Oz Linden reviewed the status of viewer development. He pointed out that the Visual Outfit Browser (VOB) is now in the main release version of the Linden made SL Viewer.
They updated the VLC RC and Bento RC viewers with VOB.
Both RC viewers are doing well in the crash rate stats. Oz expects the VLC version to release to main viewer in week 39. That will leave the Bento RC as the only RC. Seems like the pipeline is emptying out…
Oz pointed out the Lab did block a few old viewer versions. Saying, ‘Only a few thousand users…’ would be affected. That number can sound bad. But, as a percent of SL users it is way small, likely way less than 1%.
As companies outside the Lab drop support for their products the Lab has to follow. While the Lab tries to retain backward compatibility, the Lab has to move on as they can’t take over support for everything. Think QT and Windows Vista. Apple and Microsoft are not going to give the source to the Lab and if they did, maintenance of those products are far more than the Lab can provide resources to handle.
The question came up whether VLC with its FLV/Flash support replaces Flash? Answer maybe. The Lab’s testing showed mixed results. The reason is FLV and QT are containers and it depends what’s inside them that determines if VLC players can display the content.
As far as the Lab is concerned, it is time to stop using FLV and QT formats for streamed content in SL. The Lab supports the new formats for streaming media and they work way better than FLV/Flash or QT. So, change your content because the viewer and the rest of the world are not going to support it.
Oz Linden points out that changing to a 64-bit OS will reduce your crash rate to less than half. The Lab now has their 64-bit viewer in the pipeline. All the infrastructure for 64-bit is now in place. Oz plans to update the wiki docs, versions of auto-build, and plans to do a section on 64-bit at the next TPD UG meeting (week 40?).
For a time, the Lab will build 32 and 64 bit Windows viewers. Mac and Linux will be 64-bit only. Remember. Linux support is mostly via users not the Lab.
Behind the scenes they have been changing infrastructure in the viewer and servers to reduce crash rates and make way for a 64-bit viewer. Significant gains have been made on the viewer side. Lots of systemic changes are having a noticeable effect on crash rates. All exception handling is revamped, the changes are in the VLC RC viewer. That error handling thing means graceful failures in many cases that don’t crash the viewer and when they do provide some useful information as to what went wrong.
In the 64-bit viewer they are revamping single task construction and destruction that should reduce logout crashes. This basically means a new task that requires resources is like a new app, Word or Excel, opening and running. When its job is done the task is closed.
Think of working with paper letters and ledgers on your desk. When finished with one job you put them away and start a new one. Imagine if you always forgot to put the ledger away and just opened a new one on top of the previous one. Eventually you would have a stack of ledgers that made work ridiculous. That is sort of what happens when the viewer runs out of memory. The Lindens are improving the open and cleanup processes.
Voice – Vivox
The last couple of weeks has seen little progress on Voice. It has been on the back burner.
Another page, link below…