This page provides information on configuration options of the V-Ray Swarm distributed rendering service.

 

Page Contents

 

Overview


The V-Ray Swarm configuration interface allows you to create and track Tags for your render nodes, set up a Master Node, change the server port and number of threads you use, setting up a custom license configuration, and using Environment variables.

 

Configuration Interface


Select the Configuration from the V-Ray Swarm Menu in order to access the options or directly go to http://[SERVER_IP]:24267/configuration. Please note that making any changes to the Configuration page requires V-Ray to be disabled before those changes take effect. Once you disable it from the switch at the top right corner of the page, the options will become available.




 

Tags

The Tags create groups of render node machines that can be used for rendering a job. The tags appear in the V-Ray Settings interface of the 3D application. You can assign single or multiple tags to a render a job. All the render node machines that have the selected tag or tags will then be used.


 

 

By default, V-Ray Swarm has just one tag assigned, Default.  Other tags can be added or removed, including the Default tag, as long as one tag remains.

Tags can be descriptive labels such as RenderFarm, Workstation or 5th_floor.  They can contain only alphanumeric characters, spaces, and dashes.

In the example below, a tag named RenderFarm has been created.

 

 

 


Network Discovery

V-Ray Swarm uses Multicast and TCP/UDP protocols to communicate. When Use auto-discovery is enabled, all machines will use multicast address 239.242.6.7 to discover each other. The machine which can communicate with the greatest number of machines is elected to be the Master Node. It will be marked with a star icon in front of its host name in the V-Ray Swarm Network web interface. Note that if Swarm is accessed through the Master Node machine, the star assigned to it in the Network interface is not visible.

The Master Node machine can be automatically changed if a different machine reports that it can communicate with more machines than the current Master Node.

 

 

 

The role of the Master Node is to gather information about the machines' tags, V-Ray builds, status, availability, and resources (CPU, GPU, RAM) and provide this information if a rendering request from a workstation machine is submitted (a workstation with Swarm enabled in a 3D application's V-Ray settings). In this way, the workstation machine uses the render node machines' tags that are chosen in V-Ray Settings in a 3D application.

If the Use auto-discovery option has not been enabled, the custom configuration of the manually set Master Node becomes available. This option is suitable if there are more than one subnet on the LAN, or if you want to dedicate one or more machines to be Master Nodes. You may choose three machines as Primary and Alternative Master nodes. These selections are used for redundancy if some of the Master Nodes fail to handle rendering requests for some reason.

 

 

V-Ray

The first option under V-Ray configuration is Disable GPU rendering. It allows V-Ray Swarm to be configured as a node without GPU. Thus it won't appear in the discovery process. This option is very useful when a V-Ray Swarm node must be used as a desktop computer. In order to have good UI performance, the administrator of the machine may set Disable GPU rendering to true and the machine will not emerge in the discovery process of GPU-related jobs.

The second option under V-Ray configuration is the V-Ray server port that V-Ray Standalone will run on. The default port is set to 20208. If needed, it can be changed. Please note that the new port should be allowed to pass through the local machine's firewall.

The third option here is Number of threads. It determines how many threads will be used for rendering. When this value is set to 0, V-Ray will use all the CPU cores available on the machine.




License

Rendering with V-Ray Swarm requires V-Ray 3.0 Render Node license. In the License section, you have to configure the IP address/port of the machine where V-Ray license server is running.

By default, the Use system license configuration option is enabled, which uses the existing V-Ray license configuration from previously installed V-Ray products on the machine. For reference, please see Changing your License Settings.

 

 

 

Disabling Use system license configuration provides options for setting a custom configuration, which will be used only by V-Ray Standalone in Swarm. Note that this doesn't overwrite the system configuration if there is one, but creates a new one for V-Ray Swarm. Use this option if you want to change V-Ray license settings, or if you do not have any V-Ray products installed on the machine. You may choose three machines as Primary and Alternative license servers. Note that on these machines, you should have V-Ray license server running.


The User and Password options are deprecated and not used.

 

 

 

Environment variables

In this section, the environment variable related to V-Ray Standalone can be set. Each of them has a tooltip that appears when they are clicked. For more information, refer to V-Ray Standalone Environment Variables.

 

 

Adding custom environment variables can be done in the "Add new environment variable" section at the bottom of the page.  Enter the variable name and click on the "Plus" button (or press "Enter") when you are done.

 

 

 

The new entry appears just above the "Add new environment variable" input line.

 

 

Now just edit  the new variable just like the other pre-set variables in the list above.

 

 

If you want to remove the variable just delete its value and save the configuration with the Save button at the top of the page.

 

 

Refresh the page the input field for the custom variable will be gone.


Notes


  • Swarm relies on a fast Local Area Network (LAN) to communicate between different machines. It needs this to keep open connections in order to move and distribute data.
  • Each Swarm machine needs a V-Ray 3.0 Render Node license for rendering. This means that if you have 100 computers with Swarm on them, but only 5 V-Ray 3.0 Render Node licenses, only 5 will be used to render at a time.
  • For more information about Multicast, see the following link: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Multicast