This example will show you the render sets of two net jobs, where the first one will export a sequence of V-Ray scenes from a Maya scene, while the second one will render those exported .vrscene files with the V-Ray Standalone renderer.
This render set holds nothing special. The only thing to take a closer look at is the ”Export file name” entry (note that this field is specific to this particular renderer): W:\. This is the path and filename for all exported V-Ray scenes; the exported scenes will look like \Maya\scenes\export\exportfile.vrsceneW:\ and so on (from frames 1-20). \Maya\scenes\export\exportfile_0001.vrscene, exportfile_0002.vrscene
Our goal is now to render these files with another net job using the V-Ray Standalone renderer. We could wait for the job to finish first, so that all exported scenes are available and we can manually add all of them to a new job – but that would waste quite a lot of time! Instead, we will create a new job right away using a dynamic variable for the scene name. Take a look at the following render set:
The frame list contains, just like our previous render set, the frames 1-20; note the scene file entry: W:\. In place of the frame number (like \Maya\scenes\export\exportfile_$(frames:%04d).vrscene0001 and so on), we have used a dynamic variable for the frame list (and applied a padding of 4 zeros: %04d). If we now create a net job based on this set, the $(frames) variable will be parsed, and for each frame there is (1-20 in this case), a new scene will be automatically added to the job (depending on the applied frame splitting, the resulting 20 scenes will be distributed across various chunks). To make things a bit clearer, take a look at this screenshot:
We applied a frame splitting of 4 chunks in total to this job; as you can see, each chunk now ”carries” 5 frames, and for each frame, a new scene has been automatically added – just as we wanted! Each chunk will then result in 5 renderings, every time rendering a different scene. For such scenarios, it is necessary that the second net job will wait on the first one (otherwise, the scenes wouldn’t have been exported and thus wouldn’t even exist yet). Since it might be a waste of time to wait for the entire job, it is advisable to use the frame-based chunk dependency instead, as shown in the following screenshot:
This way, whenever a few scenes have been exported, they can be rendered right away without waiting for the entire job to be done.
This is just one example where dynamic scene and output file names can be useful; this advanced feature opens many new ways of creating complex rendering pipelines. Another useful application for this feature are converters.
This maintenance release brings quite a number of new handy features and improvements:
To make the integration ofV2 into custom rendering pipelines easier, we added the ability to control net jobs and client pools using the console remote controller; we also added switches to block or to restrict the job to certain clients. The console remote controller received many new switches (like specifying a net job color), especially for the new features introduced in this version.
V2 now allows you to easily execute any arbitrary commands remotely on client machines; this is especially useful to perform silent installations on your nodes.
Other improvements include a minimum dispatching delay for each net job, the ability to treat unfinished jobs as done when checking for net job dependencies and improvements to output filters and several API additions in the renderer system.
We also fixed a good bunch of bugs in this version; the submitter scripts for Maya and After Effects have received some fixes as well.
Just in time with our newversion we released a Python library that allows the users to query important data from the server directly from within their host application.
You can get all necessary information about it in our forum.
The fifth point release ofV2 brings great new additions, many improvements and important bug fixes:
V2 2.5 now offers a new license management system: For every renderer and its versions, you can now specify how many licenses are available and which pools and clients own a license. This avoids having new jobs sent to clients even if there currently is no free license slot available, eliminating common license problems.
InV2 2.5, it is no longer only possible to create individual user accounts, but to also create entire user groups. Every account can now belong to such a group, making creating and managing accounts faster and easier.
In order to get information about the various objects inV2, you had to directly query its database in previous versions. With this new point release, the console remote controller can be used to query data from the server, including net jobs and their chunks, pools and clients. This data, which comes in the XML format, can then be used, for example, to put statistics about your render farm on a website or to evaluate rendering times to calculate the costs of a job.
There are also several improvements for net jobs, like net job tags (which can be used for quick filtering) and net job coloring, as well as the ability to execute post-net job events either on success or on failure.
This is by far not everything this new point release has to offer. Be sure to visit our website for more details and a free trial download!
Some of you might know our little flash game called Stoned (or Panugh); if not, you can check it our here. This game is now also available for iOS! Those of you who own an iPhone or iPod Touch can now play this cool game on your gadgets! It’s iTunes name is Stoned 3D and can be bought for a mere $0.99 (0.79€).
Stoned @ iTunes
** About Stoned **
Stoned is a fun casual game with amazing 3D graphics and addictive gameplay. Your task is to catch as many falling blocks as possible and make sure you hit the appearing dinosaurs for a good bunch of extra points. You can also upload your scores to OpenFeint to see your position in a worldwide ranking… So start catching and hitting, and make sure you don’t get Stone’d!
** Features **
° Excellent rendered HD graphics
° Fast-paced gameplay
° Tons of fun and action
° Quick games – ideal for your next coffee break
° Highly addictive
° Online highscores via OpenFeint
** How to play **
Move the gameboard with your finger to catch the matching blocks. For some extra points try to hit the appearing dinosaurs: The faster the game gets the more points you’ll receive. But keep in mind that you only have three lives to catch as many blocks as possible… Missing one means losing a life, so better stay focused and concentrated! When the game is over you can upload your score and see in a worldwide ranking how well you performed. So you better start practicing and catch those stones!!!
Stoned @ iTunes
This new update forV2 brings many improvements and convenience enhancements, as well as several smaller bug fixes:
The dispatcher will now take into account clients that are already being woken up in other pools. This results in far less “excessive” clients being requested, and so your render farm will run even more efficiently.
Another nice enhancement is the ability to select multiple clients in the main client list. Now it is possible to perform an operation (like shutting down the clients or disconnecting them) on more than one client at the same time.
Last but not least, the remote controller will now only download the renderer definitions from the server when necessary and will otherwise use its locally stored version, greatly reducing login times and network traffic (especially when using the console RC).
There are also many other smaller improvements as well as several bug fixes in this release. Be sure to visit our website for more details and a free trial download!
is a tool that can combine multiple input images (like chunks of a sliced image or frames of an animation) into a single output image. All images can be arbitrarily arranged on a grid (which may also be a horizontal or vertical stripe), and several extended options let you put together your various image slices with ease.
If you’ve already used1, forget about that – 2 can hardly be compared to it and is way more powerful and feature-rich. It offers an easy to use graphical interface for manually creating image grids, as well as a command-line interface for automated tasks (which is especially useful in conjunction with V2). The best way to find out what 2 has to offer is to simply try it. comes with several examples and a comprehensive manual, so you won’t be lost – so what are you waiting for?
In the past weeks, we’ve been busy creating the next major version of our image combining tool,. The result is V2, which has been written entirely from scratch and offers a lot more features and “ease of use” than the previous . Pictures say more than words, so here is a first preview screenshot:
If you are already familiar with (V1), you’ll notice that the new version looks entirely different. V2 allows you to easily put together your image grid (of any size you want) and combine it into a single image with one click. But that’s not all: The true power of V2 is its command-line version (the GUI is actually a frontend), which allows for writing complex, automated scripts and more; it is especially useful for using it together with V2 (to combine sliced images back into a single image).
When your harddisk starts to make odd noises, it is often too late: your data becomes corrupt and Windows usually fails to properly read from the partition. So what to do? Get a new HD and try to rescue what you can. A great tool to assist you in doing so that I came across and used successfully is File Scavenger from QueTek.
This small tool will scan your partition (even if Windows can’t read from it anymore) for files and will restore everything it can. It’s always bad when you need such a tool, but it’s good to have one then.
If your HD supports SMART, you should always use a SMART monitoring tool; this way, you’ll know early if your disk has any problems.
In this post I’d like to provide you with some useful links that might help you with your daily rendering work.
This shows you what you have to consider when splitting an image into multiple regions either when you are trying to render print resolution or if you just want to get it done faster by rendering each tile on a different machine.
The actual splitting can automatically be done by . You just have to bake effects like final gather or global illumination before.
This might help you when you are rendering with mental ray and try to analyse the output of a chunk during rendering to check what might have caused an error or if you just want to know what is going on.
A great collection of articles on how to optimize mental ray memory wise or to increase performance.
And most importantly here are some guides on how to build your own render farm:
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/render-farm-node,2340.html the most extensive one