Everything related to Maxwell Render and General Stuff that doesn't fit in other categories
By LadleSky10
Is there a way to create a report or a log of all missing textures or items in a Maxwell Studio scene file (.mxs)? What I'd like to do is to have a report of any missing textures in a scene so that I can correct the issues before I even attempt to open the scene in v5.

Reason for asking this question:
I've been updating some of my older v3 scenes to v5 and, well, it's a bit of a nightmare. V5 takes forever to load these scenes with missing textures. And then too, if there's referenced scenes with missing textures you don't even find that out until you go to render and then v5 takes forever to let you know it can't render because of missing textures. I have to say (and I hate to say anything negative --because v5 is quite lovely), but v3 was a lot faster, more robust, when it came to missing textures.

Searching the forums I've come across some workarounds that Fernando mentioned: temporarily placing your scene in the same folder with your textures; putting a path to your textures under "search paths" in preferences (this seems to slow opening a scene even more --I have tons of textures; and too, this method only works 3 levels down --my textures are usually located 4 or 5 levels down).

What I find works the fastest is to simply open the scene and tell Maxwell not to bother searching for any textures at all --i.e. ignore all missing textures. This is fine. In fact, this is great because the scene opens within seconds! Rather than 10, 20, 30 minutes later (and I have 64GB of RAM). The problem of course is that I then need to figure out for myself where the missing texture links are in the scene.

So, this is why I'd like a report, a list, on the missing textures in a scene. (I'm keeping it as simple as possible here with a report log!) Of course, what would really be great is a pop-up window when you first open a scene that lists all the missing links in the scene (instead of searching for them one at a time --which is what seems to slow v5 to a crawl) and within that pop-up menu you can update the missing textures, or delete the shader or textures from the scene, or apply a "default" shader or texture (so that you know where you had placed a texture) to everything in the scene, or just ignore it all and open the scene.

And yes, I know it's mostly my fault. I have tons of textures and shaders and I'm always discovering new ways to organize them. :D

Thanks! Open to any suggestions.

p.s. I see that there's something called "pack and go". Perhaps that will solve my problem in future --I'll have to explore this option.
User avatar
By Matteo Villa
Pack and go is very useful to make a more organized and ready to use archive.

You will have all the texture/shaders used in a specific project inside the same folder.

Is even perfect for sharing your project to another Maxwell Render user.
By LadleSky10
Thank you! Very much appreciated!

I'll read up on "pack and go" in the documentation.

(And, maybe, one of these days I'll get these shaders and textures organized just the way I like them! :) )
By LadleSky10

Okay, I had a chance to look at "pack and go" and give it a demo try. Works great. I think it's fantastic for collaboration but I don't see how it can be used as one's daily workflow. I'm mean, essentially, you're duplicating all of your assets! (And that kind of defeats the purpose of having a library of assets that all your scenes look to and can make use of. --fyi, duplicate textures all over the place is the primary reason I keep reorganizing my libraries! :D )

Can "pack and go" also be a saved (and editable) "text" file that contains all the links and paths to your assets in the scene? (Or, is this a different feature that already exists somewhere in Maxwell?) --this would be good. I could manually edit the paths in the saved text file and Maxwell reads the saved text file every time the scene is opened. That would be really good . . . like really good!

I will use "pack and go" occasionally, certainly. But, clearly I'll need to find some other way of dealing with missing textures.


(And thank you again Matteo for the helpful suggestion.)
By LadleSky10
Okay, maybe creating little editable text files all over the place isn't the best idea. So, maybe it's "optional."

Texture Paths editable file:
You toggle on a "create textures path file" and Maxwell saves the text file listing all your paths. You edit the paths. Next time Maxwell opens that scene, it reads the saved text file. It will continue to read the text file until you toggle off the feature. Once you toggle off the feature, Maxwell will then store in the scene the last read paths for the textures.

Missing textures log or report:
You toggle on a "create a textures path log" and Maxwell saves a log report for your texture paths. Maybe this one's just a report that you can use to discover your paths.

(And still open to any suggestions! Perhaps Maxwell already does something similar?)
User avatar
By choo-chee
I say don't load the MXS in studio but render it. the console will give you all the missing dependencies and you can copy-paste it to a text file and find the missing textures.
By LadleSky10

Thank you for your suggestion. At first I thought maybe you were joking with me. :?

But I decided to give it a try anyway. Here's what I did:
1) opened Maxwell Render (not Studio).
2) loaded a scene and hit the render button.
3) waited about 45 minutes (I think) for the render to finish preprocessing and return an error about missing textures.
4) copy and paste the texture path errors given in the Console to a word document so I could correct the problem.

I hope I got it right! I did get the report that I wanted. And, it is a solution, I guess. Now I can do the same with the other scenes with missing textures --it may take me a while, I think. (Or, maybe I've done something wrong here --I really hope so :wink: --and too, your machine may be about 10x faster than mine!)

But, it is a modestly workable suggestion and I do appreciate it.

(I've learned a lesson here however: stop mucking around with my texture folders!) :D
User avatar
By choo-chee
45 minuets? how heavy is this scene? I had scenes with lots of trees etc. that consumed about 40 Gb RAM and preprocess took 10 minutes top.
By LadleSky10

That particular scene is only a 5mb scene.

It's just a test scene having a chair against a wall. I'm using an HDRI (which was missing) and the textures are pretty simple (also missing). It's a hi-res Arroway leather texture on the chair cushion and a hi-res Arroway wood texture on the floor. Otherwise, there's a metal shader and a wall paint shader. All the shaders are full featured: normal maps, color maps, reflection maps, etc. (maybe some displacement on the floor too I think.) I know the Arroway textures can be pretty heavy but then, it wasn't finding them anyway so that likely wasn't the problem.

For this scene the missing textures turned out to be minimal per the Console. But, it took the preprocessing somewhere around 45 minutes just to tell me a few textures were missing. I also think there was a referenced object in the scene that also had missing textures. I need to examine the scene a little more --but it's pretty simple.

Version 3 if I recall would have had little problem preprocessing and rendering this scene --even scenes with missing textures processed fairly quickly.

I think maybe it's the missing textures, and especially with the referenced object missing textures too, that causes version 5 to just turn into molasses getting back to me.

Maybe it's trying to find the textures --and I have a very large texture library. Maybe it's because my library and my scene are located on a NAS drive. (I can move the scene and textures to my computer's drive and see if things improve. I've always worked from the NAS drive --scenes and textures --and version 3 didn't have a problem with it.)

Otherwise, maybe version 5 just doesn't like AMD. I can try installing it on my Xeon machine and see if that works faster.

I don't think there are any problems rendering scenes in version 5 when the textures (and references) are all located, i.e. when there are no problems with the scene it seems to work just fine, I think. (Although, maybe I should test this theory a little more because so far a lot of my scenes have had missing textures that needed to be located so I haven't been paying a lot of attention to preprocessing times on the stuff that actually renders --I'm so happy just to have it rendering at all!)

Thanks again!
By LadleSky10
BTW, my Cinebench score on the computer I'm using is 16692 (11 or 12 passes). I think that's respectable. I'll have to do one of those Maxwell Render benchmark tests to see how my system compares.

User avatar
By Matteo Villa
Don’t load from a NAS especially if you use mechanical HDD.

Even with SSD cache you’re bottlenecking your workload.

A NAS is good for archiving your scene.

I keep all my texture / assets archived on a NAS within a specific HDD mirrored for backup.

On the same NAS I’ve another Archive mirrored with all the Projects saved as “Pack and Go”.

So I can simply copy-paste the required scene, and open it on whichever workstation I want.
I always work locally on my Wosktations, and upload them again on the Nas if I’ve done some changes to the scene.

I even keep an external HDD drive with all the scene saved as “pack and go” for backup.
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By choo-chee
also, it's always good to check if the older textures filenames point to obsolete networked locations. Windows tends to try too much to re-connect to invalid locations and it can significantly slow down stuff all over, not just Maxwell....
By LadleSky10
Eureka! Actually, double Eureka!! Thank you both --Matteo you pinpointed the problem precisely --thank you so much! :D

Eureka # 1:
Following Matteo's suggestion to move my files to an internal local drive did the trick. But wait, there's more: when I moved some files to the default "Maxwell" documents folder on the "C" drive (you know I've never even looked at that folder), I discovered there's a LOGS folder there and in that logs folder is a running text file that outputs all your render console info --every render! So, voila! I now have my missing dependencies report. Matteo you're a genius! :)

Eureka # 2:
Yes, using an internal drive rather than the NAS drive made a world of difference in speed. A 15mb scene (lots of textures; none missing) preprocessed in about 9 minutes. A 2mb scene (few textures) preprocessed in about 3 minutes. So, I'm definitely getting faster times now.

Something I did notice was that it's still looking to my NAS drive for the textures (per the Console) even though I used "pack & go" on the 15mb scene and rendered from the "pack & go" scene. My guess is once I get all my textures on a local internal drive and remap to it I should get even faster times!

What a world of difference. So, I'll definitely have to install a second internal drive (maybe mechanical; maybe SSD) for all my documents and textures --so the OS and programs remain the only thing on "C". Then, I'll just use the NAS drive to backup. (And I'll take your suggestion Matteo to use "pack and go" for the backups.)

Again, thanks to you both!
:D :D :D
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