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Old 07-31-2012, 10:18 PM   #1
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Plugin developers and render farms

So we just finished a huge project that was 9 minutes in stereo HD and we used 3 farms simultaneously. One farm had 180 nodes working on it. We used 5 plugins that were all installed for free on the farms. We have several more projects we're about to hit that would benefit from a plugin where the farms currently have to pay for a single full license, and in the next update, farms and users will have to pay a *per node* price. They will have discounted bundle prices, but still. We or a farm could pay 5 figures just to use the plugin on what could be just our project, or we would have to foot that bill. Is this something common in other packages that's just now coming to Cinema?
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Old 08-01-2012, 12:59 AM   #2
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...that is like 180 nodes, still trying to find these studios :P
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Old 08-01-2012, 06:10 AM   #3
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Plugin developers can make their plugins be aware of running on a net client. That way a reasonable pricing scheme for render clients can be provided. I'm not sure why the developer of the plugin in question does not make use of thise.
Maybe get in contact with him and check.
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Old 08-01-2012, 06:30 AM   #4
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To answer the other question, yes, other packages have similar issues when using third party plugins. The plugin must be installed on all nodes, and licensing is up to the third-party developers.
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Old 08-01-2012, 07:08 AM   #5
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I always make my plugins run license-free on NET servers and clients.
Asking for a license on each NET node seems a bit over-the-top to me.

May I ask, Troyan, which plugin it is you're talking about?
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Old 08-01-2012, 07:26 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by c4d-jack
I always make my plugins run license-free on NET servers and clients.
Asking for a license on each NET node seems a bit over-the-top to me.


Same here, X-Particles runs licence-free on net clients/servers. The way I see it, since you can't do anything other than render with a net client/server setup, it makes commercial sense for scene developers to buy the plugin knowing that they or the farm won't have to pay extra when it comes to rendering.

Some farms don't use net client/server but use the command-line renderer; in that case they would need a single licence for the plugin to work on all their machines.

Steve
 
Old 08-01-2012, 11:47 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Srek
Plugin developers can make their plugins be aware of running on a net client. That way a reasonable pricing scheme for render clients can be provided. I'm not sure why the developer of the plugin in question does not make use of thise.
Maybe get in contact with him and check.
Cheers
Björn


I did. He hasn't provided me with insight as to why he'll be going this route yet but just that that's the route. "reasonable price" is very subjective depending on the project and how many people will be using it when farms are considering whether your project is worth it. I would think as a developer, I'd want to make it as easy as possible for users to want to put it into their regular pipeline and this approach seems counter productive.
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Old 08-01-2012, 12:41 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by c4d-jack
I always make my plugins run license-free on NET servers and clients.
Asking for a license on each NET node seems a bit over-the-top to me.

May I ask, Troyan, which plugin it is you're talking about?


That was my feeling as well. Since farms are there strictly to provide a service to render your project, doesn't really seem right to charge a fee simply for that purpose.

I'd rather not mention the plugin.
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Old 08-01-2012, 12:46 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spedler
Same here, X-Particles runs licence-free on net clients/servers. The way I see it, since you can't do anything other than render with a net client/server setup, it makes commercial sense for scene developers to buy the plugin knowing that they or the farm won't have to pay extra when it comes to rendering.

Some farms don't use net client/server but use the command-line renderer; in that case they would need a single licence for the plugin to work on all their machines.

Steve


Yes, that makes sense in that case. But everyone, including me who has 4 machines here for doing small net renders, will have to pay a per node fee. Currently, whether the farm has command line or uses Net Render, the farm has to pay for a single full license. For the small farms that's a problem. A per node fee will just kill that possibility altogether and will definitely cause issues on the big farm for cost. Just seem really prohibitive for the developer and would make me not recommend it for our pipeline.
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Old 08-01-2012, 02:00 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Troyan
Yes, that makes sense in that case. But everyone, including me who has 4 machines here for doing small net renders, will have to pay a per node fee. Currently, whether the farm has command line or uses Net Render, the farm has to pay for a single full license. For the small farms that's a problem. A per node fee will just kill that possibility altogether and will definitely cause issues on the big farm for cost. Just seem really prohibitive for the developer and would make me not recommend it for our pipeline.


Just to clarify, you're referring to another plugin, not x-particles here. I can't envisage that we'd ever charge anything to render over net render because the plugin could not be used for anything other than rendering. For the command-line interface, the farm does need a single licence but we've already provided at least one farm with a free licence for this purpose.

Steve
 
Old 08-01-2012, 02:55 PM   #11
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Same here from a plugin developer. All of my plugins require no license (or cost) to run with NET Render. Some of my plugins are currently available at four commercial render farms and provided to them free of charge.
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Old 08-01-2012, 03:39 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spedler
Just to clarify, you're referring to another plugin, not x-particles here. I can't envisage that we'd ever charge anything to render over net render because the plugin could not be used for anything other than rendering. For the command-line interface, the farm does need a single licence but we've already provided at least one farm with a free licence for this purpose.

Steve


We are NOT talking about Xparticles. We LOVE Xparticles (we'll be more in love when Caching is working )

T
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Old 08-01-2012, 06:47 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Troyan
We are NOT talking about Xparticles. We LOVE Xparticles (we'll be more in love when Caching is working )

T


Real soon now, hopefully by the time R14 is out. There'll be a new beta for you to try soon.

Steve
 
Old 08-02-2012, 02:00 PM   #14
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Howdy,

In my opinion, as a plugin developer, the whole idea is to get users to feel comfortable buying and using your plugins. In the Cinema 4D community, that's a difficult enough task as it is. Requiring render farms to purchase a license for each client makes it that much more difficult for users to feel comfortable using your plugins for jobs, having to worry about whether or not the render farm will be willing to purchase that many licenses.

So, it seems to me that good business sense is to allow render farms to use the plugin for free. Most of the render farms will purchase one license for one machine in case they need to make adjustments on site to a customer's file before rendering.

That's why none of my commercial plugins require a license for Net Server or Net Clients.

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Cactus Dan
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Old 08-02-2012, 02:00 PM   #15
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