Fost 2.1 & thinkingParticles cache load issue

Discussion and Support related to the Frost particle mesher
MarcoA
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Fost 2.1 & thinkingParticles cache load issue

Postby MarcoA » Sun Apr 22, 2018 10:01 am

Hi,
When using tP directly as source on Frost, after cache and restart, frost make tP to revaluate from scratch tP cache on each frame, even if the cache is on Masterdynamic.

This process is a big pain when rendering on farm with deadline, since in this scenario case, on each frame, the cache will be revaluated from scratch (F000), but with cache on masterdynamic this should not happen, this should jump directly to the frame without evaluated from zero.

On a scene I'm rendering, the process can take 12 to 15 minutes PER frame, due to the cache re-evaluation frame by frame...

Scene File provided (MAx2017):
=> Open Scene, and Cache Masterdynamic
=> Save Scene, then close 3dsMAX (it's important)
=> Open 3dsMAX, load scene.
=>Open tP interface (to see the particle count on the interface title bar):
-> jump to last frame : and check the particle increasing from F0 and evaluated each substep (this should not happen when using Masterdynamic).

the bug is also reported to Cebas.

This issue happen on my side only with Frost.
Attachments
tP6_FrostMX Cache Load Issue_MAx2017.zip
(39.78 KiB) Downloaded 4 times

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Bobo
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Re: Fost 2.1 & thinkingParticles cache load issue

Postby Bobo » Tue Apr 24, 2018 12:54 pm

We had TP 6.5 installed, I loaded your scene, it complained it was made with 6.6, but worked regardless. I repathed and rebuilt the cache, and had no issues rendering any frame in Frost without any pre-rolling.

I looked into updating to TP 6.6, but the Cebas Product Manager only gives me the option to go to 6.7.135.

It is possible that something broke in TP 6.6, but I have no way of testing that right now. I might give 6.7 a try...
Borislav "Bobo" Petrov
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Thinkbox Software Inc.

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Bobo
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Re: Fost 2.1 & thinkingParticles cache load issue

Postby Bobo » Tue Apr 24, 2018 2:00 pm

Updated to TP 6.7, still working as expected. Rendering 0 to 250 every 10th frame took under a second per frame on each frame, no pre-rolling. Putting the time slider at 0 and forcing a render of frame 250 via the Range controls also rendered in a second.
So I am pretty sure the MasterDynamic cache did its job right.
To compare, I deleted the cache files, switched to sim cache mode, and repeated the rendering of frame 250 while on frame 0. It took 6 seconds with prerolling...

Tested in both 3ds Max 2017 and 2018.
Borislav "Bobo" Petrov
Product Specialist
Thinkbox Software Inc.

MarcoA
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Re: Fost 2.1 & thinkingParticles cache load issue

Postby MarcoA » Tue Apr 24, 2018 7:43 pm

Have you restart 3dsMAX, then reload the scene saved with the cache applied ?

If we do just after cache, or reloading the cache, it work just fine, but not if we open scene with the cache already applied, here is the case when I have the issue.

And this happen on all my slaves too, regardless of whether I use tP6.6, 6.7beta, max 2017 or max 2018...

Marc A.

MarcoA
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Re: Fost 2.1 & thinkingParticles cache load issue

Postby MarcoA » Tue Apr 24, 2018 8:35 pm

Bobo wrote:Updated to TP 6.7, still working as expected. Rendering 0 to 250 every 10th frame took under a second per frame on each frame, no pre-rolling. Putting the time slider at 0 and forcing a render of frame 250 via the Range controls also rendered in a second.
So I am pretty sure the MasterDynamic cache did its job right.
To compare, I deleted the cache files, switched to sim cache mode, and repeated the rendering of frame 250 while on frame 0. It took 6 seconds with prerolling...

Tested in both 3ds Max 2017 and 2018.


That's the point, Masterdynamic should NOT do a prerolling.
=> disconnect frost from tP, save, reset scene, reload, jump timeline to F250 => no prerolling
=> reconnect frost, save, reset, reopen scene, jump timeline to F250 => prerolling
=> return to F000, just reload cache, jump to F250 => no prerolling : this one it the normal behaviour of Masterdynamic

When Cache on Masterdynamic, this should jump directly to frame then load the particles from that frame.

Somehow with Frost 2.1 connected to tP, Masterdynamic react like a dynamicSet
This happen only with Frost 2.1, imagine this with 1000+frames and/or hundreds of thousands of particles how time consuming this is, and we can't use a MXS code to hack this on farm because if we manipulate tP interface throw MXS, it will force slaves to grab one tP network-sim licence, then will release it only when the slave have finish the all job).

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Bobo
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Re: Fost 2.1 & thinkingParticles cache load issue

Postby Bobo » Tue Apr 24, 2018 11:00 pm

I saved the scene, closed Max, restarted Max, reloaded the scene, rendered frame 250 via Pickup Frames while the time slider was on 0 - it still rendered from the cache in 1 second without any pre-rolling.

In other words, I cannot seem to be able to replicate the issue in TP 6.7.

You are able to replicate the problem with the simple scene you sent me, right? Could you record a screencam video showing what you are seeing? I would love to watch it and see if there is anything you are doing that I am not doing...
Borislav "Bobo" Petrov
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Thinkbox Software Inc.

MarcoA
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Re: Fost 2.1 & thinkingParticles cache load issue

Postby MarcoA » Wed Apr 25, 2018 5:53 am

https://youtu.be/-l0fZQaDEew

video made from the scene above (Max2018 / tP 6.7.135, but same happen with Max2017 and tP 6.6 (official release)).

00:00 => 01:26 : Open scene, increase particle count (*5) and frame count to 500, to make isssue more obvious, then perform cache.

01:26 => 02:02 : directly after caching tP MasterDyn, jump to frame 500, tP jump directly to Frame 500 on cache load, and frost do the job ->That's what is expected (done 2 times).Save scene and refresh max

02:03 => 04:28 : Reload scene with cache already applied , then jump to last frame and... tP evaluated each substep, even the cache was set on MasterDyn (top left 'totals' in tP interface), due to this, it take much much more time (done 2 times)

04:28 => 04:45 I just reload the cache (stop then play, to refresh the cache load on a fresh state), jump to F500 , instant tP update, like expected (done 2 times, just watching the clocks of video we can see there is something weird on previous one)

04:45 => 05:51 : disconect tP from Frost source, save scene, fresh reload of the scene, jump to F500, instant tP update , like expected (done 3 time, with 2 fresh reload of the scene), to show the normal behaviour of cache on Masterdynamic.

05:51 => 06:01 Reconect tP to Frost source, jump to F500, instant tP update.

06:02 => 07:29: save scene with tP as frost source, fresh reload the scene, with tP as frost source, and cache already set on Masterdyn. Jump timeline to F500 (done 1 times)
tP , again, with frost, revaluate MasterDyn on each substep and take much more time due to this.

CPU I9 7940X @ 3,84Ghz (14c/28th)

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Bobo
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Re: Fost 2.1 & thinkingParticles cache load issue

Postby Bobo » Wed Apr 25, 2018 1:19 pm

Thanks for the video, very helpful!

Unfortunately, I can confirm that following your exact steps I am NOT getting the same behavior. But I am getting a different issue:

After resetting and reloading the saved scene (with or without Frost connected to the TP), I tend to get the TP cache not loading at all from disk when advancing the time line. It only updates when going backwards. So for example moving to the last frame does not update TP at all, going back a frame suddenly loads instantaneously. Since this occurs even without Frost in the scene at all (I deleted it), I suspect it is a glitch in TP, or I am doing something wrong with the cache. I tested both TPS sim cache and TPC frame cache, same result. Also, I am not a TP guru, so it is possible I am missing something...

Without being able to reproduce your exact problem, I am not sure how we can determine whether the problem is in Frost itself, in TP, or somewhere in between. The fact that you can reproduce it on two different 3ds Max versions and I cannot might point at a more complex problem. I have to wonder if the hardware could have an influence, as I am running on only 4c/8th Xeon E5-1620 in an HP Z420. Any chance you could run your test on a smaller machine to compare? How big are your render nodes?
Borislav "Bobo" Petrov
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Thinkbox Software Inc.

MarcoA
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Re: Fost 2.1 & thinkingParticles cache load issue

Postby MarcoA » Wed Apr 25, 2018 1:34 pm

I have test on I9, I7 8 6 4 cores (and diffrent generations, so from 4 to last generation), I7 mobile (3rd generation), and even on a I5 (5th generation), all machines with same 3dsMAX and pluggins installed, all reproduced the issue on both max/tP version, and just because I could test it, even an old core 2 quad :) .

In fact I already have the same issue on frost 2.0.14.

=> problem do not exist when using tP with FFX, Krakatoa (PRT source, but will happen with PRT source, if I connect frost to PRT source, itself connected to tP), Vray instancer, VRay metaballs...It happen just with frost loading tP...

Really weird, because if it was a hardware thing, this should not happen on all machines on my side...

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Bobo
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Re: Fost 2.1 & thinkingParticles cache load issue

Postby Bobo » Wed Apr 25, 2018 1:49 pm

Ok, so it is probably not hardware-related. I have to wonder why my machine is not experiencing it.
I will have to test on some other machines, too :) Unfortunately, this means I have to install TP on them first.

I am also going to assume this is an actual issue even without being able to reproduce it myself, and will pass it on to the Frost developer to see if he can reproduce it and figure out why it is happening...
Borislav "Bobo" Petrov
Product Specialist
Thinkbox Software Inc.


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