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wavk
09-09-2003, 03:27 AM
Hi

I'm getting really frustrated by this. I've been trying to get screamer net to work for a long time now. I've got it to a piont that:

- I run lwsn.exe by a shortcut on the nodes to lwsn on my pc
- the nodes have L: mapped to my L: drive
- My machine has a (virtual) drive which is mapped to c:\lightwave
- I have full read/write access across the network
- the scene is loaded on the other machines
- it renders on other machines
- it SAYS it saves on other machines
- BUT IT DOESN'T

I tried different saving locations, c:\render, so that the images would be stored locally, and projectname\renders\ on my l drive.

Does this L: have to be a "real" drive, like a partition or separate hd? Also the plugins don't work on other machines, but I also checked with scenes not using any plugins.

Do I have to put lwsn on the other computers instead of running it from the network?

this is the lwsn shortcut:
L:\Programs\lwsn.exe -2 -cL:\Configs -dL:\projecten\Acantus_030406 L:\Programs\Command\job# L:\Programs\Command\ack#

I hope this is enough info? I ran through lots of tutorials on setting up screamer net, but it just doesn't work.

I would really like to see this working, as I could assimilate tens of computers in the network to work for me at night.

Thanks in advance,

Wybren

Matt
09-09-2003, 04:47 AM
if the nodes say they're saving but no files appear it's almost certainly because your plugins can't be found.

thing is SN doesn't say if it can't, handy eh!

check the path to your configs and check the LWEXT3.cfg file.
The entry to each plugin should be something like:

{ Entry
Class "AnimLoaderHandler"
Name "AVI(.avi)"
Module "L:\\Programs\\Plugins\\Input-output\\Avi.p"
}

I'd also recommend using UNC paths names rather than drive mapping.

09-09-2003, 05:12 AM
My solution, which keeps LW and lightnet ever so happily running,
is based on having only one set of LW files, used by all machines whether LW or LWSN.
It takes advantage of the amazing fact that LE seems not to rely on any registry entries, and thus does not have to be 'installed' on each machine.
Because there is only one copy of everything, I can be absolutely sure that if a scene works in LW on one machine it will 'work' in LW or LWSN on every machine.

Create a LW directory - on server if you have one - called LW or something similar.

Share that directory and make sure every machine sees it as the same name.

Copy your full working LW installation into it - including all plugin directories.

Delete or rename the base directory of the original, and any other set of LW files!

Create an extra sub-directory called 'Configs'

Copy the config files into it from your user area on your base machine.

Delete all other lw config files on every machine in the network.

Create shortcuts on your machines to LW.exe and Modeler.exe using the -c option to direct which configs should be used.

(for my LW the 'target' line reads:
M:\LW\Programs\Lightwav.exe -cM:\LW\LW_Configs)

I have 3 dongles, and their keys are all entered in the single key file, so any machine in the network can run LW simply by plugging in the dongle and making a shortcut.

Never open LW other than by the shortcut - if you do it will create a new set of configs in your local profile, and those will be used in preference to the ones specified the next time you open it properly. This is IMHO the most common cause of net rendering faliures.

PS I wold strongly recomend using a 3rd party interface to run your net rendering - I have found LightNet the simplest and most transparent to set up and run, and it means you can let all the other machines get on with the render while you do what you like on your main machine (i.e. restart LW)

Lightwolf
09-09-2003, 05:25 AM
Hi Adrian and the others...
I basically use one installation across the network as well.
I don't however use drive letters, but reference everything using unc file names, which automatically makes sure that all machines have access to the data needed (if the logged on user has the rights of course).

So, instead of:
G:\projects\customer\content\
I use:
\\myservername\projects\customer\content\

I use Spider btw.
So far no hassle, keeps me from assigning drive letters and making sure they're consistent, and it works perfectly with, for example, Digital Fusion too.
The only drawback is that apprently UNCs are a bit slower than maped drives. I gladly pay that price.
Cheers,
Mike

wavk
09-09-2003, 06:11 AM
Hm thanks for your long replies all.

Since the first post a couple of hours ago, I did another tutorial to set up screamer net in yet another way:

http://www.ironsquid.com/sntut/

I used unc names, now, also.

But you won't guess, it doesn't work :( I also changed the config files, the one with the plugin paths. And I tested with a very simple scene which doesn't even use plugins.

And one other strange thing. It now doesn't care what type of file I want to save my frames in. It just writes flx :mad:

I only have one lightwave dongle, so... Maybe I should check out spider again. Couldn't get that to work a couple of weeks ago, either.

Guess it's never going to work :(

Matt
09-09-2003, 06:36 AM
guys that's how I set my SN up.

Master Machine has:
Full LW install + dongle
All content files
a folder called 'screamer_command'
two config folders, one called 'config' for regular LW use
and another called 'config_sn' for screamernet use, which has
all path names in LW3.cfg and LWEXT3.cfg pointing to the UNC shared folder (share name = screamernet)
the UNC shared folder is the whole lightwave folder described above, inside that folder resides everything!

I have two shortcuts for lightwave layout, one points to the regular config folder, the other to the screamernet folder using the target field in the properties for the shortcut:

Regular LW:
C:\LightWave\Programs\lightwav.exe -0 -cc:\LightWave\config

Screamernet:
C:\LightWave\Programs\lightwav.exe -0 -cc:\LightWave\config_sn

node 1 has:
a folder called lightwave, inside that is _just_ the programs folder, copied directly from the master machine.
and a batch file for each CPU which has the following code:



@echo OFF
echo "LightWave ScreamerNet Node 1 Initialisation . . ."

cd c:\lightwave\programs\

LWSN -2 -c\\Mattxp\screamernet\config_sn -d\\Mattxp\screamernet\ \\Mattxp\screamernet\screamer_command\job1 \\Mattxp\screamernet\screamer_command\ack1


When you run the LightWave using the screamernet configs it's a good idea to scan all your plugins / lscripts using the UNC shared name, i.e. scan plugins and browse from the top down starting with Entire Network, DON'T create a shortcut using 'Add Network Place' and use that, it resolves to a local path.

Then to run, go to each node and run it, then come back to the master machine, run LW with the screamer config, init all nodes, add scenes, hit render!

I'm in the process of writing a tutorial for screamernet that will hopefully be very easy to follow, here's what's done so far:

http://www.creactive-design.co.uk/screamernet

Hope that helps!

Matt

09-09-2003, 08:45 AM
that flx is definitely it saving default format because either
A) it's not reading the config files - or
B) it can't find the 'save' format pluggins

My bet is, if you have double checked all the mapping,

YOUVE GOT A SET OF CFG FILES ON THE RENDER NODE MACHINE AND THE B*****D SOFTWARE IS USING THEM INSTEAD OF THE ONES YOU SPECIFIED

KILL THE CONFIG FILES

SEARCH EVERY NOOK AND CRANNY FOR ANY LW CFG FILES AND DELETE EVERY SINGLE ONE EXCEPT THE REAL ONES

thats:
LW3.cfg
LWEXT3.cfg
LWHUB.cfg
LWM3.cfg
LWSpreadsheet.cfg

lwsn will find the wrong ones BY DEFAULT and use them untill you delete them!

jupussi
09-09-2003, 02:35 PM
I don't know is this any help to you, but I got screamernet II working quite painlessly. I followed the instructions on here:
http://www.firedragon.com/~fabio/screamer/screamer.htm

I had a problem of saving empty images. I solved it by this way:
I put all my own objects, scenes and stuff in the same directory hierarcy.
P:/stuff/models P:/stuff/textures ...
Then I point the content directory to P:

Matt
09-10-2003, 02:15 AM
that's the one I used that made the penny finally drop!

iluvatar
09-10-2003, 07:04 AM
i had a saving problem starting my first network render... network rendering directly to animation won't do, cause the frames won't be delivered to the server in the right order... tried to save as image sequence .jpg but it didn't work, then i've read the whole internet for a solutions, but none worked, then i found a magical sentence in a deep black whole on the internet wich said: "make sure you render to a .tga image sequence", and so i did... guess what? it worked... don't know why, but give it a try...

Hiraghm
09-10-2003, 09:39 AM
I finally got screamernet working on my windows machines (one weird thing; I had to change my command directory to L:\content; something was putting the job files there.)

Now I just have to figure out how to get my linux render node working :(