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run After Effects on linux

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Dan Thomasrun After Effects on linux
by on May 23, 2013 at 7:21:06 pm

We want to invoke an After Effects render task from a web app that is served on a linux-based server. When testing the webapp locally, the app just does a command line call, and it works on the locally installed After Effects.

However when running our webapp form the server, it becomes more difficult. Ideally, After Effects would be installed on the same server, and we just make the call from the app. We asked our hosting service to install a windows virtual machine on the server, with the idea of installing After Effects on the windows virtual machine. However, they said that the render time would be really really slow, since AE cannot leverage a GPU (the way our local machine would), and can only use a CPU.

First question, does this sound right? Second question, is there another solution, if we reeeeealy want to keep everything on the linux server?


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Walter SoykaRe: run After Effects on linux
by on May 23, 2013 at 8:02:05 pm

[Dan Thomas] "However, they said that the render time would be really really slow, since AE cannot leverage a GPU (the way our local machine would), and can only use a CPU. "

The GPU mainly comes into play for the ray-tracing renderer. With the standard Classic 3D renderer, processing mainly happens on the CPU (with the exception of a few notable plugins like Element 3D which use GPU-based OpenGL processing, and a few others like Sapphire which can use GPU-based CUDA on supported NVIDIA cards).



[Dan Thomas] "Second question, is there another solution, if we reeeeealy want to keep everything on the linux server?"

Certainly nothing supported (though the VM was a pretty good idea). You could try it with WINE, but who knows how well that would work. Either way, you'll be on your own when it breaks and you're on a deadline.

What about running it on a dedicated Windows box co-located with your host?

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
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