Linux Client Turns Beta

After extensive testing and loads of community involvement, we’re happy to announce that the Linux version of the Second Life viewer has gone beta and is available for download at: http://www.secondlife.com/community/downloads.php

Now Linux users can enjoy the same capabilities as Windows and Mac users to explore, create and socialize!

The beta includes several features we’ve added in recent months, such as:

  • 3D voice support
  • Media playback – play back any in-world media supported by GStreamer
  • Lots and lots of bug fixes, polish, and performance improvements

There’s still plenty of fitting and finishing to do before we declare the Linux viewer ready for production, so if you’d like to find out more about the Linux client, its current community of users, and how you can contribute to its development, please visit http://wiki.secondlife.com/wiki/Linux_Viewer

Thanks to everyone who’s participated in the testing so far. We’re always interested in hearing your thoughts, so after checking out the beta, be sure to drop us a line at http://forums.secondlife.com/forumdisplay.php?f=263

See you in-world!

Johan Linden

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39 Responses to Linux Client Turns Beta

  1. Tracy Welles says:

    Yes.. And the Winblows client should now be called Alpha..
    Linux client has run better than the Win client for quite some time.

    -Tracy

  2. Tracy Welles says:

    PS, Just to clarify, The latest Win client is a crash monster. I crash a minimum of 50 percent of the time with the Win client as opposed to never with the Linux client on Debian. The linux client is not only more stable than the Win client, it is also faster and has been for a long time.
    Glad to see the Linux client making such progress. Very happy with it.

    -Tracy

  3. Blinders Off says:

    I noticed something today myself Tracy, that I thought was interesting… because it’s been there all along, and it just now hit me. When one of my friends crash, I’ve noticed at least 1 or 2 of my other friends crash at the same time. This wouldn’t be visible if someone didn’t have a lot on their friends list, but when you repeatedly see your friends crashing at EXACTLY the same moment… a pattern begins to emerge.

  4. Pingback: SecondLife promotes the Linux viewer to Beta status « I’m Just an Avatar

  5. Does that mean that my client won’t be the only software that can crash my system?
    Anyway, it is far better than win version for ages.

  6. richard says:

    so what you are trying to say that windows second life is crap?

  7. Zachary Carter says:

    @6

    Yes.

  8. WarKirby Magoijiro says:

    Beta?

    It’s been there for months. I think I remember it being there when I started SL, well over a year ago.

  9. Ryanna Enfield says:

    Ah yes, Support has been kind enough to remind me at least every two weeks that the constant crashing I’m still suffering from has been resolved and that I’m no longer in need of their assistance. **points to her crash logger** It is an ongoing memory leak. Which is why all your friends crash on your friend’s list at the same time as well. So stop blaming my computer that runs, Wow, EVE Trinity, LOTRO, and Pirates just fine without ever crashing. Three months ago I was running SL very stable on my same exact system. Good luck those of you using Linux. Hope your stability and performance in SL is much better than us Windows users.

  10. Ruadhri Otoole says:

    @Tracy – Happy – perverse though it may seem – that the latest Windows client is a disaster, I thought they’d just screwed over Mac users. I crash 3 – 4 times per hour on Mac OS Tiger since the second to last release of the client.

    Unfortunately I run Linux and Windows in virtual machines, which makes it impossible for me to move to the Linux client for the moment 😦 One more incentive to dual boot with Linux on my MBP, I guess.

    – Ruadhri

  11. roblinden says:

    @8 (WarKirby) The Linux viewer was marked “alpha” up until last week.

    Re: Windows vs Linux stability. If there’s a difference between the platforms in favor of Linux, a very likely explanation would be that the Linux OpenGL driver implementation is more stable. A lot of Windows game software uses Direct3D instead of OpenGL, which has the advantage of often being more stable on Windows, but has the disadvantage of being less (not?) portable to Linux and Mac. The stability of the implementation is going to depend a lot on the particular graphic card being used.

    We’re hopeful that the improved crash reporter that was rolled out as part of the latest releases is going to greatly improve our ability to find and squash crashing issues on all platforms.

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  13. Joker Opus says:

    Awesome, I’m glad to see Linden Lab drilling down on the other viewers. Now I feel comfertable using SL on my linux machine

  14. Zi Ree says:

    Whee!

    Finally the Linux viewer gets the status it deserves! You did a grat job on this port, and marking it “Beta” was long overdue 😉 I only have very few points that I would consider missing or non-functional in the Linux release, and stability is at least as good as the windows version. Second Life has come a long way since I joined using the first Linux alpha releases two years ago. Gone are the times when Linux users didn’t have Sound, Copy & Paste, Shiny or Video. Thank you to everyone in Second Life who supported the Linux port and to you Lindens implementing it 🙂

    Now, let’s have ALSA device selection for sound and voice, and I will be a very happy kitty 😀

  15. Tegg B says:

    Blinders Off Says:

    March 5th, 2008 at 5:16 PM PST
    I noticed something today myself Tracy, that I thought was interesting… because it’s been there all along, and it just now hit me. When one of my friends crash, I’ve noticed at least 1 or 2 of my other friends crash at the same time. This wouldn’t be visible if someone didn’t have a lot on their friends list, but when you repeatedly see your friends crashing at EXACTLY the same moment… a pattern begins to emerge.

    Yes I noticed that once before too, they both were in the same city and used the same ISP

  16. The Big is Back says:

    Talking about performances and crashes, I tried all the existing versions of SL, beta or not, on many machine PC and Mac. My last try is on a last generation Mac, 2 x quad Core 3,2 GHz, 8M ram, 8800 graphic card. When I turned this monster on, i thought that SL would finally work good on it… Error ! even on the most powerfull machine you can find today, SL is eratic, and keeps crashing…
    2 Days ago, some Lindens came to my SL place, asking me to remove some objects, supposed to cause some region slow down, I removed all they asked me to remove. And the region is still slow and crashy.
    So in conclusion, I’m now sure that if LL should put a little more money in servers and a little more serious in developpment, our second life experience could be muuuuch more cool… And please you LL stop telling people that’s it’s their equipment or their items on land causing crashes, because, having tested all possible conditions, I’m now sure that my computerS are not responsible of the crashes, same for the items i put in world.

  17. la le lu says:

    YEAAAAAAAAAAH!!!!!!!

    one thing left is: OGG Voribis Audio Support.

    https://jira.secondlife.com/browse/VWR-219

    🙂

  18. Pingback: Linux Second Life Client goes beta : The Metaverse Journal - Australia’s Virtual World News Service

  19. Lance Corrimal says:

    @9: it is. by far. and has been for ages by now.
    about 15% more framerate (which is consistent with other 3d apps that i have both on window and linux, like google earth, and the unreal tournament games), and less crashing.
    add the features in the coolrelease viewer, like saving screenshots to disk as png or jpeg, and i’m not really wanting to go back.

  20. Suzan says:

    Thanks for taking care for us Linux users! 🙂

    I am very happy with SL on Linux and waiting desperately on a new Windlight version, too.

    Rock on guys!

  21. WiLLuMPJuH says:

    Yes … thank you for letting me know about open source, Linux and Second Life and the state it’s in ….

    … hence my decision to never use it anymore…..

    ./etqw

  22. Jessica Hultcrantz says:

    Yay!

    Finally beta 🙂

    I have been running the linux client since I think at least 3/4 of a year and it is much more stable than the windows version.
    I gave windows up after never getting that working and crashing all the time and except for some serious trouble with 1.17.0 (i think, at least the first 1.17) the linux client has been a solid one even on relatively slow hardware !!

    Sure there are some crashes for me as well, but they are less than 1/20 of my windows friends crashes.

    Regarding memory leaks, look at Henri Bleuchamps cool wiever that fixes not only that, but also the degree of the UI introduced from voice and onwards (not to speak about 1.19 series…) as well as som other issues. That is a great gift to the community that Henri does, and yes that is available for windows users as well since a little time.

    Thumbs up for the linux development!

    Linux and opensource is what makes me stay in second life 🙂

    Jessica

  23. Enverex Sieyes says:

    Now it would be great, if… it wasn’t broken on Debian and Ubuntu (not sure about other distros). If you update to ia32-libs (on an x86_64 machine obviously) all objects randomly appear and disapear depending on which direction you look (and performance is generally poor). Not sure if this is a SL issue or something wrong with the latest libraries though. There was a large thread in the SL forums about it.

  24. Ylikone Obscure says:

    Awesome! Thanks LL for developing SL for more than just Windows! Some of us REALLY appreciate it. Plus, I have better stability with my Linux client than with my Windows client.

  25. Wahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh
    why did you waste your time on this when you have a broken grid/windows client/my inventory is missing/my other pet totally unrelated issue, etc., etc., etc.

    There, just thought I would save the some of the usual posters the effort.

    Seriously, though, this is great news and the comments here have been good. Makes me want to get hold of my favourite geek and create a Linux system for me so I can do more in SL.

    Thanks for the work!

  26. Tracy Welles says:

    richard Says:
    “so what you are trying to say that windows second life is crap?”

    Most definitely. If it were not for the Linux client, I would have left SL in 2006. The only reason I use Windows at all is graphics. I build and do everything else in Linux.

    la le lu Says:
    “One thing left is: OGG Voribis Audio Support.”

    I second this motion.

    -Tracy

  27. Udo says:

    @Tracy: Graphics? You mean Photoshop? That runs like a charme with the newest version of wine ( Google paid for it ).

  28. Pingback: Linden Lab annonce une version Beta pour Linux «

  29. Endy says:

    I know this is a silly question. . But why cant I run the Linux version of SL on my Nokia N800…or can I . .

  30. Tracy Welles says:

    Ruadhri Otoole Says:

    “@Tracy – Happy – perverse though it may seem – that the latest Windows client is a disaster, I thought they’d just screwed over Mac users. I crash 3 – 4 times per hour on Mac OS Tiger since the second to last release of the client.”

    Well I didn’t mean to imply that I’m happy Windows client stinks. Just that the Linux client is quite nice.

    “Unfortunately I run Linux and Windows in virtual machines, which makes it impossible for me to move to the Linux client for the moment 😦 One more incentive to dual boot with Linux on my MBP, I guess.”

    Actually, and nothing against virtual machine software (love it), the best way to configure for duel boot for longer term work is to not mess with the main boot track records during installation. Two identical physical drives partitioned to your needs is the best way. One drive for
    your Linux installation, one drive for your windows keeping the boot records separate on both drives. Then merely set up your bios to boot
    to the Linux drive grub boot track. All you have to add to your linux to
    boot windows is the following:

    su root
    vi /etc/grub/menu.lst

    Add this:
    ———-
    title Windows 95/98/NT/2000
    map (hd0) (hd1)
    map (hd1) (hd0)
    root (hd1,0)
    #makeactive
    chainloader +1

    This will boot your win drive via the grub prompt without having issues that you might encounter with the boot track sector on a single drive installation and serves purpose to allow for individual drive backup. This is how I set up business machines for duel boot.

    Udo Says:

    @Tracy: Graphics? You mean Photoshop? That runs like a charme with the newest version of wine ( Google paid for it ).

    I’ve used wine for years and never been happy with it. Photoshop is a great program, have it, okay with it, but I’ve been using Ulead PhotoImpact for 10 years and am quite good in it. It’s now owned by Corel. The output filters have been hugely improved. Thus the need for winblows for graphics.. I’m just not good enough in Gimp (which I am a fan), to use it as of this date.

    -Tracy

  31. linux23dragon says:

    SL won’t run on the Nokia n800 because it uses the ARM (RISC) processor/platform. The SL Linux client is compiled only for the x86 (i686) platform. If you have the source code, you could add code in SL to allow it to run on ARM Linux platforms, but you might need the N800 SDK stuff for that.

  32. SAIRUS says:

    I cant tell you i’ve been waiting for this for sometime now :))

    Yessssss

    This is Awesome ..!!
    Thank you all LL developers for taking care of us Linux users .

    Keep up the great work 🙂

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  37. Mycha Ashbourne says:

    I am still crashing now at the rate of 5-6 times per hour on OS/X 10.4 with the latest viewer and all releases post 1.19.05 – I long for the days of 1.04. I find it unacceptable for LL or anyone else to claim on the OSX platform “it depends on the video driver” – Apple has several canned hardware versions and I’m tired of trying to do business in a virtual world where the interface developers code like crap. And it looks like the only “improvement” in these releases is a minor re-organization of the user interface!

    I’m tired of having to reboot my MacBook Pro entirely because the SL client has locked up the machine or de-stabilized the graphics driver so bad it looks like an IBM PC CGA display from 1991.

    I have put in a support ticket and not gotten a response at all, someone there @ LL is asleep at the wheel. If I continue to get zero response from people @ LL, I’m going to take my support issues and in a polite and very professional way (no sarcasm) send it off in a registered letter to each member of the Board of Directors @ LL – maybe someone in executive management can teach their subordinates how QA is done.

    It’s quite obvious to me (and I’m a fairly seasoned UNIX admin / minor programmer myself) that the LL clients have two problems – the video driver stability, but more importantly I see evidence of single-threaded coding in the client software, which tells me that @ LL, too many coders are Windows or Java coders who only think that way – it’s a real shame, and probably also a sign of the times in the marketplace.

    I can’t get over I’m probably going to have to run Linux in a Parallels instance on OS/X to -maybe- get some SL stability. Ridiculous.

    Other highlights of this fiasco:

    – On Windows / OSX, the client crashes immediately when trying to open up a Friends conference.

    – Opening up a media stream in laggy zones hangs the client, and in most cases, the entire OS in OS/X. Hello? Multi-threading?

    If anyone asks me to upgrade to 10.5 to fix this I’m going to politely tell them : “That works with Windows users.”

    PLEASE, LL – START LISTENING TO YOUR CUSTOMERS!

  38. hugsalot says:

    Tracy, I find the windows client to be more stable than my Linux install. At least when I minimize the Windows version it doesn’t go black and eventually crash like my Linux version does EVERYTIME.

  39. Blaise Pfeffer says:

    I always thought that the Linux client was more stable. (sad truth, I switched to Linux in part because I was sick of SL being so crashtastic.)

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