SL project updates 45/1: server, viewer

Sol Existence; Inara Pey, October 2017, on FlickrSol Existenceblog post

Server Deployments for Week #45

As always, please refer to the server release thread for updates and the latest news.

On Tuesday, November 7th, the planned Main (SLS) channel deployment was cancelled when the restart system overloaded while trying to restart a few thousand regions around the same time. Some reported that RC regions were also being restarted during the deployment attempt, which may have contributed to the problem – although this has yet to be confirmed as being the case by the Lab.

Once the cause of the problem has been diagnosed, the deployment will be re-tried, although Oz Linden indicated this may not be before the usual Tuesday deployment in week #46.

There is no planned deployment to the RC channels on Wednesday, November 8th, 2017.

SL Viewer

The Wolfpack RC viewer which was functionally identical to the release viewer, but included additional back-end logging, was withdrawn from the Alternate Viewers page at the start of week #45. Otherwise, the viewer pipelines remain as for the end of week #44:

  • Current Release version 5.0.8.329115, dated September 22, promoted October 13 – formerly the “Moonshine” Maintenance RC.
  • Release channel cohorts (please see my notes on manually installing RC viewer versions if you wish to install any release candidate(s) yourself):
    • Alex Ivy 64-bit viewer, version 5.1.0.510354, November 2 (still dated Sept 5 on the wiki page).
    • Maintenance RC viewer, version 5.0.9.329707 October 31.
    • Voice RC viewer, version 5.0.8.328552, October 20 (still dated Sept 1 on the wiki page).
  • Project viewers:
  • Obsolete platform viewer version 3.7.28.300847, dated May 8, 2015 – provided for users on Windows XP and OS X versions below 10.7.

New Premium Benefit

On Tuesday, November 7th, 2017, Linden Lab announced their new Premium benefit: a 90-day transaction history – read more here and here.

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SL project updates 44/1: server, viewer

Pandora Resort; Inara Pey, October 2017, on FlickrPandora Resortblog post

Server Deployments for Week #44

As always, please refer to the server release thread for updates and the latest news.

  • There was no deployment or restart for the Main (SLS) channel on Tuesday, October 31st
  • leaving it on package #17.10.06.509394.
  • On Wednesday, November 1st, the RC channels should be updated with a new server maintenance package, #17.10.25.510119, comprising internal fixes – notes still to be posted at the time of writing.

SL Viewer

The current Maintenance RC viewer updated to version 5.0.9.329707 on Monday, October 30th. All other viewers in the current pipelines remain as per the end of week #43:

  • Current Release version 5.0.8.329115, dated September 22, promoted October 13 – formerly the “Moonshine” Maintenance RC.
  • Release channel cohorts (please see my notes on manually installing RC viewer versions if you wish to install any release candidate(s) yourself):
    • Wolfpack RC viewer,version 5.0.9.329478, dated October 20 – this viewer is functionally identical to the release viewer, but includes additional back-end logging “to help catch some squirrelly issues”
    • Alex Ivy 64-bit viewer, version 5.1.0.508209, dated September 5.
    • Voice RC viewer, version 5.0.8.329250, dated September 1.
  • Project viewers:
  • Obsolete platform viewer version 3.7.28.300847, dated May 8, 2015 – provided for users on Windows XP and OS X versions below 10.7.

 

SL project updates 43/1: server, viewer, exploits

La Vie; Inara Pey, October 2017, on FlickrLa Vieblog post

Server Deployments for Week #43

As always, please refer to the server release thread for updates and the latest news.

  • There was no deployment or restart for the Main (SLS) channel on Tuesday, October 24th, leaving it on package #17.10.06.509394.
  • On Wednesday, October 25th, the RC channels should be updated with a sideways roll to server maintenance package, #17.10.06.509394, comprising internal fixes, cuerrently deployed to the Main (SLS) channel.

SL Viewer

On Tuesday, October 24th, the current Maintenance RC viewer updated to version 5.0.9.329650. All other viewers in the current pipelines remain as per the end of week #42:

  • Current Release version 5.0.8.329115, dated September 22, promoted October 13 – formerly the “Moonshine” Maintenance RC.
  • Release channel cohorts:
    • Wolfpack RC viewer,version 5.0.9.329478, dated October 20 – this viewer is functionally identical to the release viewer, but includes additional back-end logging “to help catch some squirrelly issues”.
    • Alex Ivy 64-bit viewer, version 5.1.0.508209, dated September 5.
    • Voice RC viewer, version 5.0.8.329552, dated September 1.
  • Project viewers:
  • Obsolete platform viewer version 3.7.28.300847, dated May 8, 2015 – provided for users on Windows XP and OS X versions below 10.7.

Exploits Update: No Copy Items

One area of concern / upset for content creators has been the use of server exploits to generate copies of No-Copy items. These have been frequently used to fold the Market with illicit copies of gacha items. The Lab has been aware of this, and some of the recent server-side updates (which are now grid-wide on Agni) have been to address these problems, as Simon Linden explained, relaying Mazidox Linden’s comments made at the Server Beta Group meeting on Thursday, 19th October:

Some of our recent internal fixes included changes to our back-end systems which will no longer allow certain exploits used for duplicating no-copy content, and make it easier for us identify when anyone uses similar techniques in the future. We haven’t solved all the problems outright, but we’re making good strides.

Simon went on to add, “There is more work to be done, and we want to do it.”

Obviously, the Lab is always interested in learning about potential exploits within the platform. Anyone identifying such an exploit – such as a means to deliberately crash a simulator – is asked to file a SEC (non public) JIRA detailing the exploit. There is a new region on Aditi (the beta grid), called Crash Me, which can be used to test  / demonstrate ways the simulator might be crashed.

If a creator notices that there are endless amounts of their items on marketplace, and they suspect their items have been exploited, and JIRA Bug report should be raised.

 

Animesh project viewer arrives in Second Life

On Wednesday, October 18th, Linden Lab announced the release of their much-anticipated Animesh project viewer had been made available, marking the start of public testing for the Animesh project.

For those who have not been following my Content Creation User Group meeting updates, “Animesh” is an amalgam of “ANImated MESH”. The overall goal of the project is to provide a means of animating rigged mesh objects using the avatar skeleton, in whole or in part, to provide things like independently moveable pets / creatures, trees with animated branches, etc.

In short, an Animesh object:

  • Can be any rigged / skinned mesh which and contains the necessary animations and controlling scripts in its own inventory  (Contents tab of the Build floater) required for it to animate itself.
  • Can be a single mesh object or a linkset of objects.
  • Has been flagged as and Animesh object in the project viewer, and so has an avatar skeleton associated with it.
  • Uses three new LSL methods to run or stop animations, or check which animations are currently running:
Animesh allows you to take rigged mesh objects, add animations and controlling scripts to them, associate them with an avatar skeleton, and have them run in-world without the need for any supervising viewer / client

The Animesh project has been in development for the last several months, and has involved ongoing discussions and input from content creators at the Content Creation User Group meetings, which are held in-world at the Hippotropolis Camp Fire Circle most Thursdays at 13:00 SLT. As such, the arrival of the project viewer does not mark any kind of official release of the project. Rather, and as noted, it marks the commencement of public testing for what will hopefully become the first release of Animesh functionality.

Currently, testing can only take place on Aditi, the beta grid, where five regions are available with Animesh support enabled. These are: Animesh1, Animesh2, Animesh3, Animesh4, all rated Moderate, and Animesh Adult. Again, please note that Animesh functionality in the project viewer will not work on the Main grid at this time.

Animesh objects are created in-world, not uploaded as such. They must contain the animation(s) they are to run and a controlling script (l), and are enabled via Animated Mesh object in the Build Floater’s Features tab (centre). Note that if you select an unrigged / non-mesh object (or a No modify rigged object), the option will be greyed out and unavailable (right)

An Animesh User Guide is available to help people get started with Animesh, and a forum thread has been set-up for feedback and discussion, while specific bugs or feature request suggestions for the project should be reported via the Second Life JIRA.

Test content is also available to help people get started, if they don’t have suitable content of their own they wish to convert to Animesh objects. The test content can be found here.

In addition, those who test the viewer and Animesh are invited to attend the Content Creation User Group meetings and join discussion on Animesh (and other content related projects), and  / or are welcome to follow my Content Creation User Group meeting updates.

One of the aims in testing Animesh will be to see how many Animesh objects a region and the viewer can comfortably handle without impacting the performance of either

Eventually, Animesh will hopefully support fully fledged non-player character (NPC) creations which can, if required have things like an avatar shape associated with them, use a dedicated, avatar-like inventory, and utilise both the server-side locomotion graph for walking, sitting, etc., and the avatar baking service. However, these capabilities do not form part of the current Animesh project, but will be added as a future project, once other elements which can also help better support NPCs have been put in place (such as an update to the baking service, which forms another project within the Lab).

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