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BlkCruelt

Portable SL Viewer? One that installs to and runs from a USB flash drive

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I am searching for an SL viewer that is portable and will run under windows. A viewer that can be unpacked or installed from a normal account. In other words, without using an admin account.

I don't mind if it run slower. I will need to install without admin privileges. ideally the viewers can be config'ed to keep cache and settings on the jump drive.

TIA

Edited by BlkCruelt

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11 hours ago, Nalates Urriah said:

The SL viewer is dependent on Registry Entries to run correctly. Plus there is a bunch of stuff that lands in the App Data folders. The viewer is scattered through the computer. For security purposes Windows runs the program from and stores data in secure locations. Those places do not exist in a USB drive.

You could try installing to a USB drive and putting the caches on the same USB stick. Then try it on another computer. It might work... sort of. But, probably not. And the install would mess up the viewer on the machine you made the install from.

The only way I can think of to get a portable install would be to make a bootable USB stick with operating system and boot from the USB then install the viewer in the protable OS..

 

 

But...I can run SL from a viewer installed on my RAM drive, instead of the usual C:\Programs...

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Black Dragon was formerly known as the Niran V viewer.  It's listed on the Linden Lab Third Party Viewer page, so it complies with LL's TPV policy.  The caution about its avatar complexity function has nothing to do with its honesty or reliability...LL is merely noting that it doesn't use the same code or produce the same avatar complexity numbers as the official viewer.  My feeling is that this is simply because it hasn't been updated in a while and doesn't include all the newest viewer functions.

Unlike Alonya, I would not worry about the fact that it comes packaged as a RAR file.  She's right that a lot of dodgy software uses the RAR compression format, but so does a lot of quite legitimate software.

I had Niran's viewer a long time ago, just to try it out, but I only used it a couple of times, so I can't really give you an expert opinion on it.  It seemed OK to me, but I like my Firestorm.

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I'm necro-ing this post for the sake of clearing this up a bit, also because i just found the topic... i should probably look through the official forums a bit more.

All Viewers can run on any machine, regardless of where they were installed or if they were installed at all. Everything the Viewer needs is created on startup. Registry entries beyond the normal Windows entries that tells windows where the executable is are not necessary unless you want additional functionality like clicking a SLURL and hoping for the client to teleport you there (or start if it isn't).

Judging by how OP defined "mobile" however it might just be that no Viewer works, it depends. All Viewers as explained create everything necessary, if your non-admin account has no rights writing it's essential log, settings, presets and cache data in the correct AppData folders on your Windows drive it will fail to start. No amount of changing the paths for cache/settings will change that, there is always stuff hard coded in the Viewer that still goes to the AppData folder. For a good reason. The AppData folder is usually a folder that any user can access since it exists for every Windows user you create, it's basically the safest place to put sensible data such as settings because it is assumed that you'll always have write permissions there. If not, something is either wrong or you're using a very limited account such as those in schools for instance.

RARs are in no way evil. Not using RARs or touching them for whatever reason is simply hyperbole. It's like saying you don't touch a knife because its a weapon murderers use to kill people. RARs are nothing more than a simple package that is kind of Windows's own packaging format. Winzip and WinRar are both considered a baseline feature of Windows by now even if WinRar doesn't always come with Windows.

The reason i chose a RAR package for my Viewer is pretty simple. I'm too stupid to get the normal Viewer Installer Package to correctly build so my only option was creating packages manually, unless you like downloading thousands of files separately. I doubt you do. Another good reason for using RAR as installer is as mentioned by others already it offers pretty much the same features a stock installer does, sure no fancy images and fancy auto detect stuff but its sufficient to install a Viewer. On top of that it's also extremely transparent for the user, anyone, and i mean ANYONE can simply open it with your packager of your choice (WinZip,WinRar, 7zip) and look into it before unpacking it, you can even unpack it manually, circumventing any additional followup actions in place if you so want safety.

The reason Oz Linden put a stamp of shame on my Viewer in the TPV List is because i refuse to use the useless stock complexity calculation that does basically everything except derendering those that waste a lot of your resources. I altered the complexity calculation to be much harsher and much more unforgiving when it comes to making "mistakes" in optimizations. Since i'm not using the original calculation anymore you could say that my Viewer is "misleading" when it comes to complexity as my 40k complexity is not the same as everyone else's 40k complexity. So far the only issue this caused was scripts kicking users from a SIM because these scripts read out your Viewer reported complexity and use it against you, so even if the much harsher complexity does not directly affect you, scripts who kick people based on complexity will still "see" you having a huge complexity value and kick you. I'm not sure whether i should find this stupid or just hilarious. I'd say my calculation does a much better job at derendering lagmonsters until LL can prove me wrong (which they can't and that's why they are redoing complexity, i only had to annoy them about it for a full year).

The Viewer is by no means outdated or rarely updated. It only ever lags a few days behind the latest SL Viewer code and is semi-regularly updated (can't call it regularly because it depends, sometimes there are weekly updates, sometimes every two weeks, sometimes a 3 week release and sometimes multiple releases per week).

On 17.7.2018 at 4:15 PM, Nalates Urriah said:

I class NiranV as a character. Often annoying, sometimes ridiculous, always creative, but I've never heard of NiranV being a griefer or malicious. I use the BD viewer a couple of times a month. 

Yes. Uh... yes... uh... yes. Yes! and... uh.. yea.... i mean NO. I'm the worst! Sometimes i'm standing on a SIM for a few minutes and wasting a few kb script memory on the SIM! Sometimes i rez a cube and make it physical for fun! OH I'M SO BAD!

You clearly haven't read about me on 4chan. Seems like they think i'll hack your account if you talk ***** about me. Haha. Poor souls don't even know i don't know how to code something like that.

Edited by NiranV Dean
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I chose WinRar because at the time i didn't know 7zip can create installers as well. I might just switch over. In the end it doesn't make a difference i guess.

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Just what do you plan on doing here?  Installing and running SL on a public computer...your local library, maybe?  Or at work?

There are reasons why operating systems don't allow people who don't have admin rights to install and run software.

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This is NOT SL...   but search google for SimOAStick ( sim on a stick)   It’s a virtual ‘region’ that runs from a thumb drive. There was addons available to open it internet to allow visitors, but otherwise it will just be you in there

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The SL viewer is dependent on Registry Entries to run correctly. Plus there is a bunch of stuff that lands in the App Data folders. The viewer is scattered through the computer. For security purposes Windows runs the program from and stores data in secure locations. Those places do not exist in a USB drive.

You could try installing to a USB drive and putting the caches on the same USB stick. Then try it on another computer. It might work... sort of. But, probably not. And the install would mess up the viewer on the machine you made the install from.

The only way I can think of to get a portable install would be to make a bootable USB stick with operating system and boot from the USB then install the viewer in the protable OS..

 

 

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Put Linux on a stick, runs from an USB drive... put Linux version of Singularity on another stick also runs from an USB drive... put both sticks in your Windows PC... reboot and enjoy the lag (not sure it will even run, but that setup is as close as you can get with a Win PC without building your own live Linux distribution with an integrated viewer...)

Edited by Fionalein
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@Nalates Urriah  I am more than happy to use a viewer other than the SL Viewer. 

I saw that the Black Dragon Viewer is distributed as a RAR archive. Does anyone know anything about that viewer? Know how to directly download the executable for other third party viewers.

 

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2 hours ago, Lindal Kidd said:

But...I can run SL from a viewer installed on my RAM drive, instead of the usual C:\Programs...

Sure, viewers will run from any drive in the computer. They still have access to the main Windows registry and other Windows system files..

@BlkCruelt I understand your preference for another brand of viewer. I didn't know Black Dragon was available in RAR. Or I'd forgotten. A quick and shallow search didn't reveal any information on BD in RAR. So, I can't tell if it is intended to run as a stand-alone.

@Alyona Su A RAR file and the Windows EXE file are both compressed archive files. If one sets RAR's 'auto-run-on-open' they are outwardly near identical. So, I'm not sure why you think one is less safe than the other. Who uses what doesn't seem like a good reason for making decisions. You are aware that all the known serial killers eat/ate potatoes...

I class NiranV as a character. Often annoying, sometimes ridiculous, always creative, but I've never heard of NiranV being a griefer or malicious. I use the BD viewer a couple of times a month. 

 

 

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4 hours ago, Alyona Su said:

RAR is a common compression format used by "warez pirates". 

... and knifes are a common tool usually found in the hands of murderers. 
By the way, .avi and .mpeg files are common movie formats used by rippers.
Don't get started on .jpg to share screenshots of serial keys, it's the uberevil.

...
It's just another file extension like .zip or the mightier .7zip. 
Why do you feel the need to make up such an overdramatic description?

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13 hours ago, Lindal Kidd said:

But...I can run SL from a viewer installed on my RAM drive, instead of the usual C:\Programs...

Thanks for taking the time to point that out. That is pretty close to what I need to do.

I would prefer to run Firestorm. Just need to find a way to download the executable. Using command line parameters and good settings file,  I think I can get it look to the USB for settings and cache. 

http://wiki.secondlife.com/wiki/Client_parameters

 

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11 hours ago, Jules1979 said:

The Radegast is portable but non-graphical basicly.

Thanks for a useful reply. I should have made clear that I need the full graphical experience.

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Rio de Janeiro, December 19 2018

🐱 Meow. I come here to find out a answer but I feel like it is more a weird chat than a answer. (I think I misread something. I will try it.)

Just wanted to transfer my SL from my old computer to my new laptop without need to install it in the system.

That weird oppinions about rar vs zip. Remind their war to conquest the world years ago, like Internet Explorer vs Netscape MicrosoftOffice vs OpenOffice, Windows vs Linux (No war with MAC.. it is for richies 8p).

The prince vs the dragon, luck Shrek saved the dragon or it was the donkey?

Why people is talking about pirates in a open source software forum? That I remember SL of a open source program, no?

 

🐯 Mewing,

Pandrine

Edited by Pandrine Decosta

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I know that this thread is old, but I just found it, and I think I can add useful information.

It is quite possible to run a viewer on a USB flash drive; I have done it many times. The reason I did was that I wanted to use different computers and have the whole experience carry over from one to the other. I used a Windows batch file to copy the files from C:\Users\Username\Appdata\Roaming\Secondlife(or appropriate folder for other viewers) to the flash drive at the end of a session and copy them back at the beginning of the next one. I tried putting the cache on the flash drive, but that made the viewer run very slowly, so I ended up copying the cache back and forth, too. The default location for the log files is C:\Users\Username\Appdata\Local; it worked fine to just change the location to the flash drive from within the viewer, but it's necessary to always use the same drive letter for the flash drive if that is done. When the drive letter is always the same, it's even possible to have shortcuts work normally; you just have to install the viewer on the flash drive from each computer you run the viewer on. I used both the LL and Firestorm viewers this way.

If you didn't care about preserving data when you moved between computers, you wouldn't need to copy files, and, if you didn't care about other users or administrators seeing the files, and didn't care about the disk space they occupied, you wouldn't need to delete them from the hard drive. In that case, you could just run the viewer from the flash drive without doing anything special.

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On 7/17/2018 at 1:30 PM, Alyona Su said:

RAR is a common compression format used by "warez pirates". That it comes packaged in RAR format is enough that I won't touch it, myself. The third-party viewers page also places a "caution" on the listing for Black Dragon that it does not give accurate ARC score ("misleading" - LL's words,) either intentionally or not.

Yeah, and ZIP too! Never ever do touch a ZIP file! 🤣

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12 minutes ago, Ansariel Hiller said:

Yeah, and ZIP too! Never ever do touch a ZIP file! 🤣

1337 folks know tape archive is the only true packaging format :P

 

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32 minutes ago, Fionalein said:

1337 folks know tape archive is the only true packaging format :P

 

Reel-to-reel, 8-track, cassette, or Scotch Tape? Ohhhh, TAR!

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On 1/21/2019 at 11:03 AM, Jennifer Boyle said:

The reason I did was that I wanted to use different computers and have the whole experience carry over from one to the other.

I'm not sure what you mean by 'the whole experience carry over'... Except for a few viewer settings everything is tracked on the server side. If you log into SL from New York or California Sl should be the same.

The viewer does try to set itself up for the hardware it finds. It asks about the hardware and sets default graphics values based on the hardware. Using a USB install sort of defeats that. As you move from computer to computer the viewer needs to readjust. I'm not sure it does unless you clear out the settings.

No matter what computer you use your last location, inventory, avatar appearance, and etc. will be the same as that information is stored server side. That is why I can switch between the Linden SL Viewer, Firestorm, Black Dragon, others and change form my laptop to my desktop and have the same experience.

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On 7/17/2018 at 4:17 PM, Lindal Kidd said:

Black Dragon was formerly known as the Niran V viewer.  It's listed on the Linden Lab Third Party Viewer page, so it complies with LL's TPV policy.  The caution about its avatar complexity function has nothing to do with its honesty or reliability...LL is merely noting that it doesn't use the same code or produce the same avatar complexity numbers as the official viewer.  My feeling is that this is simply because it hasn't been updated in a while and doesn't include all the newest viewer functions.

While we're here, I wanna point this out: https://niranv-sl.blogspot.com/2017/12/complexity-and-its-complex-complexity.html

LL's complexity formula is more misleading than Niran's has ever been.

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On 7/17/2018 at 3:17 PM, Lindal Kidd said:

Black Dragon was formerly known as the Niran V viewer.  It's listed on the Linden Lab Third Party Viewer page, so it complies with LL's TPV policy.  The caution about its avatar complexity function has nothing to do with its honesty or reliability...LL is merely noting that it doesn't use the same code or produce the same avatar complexity numbers as the official viewer.  My feeling is that this is simply because it hasn't been updated in a while and doesn't include all the newest viewer functions.

 

And while we're at it. I'd like to point out that the Viewer is regularly updated and is only ever behind a month at max for regular updates (such as bugfixes) and never behind with major releases such as Fitted Mesh, Bento, Animesh and so on.

The warning is solely a note from Oz that my Viewer uses an altered complexity calculation, he's neither saying that it is better or worse, just different.

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File formats are not inherently evil.

RAR was for piracy as it's easier to create spanned volumes (one big archive split into multiple smaller files) and a slightly higher compression ratio .. which used to matter back when files were posted in multiple UUEncoded parts on Usenet.

That said ... why Niran would choose RAR over the ubiquitous ZIP is beyond me, especially when support for the later is built right into windows and needs no external software to be downloaded. Even if you do decide to install a 3rd party application to handle ZIP files, there is the excellent open source 7zip compared to WinRar being a shareware throwback from a bygone era.

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8 hours ago, BlkCruelt said:

@Nalates Urriah  I am more than happy to use a viewer other than the SL Viewer. 

I saw that the Black Dragon Viewer is distributed as a RAR archive. Does anyone know anything about that viewer? Know how to directly download the executable for other third party viewers.

 

RAR is a common compression format used by "warez pirates". That it comes packaged in RAR format is enough that I won't touch it, myself. The third-party viewers page also places a "caution" on the listing for Black Dragon that it does not give accurate ARC score ("misleading" - LL's words,) either intentionally or not.

Edited by Alyona Su

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