View Full Version : Render farm

04 April 2002, 07:00 PM
Does anyone know were i can find good information on how to
built a renderfarm? And maybe how to set the licenses (for Softimage XSI).


04 April 2002, 10:23 AM
There's not a whole lot about setting up render farms especially for XSI available out there. We have a pretty good rendering network built totally for XSI/Si3D. I would recommend basically getting the most raw cpu power you can afford. You don't need the latest and greatest pentium chip or anything. We have many older machines that alone; don't do much but together with many other machines or running together in rayhost configuration, they do just fine. I would look for maybe a dual cpu config....somewhere in the 800mhz to 1.2ghz range. You could go higher but I definately would make sure you have enough funds to pop a gig or two of RAM into your machines. For us, RAM is the biggest issue sometimes since we do a lot of architectural stuff which eats RAM alive!!! Many of our older machines have a hard time keeping up since they only have 512MB of RAM. Next, make sure you have a decent size HD but nothing monsterous. I'm assuming you have a network where your rendered images would go so your renderfarm only needs enough space for software and plenty of swap space. Thirdly, make sure they're cooled properly. If you have, for example, a rack of BOXX technologies' rendering systems, you will need plenty of cool air to keep them happy. Fourth, definately have a seperate system run your licensing software. We dusted off an older system, breathed some new life into it, and use that as our licensing machine. This works fine since you don't need a speedy system to distribute licenses. The next thing I would recommend is to use MOTION's Render Server software( This is by far the most amazing rendering software I have ever seen. I've been working closely with the developer who wrote it for quite some time now and we've developed it to the point of near perfection. This software will save you lots of time managing large amounts of renders and managing many machines on a network. It can handle any SI3d or XSI rendering task including running .mi files and rayhosting. Well that's all I can think of for now. Hope that helps.

04 April 2002, 05:20 PM
Thanks for your reply, it will surelly helps!

Have you ever used (or actually use) the BOXX rendering system?
I was looking at then the other day and them seems great. Are they expensive?

04 April 2002, 06:41 PM
There not too bad.....I haven't looked around for rendering hardware for awhile. We use BOXX workstations but we don't have them for rendering.....I wish we did. We use our workstations and a lot of older Intergraph boxes. Last time I checked, their prices seemed pretty good. I know you can get them with AMD processors now.

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