Reading Daniel Voyager’s blog I see a new viewer is out. Oh yay! Something else to play with. My first check is to go looking at the viewer’s web site. In this case that is mostly BitBucket, a programmer’s code repository tool. So, don’t expect the typical blog, wiki, and forum.
There is an instructions page in the “wiki”. I personally think every viewer should have install instructions and explain the basics of how the viewer sets itself up. In this case they tell me the viewer will install in its own folder and use its own settings and cache. Good to know.
While many viewers share the Roaming\SecondLife\[avatar_name] folder for chat, Zen creates a separate folder for all the chat logs and user settings. You do have the option in Preferences->Privacy to change the location. If you don’t, then the viewer will only see chat that has happened in it.
They also list their special Debug Settings. Support is via the developer, Zena Juran, in-world by direct contact, IM, or note card. Feature requests and bug reports should go in Issues section of Bitbucket.
The wiki is a nice touch.
Download Zen Viewer 3.2.8 (7)
The Zen Viewer download page is here. So far, there are 24 downloads of the (7) version. Download is quick and about 26mb.
The install places the program in C:\Program Files\Zen Viewer\
The install creates a separate folder in Roaming for the user settings and chat logs.
The viewer is in Linden Lab’s Third Party Viewer Directory.
I was freaked at first when I tried to use a less than full screen window. The Restore Down button took the viewer down to nothing. See the image. It took me a couple of tries to notice the viewer was not simply minimizing to my task bar. You can grab the corner and size the window.
The setting panel is arranged differently. If you have become accustomed to the Viewer 3 FUI you’ll have no problem finding things. Graphics setting are a bit different. But, again you’ll have no problem. There are more graphics settings exposed in Preferences. Shadow settings have their own panel in Preferences.
There is a Zen menu item in the top menu. It will let you select the pie right click menu or V3 list menu to use. It has some other choices. See image.
The Mesh Deformer Alpha Version is in part of the viewer. In Develop there is the option to turn it on or off. It is on by default.
The build tools seem to be a mix of several different features. The panel is rearranged a little. All the stuff you are going to be looking for is there and at least near where you’ll expect to find it.
The panel includes the triplets copy for size, rotation, and position. Qarl’s align tool is included. Default build options is part of the panel. Build Math is included. I think it is about as complete a set of build tools as exists.
Using Light & Shadows, Ambient Occlusion, and Shadows and 1280×700 window (there are no LOW to ULTRA settings) I get about 19 FPS in a sandbox and my home.
The viewer has Mesh Upload.
This is very much a Viewer 3 interface viewer. It has lots of stuff missing from the Lab’s viewer. If you build in SL and like the V3 interface, you will want to check out the Zen Viewer.