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RebusFarm 2.0 revealed


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Date Added: 14th November 2014

RebusFarm 2.0 is out now, making the render farm experience even smoother than ever before. Discover how to get up and rendering within a matter of minutes!


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One of the biggest names in cloud rendering has just got a lot better. RebusFarm has already established itself as a go-to company if you need renders completed quickly and accurately, and with version 2.0 it's improved on perfection. There are a bunch of little tweaks here and there, all designed to provide a seamless experience and to get you up and running in a matter of minutes.

As well as implementing RebusDrop, ControlCenter and a new version of Farminizer the entire process is encrypted with Secure Sockets Layer (SSL), which means that those vital spoiler frames from the upcoming Star Wars movie can't be leaked onto the internet by a mischievous hacker. Here we'll guide you through RebusFarm's awesome additions, and show you how to make the most of them.

What is RebusDrop?

RebusDrop sits right of the start of your project's journey from sitting on your computer to a full-blown render. This small but powerful program lives in the system tray of Windows and Linux computers, or in the menu bar of Macs, and gives a quick overview of the upload, download and rendering status of any projects. It also provides alerts when tasks are complete. It's a simple system which isn't too intrusive, but at the same time it's a great way to keep a tabs on what's happening and when.

How does the ControlCenter work?

ControlCenter replaces Rebus Farm's Manager software. Unlike its predecessor it's entirely accessed from your web browser via www.rebusfarm.net. This means that you don't have to worry about time-consuming update installation or compatibility issues. It's a "live” web application, a little like webmail or internet chat, so you don't have to constantly refresh the page and you'll see any changes immediately.

On top of the massive advantages of being web-based, ControlCenter brings lots of useful tweaks and new features. You can manage multiple projects at once, even if you've got other data uploading or downloading. It's far faster than the manager, and you've got the ability to pause projects or cancel them altogether at the touch of a button.

You can also use ControlCenter to alter the priority of each individual project, so if a VFX supervisor is breathing down the back of your neck for that amazing sequence you can immediately jump to a Premium position in the queue, while that cool piece of art you're working on for your personal portfolio can take a back seat with the Economy tariff. Costs are calculated on the fly, too, so you can work out exactly how much to charge the boss.

Thanks to its web-based nature you're no longer tethered to your computer while projects are processed. You can actually go wherever you want - to the cafe for a coffee, or the pub for a pint. As long as you've got a smartphone or tablet and internet access you can manage your tasks and see what's happening as if you were connected directly to the server.

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How will the Farminizer change my life?

ControlCenter isn't the only part of RebusFarm to go live - Farminizer, the plug-in for 3ds Max, Maya and CINEMA 4D (among others) will now upload files in the background. This means that while you're working on a project most of its data will be ready to go on RebusFarm's servers. It's a seamless experience, and - crucially - it doesn't affect the user's computer in terms of speed at all.

How to render at RebusFarm - a quick guide!

In version 2.0, RebusFarm maintains the simplicity of use it's become famous for. To begin you'll need to visit www.rebusfarm.net and choose "Let's go,” select Mac if you're not using a PC followed by "Download Farminizer.” This package includes both the Farminizer plugin for all applicable 3D software, and RebusDrop for your PC or Mac.

With the software installed it's simply a question of loading up the scene you wish to render in your 3D software and click the Render with Rebusfarm icon. A "Smartcheck” option here will run through your project and highlight any errors which need to be fixed before uploading, providing a link to a site which will guide you through how to correct these. Smartcheck also gives warnings, which give advice on things you can do to prepare your scene so it renders
more quickly.

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Go to Rendering > Render with REBUSfarm...

"Live upload” means that Farminizer will upload projects in the background, as discussed earlier. "Autostart Render” does exactly what it suggests, immediately beginning the render when your project is uploaded. RebusFarm recommends uploading a few test frames before sending a whole animation, too, because the process can run differently on RebusFarm's hardware.

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Upload a few test frames before sending a whole animation to make sure everything is set up correctly

Of course, before you begin the render process you can work out how much it's going to be with the CostCalculator. In the Farminizer you'll find a "Calculate Costs” button, or you can simply click on "Let's Go” followed by "Calculate Costs” on www.rebusfarm.net - the latter being handy if you want to give a client a breakdown of a project's costs while you're in their offices.

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With the CostCalculator you can work out how much your project will cost to render before you start

The caveat here is that you'll need to know the speed and power of your computer, but RebusFarm's CostCalculator is based on your CINEBENCH score, which you can figure out with Cinebench's free industry-standard benchmark software. Most popular processor's performance can be worked out by CostCalculator automatically, but on the rare occurrence that your CPU isn't in RebusFarm's database you can upload your score manually.

Once your project is in the upload process you can check its progress by right-clicking on RebusDrop, which will let you know which jobs are finished, running, queued or paused. You can use this menu to import Maxwell or Indigo jobs, and you'll see processes and costs in the system tray.

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At any time you can check the status of a rendering job from the system tray

Now that your project is in the process of being produced in the cloud you can check on its status from afar with RebusFarm's ControlCenter. Simply go to www.rebusfarm.net, click "Log in”, then choose "MyRebus” and "ControlCenter.” Here you'll see all your render jobs, and you can drill down to the status of irradiance and light cache calculations if you're using them.

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Simply login to MyRebus to see all your render jobs and review how you're using your calculations

On top you can start, pause and cancel jobs, see how many frames have been processed, and the priority of the project. It's worth noting that upping the priority only shifts the project up the queue, and doesn't affect its render time as a whole. Here you can also see how many nodes are currently working extra hard on your job.

In the words of happy customers

RebusFarm boasts a hugely active online community that is more than willing to sing its praises. "{RebusFarm] saved my ass big time,” says RebusFarm user Francois Maree. "It's the first time I've ever used an online rendering service. I always thought of it as being extremely expensive, even for people like me living in South Africa. Boy was I wrong!

"A client contacted me to do a job for him - 4 minutes of 3D animation with lots of metal and realistic HDR lighting. Even on 2 pretty decent PCs, it would have taken about 28 days to render it all! After looking at [RebusFarm] and using the CostCalculator, I found out it would cost me not too much - and it would take less than an hour to render it all!

"I love (the) Farminizer software, especially for the Smart Check it can do and tell me what I need to keep in mind and be aware of before submitting my job for rendering. And one of the other great things was the fact that I could pay half upfront, have ALL my jobs finish rendering, and tell me how much I still owe before I can download all my render results. It's such a brilliant concept.”

"My client had made last-minute changes on a Friday evening with a Monday deadline, leaving me precious little time to render and adjust...Meeting the image size and resolution would be a challenge, but still possible by Sunday, leaving me time to work on post. After 14 hours of rendering, 89-percent complete, I went to make a cup of tea before bed; I filled and switched on my kettle - and I noticed at that moment my kettle had knocked out my electricity circuit, which included my render farm! I rebooted and went to re-render but at slightly lower settings. Unfortunately by Monday morning it had not finished and my mind turned to my backup option: Rebus Renderfarm! I sent the same job from within 3ds Max in just a few minutes and had it back before my client was at their desk 2 hours later. The render manager had all the information I needed so I was never left feeling I was detached from the progress, and also I used the mobile app to monitor while away from my computer...Due to the unique set of circumstances Rebus Renderfarm has gone from my backup to my main high-end render solution, and I got a new kettle to boot!"

Subnautica is an indie game on Steam that was rendered using RebusFarm. Check out the trailer:


9:30 am is a short film by the Jellyfish Collective, awarded Best Animated Short Film at the 12th Morelia International Film Festival (FICM). Watch the teaser:



A Day on the Farm

The new additions in RebusFarm 2.0 make it easier to use, more secure, smoother and faster. Thanks to its pricing structure it's extremely economical, too, whether you're rendering a single frame or an entire movie. Clever systems, such as background uploads and automatic rendering, mean that the process of rendering requires very little input and is extremely efficient.

RebusFarm is sure to keep updating its software, too, and with ControlCenter you can be almost guaranteed that you'll be running the latest version. With so many improvements, we can but look forward to what a version 3.0 will have in store!

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Related links:

Learn more about RebusFarm 2.0
Try the CostCalculator to see if RebusFarm works for you
Follow RebusFarm on Facebook
 
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