Second Life: Updating AvaStar with Slink Dev Kit

I happen to like Slink, so I build what I can wear. For me that means using the Slink Developer Kit. Finishing some stuff up I decided it is time to update my AvaStar, Blender, and Slink Kit before moving on to new things. Also, I wanted to try out the AvaStar feature that adds Dev Kits.

AvaStar 2.4-1 and Slink v9

My previous updates I have written about here; AvaStar – Add the Slink 2017 Model – (5/2017) and AvaStar Tutorial: Adding the Slink Model to AvaStar – (3/2017).

Blender Update

The highest Blender I have is version 2.79c. This can get a bit confusing. The official release is 2.79b according to the Blender.org site. The main download provides an MSI file for use with Windows. This is a basic Windows install file. Not what I suspect most developers want. We want the ‘Archive’ file, the one that allows us to have multiple versions installed. You get that from the same download page just look in ‘other versions’ and grab the ZIP file.

The reason to have multiple versions installed is so I can easily go back to edit a file I made with an earlier version. That saves having to make some updates. I can have an older AvaStar and Blender still setup and ready to use. It helps to note which versions are used with a project.

If you didn’t make notes, you can check the dates of Blender folders and your Blender project files. You can figure out the likely version of Blender-AvaStar to use.

Since ‘b’ is the promoted version, go with that. I’ll use it for this article. If you don’t know how to use the ZIP version, you can dig through my Blender articles to find how to install the archive or Google for help.

Blender 2.8 is coming. But, it is too far away and currently not for production. So, for today’s update, its 2.79b.

Slink Dev Kit

You get the Slink Dev Kit from Slink here.

If you have previously requested a kit and got the download link in an email, you can use that email you received to get the latest update.

You’ll find that all the Slink Dev Kit updates are named the same, Slink Physique Male and Female Kit Avastar Maya -May 2017. That is done so the link in your email continues to work. Files inside the ZIP file do have different version numbers. The current female update I got today is version number 9. Male = 3.

AvaStar

The now ubiquitous Cookies Warning covers the link you need at the Machinimatrix site. What you want is the ‘My Products’ page.

The official production release is 2.4-1. A 2.5 is in RC testing according to announcements in the AvaStar Support group (by invitation). The update of AvaStar for Blender 2.8 is waiting for somethings in Blender to be finalized.

There are instructions for adding Dev Kits to AvaStar here. These are generalized for all Dev Kits.

Installing

I’ll assume you have Blender and AvaStar installed and working. So, how do we get the Dev Kit installed and use it?

The Slink kit must be unzipped. Remember where you put the files.

AvaStar Devkit Manager

The first step is to add the Dev Kit to AvaStar.

In Blender, on the AvaStar tab, open the Devkit Manager.

You see one kit, the Avamesh – Female kit, that is the AvaStar version of the classic Linden avatar.

I need to add Slink’s Dev Kit. Click Add more Devkits…

This opens the User Preferences. Normally accessed via the menu File->User Preferences->Add-ons->AvaStar Bento.

Once in the AvaStar add-on scroll down to the section titled Devkit Configurations.

We need to fill in the information for the Dev Kit we want to add. A limit of this system is the source file can have only ONE model. So, I need to point this to the Slink file: Slink Physique Female Kit Avastar 2x Version9.blend.

The Devkit Manager in User Prefs

My Settings

I filled out the information as shown. I think I have everything correct. I used the default settings.

Click the Add/Replace Devkit Preset.

Save the settings and you are done.

You can save this file as a master from which to begin new projects. That can save a few minutes at the beginning of each new project.

But, this kit is now in Blender-AvatStar.

In a new Blender file to find a Devkit to start from click the AvaStar tab. And open the Devkit Manager section. You’ll see your newly added Dev Kit. Click it to add it as the avatar model.

You’ll need some patience. This takes a minute or two. It is the reason that I saved a copy of the file with the Dev Kit already added and start from it.

 

Summary

The new process is much nicer. Way less stuff to mess with. A few clicks and I’m there.

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