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Chris DarlingtonNetwork Rendering
by on Oct 18, 2009 at 4:05:13 pm

Hi

I have one macpro and 2 Pc's. My workflow is do the job on the mac. i then set up the render queue for MultiMachine Sequence. I go to collect files, selected comp, reduce project, change render output. My problem is under "enable "Watch Folder" render it says "1 single machine render item" and "0 multiple-machine render items."

I can't figure it out why it says 0 multiple machine render. I have the watch folder set up on the pc's. I collect files and save to appropriate folder and only one of the pc's will start rendering. the other machines says something like "no renderable items found." Can anybody explain why I can't get both machines to render?

Thanks.


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Mark WalczakRe: Network Rendering
by on Oct 19, 2009 at 2:55:40 pm

I don't know much about this topic, but I do know that network renders often get confused if you don't have plugins installed across your whole network that are used in your comp to be rendered. Again, I don't know if this will help, but it may be worth a shot...

What makes you explode?
http://www.explosivegraffix.com


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Chris DarlingtonRe: Network Rendering
by on Oct 19, 2009 at 3:10:32 pm

Hi Mark

I figured out my problem. I was choosing multi machine sequence under output but wasn't selected multi machine under render settings. It now works perfectly. Thanks for your post.


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Mark WalczakRe: Network Rendering
by on Oct 19, 2009 at 3:45:41 pm

No problem. Thank YOU for posting about this topic. I haven't looked into it much, but multi-machine rendering for AE would really beef up my workflow...

What makes you explode?
http://www.explosivegraffix.com


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Chris DarlingtonRe: Network Rendering
by on Oct 19, 2009 at 3:48:37 pm

Hi Mark

It's my first time getting it working. I must say with one mac and 2 i7 pc's it's speeded up my render time substantially. I do quite a bit of HD and 2k motion graphics and my bottleneck was always rendering. My plan is to just keep adding computers to the network as I go. Cheers.


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Mark WalczakRe: Network Rendering
by on Oct 19, 2009 at 3:54:40 pm

Agreed. I'm planning on building a nice new Core i5 rig (for like, $500!), which should help with my C4D rendering. Does AE multi machine rendering work well with heterogeneous networks? Does the PC version of AE come with a Mac render license?

Thanks!

What makes you explode?
http://www.explosivegraffix.com


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Chris DarlingtonRe: Network Rendering
by on Oct 19, 2009 at 6:28:13 pm

Hi Mark

That's what I did. I bought 2 Dell i7's. Unfortunately you do need a pc and mac licence to do cross platform which was a bit of drag but buying PC's as you know is quite a bit cheaper than a couple of Mac pro's I own a mac licence and a pc licence. With either, you can install the network renderer on as many machines as you want I think. Up to 10 for sure. So, in the end, it was cheaper to buy 2 licence's for AE, one windows and one mac. With that setup I can actually work on PC to compose as well as the Mac.

Cheers

chris


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Mark WalczakRe: Network Rendering
by on Oct 19, 2009 at 6:39:08 pm

Great to know - thanks, Chris!

What makes you explode?
http://www.explosivegraffix.com


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Walter SoykaRe: Network Rendering
by on Oct 20, 2009 at 1:05:37 am

A couple notes on my experience with distributed rendering in with After Effects, which may help you as you build out your render farm:

All the render nodes will need to have any plugins and fonts used in the project.

Different plugins carry different license restrictions for render nodes. Some allow only one install per license, some allow five or ten, and some are unlimited.

Multiple cores/processors count in the "maximum number of machines." If you have four quad-core render nodes, you need a maximum of at least 16 (and probably more with hyperthreading).

I never recommend OpenGL rendering, but it's especially important not to use it here; different graphics cards could render the same effect differently on neighboring frames.

AE's network renderer is somewhat naive. Each node gets the same sequence, and looks to the shared storage to see what frames have been rendered already, and will take the first unrendered frame in the range. As you add render nodes, you greatly increase load on you network and on the shared disk subsystem. A fast network and a beefy file server are very important. Without that, it may be faster to manually split your render across your multiple workstations.

AE's network render always works with image sequences. If any you need to make any tweaks, you only need to delete the image files representing the affected frame range and re-render. The network render will only re-render the missing frames.

You can use the "set proxy" post-render action to automate conversion from the image sequence to a movie file. In "Output Module" for the comp, set the post-render action to "Set proxy." Add the comp to the render queue a second time and choose whatever output settings you require. Under "Render Settings" change "Proxy Use" to "Use All Proxies." Once the multi-machine image sequence has been created, one of the nodes in your network will go through the image sequence and create your movie file. Again—a fast network and disk subsystem are a must.


Walter Soyka, Principal
Keen Live, Inc.
Presentation, Motion Graphics & Widescreen Design
RenderBreak: A Blog on Innovation in Production



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