Render to network drive question

hello all,

i’ve been attempting to set up a render network via the method of storing the blend file on a shared folder, opening the file on each machine and mapping the output to the shared folder but am having some trouble getting blender to actually render to the network drive.

i’m just using 2 computers to start with and the client sees the drive on the host, the permissions allow changing files remotely and in blender on the client machine i’ve set the output to the top-most directory (which, in the file browser for output in blender shows all other files in the shared folder as it should) but when it renders it just puts everything in the default “C” drive on the client machine and not the shared folder…

I had read another post that suggested selecting “Make all paths relative” in blender but this didn’t seem to do anything (it pertained to a slightly different issue, though).

is this a configuration issue that i’ve neglected to set in blender or could there be something potentially greater going wrong?


You can save yourself a lot of configuration hassle by using one of the distributed rendering utility apps that the community has produced. I’ve been using Loki Render lately with good results (except for fluid sims, unfortunately, though there is a workaround). Even if only rendering on one remote machine, it’s very simple to set up and get running, and for multiple rendering “nodes” it’s gangbusters.

There are other comparable apps out there if you want to browse to find the one that works best for you. Search “Blender distributed rending” and I think you’ll have a bumper crop of options.

chipmasque -

i can’t thank you enough for your suggestion!! i remember seeing loki when i was researching all of this about 6 months ago (moved a few times and my machines stayed packed) but for some reason i thought it was a proprietary/non-GPL product. i evidently had it mistaken for something else… ran as grunt on both windows and linux with no problem at all and reduced render time by SIXTY PERCENT!!!

many thanks again for your tip! haha - this made my week.

I definitely think that “rendering to a network drive” is not a good idea. You need the fastest I/O transfer times that you can get. Once the renderer has prepared a frame of output (and I am tacitly assuming that you already know to render “one file per frame” …) it can move on to the next one while some other process moves the file to a network drive.

sundialsvc4 -

indeed. i was fairly certain the network drive option wouldn’t be best but since this is going to be used in a commercial environment i was trying to stick with what was included in blender (under my misunderstanding of loki’s gnu/gpl state). i also had some concerns about “collisions” in the output directory. i know blender’s render settings include the “touch” option which is supposed to act as a sort of placeholder for the file while it’s generated but for some reason that just made me uncomfortable. a system such as loki certainly seems to have a better queuing structure for intentionally rendering a certain frame/file.

quick question about loki -

on the preferences panel there’s a “local master” tab with settings pertaining to a “multicast group” and some sort of WAN IP (or possibly something else… either way it doesn’t have my local prefix)… also lists port settings and everything is disabled for manipulation. curious as to what is being simulcast. i mean - my renders ARE only staying on my local network, right? i’ve heard of some projects where people actually farm out wide-area clients but it seemed like loki only used the local network. is this correct?

thanks again

Better to post such questions in the “Other Software” category here on BA, or on the Loki Render forum. Admittedly the latter doesn’t show much traffic but it’s the place for direct question like yours.

ah. will do!

thanks so much again to all who replied.