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  • Work item dots are now visible on the TOP Network tile outside of TOPs.

  • Work item dots now paginate on TOP tiles.

  • New ability to promote TOP network cook controls to any node.

  • New enhanced Task Graph Table display options.

  • New right-click context menu for individual work items from the Task Graph Table.

Scalability and performance

  • Sweeping improvements to many nodes like the FFmpeg, CSV, and USD TOPs.

  • PDG now has better scalability, lower farm usage, and is easier to use.

  • TOPs and the PDG Data Layer are now 30% faster and use 75% less memory with large sets of work items.

  • New comprehensive performance monitoring including detail timings of PDG node callbacks evaluated during the TOP cook.


  • Improved automatic caching. For example, work items in PDG nodes that support caching now always affect the cache state of downstream work items.

  • New custom cache file validation with registered custom cache handlers.

Frame ranges

  • Range Extend TOP now supports shifting the frame range both before and after extending the range.

  • ROP Fetch TOP now has a mode that prevents PDG from overriding the frame range on its target ROP node.

  • Input frame ranges for the Partition by Frame TOP can now include negative frames.

  • New Range Generate TOP can create work items for a specified frame range.

PDG services


  • In Process Scheduler TOP enhancements like the ability to run in-process work items on the main thread.

  • New simplified path mapping between file systems for the HQueue Scheduler TOP and Local Scheduler TOP.

  • Enhanced interfacing with the Deadline Scheduler TOP.

  • Redesigned Message Queue (MQ) server and relay for the Deadline Scheduler TOP.

  • Deadline Scheduler TOP now supports work item export environment attributes, various MQ types (like local, farm, and connect), and GPU affinity settings for OpenCL and Redshift nodes.


  • More flexible and efficient dynamic processor nodes.

  • New one-click access to job parameters from PDG processor nodes.


Multiple partitioner enhancements. For example, like control over attribute merging.

Geometry handling

  • Improved geometry importing.

  • Geometry Import TOP can now merge upstream geometry.

  • Geometry Import TOP now supports adhoc groups when specifying a group to import as a work item.

Image manipulation

Complete overhaul of the ImageMagick TOP like improved UI/UX, batching support, support for all ImageMagick operations, and better control over the construction of the ImageMagick command line.


Redesigned Send Email TOP that now supports SSL, TLS, and authentication.


New expression functions for accessing attributes and input files. For example, pdginputsize(tag), pdgoutputsize(tag), pdgattribvals(name), pdginputvals(tag, localize), and pdgoutputvals(tag, localize).

What’s new in Houdini 18.5