• Backups and OARs

    This week has seen significant progress in development of a couple of our core tools for public ReactionGrid. In addition to the daily backups of all region data and core assets, user data, etc. we now have in place a system to automatically generate OAR files of all regions on ReactionGrid every couple of days, giving us a little resilience in case of building mishaps, or for the extremely unlikely event of the failure / loss of a machine. These OAR files, like the core backups, are transferred to an offsite store on a regular basis, and soon we’ll have the ability to tap into some of that for users of MyROAR. (An OAR file is an OpenSim Archive file that contains all of the detail about all objects and resources in use on a region, scripts, textures, terrain information, etc. and can be used to save and load entire regions with ease.)

    The MyROAR application (http://myroar.reactiongrid.com) is available to all sim owners on ReactionGrid, including those who only have a single region with us (see here for details). The application currently enables you to generate a snapshot of your region by saving its current state to an OAR file. This file is stored behind the scenes and sent off site as part of the process, but to date the only way to obtain a copy is to file a support ticket at http://metaverseheroes.com. In the very near future, as part of this week’s coding efforts, we’ll make it possible to view a list of OAR history for your region, and to download copies of your OAR files. In addition, we hope to make it possible to initiate a load of a specific OAR file on demand from the web interface, making a rollback to an older version possible without having to file a support ticket.
    We’d love your feedback on applications like this, and on ideas for future work, so please feel free to drop in a ticket at http://metaverseheroes.com and send us your thoughts!
  • Downloading the Hippo client for OpenSim

    It seems there is a small outage on the site that hosts the link we normally give to people for the Windows version of the Hippo 0.5.1 installer. If you are having trouble downloading Hippo and need to get up and running, it is also hosted on Sourceforge so please try the alternative link if ever you have trouble with the OpenSimulator forge site.
  • Maintenance for Jan 8 Complete

    Maintenance is complete for the date Jan 8th, 2010

    Thank you all for your patience while we make the world a better place!
  • Maintenance Scheduled Jan 8 NOW – Taking a Bit Longer than earlier predicted

    The following regions will be affected by the scheduled maintenance  Jan 8th at Noon UTC / 7am EST / 4am PST – there will be approximately 1 hour downtime while we tend to scheduled maintenance operations:

    Mentors, CoolCatScratchPost, Crehyr Glas, RezzMe, RezzMe Advertising, Thalkowane, UncommonNonProfit, Wizzy, Xeno, Airline Isle, Jens Isle, Agile Dimensions, An Lios North, An Lios South, HomeCamp, Gaelscoil, Ontos, Shannons World, Technical Test Zone, The Labohratory
    We thank you for your patience while we make your virtual world experience better!
    If you have any questions please submit a ticket to http://metaverseheroes.com  with your avatar name,region name, and your question.
  • Announcing MyROAR for all Region Owners

    Region Owners – announcing a new tool to view some data about your regions, and give you the ability to edit some information about those regions. If you own a region on ReactionGrid, you can now log in to http://myroar.reactiongrid.com with your ReactionGrid avatar account and view information about your region online.
    It’s an early stage application, but it will be growing! What you see when you log in is a slice from our core ROAR application that powers the whole of ReactionGrid. With the full version of this application, we have a web-based administration for our grid, enabling us to add regions, move region coordinates, check to see if a region is currently busy, and more. The lite version of ROAR is now available for free to anyone with a private grid hosted on our servers, but for region owners on ReactionGrid, there was no web admin until now.

    So, what does it do?

    Primarily, you get a count of the number of prims on your region, and the number of scripts. We have tracked nearly all the regions on the grid now, and we are starting to see patterns as to how many prims and scripts are “a lot”. Scripting can be tricky to quantify, since a single script could be harmful to performance, but any region that is showing over 150 scripts will take a long time to start up and will not perform nearly as well as one with 50-100 scripts. From the data we have at hand now, we can say that a significant quantity of support requests have been submitted in recent months from regions with over 200 scripts actively running on them. If you are experiencing a high number of crashes, then this could be an indicator that you need to review the quantity of scripts on your regions.
    Prim count – we have some regions with very high prim count, few textures, and virtually no scripts, and these regions run very well. There is more of a hit on the client on these regions since your client will have to download data about all the primitives on the region, but in general, waiting for that information to come down is all that is required then you can explore the region (see Wizzy sim for an excellent example of this!) More textures will be more of a hit, more complex primitives is also a hit (lots of hollow twisty path-cut spheres, for example) on client rendering.
    You can edit the description and category of your region – this data is shown here and is a great way to find and read about interesting regions on the grid. So far we’ve tried to add descriptions ourselves to some regions, but you know your regions better than we do, so please update your region descriptions for the world to find out more about what you do!
    There’s a button to save your region’s current state to an OAR file as a snapshot. We actually automate this process for all regions on the grid, but this gives you the power to take a snapshot when you are ready to do so. That snapshot is then safely stored, and remains there in case you need to restore your region. If you ever wanted to roll back, you could just drop in a ticket to our support department at http://metaverseheroes.com and we could revert your region for you.
    Region status – admittedly isn’t massively useful in its current form, but if you see text along the lines: “Region: ONLINE: 1” then your region may be alive. If you see the text that something went wrong and the region may be down, then it may be down. I would love to get more useful information from this, so we will be working to get more data here.
    This is version 1.0, there will be new releases and upgrades to this over time as we add more functionality- some items on the wish list (that are not hard to achieve) include a web interface for remotely loading terrain heightmaps, and a history / version system for OAR backups. Feature requests are very much appreciated, please drop them in to http://metaverseheroes.com and we’ll collate them and see what you want us to provide, and see if we can help to provide those features for you!