Setting up even a small render farm can require a substantial amount of time. As a first step, verify that your proposed network meets the basic requirements. You should also be acquainted with the software required to render over the network.
Rendering servers should meet the minimum requirements for running 3ds Max Design. To improve rendering performance, use machines with faster processors, additional memory, and more swap space. A rendering server does not require a monitor while rendering, although it's helpful to have one for setup. Display adapters and accelerators make no difference in rendering performance.
For operating system requirements, see “System Requirements” in the Autodesk Backburner Installation Guide. You must also be connected over a network with TCP/IP protocol properly installed. See Instructions for .
One authorized copy of 3ds Max Design is the minimum requirement. With this one copy, you can set up 3ds Max Design on multiple machines for the purpose of network rendering. Later topics provide explicit details for doing a custom setup on each machine. During this setup, programs required to render over a network are installed and registered.
3ds Max Design is used to launch job assignments. You submit a network rendering job from the Render Setup, Render to Texture, or Execute Video Post dialog. The application is also used by the rendering servers to render the job.
The manager program manages communication with the rendering servers during a network rendering job. This can be set up on any machine in the network. However, if large files are to be submitted and many rendering servers are going to be used, a fast computer with a large amount of disk space is the best choice. In almost all network-rendering scenarios, you only have a single manager running on the entire network.
The server program sends its local IP address to the Manager program, which in turn registers the Server so it will be available for network rendering a job assignment. When the server receives a job from the network manager, it launches a local copy of 3ds Max Design to perform the rendering. The server then sends the completed frame to a target directory and begins rendering the next frame sent to it by the manager. The server shuts down the 3dsmax.exe3dsviz.exe process when it is no longer needed.
This standalone program, named Queue Monitor, provides a Windows interface that lets you monitor and schedule network rendering. Since the Queue Monitor is a standalone program, you can start it at any time from any computer in your network. The only requirement is that you establish a TCP/IP connection with the computer running the manager.