Since the upgrade to OpenSim, the functions of the former UGAIM servers are now integrated within a unified ROBUST shell, which substantially reduces the overheads in terms of inbound traffic generated between services that communicate over the Web rather than via the local intranet. Only the region server and the ROBUST shell now do so, and lag has been substantially reduced as a result. It has therefore been possible to restore Hypergrid functionality. Unfortunately, the new Hypergrid version 1.5 is incompatible with the earlier version 1.0 for security reasons, i.e. grids running OpenSim versions up until 0.6.9; in addition, star gates such as the one on Annwfn are currently crashing the simulator because of a scripting bug in an LSL function. The star gate should not be used until further notice, as a result.

It is with regret that we have had to disable outgoing hypergrid, although it is still possible to use incoming hypergrid to visit from other grids. This is because in order to enable it, you have to change the OpenSim servers (User, Inventory, Assets, Inventory, Messaging and Region) from the loopback IP address to the server IP address or host name. Because this server uses dynamic DNS and runs on home ADSL, that means that all internal calls between the various OpenSim servers are forced to do so via the internet rather than via their shared internal network, which dramatically decreases performance. This is especially true via ADSL where upload times are considerably slower than download times, unlike the more expensive DSL where they are the same.

Ultimately there was a clear choice between grid performance and outgoing hypergrid access. We hope that in future there may be an opportunity to use a fixed IP address, in which case the local router would be able to direct internal traffic to the external IP address via the internal network rather than rely on an outside IP resolver. This may be more of a financially viable option than DSL, and would provide greater performance gains for the grid in this particular context.

The grid status notification found on the web site, viewer login screen and admin homepage have been automated. If the main simulator is down, or if there is no region registered, the status notification box will show OFFLINE without additional intervention by the administrator. OFFLINE status can still be set manually, as an override, for upgrades and testing purposes, although it is also possible to restrict logins temporarily for that purpose.

Linden Labs Viewer 2.0 no longer breaks compatibility with the OpenSim platform and may cause damage to your inventory, so it should not be used at present. It is likely that the hardworking OpenSim developers will solve this problem during the coming months, providing Linden Labs don't break anything else :-/ This one has been solved.

This includes new viewers based on this codebase, e.g. Kirsten's Viewer 20.

This issue was resolved in the final versions of Emerald and is not an issue in Phoenix.

If you use the current version of the Emerald Viewer (no change in this respect from 1632) to log into Ocean Grid or another OpenSim grid at present, you'll notice that your avatar never rezzes and that you remain a gas cloud. It is optimised for SL rather than OpenSim. Hopefully this will change in a forthcoming version, as it has now been promised that this known bug will be fixed.

(This is also true of viewers based on the official LL Viewer 2.0 codebase, although using these with OpenSim can also cause substantial inventory damage, so they should not be used with OpenSim.)

Another small issue with Emerald is that its makers have chosen to always show their own splash screen rather than that of the grid that you are logging into. While Ocean Grid is not always online at night GMT+0/+1 for logistical reasons, this is a particular issue because you have to go to the website to see the online/offline status. While understandable that Emerald want to highlight their own brand, no other viewer does this, and it undermines the purpose of the splash screen in communicating news related to the specific grid. You'll notice that Emerald's splash screen includes both their own (Modular Systems) and Linden Labs' news, but of course none related to any other grid, despite the grid manager feature allowing logins to other grids.

Emerald also overrides the decision of the user to hide their online status from friends, by showing your settings to them. This undermines privacy and it's odd that this is not considered a mild contravention of LL's rules, as far as SL is concerned.

That said, aside from the temporary rezzing issue, Emerald is an excellent viewer and it's a shame not to be using it.

Various settings have been changed that should allow the servers to communicate with each other far more quickly and efficiently, resulting in fewer errors and reduced lag. The difference should be significant. If there are any problems, please report them at once. Thanks.

This has now been tested by a number of users and all is functioning as expected.