We bought some computing power so it's useful again for us to use network rendering.
We ran into many issues before getting a successful render and some things we ended up doing I didn't find in the documentation, so I thought I'd share it here for everyone and under your control.
Our projects contain many linked files pointing to both local and shared paths (on a NAS server). So here's our checklist before using CrowdRender (v0.4.4, Blender 3.2):
- On every machine :
- Uncheck : Preferences > Save & Load > Blend Files > Default To : ☐ Relative paths
- Disable Crowd Render (some error messages appear, not sure why but it's not problematic)
- Disable Auto-Save Preferences
- Save Preferences
- Close and reopen Blender
- Enable and start Crowd render only on one instance of Blender per each machine
- On the Client machine :
- Pack and localize all the linked images and datablocks that do not point to common paths (those that are not in the NAS server)
- Make All Paths Absolute, in both the project file and all the linked source files
- Disable Render Region
- Disable Compositing (not sure this one matters yet)
If you started with relative paths you may still have to delete all the linked objects and libraries (in Outliner > Blend file), then Save-Revert the main blend file and re-link objects to ensure all the paths are absolute. That's something to always check before launching Crowd Render if you don't want the pink of doom to jumpscare you.
Feel free to complete and/or correct this checklist.