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nick mooreNetwork Render
by on Dec 28, 2010 at 8:51:34 pm

Im trying to use the "watch folder" to render a composition using multiple machines to render a composition but im having some difficulty. i setup the watch folder on the main computer. then on the render computer i mapped a network drive making the "watch folder" a network drive. then i try to choose the watch folder using the adobe AE Render Engine. it then gives me the error:" Cannot watch the root of a volume. Please choose a folder within this volume". So i made a folder inside the "Watch Folder(\\SPLIT-PCSplit)(z:)" called "New Watch Folder". and then it let me choose it in the watch folder option. Then i go to my Main Computer and choose "Collect Files" option and save to the "New watch Folder" then it saves. Now on the Render PC the Render Engine is Searching every 10 seconds. then it finds the Files and downloads and opens the project, then right after that it just back to searching and and DOES NOT start rendering.

do i have to set my render and output settings a certain way? i tried used "multi Machine" settings and it still wont start the render.ive tried rendering as PNG and JPEG sequence as well and still nothing.

sorry for the long post but if there is any flaws in the system i used Please let me know.
ive been searching forum after forum and im not getting anything.

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Amit ZinmanRe: Network Render
by on Dec 28, 2010 at 9:24:37 pm

Have you tried the alternative method? Instead of collecting the files just render to the network share folder using PNG and specify (in the Render Settings) not to render frames that are already rendered.
That should do the trick.

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Walter SoykaRe: Network Render
by on Dec 28, 2010 at 9:26:35 pm

The AE network renderer has some very specific requirements. There's a list of network considerations on the Network rendering with watch folders and render engines [link] page:
Network considerations
When working with multiple render engines on multiple computers, keep in mind the following guidelines:
  • When possible, identify folders using absolute file paths so that the paths are correctly identified for all render engines. Identifying folders using absolute file paths may mean mapping network drives to a particular drive letter on all computers (for example, H:\renders\watch\). Avoid using relative paths (for example, \\renders\watch).
  • Each Macintosh computer monitoring the watch folder must have a unique name. Because the default names of computers are often identical, you should rename your computers to not use the default name.
  • Make sure that all servers and clients (computers monitoring the watch folder) have hard drives with unique names.
  • Do not use the same computer to serve a watch folder and to run After Effects in Watch Folder mode. Use a dedicated server that’s accessible to all render engines to serve your watch folder.
  • Do not render to or initiate Watch Folder mode on the root of a volume or a shared folder that appears as the root when viewed from another computer. Specify a subfolder instead. Also, avoid using high-ASCII or other extended characters and slashes in filenames. For multiple-computer rendering, After Effects includes the Multi-Machine sample template that you can use as a starting point.

[nick moore] "Now on the Render PC the Render Engine is Searching every 10 seconds. then it finds the Files and downloads and opens the project, then right after that it just back to searching and and DOES NOT start rendering."

Does it flash any message on the screen before searching again, or perhaps make an entry in the log file?

You might check out Aharon Rabinowitz's tutorial on multi-machine rendering (using the full version of AE instead of render engines):

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
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nick mooreRe: Network Render
by on Dec 29, 2010 at 4:48:04 am

u guys are awesome!

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