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Installing V-Ray for Maya from a .zip file provides several advantages:
This page describes how to set up your local system so that it loads the files for the correct version. The notes here are for the Windows, Linux and MAC OS X operating systems.
Unpacking the Contents of the .zip File
Extract the contents of the relevant .zip file into a suitable folder, for example, vray_builds/my_version . After the extraction, there should be three sub folders in it: maya_root , maya_vray and vray .
Before you run Maya, you need to perform the following steps:
If you plan to use batch rendering, set the environment variable MAYA_RENDER_DESC_PATH to the folder vray_builds/my_version/maya_root/bin/rendererDesc
Set the VRAY_FOR_MAYAnnnn_MAIN_x64 environment variable to point to the vray_builds/my_version/maya_vray folder where nnnn is the Maya version (2013, 2014, etc.).
Set the VRAY_FOR_MAYAnnnn_PLUGINS_x64 environment variable to point to the folder vray_builds/my_version/maya_vray/vrayplugins
Set the VRAY_OSL_PATH_ MAYAnnnn_x64 environment variable to point to the folder vray_builds/my_version/vray/opensl (if the particular V-Ray version supports OSL)
On Linux, add to the LD_LIBRARY_PATH environment variable the path to the vray_builds/my_version/maya_root/lib folder; on Windows, add to the PATH environment variable the path to the vray_builds/my_version/maya_root/bin folder, on OSX add to the DY LD_LIBRARY_PATH environment variable the path to the vray_builds/my_version/maya_root/Maya.app/Contents/MacOS folder
Add to the MAYA_PLUG_IN_PATH variable the folder vray_builds/my_version/maya_vray/plug-ins
Add to the MAYA_SCRIPT_PATH variable the folder vray_builds/my_version/maya_vray/scripts
Add to the PYTHONPATH variable the folder vray_builds/my_version/maya_vray/scripts to be able to use V-Ray's python modules
Add to the XBMLANGPATH variable the folder vray_builds/my_version/maya_vray/icons/
Note title Linux specific
the syntax is slightly different for Linix, %B must be added at the end, f.e. vray_builds/my_version/maya_vray/icons/%B
Edit vray_builds/my_version/maya_vray/bin/vrayconfig.xml and set <PluginsPath> to be vray_builds/my_version/maya_vray/vrayplugins to be able to use IPR
You can now run Maya.
If you want to use the VRScene mode for XGen for Maya 2014.5+ there are a few more steps.
Here is a sample Maya.env file for windows: Maya.env
Running V-Ray Standalone
Before running V-Ray Standalone, you need to perform the following steps:
Add to the PATH environment variable the folder
vray_builds/my_version/maya_vray/bin (this is required for running V-Ray itself)
vray_builds/my_version/vray/bin (if you want to use any additional tools like the irradiance map viewer, the VRIMG to OpenEXR converter etc.).
On Linux, add to the LD_LIBRARY_PATH environment variable the folder
Set the VRAY_PLUGINS_x64 environment variable to the folder
Set the VRAY_OSL_PATH _x64 environment variable to point to the folder vray_builds/my_version/vray/opensl
You can now run the vray command.