Solaris rendering on the cloud

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BrianHanke
Here's the script I use on Linux VMs:

sesictrl login (will prompt for user/pass)
wait
cd /home/brian/programs/houdini/
source houdini_setup
hserver
hserver -S https://www.sidefx.com/license/sesinetd

Is hython working on the bash for you? I can't get It to work due to the license server... It's not getting licenses from the sesi site.
I've been talking to support but no solution yet.
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Just checked. hython hangs if I'm not logged in, but if I log in with my script it works fine. RHEL 8.4 on Azure. Did you run sesictrl login and hserver -S blahblahblah?
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Just checked. hython hangs if I'm not logged in, but if I log in with my script it works fine. RHEL 8.4 on Azure. Did you run sesictrl login and hserver -S blahblahblah?

Yes, I needed to restart hserver AND add HEngine licenses since my 2 licenses were on hold and I didn't notice It.

Thanks again for the help, Brian. When I get everything working on AWS, I'll post here.
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Glad it's working. Let us know how it goes on AWS!
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Glad it's working. Let us know how it goes on AWS!

Brian sorry to bother you again, but I was using the AWS Pricing Calculator and I found It far more expensive that I thought It would be. What kind of machine are you using in Azure? Do you use them as reserved machines or on Demand?
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Brian sorry to bother you again, but I was using the AWS Pricing Calculator and I found It far more expensive that I thought It would be. What kind of machine are you using in Azure? Do you use them as reserved machines or on Demand?

Here's my go-to Azure setup, just under $1/hour plus a few cents for bandwidth and storage. The key is using a spot instance. Not sure what it's called on AWS, just means that you can be kicked out if the system needs the capacity for people paying full price. In my experience all cloud providers offer pretty similar services and pricing.

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guilhermecasagrandi
Brian sorry to bother you again, but I was using the AWS Pricing Calculator and I found It far more expensive that I thought It would be. What kind of machine are you using in Azure? Do you use them as reserved machines or on Demand?

Here's my go-to Azure setup, just under $1/hour plus a few cents for bandwidth and storage. The key is using a spot instance. Not sure what it's called on AWS, just means that you can be kicked out if the system needs the capacity for people paying full price. In my experience all cloud providers offer pretty similar services and pricing.

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Yes, AWS has spot instances too. So you pay only on Demand?
Aren't spot instances a problem with tight deadlines?
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Aren't spot instances a problem with tight deadlines?

It depends. In my experience you can go for many, many hours without getting kicked. And when it happens you can just start the VM right back up and start where you left off. It's inconvenient, no doubt, but it does save a ton of money.

Azure also lets you look at regional stats and pick a region that is less likely to get kicked. I don't bother with that, but it is an option.
Edited by BrianHanke - Jan. 25, 2022 09:29:29
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Are you guys using any form of render management? Like Hqueue or Deadline?
I was thinking about using AWS through Deadline, but it seems like that could get quite expensive and be difficult to set up.
But I don't really want to manually start renders one by one. I would expect I could install something like Deadline on the virtual machine but maybe someone has any experience with that already?
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Are you guys using any form of render management? Like Hqueue or Deadline?
He stated that he is not using some render manager on the last page.
He likes to remote ssh more.

There is Royal Render as well, they have support for Azure.
And the current version requires you to buy a small 4 license pack only and cloud is for free with the current version.
(The render manager license, not the Azure VMs)

>licensing
About the licensing: Yes, the metered license per minute/hour on AWS and in Azure (search for "batch" for prices) are expensive.
Some software vendors offer 1 month rental licenses as well.
You might want to go for these.


>spot instances
There are usally enough VMs available if you have a 2-3days until your deadline.

Note that you are not limited by time.
In your company you have to start rendering on your e.g. 20 machines on friday to finish until monday.

On the client you do not have to think in time, just cost.
On the cloud you can get 60 machines for the half of 2 nights and get the same render done.
And exactly the same cost. 3 days with 20 VMs or 2 x half day with 60 Vms.
Edited by schoenberger - Aug. 1, 2022 06:57:32
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I've tried Deadline, but I find it so complicated. I feel better making a custom solution for my specific situation. I have pretty much every step of the process covered with Azure and PowerShell (create VM script, upload assets script, render sequence script, etc.), but I haven't yet combined it all for total automation. That's next up on my agenda. Ideally I just want to type something like "render scene01" and wake up the next morning with all the frames on my local drive. Should be doable!
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Sooo AWS just made (almost) all their products free, including Deadline.
https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/media/aws-thinkbox-products-now-available-free-of-charge/ [aws.amazon.com]

No usage-based costs for deadline clients anymore. So now the costs should only be for the actual servers. Hopefully, I can figure out the setup and report back if it works. Though their documentation seems more geared towards full-time network admins and not Houdini Indie users :S
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Sooo AWS just made (almost) all their products free, including Deadline.
https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/media/aws-thinkbox-products-now-available-free-of-charge/ [aws.amazon.com]

No usage-based costs for deadline clients anymore. So now the costs should only be for the actual servers. Hopefully, I can figure out the setup and report back if it works. Though their documentation seems more geared towards full-time network admins and not Houdini Indie users :S

It has been this way for a while now. They haven't been charging for UBL in the cloud for years I think, they were charging just for local licenses of DL.
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Ha, yeah, the Deadline docs are something else. I know a bunch of indie artists using Deadline, so I might try setting it up again. My IT knowledge is slightly improved compared to last time...
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Setting deadline up locally isn’t really an issue. The installer guides you through it. It’s the render manager I personally use for all renders. Houdini, Fusion etc.
Let me know if you have issues setting it up locally. I might be able to help as I’ve done it a couple of times.

The cloud stuff seems a little more involved unfortunately.
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Cool, thanks, I may take you up on that. I opened up the Deadline docs this morning and immediately got PTSD...
Edited by BrianHanke - Aug. 3, 2022 13:13:58
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Hi, I'm also looking up into Deadline and Karma USD workflow since yesterday,
and it seems AWS Deadline doesn't support H19.0+ and any husk Submitter for Karma Rendering.

It's gonna take a little plenty of time though,
these great houdini legends made alternative solutions, so you might want to check out.


custom Deadline usd husk submitter on GitHub
https://www.sidefx.com/forum/topic/79999/ [www.sidefx.com]

USD and Husk with Deadline
https://www.sidefx.com/forum/topic/85044/ [www.sidefx.com]


As AWS Deadline became free to use, we can ask Houdini Lab team to make something out maybe???
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Thank you for posting the Custom Husk plugins. Something to try out soon.

It was actually already possible to render Solaris scenes through deadline.
You can submit the USD Render ROPs just like any other ROPs.

Correct me if I’m wrong, but I think it’s necessary to submit them that way if you don’t have a single usd file written out that can be rendered.

Besides that it’s also possible to submit the USD ROPs to deadline so you can easily schedule writing out USD files.
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Yesterday I started working on an Uber Script for job submission, execution and finishing, expecting it to be a multi-day project. But, it came together in just a few hours! I'm very close to the dream of "render scene01." So far I've got:

- Windows PowerShell script that archives all scene files, uploads to Azure, spins up a VM, and logs you in via ssh.
- Bash script that downloads all the assets, extracts them, does an Arnold render via kick, uploads the EXRs and shuts down the VM.

A final script will download the EXRs from Azure and delete the VM, but that's easy and not a big concern.

I think I'll probably write an article going into detail about how I got this working. The scripts are tailored to my needs, but maybe I can give others some inspiration.
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pretty awesome,
I also set deadline at home and it DOES support Houdini 19.0 but there is a way to setup H19.5 by simply chaning the numbers in the settings.

for example Houdini 18.0 settings block can be used with H19.5 numbers and it will work.

Question is, how do I submit those jobs to the cloud and what are the costs




.
Edited by AhmedHindy - Aug. 7, 2022 07:39:59

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