week #32.
  • The update(simulator package 19#19.07.10.529179), intended for the Magnum RC originally deployed and then rolled back on Wednesday, July 17th (the roll-back the result of a bug being discovered during the attempt at deployment), will likely be re-deployed to at least one RC channel, during in week #33 (commencing Monday, August 12th.

SL Viewer

The Love Me Render viewer updated to version 6.2.4.529638 on Monday, August 5th.

At the time of writing the rest of the official viewers remain as follows:

  • Current Release version 6.2.3.527758, formerly the Rainbow RC viewer dated June 5, promoted June 18 – No Change.
  • Release channel cohorts:
  • Project viewers:
    • 360 Snapshot project viewer, version 6.2.4.529111, July 16.
    • Legacy Profiles viewer, version 6.2.3.527749, June 5. Covers the re-integration of Viewer Profiles.
  • Linux Spur viewer, version 5.0.9.329906, dated November 17, 2017 and promoted to release status 29 November 2017 – 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.

In Brief

Lumiya / Android Client

No major change in situation: aspects of Lumiya – notably in relation to the in-world view the app has ( changing their outfits, using animations / AOs, etc.) – have not been working since the last of the UDP asset messages were removed from the simulator. Calls are still being made for the Lab to work on an Android client, given they are developing an iOS client. However, as I noted in week #30:

  • The initial versions of the iOS app will be for chatting and messaging only – which can still be done with the Lumiya app.
  • While the capabilities of the iOS app will be extended over time, the Lab has not committed to what additional functionality will be provided or a time frame of when they will be provided. Simply “diverting” development from iOS to Android (assuming LL has the in-house skills for Android development) will not really change that; ergo, it’s unlikely a change in development at this point in time will overcome the current Lumiya issues.

Other Notes

  • Simulator performance:
    • Some region holders are reporting improved performance in their regions over the last 2-3 weeks. Nothing has been altered on the back-end to account for this.
    • Some region holders are conversely reporting frequently degraded physics performance in their regions that requires frequent restarts to overcome. If this is occurring with a recently terraformed region, the suggestion is to check for any “land leveller” prims that may have been buried in the terrain.
  • Ghosted attachments: issues of attachments being “ghosted” – that is, failing to render whilst still being attached or remaining rendered (in your view) when they have been detached (“killed”) as a result of a teleport seem to be on the increase. The problem appears to be with attachment “kill” messages being incorrectly sent, or with multiple “kill” messages being incorrectly received. It’s not clear how / when this might be dealt with.

2019 SL User Groups week #31

Tyraina; Inara Pey, June 2019, on FlickrTyraina, June 2019 – blog post

SL Feature Summit

This week is the week of the Lab’s Second Life feature summit. This is the time when engineers, developers and product managers for Second Life get together in person to discuss and plan the next several months of Second Life’s development.

This means that most / all of the Second Life user group meetings for the week are cancelled.

Next Meetings

The following table outlines when the next SL user group meetings will likely take place.

User Group
Next Meeting
Simulator User Group
Tuesday, August 6th
Governance User Group
Tuesday August 6th
Open-Source Development Wednesday, August 7th
Content Creation
Thursday, August 15th
Concierge & Land Thursday, August 22nd
Server Beta User Group
TBA – possibly Thursday, August 1st

Server Deployments

Again, due to the Second Life Feature Summit, there are no planned server deployments for this week. However, channel restarts may occur in accordance with the Lab’s 14-day restart policy.

SL Viewer

It is likely that there will no updates to the current pipelines for the official viewer this week, again as a result of the SL Feature Summit, although some of the RC viewers have updates either queued ready for, or getting close to being ready for, update. In the meantime, the pipelines remain as follows at the time of writing.

  • Current Release version 6.2.3.527758, formerly the Rainbow RC viewer dated June 5, promoted June 18 – No Change.
  • Release channel cohorts:
  • Project viewers:
    • 360 Snapshot project viewer, version 6.2.4.529111, July 16.
    • Legacy Profiles viewer, version 6.2.3.527749, June 5. Covers the re-integration of Viewer Profiles.
  • Linux Spur viewer, version 5.0.9.329906, dated November 17, 2017 and promoted to release status 29 November 2017 – 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.

2019 SL User Groups 30/1: Simulator User Group

Lotus Bay; Inara Pey, June 2019, on FlickrLotus Bay, June 2019 – blog post

Server Deployments

There are no planed deployments for this week, leaving the major simulator channels on server maintenance package 19#19.06.14.528215, comprising internal changes.

  • Note that a deployment to the Magnum RC on Wednesday, July 17th (simulator package 19#19.07.10.529179), was subsequently rolled back as a result of a bug being discovered during deployment.
  • Region restarts may occur in accordance with the Lab’s 14-day restart policy.

Also, there will be no simulator deployments in week #31, due to the Lab’s internal Second Life Feature Summit.

SL Viewer

There have been no LL viewer updates as of the time of writing this update, leaving the pipelines as follows:

  • Current Release version 6.2.3.527758, formerly the Rainbow RC viewer dated June 5th, promoted June 18th – No Change.
  • Release channel cohorts:
  • Project viewers:
    • 360 Snapshot project viewer, version 6.2.4.529111, July 16th.
    • Legacy Profiles viewer, version 6.2.3.527749, June 5th. Covers the re-integration of Viewer Profiles.
  • Linux Spur viewer, version 5.0.9.329906, promoted to release status 29th November 2017 – offered pending a Linux version of the Alex Ivy viewer code.
  • Obsolete platform viewer, version 3.7.28.300847, May 8th, 2015 – provided for users on Windows XP and OS X versions below 10.7.

In Brief

  • Aditi log-ins remained problematic during week #29 / the start of week #30, but the Lab believes the issues to now be resolved – see BUG-227357.

Android / Lumiya  / Mobile

Since the last of the UDP asset messaging deprecation, users on the Lumiya Android app have been unable to use certain functions – notably in relation to the in-world view the app has, changing their outfits, using animations / AOs, etc.

The problem here is that Lumiya needs to be updated to HTTP for asset data fetching across the board; unfortunately, with the developer out-of-contact, this (like the issue of the app remaining unavailable on the Google store) is unlikely to be resolved any time soon.

Currently LL is developing an iOS “companion app” – and there have been calls for the Lab to re-direct this work towards Android. However, these requests overlook two key points:

  • The initial versions will be for chatting and messaging only – which can still be done with the Lumiya app.
  • While the capabilities of the iOS app will be extended over time, the Lab has not committed to what additional capabilities will be provided or a time frame of when they will be provided. so whether or not a 3D world renderer of the type seen in Lumiya will be a part of any future expansion of the app is open to debate – as is any time frame in which it might appear.

Therefore, even if work were move from iOS to Android – it actually wouldn’t resolve the specific pain point Lumiya users are currently feeling (unable to change their appearance, use animations, etc), in the short or medium term.

It has also been suggested that LL should provide a streaming solution. However, the issue here is cost (the one operating streaming service for SL – Bright Canopy  – costs US $1.70 per hour, for example). LL currently (and most likely correctly) believe streaming costs for SL are above levels user would be willing to play. They would rather wait until said costs have (hopefully) come down in the future.

Next SUG Meeting

Due to the Lab’s internal Second Life Feature Summit taking place in week #31, there will be no SUG meeting on Tuesday, July 30th. The next meeting will therefore be Tuesday, August 6th, 2019.

2019 SL User Groups 29/1: Simulator User Group

Cherishville; Inara Pey, June 2019, on FlickrCherishville, June 2019 – blog post

Server Deployments

As always, check with the deployment thread for the latest news.

  • There are no deployment to the SLS (Main) channel on Tuesday, July 16th, on server maintenance package 19#19.06.14.528215, comprising internal changes.
  • On Wednesday, July 17th:
    • The Magnum RC should be updated to a new simulator package, 19#19.07.10.529179, this apparently contains internal fixes, described by Simon Linden as, “a tiny performance boost … one crash fix, an esoteric TP failure fix, update a system library … general fix-it stuff that isn’t likely to be visible.”
    • BlueSteel and LeTigre will remain on 19#19.06.14.528215.

SL Viewer

On Monday, July 15th:

  • The EEP RC viewer updated to version 6.4.0.529247 (dated Friday, July 12th).
  • The Love Me Render RC viewer updated to version 6.2.4.529302.

On Tuesday, July 16th, the 360 Snapshot project viewer was re-issued as version 6.2.4.529111. This brings the viewer up to parity with the current release viewer.

At the time of publishing this update, the remaining LL viewer pipelines were as follows:

  • Current Release version 6.2.3.527758, formerly the Rainbow RC viewer dated June 5, promoted June 18 – No Change.
  • Release channel cohorts:
  • Project viewers:
    • Legacy Profiles viewer, version 6.2.3.527749, released on June 5. Covers the re-integration of Viewer Profiles.
  • Linux Spur viewer, version 5.0.9.329906, dated November 17, 2017 and promoted to release status 29 November 2017 – 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.

In Brief

  • Some are experiencing issues logging-in to Aditi (the beta grid), and fingers have been pointed at Firestorm, however, others aren’t encountering the same issues (myself included).
  • UDP and appearance issues: people on older viewers are continuing to report issues with their appearance (and in the case of Lumiya). This is most likely due to all UDP asset messages (including those related to appearance) have been deprecated on the simulators in favour of HTTP, but these older viewers / clients lack the necessary updates.
  • With the release of Firestorm 6.2.47588 there are reports that RegionCrossingInterpolationTime is acting more like a stop at region crossing within that viewer, sometimes with odd behaviour. One suggestion has been to set the debug to 2.00 seconds to stop the odd behaviour. I must admit that I’ve not been boating or flying with FS 6.2.4.57588 so hadn’t noticed any issues.
  • Summer vacations: the summer season means that vacations are rolling around at the Lab. Rider Linden, who had been digging into the script processing issues is currently out; Simon Linden is due on vacation (although SUG meetings should continue in his absence). And there is the SL “summit” among the developers, etc., so some development work is liable to slow down a little.