Good bye, and thanks for all the fish.

Sometimes it takes us humans quite some time to admit something to ourselves that we don’t want to admit, but eventually there’s no more putting it off.

It is with a heavy heart that I have to announce the end. It’s over. No more new Dolphin Viewer.

With my current RL job and all the travelling that I’m doing there are more exciting things to do with the little time I have to spend on SL and other hobbies, than maintaining a third party viewer… especially when most of the “maintenance” involves fixing stuff that shouldn’t have been broken in the first place.

I have been porting a few of the things that used to be in Dolphin Viewer 3 to Firestorm in the last few weeks, the repository with those changes is here.

I invite the FS team to grab anything from there that they like.

I’ll leave the website and the forum up and running for the time being, but I’m going to close the Dolphin Viewer Resort at Hippotropolis at some point in the future.

I will keep the openSUSE repository at OBS running for my own use, but eventually there will be no more Dolphin Viewer in there… just radegast, Firestorm and the official viewer.

Good bye, and thanks for all the fish!

Finally! The first public beta of the new Dolphin Viewer 3!

It is my great pleasure to announce that I finally have something that I can release into the wild!

I present you with:
The first public beta of the revamped Dolphin Viewer 3!

Right now it’s on par with RLV 2.9.1 (the official viewer around version 3.7.9), just before SLShare came in, but I’ll be working on that now.

Implemented from what we had in the last public Dolphin Viewer 3:

  • Mesh upload
  • Sailor’s mini map Mk.II
  • Worn tab
  • Inventory filters
  • Lots of small fixes

Missing:

  • All build tool improvements
  • Area search
  • Asset blacklist
  • Spam protection

Not going to be implemented:

  • Flickr uploader (see: SLShare)
  • Client AO (see previous blog posts)
  • Media filter (see previous blog posts)

The Windows download is here (and not on the download page, since it is only a beta version).

The Linux version is only available as a rpm package for openSUSE 12.3 and 13.1 right now, just do a “zypper in dolphinviewer3-beta” after adding the repository (instructions are on the download page) to try it out.

Update: the download link for a Linux version of the Dolphin Viewer 3 BETA is here. Of course openSUSE users can simply install it with zypper or from YaST, if the repository has been added.

Dolphins don’t always move all that fast…

Here’s a little bit of a status update on Dolphin Viewer…

I am currently struggling with the changes under the hood that have come into the official source code by means of “Project Interesting” (as many other TPV developers are too).

Besides that, I do have now, on top of what I listed in the previous update:

  • Worn tab
  • Preferences page
  • Machinima floater

And I made a few decisions about some features that the Dolphin Viewer won’t have in the future:

  • No client-side AO (To fully implement this in such a way that the user can have the same advantages that are possible with inworld AO attachments , I’d have to port the scripted Bridge from Firestorm, and that is too big a fish for me to fry. Besides I don’t want to force an attachment like the Bridge on people.)
  • No media filter (Is that one really still needed? Does actually having to confirm the URL for a stream actually help anything?)
  • No Flickr uploader (After all there is “SL Share” coming from the Lab, which includes a Flickr uploader, and posting to Twitter.)

So after getting through all that “Project Interesting” mess, I still need to get the build tools sorted, area search, and the inventory filters … and then we can haz dolphins!

Timeline: “When it’s done.”

 

The Ghost of Dolphins Yet To Come

Just in case you thought it would not happen … from Help/About:

Dolphin Viewer 3 3.5.99 (30446) Jan 25 2014 17:15:48 (RestrainedLove viewer v2.08.05.09 (3.6.11.30354))

So far I have:

  • Latest Viewer-Release+RLV
  • The Sailor’s Mini Map V2
  • Avatar name in the title bar
  • Several bugfixes

What I still need before I can even think of calling it a public beta, let alone release:

  • Proper branding in all places, including icons and names of settings files
  • Preferences pages for all Dolphin Viewer 3 features
  • Flickr uploader
  • Improved build tools
  • Worn tab
  • Advanced inventory search/filter
  • Area search
  • Machinima floater

Estimated release date: no idea yet. Right now I have time to work on it, but that might change in a few weeks.

Just thought you’d like to know…

The next Dolphin Viewer…

I am not exactly happy about what I have to announce here, but this is how it is going to be:

The next Dolphin Viewer is not going to be around any time soon.

I have looked at the mess that my current state of the sources would produce, and I have (finally but far too late) come to this decision:

I will start from scratch.

Right now, taking the current Dolphin Viewer source and just “shoe-horning” in everything new from the official sources produces a terrible mess that does not compile cleanly, let alone works. Besides, the last Dolphin Viewer has a quite large number of features that don’t work any more, due to changes that the Lab has made in the meantime.. temp uploads being one of them.

So, I’ll basically have to reinvent everything. That will of course take some time. I’m guessing “several months” right now, not the least due to the fact that with my new job that I have been doing since April, I’m travelling a lot, so I’m not even home all that much. I’ll see how much I can do on my company laptop.

I will go back to my usual “release early, release often” policy, as soon as I have something that is properly branded as Dolphin Viewer and has more to offer than just the name.  I will plan to release at least a public beta as soon as I have something.

Not exactly totally unrelated: I will eventually stop building / providing openSUSE rpm packages for some of the other third party viewers in my OBS repository. I just can’t seem to get more than 24 hours out of a day.

openSUSE 11.4 has reached its end of life

This notice only affects linux users.

On November 5th, openSUSE 11.4 has reached its end-of-life date.

For linux-based users of the Dolphin Viewer 3, this means that there will be no more rpm packages for openSUSE 11.4 from now on.

If you are using 11.4 and can’t upgrade to 12.1 or 12.2 you will have to use the tarballed linux release.

For obvious reasons this has no effect on users of other linux versions, or Mac OS X or Windows.

Notice to current users of openSUSE 11.3

This post only concerns those of you, who are currently running openSUSE 11.3 linux environment.

On January 20, 2012 Benjamin Brunner of the openSUSE team announced that openSUSE 11.3 has reached its end-of-life. That means that the repositories for openSUSE 11.3 are no longer available and it is no longer a valid build target.

Since openSUSE 12.1 is the version that I am working with, and there is no longer a controlled build environment for the previous version, I will not be providing any new Dolphin Viewer packages for openSUSE 11.3.

So if you have not already, I suggest you consider updating your OS 😉

Dolphin Viewer 3 Windows Installer

I received a single user report that Avira anti-virus found a virus in DolphinViewer3-i686-Windows-3.0.3.20418.exe.

After getting that report, I ran F-Prot, AVG, and ClamAV over the setup file, as well AVG and ClamAV across my whole build system, and they all found nothing.

Avira, on the other hand, has been known “somewhat prone to false positives”.

So there is no virus in there.

UPDATE:

The ‘virus’ that Avira is detecting in the Dolphin Viewer 3 installer is “ADWARE/Adware.Gen“.

Please note this section in the description of this ‘so-called’ virus:

A generic detection routine designed to detect common family characteristics shared in several variants.
This special detection routine was developed in order to detect unknown variants and will be enhanced continuously.

To me that translates to “We don’t really know what is going on there.”

I’ll send the installer to Avira to have it analyzed and properly scanned now.

UPDATE 2:

I’m getting word that other people have similar false positives with Firestorm, and the original Linden Labs viewers right now. It seems that there is something in the original code that upsets virus scanners.

Dolphin Viewer 1 might be dead soon, after all

It seems that my little April Fool’s joke was actually partially prophetic.

After the latest huge changes to the Second Life Viewer 2 source code in http://hg.secondlife.com/viewer-development, the SL2 source now uses autobuild to build binaries.

Without going further into technical details that anyone interested can read up about on the wiki, let me put it this way:

  • Autobuild, and therefore any viewer based on the latest SL2 source code, requires Visual Studio 2010 Express, or better, to build on Windows. That means, as soon as that system gets used for viewer-release, I’ll have to have Visual Studio 2010 on my laptop, or I won’t be able to build Windows packages.
  • The old Snowglobe 1 code, which is what Dolphin Viewer 1 is based upon, requires Visual Studio 2005 or Visual Studio 2008, and does not build with Visual Studio 2010.

So, unless it is actually possible to have both 2005 and 2010 installed on the same machine … one of the two flavors of the Dolphin Viewer is going to go the way of the dodo.

And frankly, every day there are more and more improvements coming into the official Second Life Viewer 2 that I simply do not have the time and skills to backport to Snowglobe code, so I think it will be the Dolphin Viewer 1 that ceases to be developed.

I will of course keep the binaries of whatever the last version will be around until such day that Linden Lab decides to actively block 1.x-based viewers from connecting to their servers.