Launcher

Overview

The Launcher’s main use is to provide a means of remote communication between the Monitor and the Slave or Pulse applications, and therefore should always be left running on your render nodes and workstations. It can also detect if the Slave running on the machine has stalled, and restart it if it does.

Unless the Launcher is running as a service or daemon, you should see the launchericon icon in your system tray or notification area. You can right-click on the icon to access the Launcher menu, or double-click it to launch the Monitor.

Running The Launcher

To start the Launcher:

  • On Windows, you can start the Launcher from the Start Menu under Thinkbox\Deadline.
  • On Linux, you can start the Launcher from a terminal window by running the deadlinelauncher script in the bin folder.
  • On Mac OS X, you can start the Launcher from Finder by running the DeadlineLauncher application in Applications/Thinkbox/Deadline.

The Launcher can also be started from a command prompt or terminal window. For more information, see the Launcher Command Line documentation.

Administration Features

Running the Launcher can help make some administrative tasks easier, which is why it’s recommended to keep it running at all times on your render nodes and workstations.

Automatic Updates

If you have enabled Automatic Upgrades under the Client Setup section of the Repository Options, whenever you launch the Monitor, Slave, or Pulse using the Launcher, it will check the Repository for updates and upgrade itself automatically if necessary before starting the selected application.

Note that the upgrade will only trigger when launching applications through the Launcher. Also, if the Launcher is running as a service on Windows, launching the Monitor will not trigger an update.

Remote Administration

If you have enabled Remote Administration under the Client Setup section of the Repository Options, you will be able to control the Slave or Pulse applications remotely, and remotely execute arbitrary commands. Note that it may be a potential security risk to leave it running if you are connected to the internet and are not behind a firewall. In this case, you should leave Remote Administration disabled.

Launcher Menu Options

Right-click on the Launcher system tray icon to bring up the Launcher menu. The available options are listed below. Note that if the Launcher is running as a service or daemon, this menu is unavailable because the system tray icon will be hidden.

../_images/launcher_menu.png

Launch Monitor

Launches the Monitor application. If the Repository has been upgraded recently, and Automatic Updates is enabled, this will automatically upgrade the client machine.

Launch Monitor for Repository

Provides a sub-menu to allow the launching of a new instance of Monitor connecting to a known repository directly, via a Proxy Server or enter a NEW repository to connect to. If the Repository has been upgraded recently, and Automatic Updates is enabled, this will automatically upgrade the client machine.

Launch Slave(s)

Launches the Slave application. If this machine has been configured to run more than one Slave instance, this will launch all of them. If the Repository has been upgraded recently, and Automatic Updates is enabled, this will automatically upgrade the client machine.

Launch Slave By Name

Launch a specific Slave instance, or add/remove Slave instances from this machine (if enabled for the current user). Note that new Slave instances must have names that only contain alphanumeric characters, underscores, or hyphens. See the documentation on running Multiple Slaves On One Machine for more information. (If user group permissions allow)

Local Slave Controls

Opens the Local Slave Controls window, which allows you to control and configure the Slave that runs on your machine. (If user group permissions allow)

Launch Slave at Startup

If enabled, the Slave will launch when the Launcher starts up.

Restart Slave If It Stalls

If enabled, the Launcher will try to restart the Slave on the machine if it stalls.

Scripts

Allows you to run general scripts that you can create. Note that these are the same scripts that you can access from the Scripts menu in the Monitor. Check out the Monitor Scripts documentation for more information.

Submit

Allows you to submit jobs for different rendering plug-ins. Note that these are the same submission scripts that you can access from the Submit menu in the Monitor. More information regarding the Monitor submission scripts for each plug-in can be found in the Plug-Ins section of the documentation. You can also add your own submission scripts to the submission menu. Check out the Monitor Scripts documentation for more information.

Change Repository…

Change the Repository that the client connects to. (If user group permissions allow)

Change User…

Change the current user on the client. (If user group permissions allow)

Change License Server…

Change the license server that the Slave connects to. (If user group permissions allow)

Change Region…

Change the region that the machine belongs to. (If user group permissions allow)

Keep Local Repository Cache

If enabled, a local copy of all repository based scripts will be stored locally on the machine. (If user group permissions allow)

Explore Log Folder

Opens the Deadline log folder on the machine.

About Deadline Launcher

Opens the Deadline About dialog.

Command Line Options

To run the Launcher from a command prompt or terminal window, navigate to the Deadline bin folder (Windows or Linux) or the Resources folder (Mac OS X) and run the ‘deadlinelauncher’ application. To view all available command line arguments, you can run the following:

deadlinelauncher -help

Available Options

To start the Monitor with the Launcher, use the -monitor option. If another Launcher is already running, this will tell the existing Launcher to start the Monitor. If an upgrade is available, this will trigger an automatic upgrade:

deadlinelauncher -monitor

To start the Slave with the Launcher, use the -slave option. If another Launcher is already running, this will tell the existing Launcher to start the Slave. If an upgrade is available, this will trigger an automatic upgrade:

deadlinelauncher -slave

To launch specific Slaves with Launcher, after the -slaves option use the -slavenames option along with a comma-separated list of Slave name suffixes. The resulting Slave names will have the unique suffixes appended to the base Slave name:

deadlinelauncher -slave -slavenames "suffix1,suffix2"

To start Pulse with the Launcher, use the -pulse option. If another Launcher is already running, this will tell the existing Launcher to start Pulse. If an upgrade is available, this will trigger an automatic upgrade:

deadlinelauncher -pulse

To start the Balancer with the Launcher, use the -balancer option. If another Launcher is already running, this will tell the existing Launcher to start the Balancer. If an upgrade is available, this will trigger an automatic upgrade:

deadlinelauncher -balancer

To start the License Forwarder with the Launcher, use the -licenseforwarder option. If another Launcher is already running, this will tell the existing Launcher to start the License Forwarder. If an upgrade is available, this will trigger an automatic upgrade:

deadlinelauncher -licenseforwarder

To start the Proxy Server with the Launcher, use the -proxyserver option. If another Launcher is already running, this will tell the existing Launcher to start the Proxy Server. If an upgrade is available, this will trigger an automatic upgrade:

deadlinelauncher -proxyserver

To start the Web Service with the Launcher, use the -webservice option. If another Launcher is already running, this will tell the existing Launcher to start the Web Service. If an upgrade is available, this will trigger an automatic upgrade:

deadlinelauncher -webservice

To trigger an automatic upgrade if one is available, use the -upgrade flag:

deadlinelauncher -upgrade

To prevent the Slave from being started if the Launcher is configured to launch the Slave at startup:

deadlinelauncher -noslave

To run the Launcher without a user interface, use the -nogui option. Note that if the Launcher is running in this mode, if you launch the Slave or Pulse through the Launcher, they will also run without a user interface:

deadlinelauncher -nogui
deadlinelauncher -nogui -slave

To shutdown the Launcher if it’s already running, use the -shutdown option:

deadlinelauncher -shutdown

To shutdown the Slaves, Pulse, and Balancer on the machine before shutting down the Launcher, use the -shutdownall option:

deadlinelauncher -shutdownall

Launcher As A Service

When installing the Deadline Client, you can choose to install the Launcher as a service (Windows) or a daemon (Linux and Mac OS X). If you want to configure the Launcher to run as a service or daemon after the Client has been installed, simply run the Client installer again and enable the service or daemon option during installation.

There are also some considerations that need to be made when installing the Launcher as a service or daemon. See the Installing as a Service or Daemon documentation for more information.

Manually Installing the Launcher Service on Windows

On Windows, you can use Deadline Command along with the following commands to install or uninstall the Launcher service:

InstallLauncherService               Installs the Deadline Launcher Service, and
                                     optionally starts it.
  [true/false]                       Whether or not to start the Launcher Service
                                     after it has been installed (optional)


InstallLauncherServiceLogOn          Installs the Deadline Launcher Service with the
                                     given account, and optionally starts it.
  [User Name]                        The account user name
  [Password]                         The account password
  [true/false]                       Whether or not to start the Launcher Service
                                     after it has been installed (optional)


UninstallLauncherService             Stops and uninstalls the Deadline Launcher
                                     Service.


StartLauncherService                 Starts the Deadline Launcher Service if it is
                                     running.


StopLauncherService                  Stops the Deadline Launcher Service if it is
                                     running.

Here is an example command line to install the service:

deadlinecommand.exe -InstallLauncherServiceLogOn "USER" "PASSWORD"

Here is an example command line to uninstall the service:

deadlinecommand.exe -UninstallLauncherService

FAQ

Why should the Launcher application be left running on the client machines?

Its main purpose is to provide a means of remote communication between the Monitor and the Slave applications. If it’s not running, the Slave will have to be stopped and started manually.

In addition, whenever you launch the Monitor or Slave using the Launcher, it will check the Repository for updates and upgrade itself automatically if necessary before starting the selected application. If the Launcher is not running, updates will not be detected.

Finally, the Launcher can detect if the Slave running on the machine has stalled, and restart it.

Can I run the Launcher without a user interface?

Yes, you can do this by passing the -nogui command line argument to the Launcher application:

deadlinelauncher -nogui

I have Idle Detection enabled, but the Launcher doesn’t start the Slave on Linux when it’s been idle long enough.

Please ensure you comply with our System Requirements for Linux.