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Author Topic: Re: FP is getting FAR Too Slow  (Read 482 times)

TD1008

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Re: FP is getting FAR Too Slow
« on: August 03, 2023, 02:27:09 AM »
iToo, I think you need to reassess and start listening to the customers.  10 mins to open a scene is becoming normal. There are 100s of posts throughout these forums from users experiencing extremely long scene load times (and these are only the people actually reporting it, I'm sure there are 100s more that have just given up and moved on to other scatter solutions).  2200 people have viewed this post which is about 10 times more than the usual forum post.  This paints a pretty clear picture.
 
I'm also having many issues with the plugin. One thing, there's a rescale dialogue box issue when 3ds max units are set to Meters. You have to click "OK" on a rescale dialogue box for every single forest pack proxy in the scene. This is absurd and completely unacceptable. Once you battle past this issue, there seems to be a new issue with many of my scenes now where the plugin completely freezes 3ds max almost to a halt upon opening the scene. There's a 1-2 minute delay on mouse clicks within 3ds max, I have to click the forest lister, hide all forest objects, then unhide them then 3ds max slowly comes back to life.  This is rubbish sorry.. Forest Pack is slowly becoming an unusable liability in my day to day work. Along with at least 10 others in my organisation.

Please note, and read this carefully, prior to this new issue showing up, I have not changed my workflow, updated any assets (proxies, libraries etc, added any new plugins or scripts or changed my version of 3ds max. This issue seemingly came out of nowhere over the last 6 months and it's crippling my productivity.

Either please report you are aware of the problem and working on addressing it or reduce you subscription prices until you have a reliable production ready piece of software. In the industry, Forest Pack is notoriously an unreliable plugin that has become a liability in many studios workflow.

« Last Edit: August 03, 2023, 02:30:35 AM by TD1008 »

RealViz

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Re: Re: FP is getting FAR Too Slow
« Reply #1 on: August 03, 2023, 08:33:08 AM »
iToo, I think you need to reassess and start listening to the customers.  10 mins to open a scene is becoming normal. There are 100s of posts throughout these forums from users experiencing extremely long scene load times (and these are only the people actually reporting it, I'm sure there are 100s more that have just given up and moved on to other scatter solutions).  2200 people have viewed this post which is about 10 times more than the usual forum post.  This paints a pretty clear picture.
 
I'm also having many issues with the plugin. One thing, there's a rescale dialogue box issue when 3ds max units are set to Meters. You have to click "OK" on a rescale dialogue box for every single forest pack proxy in the scene. This is absurd and completely unacceptable. Once you battle past this issue, there seems to be a new issue with many of my scenes now where the plugin completely freezes 3ds max almost to a halt upon opening the scene. There's a 1-2 minute delay on mouse clicks within 3ds max, I have to click the forest lister, hide all forest objects, then unhide them then 3ds max slowly comes back to life.  This is rubbish sorry.. Forest Pack is slowly becoming an unusable liability in my day to day work. Along with at least 10 others in my organisation.

Please note, and read this carefully, prior to this new issue showing up, I have not changed my workflow, updated any assets (proxies, libraries etc, added any new plugins or scripts or changed my version of 3ds max. This issue seemingly came out of nowhere over the last 6 months and it's crippling my productivity.

Either please report you are aware of the problem and working on addressing it or reduce you subscription prices until you have a reliable production ready piece of software. In the industry, Forest Pack is notoriously an unreliable plugin that has become a liability in many studios workflow.
Perhaps it would be advisable to find fault with yourself first, rather than throwing dirt on iToo. I think FP is pretty robust and I've never had a problem with it. If there was a speed problem, it was always my fault when I set the FP wrong. It happened in the early days when I was not that experienced with FP. This is usually due to a poorly set distribution + collisions, etc.
I definitely recommend that you first find out which FP is causing it and look for the error in it. You can't just throw the blame on iToo when you haven't verified that it's not your fault. As I already wrote, there is almost never a problem with FP (of course there are versions with minor errors, but it was never about speed).

iToo

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Re: Re: FP is getting FAR Too Slow
« Reply #2 on: August 03, 2023, 10:32:53 AM »
iToo, I think you need to reassess and start listening to the customers.  10 mins to open a scene is becoming normal. There are 100s of posts throughout these forums from users experiencing extremely long scene load times (and these are only the people actually reporting it, I'm sure there are 100s more that have just given up and moved on to other scatter solutions).  2200 people have viewed this post which is about 10 times more than the usual forum post.  This paints a pretty clear picture.

First of all, this thread was created in 2021. You can see the date in the first post. Since then, other users replied to it. But it's normal than older posts have more views than recent ones.
We have released many Forest updates since then, and probably the problem reported originally has not relation with your issue.

Quote
I'm also having many issues with the plugin. One thing, there's a rescale dialogue box issue when 3ds max units are set to Meters. You have to click "OK" on a rescale dialogue box for every single forest pack proxy in the scene. This is absurd and completely unacceptable.

I agree. That's very annoying. This rescale dialog is triggered by 3DS Max, when loading assets from an external file, which uses different units than main scene. It happens both with Merge and XRef modes.
In our case, it may be triggered when loading assets from the Library (we use XRefs for that). But unfortunately there is not any option in Max to disable it. We also asked to Autodesk about that.

If that happens for you in other cases than using the Library Browser, please give us more details.

Quote
Once you battle past this issue, there seems to be a new issue with many of my scenes now where the plugin completely freezes 3ds max almost to a halt upon opening the scene. There's a 1-2 minute delay on mouse clicks within 3ds max, I have to click the forest lister, hide all forest objects, then unhide them then 3ds max slowly comes back to life.  This is rubbish sorry.. Forest Pack is slowly becoming an unusable liability in my day to day work. Along with at least 10 others in my organisation.

Please note, and read this carefully, prior to this new issue showing up, I have not changed my workflow, updated any assets (proxies, libraries etc, added any new plugins or scripts or changed my version of 3ds max. This issue seemingly came out of nowhere over the last 6 months and it's crippling my productivity.

Either please report you are aware of the problem and working on addressing it or reduce you subscription prices until you have a reliable production ready piece of software. In the industry, Forest Pack is notoriously an unreliable plugin that has become a liability in many studios workflow.

No. We are not aware of this problem, and we cannot reproduce it here.
You're assuming there is a general problem with Forest, and all users are suffering it. But that is not the case. Most of our users work with the plugin without problems.

As said in previous posts, if you send us your scene, we'll be more than happy to test it here, and compare results.

You also mentioned this problem came out of nowhere over the last 6 months:

Have you updated Forest Pack in the last 6 months ? Have you tried using an older Forest version ?
If problem is caused by a recent Forest update, it should be solved installing a previous version. If not, the cause may be elsewhere.

Regards,

Carlos Quintero
iToo Software

TD1008

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Re: Re: FP is getting FAR Too Slow
« Reply #3 on: August 04, 2023, 03:24:28 AM »
Thanks for your reply Carlos. The issue I have is that I consider the amount of revenue itoo receive annually from customer subscriptions and the company still requires it's customers to troubleshoot fundamental operational issues with the software.
You state you're aware of the rescale dialogue popup issue upon opening scenes, and say there is no option in Max to disable it. Somebody out there has made a script specifically to fix this issue in forest pack. The script is called Silentium. Now this is just one example.  Somebody had to create that tool for your software, not your R&D team that receives millions in annual revenue to solve these very basic issues for it's dedicated paying customers.

It's astonishing how patient your customer base is with spending their time during large projects, on top of their day jobs, assisting you with troubleshooting and creating workaround script to fix basic issues with your software.
I understand there are many working environment variables to test and troubleshoot, but considering the amount you receive in subscription revenue, there is no question that your R&D team should be working harder to endlessly test the software in these various hardware and software environmental variables to make sure the software is as stable as it can be for it's customers.

Unreal Engine is a good example of how a dedicated software development team should be treating it's customers and the software package it releases to the world. They do not have a hands behind head approach and wait for people to send them archived scenes, they proactively weed out and fix issues with the software with their development team and leave the customers alone to create.

RealViz

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Re: Re: FP is getting FAR Too Slow
« Reply #4 on: August 04, 2023, 07:02:45 AM »
Thanks for your reply Carlos. The issue I have is that I consider the amount of revenue itoo receive annually from customer subscriptions and the company still requires it's customers to troubleshoot fundamental operational issues with the software.
You state you're aware of the rescale dialogue popup issue upon opening scenes, and say there is no option in Max to disable it. Somebody out there has made a script specifically to fix this issue in forest pack. The script is called Silentium. Now this is just one example.  Somebody had to create that tool for your software, not your R&D team that receives millions in annual revenue to solve these very basic issues for it's dedicated paying customers.

It's astonishing how patient your customer base is with spending their time during large projects, on top of their day jobs, assisting you with troubleshooting and creating workaround script to fix basic issues with your software.
I understand there are many working environment variables to test and troubleshoot, but considering the amount you receive in subscription revenue, there is no question that your R&D team should be working harder to endlessly test the software in these various hardware and software environmental variables to make sure the software is as stable as it can be for it's customers.

Unreal Engine is a good example of how a dedicated software development team should be treating it's customers and the software package it releases to the world. They do not have a hands behind head approach and wait for people to send them archived scenes, they proactively weed out and fix issues with the software with their development team and leave the customers alone to create.
Unfortunately, you're wrong about Silentium. Respectively it's not a fault of iToo, but a feature of 3dsmax. Silentium does address the fact that 3dsmax doesn't ask you the same thing so many times, but it's not always correct. Plus if you have the workflow set up correctly you have all assets and scenes in the same units = no problem. Yes there are then exceptions where the source scene is in meters instead of cm due to size, but that is far less common.

You still haven't said what FP is causing you problems, you are just throwing dirt on iToo for being incompetent. Which I think and with experience from other companies they certainly aren't. Plus, their support actually solves things, even on the basis of a single query. How can iToo solve your problem if you don't provide anything tangible and just make accusations?

TD1008

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Re: Re: FP is getting FAR Too Slow
« Reply #5 on: August 07, 2023, 03:22:37 AM »
"throwing dirt" is not what I'm doing. I have been a dedicated and frustrated paying customer for nearly 2 decades that acquired their frustration from the years of persistent issues experienced with the use of your plugin.  I'm raising long standing issues with the plugin of which I've been very patient with.  I'm saying what far too few people need to say to get your software package up to scratch and make it worth the annual subscription fee.

A respectable software company doesn't sit around blaming the users and software package they are integrating into for not supporting their plugins method of programming. The plugin creator generally works out how to seamlessly integrate into the software package they are designing for. Now you're also criticising someone that spent time scripting a workaround solution to an issue that arises from the use of your plugin.

In regards to the units issue, as you know, different countries and industries across the world use different units. You say "if you have the workflow setup correctly", are you suggesting that there are "correct" and incorrect units to use with the Forest Pack plugin? As offering one type of units is not a universal solution, would it not make the world of sense to prompt the installer of the software and ask them which units they are using and the plugins adjusts to suit like most design orientated software packages would do? Not use sweeping statement like use the "correct workflow". Are you suggesting the solution is that I convert the units of all assets I own and go against the standard units my studio is using in order to use your plugin "correctly"?

« Last Edit: August 07, 2023, 03:28:19 AM by TD1008 »

RealViz

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Re: Re: FP is getting FAR Too Slow
« Reply #6 on: August 07, 2023, 08:00:58 AM »
I just want to start by pointing out I'm not an iToo developer. I'm just an ordinary paying customer.

Now I still don't understand what it is about FP/iToo that bothers you. You wrote at the beginning that the scene is slow to open up for you. Now you are bothered by the units or the max property that asks when xref objects how to xref it. This is solved by the Silentium script (but as I wrote, it may not suit everyone -> if it suits you, OK use it. The whole 3ds max is riddled with third party scripts). If you want iToo to integrate this script, or an equivalent, into their plugin then report it to them directly, maybe they can figure out how to do it better than silentium.
If you have problems with long loading times, you need to identify which FP is doing it and address the problem with iToo. Your complaining "iToo is slow" is analogous to your grandmother complaining "the bread isn't baked enough"...

iToo

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Re: FP is getting FAR Too Slow
« Reply #7 on: August 07, 2023, 08:58:53 AM »
I moved this discussion to a separated thread, to not mix it with other old cases.

Checking our archives, i only found two cases which would be related with the slowness issue:

a) When Forest intializes, it scans the texture paths (defined at Customize->Configure Project Paths->External Files), searching for all 'maps' folders.
For some customers, which use multiple texture paths located in network folders, this process may take a long time.

This was solved in recent Forest versions, skipping network paths in the scanning process.
This may be configured at Library Browser->Preferences->Options (see attached image), although this option ('Exclude Network Paths') is enabled by default.

In case you use an older Forest version, the scanning process can be disabled at forestpack.ini (stored at C:\Users\<user name>\AppData\Local\Autodesk\3dsmax\<max version>\ENU\en-US\plugcfg), changing these two variables:

checkTexturePaths=0
collectTexturePaths=0


b) A couple of customers, reported a similar issue when loading presets from the Library. It was caused by an issue with the 'Scene Converter' tool.
By default this tool is opened automatically when Max detects a missing DLL. But if the tool was disabled in their configuration, it would cause a long Max freeze (several minutes), when loading the assets.

We cannot reproduce it, and i'm not sure what Max versions would be affected.
I suggest you take a look to it, and be sure the Converter tool is enabled at Rendering->Scene Converter (see image).

If none of the above works, we'll need more information from you to find the cause.
As said in previous posts, if we cannot reproduce that problem here, there is no way we can identify or fix it.

Regarding the 'Silentum' tool, this script doesn't disable the units warning message. It just detects when the dialog is shown, and simulate a 'click' in the 'Ok' dialog button (sending a notification to Windows) to close it.
This is basically is hack, and would cause undesired side effects. This is not something we want to add in our plugins.

As said before, this warning dialog is part of the Max behaviour, and we cannot change it.
We only may ask to Autodesk some option to disable it (although i guess we already requested it some time ago). But even if such option is added, it would be available only in future 3DS Max versions.

And please, let's calm this discussion.
I will be happy to help you with the tecnical issues, but i'm not discuss about our business model, or compare iToo Software with other companies or products.

Carlos Quintero
iToo Software