Rendering Cross platform

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Old 07 July 2013   #1
Rendering Cross platform

We have a windows based render farm (running backburner)and Im currently trying to setup a way that I can send renders from Maya 2013/2014 from both MAC and PC to the render farm, and possibly unused workstations.

the server that we work off of (where the project folders are set to) runs both of a Samba based share and a AFP based share, in general we try working of the smb based share, so the locations should be universal.

At the moment all I am trying to achieve is the ability to send from a Maya2013/2014 on MAC to the farm with no issues.

one issue I seem to have is the difference in the way MAC and windows handles network paths (windows runs off of a "\\" set while mac seems to run off of a "//" set or a "/volumes" set)


Has anyone dealt with this before and is it even possible to render cross platform like this?
Can Backburner handle this or would I need to switch to a different render manager?

any and all help is appreciated
thank you

Last edited by Snake Eyess : 07 July 2013 at 12:16 PM.
 
Old 07 July 2013   #2
The queue manager doesn't matter that much. There are a few ways you could do it, like use environment variables to define the root path of the project that get set at the beginning of the job, then use only relative file paths in the scenes. Or a script could run when the applications starts that looks for file paths and changes them according to the platform it's running on.

On the Mac side look into autofs so the mounts are there every time and the users don't have to manually mount the network shares. You can pick where to mount stuff and/or make symbolic links to shorten the path the users have to deal with like "/data" instead of "/Volumes/production/data" (or whatever your structure happens to look like).

https://ssl.apple.com/business/docs/Autofs.pdf
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Old 07 July 2013   #3
I read that you need to set a unified render path by on MAC creating a file "Render" in the /etc/paths.d/ directory.

So then if you submit the render through the "create backburner job" and add "Render" in the Renderer path parameter it will point to the correct location on the respective platform (MAC/WINDOWS)

Where do you put the equivalent "Render" file in windows though?
 
Old 07 July 2013   #4
Heya olson

thing is I dont want the network locations to auto mount, I want the user to input his/her respective username and password.

All I want it to do is instead of mounting it as a AFP: path (e.g. afp://Volumes/whatever)
I need it to mount as SMB: path (e.g. smb://whatever)

have noticed now that if I try setting the project file in maya, it automatically tries to mount as /volumes.
 
Old 07 July 2013   #5
Originally Posted by Snake Eyess: I read that you need to set a unified render path by on MAC creating a file "Render" in the /etc/paths.d/ directory.

So then if you submit the render through the "create backburner job" and add "Render" in the Renderer path parameter it will point to the correct location on the respective platform (MAC/WINDOWS)

Where do you put the equivalent "Render" file in windows though?


You can add stuff to the path in Windows like this, happened to be the first Google result so there might be other guides out there that explain it better.

http://www.computerhope.com/issues/ch000549.htm#0
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Old 07 July 2013   #6
Originally Posted by Snake Eyess: Heya olson

thing is I dont want the network locations to auto mount, I want the user to input his/her respective username and password.

All I want it to do is instead of mounting it as a AFP: path (e.g. afp://Volumes/whatever)
I need it to mount as SMB: path (e.g. smb://whatever)

have noticed now that if I try setting the project file in maya, it automatically tries to mount as /volumes.


Autofs can be tied into the domain or whatever user accounts you want. If you don't want to change where it mounts (which you can) then you can setup symbolic links wherever you want to link back to the mount.
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Old 07 July 2013   #7
just throwing this out there, not trying to confuse the situation but windows doesn't use the POSIX pathing methods but rather UNC convention.. so if you find a POSIX style utility you may be able to correctly do the pathing in one method that works well across all platforms. Perhaps Cygwin?
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Old 07 July 2013   #8
Originally Posted by tswalk: just throwing this out there, not trying to confuse the situation but windows doesn't use the POSIX pathing methods but rather UNC convention.. so if you find a POSIX style utility you may be able to correctly do the pathing in one method that works well across all platforms. Perhaps Cygwin?


Windows does have a path, it's not just as obvious and it has some quirks. Cygwin works if you want bash or other Unix like utilities (rsync, sed, etc.), but that doesn't matter in this case for rendering.
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Old 07 July 2013   #9
perhaps I mis-understood the issue, but doesn't this boil down to the configuration file that gets passed between the systems.. and since they reference the network storage differently (POSIX style versus UNC), it could be causing a problem for him?

so, if this is the case.. you could enable POSIX style pathing support on the windows backburner controller so when it parsed the config file logic it would understand the references?
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Old 07 July 2013   #10
Originally Posted by tswalk: perhaps I mis-understood the issue, but doesn't this boil down to the configuration file that gets passed between the systems.. and since they reference the network storage differently (POSIX style versus UNC), it could be causing a problem for him?

so, if this is the case.. you could enable POSIX style pathing support on the windows backburner controller so when it parsed the config file logic it would understand the references?


The directory referred to above on OS X (/etc/paths.d) holds files that add to the path. I think we're using the term path differently.

https://developer.apple.com/library...h_helper.8.html

Windows has an equivalent feature that I linked to earlier.
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Old 07 July 2013   #11
I tried adding that to the Path settings olson and it doesn't seem to work...

what its supposed to do is if I open cmd and type render... it should in essence start the render.exe in c:\Program Files\Autodesk\Maya2014\bin\

but it just returns a "'render.exe' is not recognized as an internal or external command,
operable program or batch file."

we are supposed to be running on a UNC based setup, if i understand it all correctly
 
Old 07 July 2013   #12
Originally Posted by Snake Eyess: but it just returns a "'render.exe' is not recognized as an internal or external command,
operable program or batch file."


Double check the path variable and the path for the render.exe, also restart or logout because the changes won't affect the current session.
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Old 07 July 2013   #13
restarted my machine, still didnt work
 
Old 07 July 2013   #14
The syntax is probably wrong for the path variable. Can you copy and paste what you have entered for the path variable?
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Old 07 July 2013   #15
I mix Linux/OS X and Windows with V-Ray for Maya the recent nightly builds added automatic transfer of assets on the back end so you don't have to worry about sharing identical paths. I don't know what renderer you're using but if it's V-Ray, you should look into the nightly builds

if you're just looking for a simple way to add the render command to the OS X terminal, I wrote this a while ago:

http://polygonspixelsandpaint.tumblr.com/post/701899285

But maybe you're looking to do it for all users, so olson's method seems more global.

Last edited by cgbeige : 07 July 2013 at 02:24 AM.
 
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