Today S20(42) was released. A couple of days ago I was wondering what was up with the (42) release I saw come up in my RSS feed. By the time I got around to looking at the blog the article was gone. Today Kirsten explained what happened, basically a change of mind. Kirsten decided the version was too buggy to be out.
We are also warned that this release is likely to be buggy. This version, while not appearing dramatically different, is a big change. The entire viewer has been stripped down and redone as a combination of the Mesh Project Viewer and the version 2.5.x viewer code was incorporated.
The biggest change is the addition of the ability to render meshes, which it can. My first use of the (42) viewer was a trip to ADITI and the mesh sandboxes and cities. Everything seems to render just fine. There are some really nice mesh models people have left laying around. The dinosaur skeleton is everywhere.
Kirsten mentions that much of Linden Lab’s viewer update code has been removed from the KirstenLee Viewer S20 (42). So, the install is very standard for Kirsten’s viewer. I installed over the top of my previous version, which it uninstalls. It remembers the unique cache location I used and my settings. I got in a hurry and forgot to manually clear my cache. However, the viewer worked just fine.
In ADITI Preview Grid the viewer was running 50 to 65 FPS (Vista Duel Core2 & 8800GTS). It is mostly empty, so that is not too surprising. In AGNI Main Grid I was getting 25 FPS. Both are on the standard High graphics setting. ADITI had a low ping time 60 to 70 ms. AGNI was much slower with 130 to 350 ms.
I did not spend much time playing with the viewer. I did notice some Preference Panel changes here and there, nothing exciting.
I had problems trying to get Lighting and Shadows on in the last viewer. All I got was a slooooow black screen. This time I exited the viewer and turned on L & S before logging in. The feature works for me in this version. Things look very different. My FPS is 10 to 25.
Logging out and on the way back in, turning on Ambient Occlusion worked. Yay! This also changed the appearance of things…
I repeated the process to turn on Sun and Moon Shadows & Projectors. They also worked. I took a performance hit. I got between 3 and 12 FPS. But, it works! Yay!
So, to stress it I popped over to Bare Rose, a favorite shopping place with a gazillion cheap things. Also, they have lots of Asian clothes. With 128m Draw Distance my FPS stayed around 3, packet loss 0% and Ping 160ms. Things were very jerky. After most of the textures downloaded my FPS was 6 to 13, but turning would cause more textures to download and pull me down to 3 to 6.
From my perspective this is a nicer version than (41), which gave me lots of problems. I’m back to being able to take pictures with shadows.