Renderfarm

From TOI-Pedia


Renderfarm Main Quick Walk-through Workflow Frequently Asked Questions Advanced Topics

If you want to know how to use the renderfarm, please read the Renderfarm Quick Walk-through. You can find more detailed information in the Renderfarm Workflow page. You can submit your render jobs directly from Maya.


Render Capabilities

The renderfarm currently runs Maya 2015 (Servicepack 5). It should be able to render scenes from previous versions of Maya, but it may yield unexpected results.

Currently, the following render engines are supported:

  • Maya Software
  • Maya Mental Ray
Note that Vector rendering and hardware rendering are NOT supported!


Background information

TOI started the renderfarm project in 2005. It's currently still in a experimental phase and thus still 'for free'.

A renderfarm is a number of (dedicated) computers that render 2D images or image sequences from 3D computer models. In this case the renderfarm is configured to render Maya scenes. It consist of a number of render nodes (computers with two processors and lots of memory) and a 'master' that distributes jobs and holds all the data. Specialized software enables complex jobs to be split in smaller jobs, merging the results automatically when finished.

Technical details

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We're adding new machines to the renderfarm on a yearly basis and older machines are then removed. The current composition is:

#CPUSpeedMemoryYear addedTotal GHz
2dual 4-core Xeon E54202.50 GHz16GB200840 GHz
1dual 10-core Xeon E5-2680v22.80 GHz64GB2014112 GHz
2dual 12-core Xeon E5-2680v32.50 GHz128GB2015240 GHz

In total this results in 84 processor cores at a combined speed of 392 GHz and 352 Gigabytes of memory. De renderfarm is controlled by one master node (dispatcher) virtual machine.


Software

We currently use Muster from Virtual Vertex to manage the renderfarm. The servers run Windows Server 2012 Data Center Edition.

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