Use the Network Job
Assignment dialog to name rendering jobs, specify the computers
that will participate in the rendering, and submit jobs to the rendering
You can submit as many
jobs as you like in a single session. Open each file you want to
render and submit it following the standard procedure. Each job
is placed behind the last one submitted. If you submit a job in which
the frame output name is the same as another job in the queue, a warning
dialog asks you if you want to overwrite the output frames from
the other job.
You can divide the work
of rendering a single image among any number of rendering servers.
This is particularly useful when rendering a single, extremely high-resolution
image intended for print. To use this feature, turn on the
Scan Lines option.
To use the Network Job Assignment dialog:
The Network Job Assignment
dialog is accessible when you turn on the Net Render toggle. The
Net Render toggle can be accessed from three different dialogs used
- Rendering menu Render Setup Render Setup dialog Render Output group
- Rendering menu Render To Texture Render Setup dialog Render Settings group
- Video Post dialog Execute Sequence Execute Video Post dialog Output group
- In the
Render Setup dialog Render
Output group, click the ellipsis button and then specify an output
file name and path using
Naming Convention (UNC). The easiest way
to specify a UNC path is to start with Save In My Network Places.
- Turn on Net Render.
- Click the Render button.
The Network Job Assignment dialog appears.
- On the Network Job Assignment dialog,
specify a job name.
By default, this is the
file name of the current scene. Click the plus (+) button next to
the Job Name field to increment the job name. Unlike the plus button
in the file dialogs, this button does not automatically launch the
Note3ds Max does not let you submit multiple
jobs with the same name.
- Determine whether to find the Manager
automatically or manually. By default, 3ds Max searches automatically
for the Manager using a network mask that you specify in the dialog.
Alternatively, turn on Manual Search and enter the name or IP address
of the computer running the Manager program.
- Click Connect to continue.
You see a listing of all servers available for
network rendering. Each server is marked with a colored icon to
denote its current status:
Running and not rendering
Rendering another job. You
can assign jobs to busy servers, and the jobs will be rendered in
the order received.
Failed. Try rebooting
the server or see
more information on failed servers.
Absent. Verify that the Server
is currently running and that it has not been "Disallowed" in the
Week Schedule. See “Scheduling the Availability of a Render Node Using
the Backburner Monitor” in the Autodesk Backburner User’s Reference.
If a rendering Server
is running on a workstation that also has an interactive session of 3ds Max,
you can still select that machine for rendering. A second copy of 3ds Max is
launched to execute the network render.
You can view statistics
of a particular Server by right-clicking its name and choosing Properties.
- Determine whether you will use the selected
server, all servers, or a group of servers.
- Click Submit to send the job to the rendering queue.
- Job Name
Provides a field for
you to name the job (mandatory). The + button beside the field adds
incremental numbering (Job01, Job02, and so on).
Note3ds Max does not
let you submit multiple jobs with the same name.
Enter an optional description
of the job.
Enter Subnet Mask/Enter
Manager Name or IP Address group
- Enter Manager Name or IP Address
When Automatic Search is
turned off, enter the name of the
Manager machine or its IP address.
- Enter Subnet Mask
When Automatic Search is
on, enter a subnet mask for automatic search. For information on
using subnet masks, see
Connects to the network Manager. 3ds Max preserves
the connection as a global setting so that you need to change it
only when you want to specify an alternative Manager. If connected
to the network manager, click Disconnect to disconnect from the
current manager so you can choose a different manager.
- Automatic Search
Determines whether 3ds Max connects
to a specific manager or searches for one using a subnet mask when
you click Connect. When off, 3ds Max attempts to connect to the
manager you specify in this group. When on, it searches the network
for a manager using the specified subnet mask.
Updates the Server and Job
By default, all servers
are used for the job. When the Options group Use All Servers check box is turned off,
you can choose one or more servers to render the job. If rendering
to a multiple-frame file format, such as an AVI or MOV file, you
can choose only one server.
Specifies a priority ranking
for the job. The lower this setting, the higher the job priority.
For example, consider
a job with priority 1 (Job B) that is submitted to a network manager
that's already rendering a job with priority 2 (Job A). Because
Job B has a higher priority, Job A will be suspended and Job B rendered.
When Job B is finished, 3ds Max will resume rendering Job A.
If two or more jobs have
the same priority, they're executed in order of submission.
Sends the job to the
head of the queue, preempting the existing jobs. If a server is
currently rendering and a critical job is sent to the queue, the
server will stop rendering its current job and begin rendering the
new, critical job. When finished with the critical job, the server
returns to the next job it has been assigned in the queue.
Dependencies dialog, which you can use
to specify existing jobs that must finish before the current job
- Enabled Notifications
Lets 3ds Max send
rendering-related messages via email. When this is on, its Define button
becomes available. For information, see the
Opens the Notifications dialog,
which lets you set notifications parameters.
- Split Scan Lines
Lets you subdivide the rendering
of each frame among the rendering servers. This is useful when rendering
a single, extremely high-resolution image intended for printing.
For information, see the
Setup dialog topic.
When Split Scan Lines
is on, its Define button becomes available.
NoteThis feature does
not support Render Elements. Also, it's unavailable when rendering
to textures with projection mapping enabled and Sub-Object Levels on.
Opens the Strips Setup dialog,
which lets you set parameters for the Split Scan Lines option.
- Ignore Scene Path
When off, the server attempts
to copy the scene file from the manager to the server. If the manager
is running on Windows 2000 Professional, only 10 servers will copy
the file from the manager; any machines over the limit 10 will use
TCP/IP to retrieve the file. When turned on, the servers get the
file via TCP/IP only. Default=off.
- Rendered Frame Window
During rendering, displays
the Rendered Frame Window on all servers running serverapp.exe (not serversvc.exe). Default=on.
- Include Maps
Archives the scene, with all
of its maps, any inserted Xrefs and their maps, into a proprietary-format
compressed file. The compressed file is sent to each Server, where it
is uncompressed into a temporary directory named serverjob in the \network subdirectory
of 3ds Max and rendered. Default=off.
Use this feature if you
have access only to Servers that exist over the Internet or if you have
a slow network setup. It is not meant for heavy production use.
However, if you don't use it, you must first ensure that all network
servers have access to all map and Xref paths referred to in the
- Initially Suspended
Adds the named job to the
queue in an inactive state. The job is not started until you activate
it manually from the Backburner Monitor. See “Monitoring and Managing
Jobs” in the Autodesk Backburner User’s Guide.
Server Usage Group
You choose between using
all available servers, all servers in a group, or selected servers.
See “Configuring Server Groups” in the Autodesk Backburner User’s
Guide for an explanation of how to set up server groups.
In a 3ds Max setup it can be useful to set up servers in groups.
For example, during busy times you can assign high priority jobs
to a group of high performance servers.
- Use Selected
Uses only the servers
that you have highlighted in the Server list.
- Use Group
Uses all of the servers
in a group.
TipNote that the servers
are assigned to a group in the Autodesk Backburner monitor.
- Group drop-down list
Choose the group of servers
that you want to use for your render.
- Use All Servers
Uses all Servers in the active
Server group for rendering the job. Available only after you submit
a multi-frame rendering job.
Path File Group
- Use Alternate Path File
Allows you to specify
an alternate path file in the MXP format that rendering servers
can use to find bitmaps that are not found on the primary map paths.
When on, you can manually enter the path and file name in the field
below the check box, or click the ellipsis button and browse to
the MXP file.
Displays text messages
describing the current status of the job assignment.
The Server list, located
on the upper-right side of the Network Job Assignment dialog, displays
rendering servers registered with the
network manager after you connect to the manager. There are two
types of tabs in the Server list:
- All ServersLists
all of the available servers that can be used for your render. When
this tab and Use All Servers are enabled, all servers will be used
to render the job.
- [group name]Lists
all of the servers assigned to a group. When this tab and Use Group
are enabled, all servers listed on the tab will be used to render
NoteIf a server is unavailable
it will be skipped and the next available server will be used.
If more groups are available
than can fit in the space above the list, arrow buttons for scrolling
the group list horizontally appear above the list's top-right corner.
Click these arrow buttons to scroll the list left or right to view
additional group tabs.
By default, each Server
is marked with a colored status icon:
and not rendering any jobs.
another job. You can assign jobs to busy Servers, and the jobs will
be rendered in the order received.
Try rebooting the Server or see
more information on failed Servers.
Verify that the network Server is currently running and that it
has not been "Disallowed" in the Backburner Monitor. See “Launching
the Backburner Monitor” in the Autodesk Backburner User’s
Guide for information on viewing activities in the monitor.
NoteYou can change the
height of the server list window relative to the job list window
below it by dragging the partition vertically.
Server list right-click
By default, servers are
listed by name only. To see more information about a server, right-click
its name in the list. A menu appears with these options:
Displays the Server Properties
dialog, which shows aspects of the server hardware and operating
system, including memory and disk space.
- All Server Details
This toggle, when on, displays
all details about each server to the right of its name. When off,
restores the last saved set of partial server details unless the
last saved set was All Server Details, in which case it restores the
default set: name only. See the following item for the list of available
NoteYou can see more
details by scrolling the list with the horizontal scroll bar at
the bottom, or by widening the dialog by dragging its right side
with the mouse.
- Partial Server Details
Opens the Set Server Property
Tabs dialog, which lets you specify which details are shown in the
Server list. The dialog provides check boxes for turning on and off
the display of these details:
- Status: See
Server list for
- Number of CPUs
- Total Physical Memory - in bytes
- Operating System
- Work Disk Space - in megabytes
- Historical Performance Index - see note
- Handle - a hexadecimal identification
number for the machine
- User - current user name
NoteThe Historical Performance
Index value, listed under the Perf. Index heading in the Server
list window, offers information on the relative speed of the listed
servers. The fastest machine is rated at 1.0, while the other servers
are rated as fractions of the fastest. A machine whose average is
twice as long would receive a 0.5 index. Each machine is rated by
measuring the time it takes to complete each frame, and the accumulated
time is divided by the number of frames, resulting in the average
time per frame, in seconds.
Several factors can affect
a machine's performance. CPU power isn't necessarily a concern when
large file transfers are involved. For example, if a certain job
uses several map files from a centralized server, the performance of
the network throughput plays a much larger part than CPU performance,
as most machines will spend the majority of the time reading maps.
On the other hand, if the machine has all maps locally it will have
a huge advantage (local access versus network access) regardless
of which CPU it is using. The performance index provides you with
information regarding your servers' rendering performance to help
analyze your network rendering setup and better distribute the workload.
The job list, located
on the lower-right side of the Network Job Assignment dialog, displays
all jobs submitted to the network manager. Also shown are each job's
priority, status, and output file path.
To change job settings
and manage jobs, use the Backburner Monitor. See “Modifying Job
Settings” and “Monitoring and Managing Jobs” in the Autodesk
Backburner User’s Guide.
Settings dialog, where you can make settings
for Per-Job Timeouts, TCP port number, Pre-Render MAXScripts and
Click Submit to exit
this dialog and send the current job to the Network Manager, which
places it in the queue for rendering.
When you submit a rendering
job, if the output file name to be used by the job is the same as
that used by an existing job, you're asked if you want to overwrite
the existing file(s). Also, if the name of the submitted job replicates
one already in the rendering queue, an alert notifies you; click
OK, change the job name, and submit it again.
NoteSubmitting a job
creates a folder for the job on the manager machine in the \Program Files\Autodesk\Backburner\Network\jobs\ folder.
In that folder is a compressed file with a .maz extension containing
the scene file. You can extract the scene from the command prompt
using the maxunzip.exe program, found in
the 3ds Max program directory. For example, to extract a file named testfile.maz, assuming 3ds Max is
installed in a folder named \Autodesk 3ds Max 2011\,
open the command prompt, navigate to the \Program Files\Autodesk\Backburner\Network\jobs folder,
and enter this: “\Program Files\Autodesk\Autodesk 3ds Max 2011\maxunzip”
testfile.maz. You must specify the .maz file-name
extension; otherwise you'll get an error message.
Discards changes and exits
- Job Dependencies Dialog
This dialog lets you
specify jobs that shouldn't begin rendering until other jobs finish.
Use the two lists and the Add and Remove buttons to build a list
of jobs that must finish rendering before the current job can start.
- Notifications Dialog
This dialog lets a network
rendering job send notifications via email. Such notifications can
be useful when you launch a lengthy render, such as an animation,
and don't care to spend all your time near the network manager system.
- Strips Setup Dialog
The Strips Setup dialog
lets you specify how to split up the rendering of a single, large
image among several different servers on the network. 3ds Max automatically
subdivides the rendering based on settings you provide, and then
fits the pieces together into the final image.
- Advanced Settings Dialog
The Advanced Settings
dialog lets you set job timeouts on a per-job basis, assign the
TCP port number, specify pre-render scripts and affect job handling
and archive settings.