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The Launcher is pre-release software. It may contain bugs or workflow issues. We appreciate any feedback you send to help us improve it before release.
You can download the Launcher app, then use it to install, manage, and run multiple versions of Houdini. You don’t need to reinstall the launcher when you install a new build of Houdini.
You can start Houdini from the Launcher, or using the traditional methods (desktop app icon, or from the command line in a Houdini shell). You do not need the Launcher to run Houdini.
When you use the Launcher to upgrade Houdini, it downloads the only the parts that have changed. This is a major benefit of using the Launcher, especially for users with slower home Internet connections.
The Launcher also supports offline installation from an ISO image file.
Installing and starting the Launcher
Download the installer file from the SideFX download page and run it. Follow the prompts in the installation wizard.
Run Houdini Launcher from the start menu.
Download the Launcher disk image from the SideFX download page. Open it and drag the Launcher app into the Applications folder.
Run the Houdini Launcher app from the Applications folder.
Download the launcher installer file from the SideFX download page.
Open a shell.
CD to where you downloaded the install file.
Run the following line:
chmod a+x install_houdini_launcher.sh; install_houdini_launcher.sh
Follow the prompts.
Some of the installers may be small programs that download the rest of the data as part of the install. You can also download ISO image versions of the installers that contain all the data. This is useful if you are installing the launcher on multiple machines, or installing on a machine without Internet access.
Installing Houdini offline
Houdini ISO images include the Launcher installer for convenience, if you haven’t already installed the Launcher.
Download the ISO image for the version of Houdini you want to install.
Run the Launcher.
Click the gear menu, then click Installation Source ▸ Choose Offline Install Source.
Navigate to the directory containing the ISO file and click Open.
In the Launcher window, click Houdini on the left. Then click Install Houdini.
Scripting Launcher installations
Launcher can be programmatically retrieved through the SideFX Web API.
Download sidefx.py which provides a convenient wrapper to make authenticated calls to our API.
Here is an example which downloads Launcher through our API.
import sys import os import stat import requests import shutil import subprocess import platform import sidefx CLIENT_ID = "==Your Client Id==" CLIENT_SECRET = "==Your Client Secret==" # Return the current platform keyword that can be passed into # the SideFX Web API functions if current platform can be # recognized; Otherwise, an empty string '' will be returned. def get_current_platform(): current_platform = platform.system() if current_platform == 'Windows' or current_platform.startswith('CYGWIN'): return 'win64' elif current_platform == 'Darwin': return 'macos' elif current_platform == 'Linux': return 'linux' else: return '' # Return a sidefx.service object allowing access to API functions. def create_service(client_id, client_secret_key): return sidefx.service( access_token_url="https://www.sidefx.com/oauth2/application_token", client_id=client_id, client_secret_key=client_secret_key, endpoint_url="https://www.sidefx.com/api/") # Download the file specified in "build" argument and return the # downloaded filename on success. def download_build(service, build): platform = get_current_platform() build_info = service.download.get_daily_build_download( build["product"], build["version"], build["build"], platform) download_file(build_info["download_url"], build_info["filename"]) return build_info["filename"] # Download the file hosted on "url" and name it as "filename" def download_file(url, filename): with requests.get(url, stream=True) as response: with open(filename, "wb") as open_file: shutil.copyfileobj(response.raw, open_file) make_executable(filename) # Add executable privilege to the file specified in "file_path" def make_executable(file_path): stat_info = os.stat(file_path) os.chmod(file_path, stat.ST_MODE | stat.S_IEXEC | stat.S_IXUSR | stat.S_IXGRP | stat.S_IRUSR | stat.S_IRGRP) def run(): product = "houdini-launcher" platform = get_current_platform() service = create_service(CLIENT_ID, CLIENT_SECRET) # Retrieve the daily builds list, if you want the latest production # you can skip this step builds = service.download.get_daily_builds_list( product, version=None, platform=platform, only_production=False) # Retrieve the latest daily build available launcher_file = download_build(service, builds) # ==Installation part begins here== if __name__ == "__main__": run()
Installation part of code is platform dependent. The following code can be added to the above script accordingly to automate Launcher installation. Launcher installation path can be customized. On Linux and MacOS, both relative and absolute paths are acceptable, but only absolute paths are supported on Windows.
# Install Launcher to the "C:\\houdini_launcher" folder, which could be modified # to your prefered path. # Note this step might require security privileges of superuser on your machine # depending on your installation path. # If so, please run the command shell as administrator. subprocess.call(["./install-houdini-launcher.exe", "/S", "/D=C:\\houdini_launcher"])
# Mount the Launcher ".dmg" file. subprocess.call(["hdiutil", "attach", launcher_file]) # Create "houdini_launcher" folder if not exists if not os.path.exists("houdini_launcher"): os.mkdir("houdini_launcher") # Install Launcher to "houdini_launcher" folder next to current script, # which could be modified to your prefered path. subprocess.call(["cp", "-R", "/Volumes/Houdini/Houdini Launcher.app", "houdini_launcher"]) # Unmount the Launcher ".dmg" file subprocess.call(["hdiutil", "unmount", "/Volumes/Houdini"])
# Install Launcher to "houdini_launcher" folder next to current script, # which could be modified to your prefered path. # Note this step might require security privileges of superuser on your machine # depending on your installation path. # If so, please run the python script with `sudo`. subprocess.call(["./install_houdini_launcher.sh", "houdini_launcher"])
Scripting Houdini installations
The Launcher is a graphical program, however the install includes a command-line executable. This is useful for performing installations remotely or in a script.
The non-graphical command-line executable is called
The command line programs are in
C:/Program Files/SideFX/launcher/bin by default.
The command line programs are inside the
/Applications/Houdini Launcher app bundle, in
The command line programs are in
/opt/sidefx_launcher/bin by default.
Get ready to install
The Houdini version string (
Script offline installation
See the install subcommand below for more information.
Command line options
The general form for running
houdini_installer [global_opts] subcommand [subcommand_opts]
You can run just:
…to display help information.
The global options are:
Suppress non-error output.
Print more progress information.
Read user name and password from
-o, --log-file file
Write a detailed installation log to
file. This does not affect the progress information written to
Common options across the
repair subcommands are:
Indicate acceptance of the End User License Agreement with the given date.
The location of an offline installer file.
Installs a new product/version.
houdini_installer [options] install [install_options] product version [installdir]
"Engine 3ds Max|Maya|Unity|Unreal",
"HQueue Client", or
"HQueue Server". Note that product names containing spaces must be enclosed in quotes, for example:
houdini_installer install "Engine Maya"
The Houdini version to install, including the build number.
The directory to install to.
The platform identifier for the build to install.
Moves and/or upgrades the version of an existing installation.
houdini_installer [options] modify [modify_options] installdir
The directory containing the installation directory.
The directory to move the installation to.
The version to update to.
The platform identifier for the build to install.
Removes an installed product/version.
houdini_installer [options] uninstall [uninstall_options] installdir
The directory containing the installation to uninstall.
Tries to fix problems with a broken installation (for example, missing files).
houdini_installer [options] repair [repair_options] installdir
The directory containing the installation to repair.
Lists installed products/versions.
houdini_installer [options] list [directory]...
The install directories to list details about. If none are given, it will list details about all installations.