Second Life Update 2020-10

I am not keeping up with SL tech like I used to. I play more these days. But, today I made it to a Server-Scripting meeting. BIG changes.

UPLIFT

The Lindens tell us the UPLIFT is the biggest change to the service ever made in the history of Second Life™. Expect problems and odd glitches. They even posted a request in the SL Tools & Tech section of the SL Forum, A Light in the Cloud. Patience. As they move to eliminate the one foot in data center and one in the cloud, things are likely to get bumpy. Expect odd problems. Lots of people are working hard to make this change as smooth as possible. The optimistic completion is before the holidays.

Leonorah Beverly @ Flicker

The UPLIFT of region simulators to the cloud is in high gear. You can tell if the region you are in is running in the cloud in Help->About… Look for the “You are at…” part. You have to know how to read server names and URI values to tell. But, simply said cloud addresses are amazon.com and Linden Data Center servers have the address linden.com. This simple distinction will go away as more regions move to the cloud. The Lindens will use what they call a synthetic name, which gives the Lindens more useful information about the server and its regions.

Knowing which region is located where is not going to matter for long. Soon it will all be cloud based. Then only the Lindens will need to know which server is carrying which region.

We are told that last Tuesday night at minimum use time about 1,000 regions were Uplifted to the cloud. Mazidox Linden tells us those regions have been running with only minor problems.

They anticipate moving may be 2,500 regions Wednesday (10/28) to the cloud. Which means problems are very minor. This will also mean more than half of all regions will be in the cloud.

Today we got our first set of server Release Notes for the cloud versions. See an example: Release Notes.

More pages… links below.

Catching Up in Second Life

I have survived CoVid-19. It took me down for about 15 days. Still recovering, I easily tire. My four-mile hiking is down to a half-mile.

What I learned about CoVid-19 is there is more confusion, contradictory information, and horrible reporting. The worst information and often deliberately injurious information is coming from California and New York. Even my doctors had little information and kept saying they would have to talk to experts and get back to me when I asked questions.

Being in California I was dealing with the state’s and country’s requirements and quarantine instructions. Most annoying was the followup contact tracing. It was obvious there is a political bias in the contact tracking. They only collect information related to those facilities the state wants to close down. Information for those facilities the state wants open is not collected.

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GENUS DMCA Update

Anna Ivanova, owner of the Genus Project, has provided an update on the legal drama washing over Genus products. You’ll find the update on Facebook. Since I hadn’t figured out how to link to a FB Post, I had to look it up. The time stamp at the top of a post contains a link to the post. Anyone can right-click copy that link and use it.

For those that do not know Genus Project makes products for Second Life™. The Genus mesh heads are somewhat popular. You can see people writing about them in the SL Forum.

Marketplace Store – As of today 9/3/2020, the mp store is still empty. Expect that to change as soon as the court verdict propagates through the system.

The original post is here. I’ve quoted the post below…

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Second Life Region Crossings 2020 – What’s Coming?

This is an informal test and I use the word ‘test’ very loosely. I just wanted to see what the commotion about crossing in the new AWS servers was about. There is no hard data in this experiment. My computer and connection are irrelevant IMO. The Viewer is Firestorm 6.4.5 Beta, which I used because I have it setup to work with OBS.

I started my trials in Blake Sea – Half Hitch, Aditi (SLURL). If you search for the region in Aditi, include the Blake Sea part.

There is a long 1 sim wide run from Blake Sea – Azimuth to Blake Sea – Bering of 17 regions. That is a 4.352 kilometer run or about 2.7 miles for the metric challenged. Plenty of room to max out my Bandit 380R (The Mesh Shop – Map URL).

I want to mention The Rubber Bunny. That HUD on the left is made by Kaliska Dismantled of Rubber Bunny. Kaliska makes easy to modify HUDs for various boats and vehicles. I’ve bought a couple (L$49). Plus making some fun vehicles. Among them hovercraft which are a novel SL driving experience.

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The Firestorm Viewer and EEP

EEP is the Enhanced Environment Project. I consider this a step in the Lindens rebuild of the render engine. Whatever it is, the Firestorm team has released a Beta version of their viewer with EEP.

Photoshop Play Time

Beta, in this case, means the software is not yet ready for prime time. It also means it is your choice as to whether you install this version. And for those of you using a version three versions back, this does not count as one of the three allowed versions. So, you aren’t going to have that 3rd old version blocked from the grid. Yet…

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Second Life Region Crossings Fixed?

Wouldn’t that be something?

In my previous article, I recount how I sailed across dozens of region-crossings without crashing. Now I am reading of others testing the new cloud-based region servers having the same experience.

Cloud-based? You probably know the Second Life™ system is moving to the cloud. We don’t get to hear much about it as user knowledge of changes messes up the bug reporting. But Mazidox Linden posted, Blake Sea is now up on Aditi!  (July 20, 2020) And wow…

Region Crossings
Those invisible region crossing walls…

If you don’t know, Aditi is the beta test grid for the Lindens. Also known as the Preview Grid. They allow us to use it too. Only selected parts of the main grid are in Aditi. Plus, the Aditi grid changes… a lot and unexpectedly and often goes down as they restart tests. Unexpectedly for we mere mortal users. Aditi is the Linden workspace and their testing takes first priority.

Every so often the Lindens need some genie pigs… er… beta testers. The Thursday UG Server Beta meeting is usually the place for those requests. Meeting participation there has been declining since most server news over the past few months was just internal fixes and other stuff they couldn’t talk about. The servers run on proprietary software and contain the security for the system. So, there are limits on what they can say, which makes sense.

Whether that is the reason Maz posted in the SL Forum’s Tech->Server section or not, there the post is.

The post tells us they are testing region crossings. The test scenarios are for regions within the same host and in different host servers. The article has links to the test regions in Aditi. Plus, there are a few accounts from people participating in the testing.

The majority find the crossings are ‘barely noticeable’ or a total fail with the vehicle lost and never returned. To me this sounds like progress. It also tells me the Lindens are getting close to having region servers running in the cloud. The region servers are a huge part of the system using a large number of computers.

This should make for dramatic changes in SL. The Lindens are excited. It leaks out here and there and user complaints at UG meetings about annoying problems are often addressed with an intimation that will sort of get solved with the move, ‘uplift’, to the cloud.

Whatever, I think it interesting and exciting. Only time will tell if this is the big FIX we all hope for.

So… what’s going on at Second Life?

I haven’t posted in a while. I was feeling the URGE… to post, silly. So, I stopped to think about what is happening in SL that might be interesting.

Sailing

I like to sail and fly. I have a Bandit-55 sailboat that is great fun. Saturday, I sailed it around Eden. If you haven’t been to Eden it is a fun place to sail and fly. It has handy ports and landing fields. There are even some GTFO stations. And there are some large open space areas. I seldom have problems with security orbs there.

Eden: August 2018 – With Aviation Grid

The remarkable thing that may be interesting, was to me, is I put in and sailed from Eden Cygnet, the hedonistic Bumrose for elegant avatars (horny will suffice), in the upper northwest to the East-Southeast edge then around and south then slowing tacking my way North West, with wind from the NW, to the far western edge. Then back North to Bumrose.

What is interesting is I was never detached from my boat nor did I crash nor did I run into a security orb. Amazing. I sailed for hours.

I often strip down to my fewest scripts, often none attached, and drop my ACI by wearing only my classic avatar body. This trip I worn my mesh body, head, and mesh outfit (wearing it here – white top and jeans shorts – like 130k ACI). Dropped off my various HUD’s and jumped on my Bandit-55.

This was an amazing trip. Sailing for hours without a crash is very unusual. Eden was not deserted nor was SL. Concurrent users was in the high 40k and low 50k. So I am surprised there were no problems.

Was it Eden, SL, me… not sure but it was a nice time. Plus, I have been needing to work on my tacking for some time. This was a great opportunity. I think I improved my skill. I still cheat now and then and use the motor. But mostly I moved Northwest under sail. Yay, me!

Linden Lab to be Purchased

On another note, a little-noticed post on the Linden Lab website announced that the Lab is being purchased. It says little more than an agreement has been made and who the acquirer is.

LINDEN RESEARCH, INC. TO BE ACQUIRED – July 9, 2020.