CGRU render farm manager gets improved Blender plugin

CGRU render farm manager gets improved Blender plugin

Somewhat unnoticed, an update of free CGRU render farm solution was released with a completely rewritten addon for Blender.

The patch was provided by Paul Geraskin who works for Playkot, a Saint-Petersburg (Russia) based game development company, where he exclusively uses free software. It was then further improved by Sylvain Maziere.

The original plugin by Timur Hairulin was loosely modeled after an existing similar addon. It added Afanasy, the job manager in CGRU, to the list of available render engines. This got quite a few people confused regarding how the plugin works and what it actually does (Timur isn't exactly a regular Blender user, after all). The new addon moves everything to the Object Mode:

CGRU tools in Blender

The rewritten Blender addon got several new features:

  • packing all linked objects and groups from other .blend files;
  • changing all textures' paths to relative;
  • packing all textures into the .blend file.

On top of that, the new behavior is to save a temporary file and apply all jobs to it, then reopen the original file after exporting to CGRU.

Additionally, more changes were applied to various parts of CGRU, e.g. you can now create a Nuke scene in a shot using a template with all defaults that you need. See the changes log for more details.

Another update is expected soon, with improvements such as newly added editing of custom data for job and user in AfWatch.

Apart from Blender and Nuke, CGRU also supports After Effects, Cinema 4D, Houdini, 3ds Max, Maya, and XSI. Builds are available for Windows and a variety of Linux distributions.

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  1. Looks like it has potential. If it improves on all parts of the old plugin as it promises…