Mari 1.3v2 is finally available!

loocas | Mari,Nuke,software | Thursday, June 30th, 2011

Mari 1.3v2

Finally! This was one of the reasons why I bought a copy of Mari! The bridge between Nuke and Mari makes these two an uber-powerful combo!

Here are some information about this update and Frank’s video demonstrating the power of this tool.

Btw: this is something I also want to extend to the 3ds Max world. Stay tuned… ;)

Transformers 3

loocas | miscellaneous,opinions | Tuesday, June 28th, 2011

Transformers 3

I think I jizzed in my pants…

Go see this VFX miracle. It’s the holy grail for VFX enthusiasts and artists.

How much RAM is “enough”?

loocas | hardware,miscellaneous,opinions,technical | Monday, June 27th, 2011

RAM usage

I’m actually scared by the fact that even 24GB of RAM isn’t enough for a high-end workstation these days. And I’m talking about projects up to a maximum of full HD resolution! I don’t even consider 2K or, hell, 4K projects at the moment as I primarily work on TV commercials etc…

This is very interesting as I remember every time I upgraded the amount of RAM of my workstation, I was very pleased with the performance and the amounts of available memory every time I worked on something. But then, not long after, I started to reach the limits of the system’s resources.

The thing is, when you reach the cap of your CPU, or GPU for that matter, your renders just take a bit longer to finish. But as soon as you reach the RAM limit, your apps start crashing and the entire system becomes unstable! So, it is a bit of a problem.

I started reaching the limits not long ago when I had tons of apps open at the same time. Especially Nuke, Max, VMWare Workstation and Photoshop. But on recent projects I started reaching the cap with Nuke and Photoshop alone! It’s terrifying as it suggests that no matter how much RAM I put in the system, it will never be enough!

So, it seems that my next workstation upgrade will, indeed, be a RAM boost. Not sure I’ll be able to buy the full 96GB of ECC RAM at once, but, I’m certain I’ll get there very soon.

Creating 3ds Max deployments

loocas | 3ds Max,miscellaneous,software,technical | Monday, June 27th, 2011

A very informative post on the Autodesk forums about making 3ds Max deployments.

I planned to do a similar how-to here, on this blog, in the future. Possibly a videotutorial, so, stay tuned… ;)

Virtualizing the render farm

loocas | miscellaneous,opinions,software,technical | Wednesday, June 22nd, 2011

So far I haven’t had much luck transforming my render farm to a fully virtualized environment for easier management of the render nodes’ software config.

I’ve tried Microsoft’s Hyper-V technology at first as it seemed like the easiest path, but I couldn’t have achieved what I’ve wanted from the setup:

  • Startup of the render nodes
  • Have all the render nodes boot up to a centralized virtual OS
  • Render tasks
  • Shutdown

I’ve even tried the SCVMM, but it was way too complex and complicated so I didn’t actually spend too much time fiddling with it.

I’m currently looking at my #2 option (mainly due to added cost and software layers), VMWare. Especially the VMWare View and vSphere products.

So, no virtualization tips from me right now, all is still one big work in progress, but I’ll be posting updates as soon as I have them.

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