Firestorm Update

Firestorm Logo

Firestorm Logo

I am finding that I can’t stay logged into SL for more than a couple of hours, if that long, before the viewer starts to lag out. I have mini freezes and periods where the frame rate (FPS – Frames per Second) drops to 2 or 3 and PING jumps up into the thousands of milli-seconds.

Testing with the OS ping to the SL servers at the same time I am not seeing those long times. Nor with the SL Viewer am I seeing those long ping times. Also, I had occurrences of the screen going black then coming back. There is some kind of video problem happening.

I just added the 335.23 driver to my GTX560. So, it should be good. But, doesn’t mean there isn’t a problem. 

I gave up trying to tour the Skin Fair 2014 with Firestorm. (Map search on WEBHOST to find the Skin Fair regions.)

I tried the SL Viewer. I made it through about 1-1/2 regions before it too crashed. But, it did not experience the long ping and mini-freezes. It just suddenly started doing a crash report and showing Not Responding. Then I terminated the process to clear it off my screen.

If I stay home and chat, the Firestorm Viewer stays up. At least I have not crashed it at home while chatting. Once I am out running around then I start running into crashes. At this point I seem more prone to crashes when I am around other people. So, it may be a Liquid/Fitted mesh issue. But, I have not been able to test enough to decide.

I can put on Fitted Mesh and crash the Firestorm viewer in minutes. I am still testing whether that is the case for any Fitted Mesh or if it is particular mesh items that are the problem. It is a challenge to test. I often can’t stay in world long enough to get the fitted mesh off. So, I have to login with the SL Viewer, take it off, then relog with Firestorm. Wheee! …not!

I have been listening to the FS Support. They are busy but not swamped, well, from my viewpoint. If the crash problem were a general issue I am sure I would have seen people flooding the group chat.

I’m running the 64-bit version of Firestorm. Others running it describe it as ‘smoother.’ I can’t say exactly why, but I do agree it gives a smoother impression. And I am really wanting to play with the PhotoTools.

Let me know if you are able to use FS-64 for more than a couple of hours and whether or not you see any of the problems I do. This could just be me. And I am still recommending people upgrade to the new Firestorm.

20 thoughts on “Firestorm Update

  1. I’m using the 64bit Firestorm viewer and I’ve not had any of those problems that you have mentioned above. But I’ve heard from a guy I know on SL, who has 2 people from the firestorm programmers team. That Firestorm are going to be bring out another new viewer once they have fixed the bugs and glitches that are in the new one released yesterday. Just wondering if you have heard the same thing?

    • Jessica has said something along those lines at a couple of different meetings. She is big on stability. So, I suspect a bug fix release is likely.

      Thanks for letting me know your 64-bit is working well.

  2. I’ve been running the RC of the latest viewer for a week or so and had only minor problems. I don’t have a very powerful machine but I did run into a couple. First it didn’t seem so smooth as it used to be and when installed defaulted my settings to AMD 5000 instead of 5400. Very odd,and I too started to get freezes & black screens if there were more than half a dozen avatars in the same place. Usually this is a symptom of my settings being too high and I adjust them lower to compensate, however, this didn’t work. Then I attempted to update my graphic drivers which caused chaos. I spent a miserable 3 hours sorting my computer back out, wiped FS (64 bit) and finally reinstalled it.
    This time is seemed to play ball, correctly identified the correct GPU but then each and every time I enabled advanced lighting to see my material enabled outfits I’d recently put together ..instant crash. Over and over and over. For me, as someone who enjoys taking SL pictures this was terrible, then I found the same thing happened in Cool VL, Singularity and the older Firestorm.
    My personal opinion, unfounded, is that SL has been particularly bad for a couple of days and a few hours later, I enabled all options with shadows and suddenly everything worked. I went somewhere with a few more people and could move, I got a bit laggy, had a couple of freezes but this time, turning off shadows and advanced lighting made a huge difference again.
    As I had the exact same problem with other viewers I suspect it’s not Firestorm but my system and drivers causing problems.

  3. The crashes you describe are similar to what I have been experiencing in the last couple of years. In my case, the avatar becomes unresponsive. I can turn it left or right, I can move the camera but I can’t move and chat doesn’t work. After a couple of minutes I get logged out. This happens with Firestorm and the SL viewer. Is this the same problem that happens to you?

    In the beginning I thought it was a problem with the viewer, then I thought it had to do with a change of router. When I upgraded my fiber connection from 10 Mbps to 100 Mbps the telecom company replaced a Cisco router with a local brand. I have the impression that the problem is less frequent since I have upgraded to this 64-bit Firestorm update, but it’s too early to affirm that with any certainty.

    As for the black screens, I have those as well with the latest NVidia drivers.

    • Thanks Indigo. The avatar stalling and the camera working are indications of a connection problem. Since FS has the new HTTP changes I would expect the problems to be reduced.

      The black screens are being seen by a number of people.

      • Indeed, I have been expecting improvements with the HTTP changes coming and apparently things seem to be better now, but I did experience the problem described at least once. Need to further test this.

  4. Found this nice fitted mesh dress for free on flickr, may help you testing

    • Using Firestorm 64 bit version (which I like as it works very well on my system), testing the dress:
      I tried that dress and I was totally surprised how it worked. Worn without alpha mask almost the whole avatar body was showing. I put the alpha mask on, all was ok.

      But except:
      The waist of the dress was very narrow and the shoulders were too wide (for my taste). Sure the dress changed with all the sliders nicely. Anyway, the way I saw the dress I was not pleased with its strange shape. It is possible to adjust the appearance sliders so that the dress shape looks more “normal”.

      But I was thinking that the idea of Fitted Mesh is that we do not need to change our shape. Hmm… I wonder how that dress was made?

  5. I am on an Apple using mavericks and on FS 4.4.2 – last one and have been getting the same tiny FPS and ping into the thousands. Been that way for three-ish weeks.

    In empty sims and busy ones. In empty sims the issue corrects for a while and then comes back — even when nothing changes with me– I can stand still in a systems outfit and no other avatar comes or goes – not even a child agent.

    Something in the background is making this happen– did LL over stuff the server? Or are we over throttled — I get the too much incoming messages now when I open three notices upon log in.

    I’ve tried rebooting router etc — nothing fixes it this.
    Never had this awful ping before — speed tests are good — no lag in other things – netflix , YouTube etc.

    • Unfortunately it is none of those things. It is a problem with the Mac. Jessica discussed the issue about a month ago.

      See: Look for the heading Mac Users.

    • I’ll do testing and if I can ID that it is a particular mesh I’ll get you a copy of it. I made the thing, sort of…

    • Cathy thanks for taking the time to make a good response.

      I agree with what you have to say about how the Mesh Deformer was to work up to the point of the XML base shape only being for use outside of SL. The last iterations of the Deformer after adding base shapes was to include the base shape in the mesh upload. I even tried a couple of different base shape uploads.

      So, we disagree on how the Mesh Deformer was to work. Oz Linden pointed out to me the anticipated problem the Lab was having with base shapes and the Market Place. I point that out to show I was not the only one to have seen it that way.

      That is basis for saying marketing of Mesh Deformed clothes would get confusing. I understood Oz to say that was a significant driving point in their decision to go with Fitted.

      In regard to the morphs… I’m novice enough not to be able to debate that point. What little experience I have is the morph groups are associated with vertex groups associated to bones. Plus, we know that there are bones we do not have access to for animation.

      I am still digging through viewer code to see how the SL Avatar is actually represented in the viewer code. I think there is some significant part we are missing.

      I tried working some with people-faces and The Mesh Deformer. My experience was they sort of worked, but not at the level I would want. Watching your linked videos I want to try again in OpenSim and see if it is better.

  6. Nothing novel to report, here. No crashes. I went to the same locations you did to try and replicate, and also stress-tested in Hangars Liquides by moving very quickly across sim borders at high speed, which is my usual way of checking for local networking issues that might cause some kind of problem. No blank screen freezes for me (which means I get less than usual, less being ‘not many’).

    System (from diagnostics information on About Window):
    CPU: Intel(R) Core(TM) i5-2500K CPU @ 3.30GHz (3310.85 MHz)
    Memory: 8174 MB
    OS Version: Microsoft Windows 7 64-bit Service Pack 1 (Build 7601)
    Graphics Card Vendor: NVIDIA Corporation
    Graphics Card: GeForce GTX 550 Ti/PCIe/SSE2

    Windows Graphics Driver Version: 9.18.0013.1106
    OpenGL Version: 4.2.0

  7. I’ve been running the new FS 64bit Linux beta on an older PC and found it to be very stable. I can tp around the grid without problems. Some sims that usually rezz slowly for me have been “popping” in faster. FPS seems to be slightly better then the 4.4.2 version I was running. I have not seen any black screens yet. Spent close to 16 hours on Saturday logged in without any performance problems except a couple of router disconnects caused by my ISP.

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