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* 1. Introduction
* 1.1. Features
* 2. New in this release
* 2.1. New Features
* 2.2. Enhancements
* 2.3. Optimizations
* 2.4. Examples
* 2.5. Tools
* 2.6. Documentation
* 2.7. Bug Fixes
* 2.8. Known Bugs
* 3. About
* 3.1. Operating System Support
* 3.2. Window System Support
* 3.3. Documentation
* 3.4. Support
* 4. Errata
1. Introduction
Welcome to Equalizer, the standard middleware to create and deploy
parallel, scalable OpenGL applications. This release introduces major new
features, most notably asynchronous readbacks, region of interest and
thread affinity for increased performance during scalable rendering.
Equalizer 1.4 is a feature release extending the 1.0 API, distilling over
seven years of development and decades of experience into a feature-rich,
high-performance and mature parallel rendering framework and an
object-oriented high-level network library. It is intended for all
application developers creating parallel, interactive OpenGL applications.
Equalizer 1.4 can be retrieved by downloading the source code or one of
the precompiled packages.
1.1. Features
Equalizer provides the following major features to facilitate the
development and deployment of scalable OpenGL applications. A detailed
feature list can be found on the Equalizer website.
* Runtime Configurability: An Equalizer application is configured
automatically or manually at runtime and can be deployed on laptops,
multi-GPU workstations and large-scale visualization clusters without
* Runtime Scalability: An Equalizer application can benefit from
multiple graphics cards, processors and computers to scale rendering
performance, visual quality and display size.
* Distributed Execution: Equalizer applications can be written to
support cluster-based execution. Equalizer furnishes and uses the
Collage network library, a cross-platform C++ library for building
heterogenous, distributed applications.
* Support for Stereo and Immersive Environments: Equalizer supports
stereo rendering head tracking, head-mounted displays and other
advanced features for immersive Virtual Reality installations.
2. New in this release
Equalizer 1.4 contains the following features, enhancements, bug fixes and
documentation changes:
2.1. New Features
* Asynchronous readback support
* Automatic CPU-GPU affinity
* Application-specific scaling to visualize data in a scale different to
1:1 in immersive environments
* VirtualGL-aware auto-configuration
* Region of interest for scalable rendering and load-balancing
* Zeroconf support and node discovery
* Blocking co::Object::commit
* Extensible packet dispatch
2.2. Enhancements
* System window without drawable buffer
* Mac OS X: Build universal libraries even when AGL is enabled
* auto-config: add direct send configuration
* auto-config: save generated configuration to .eqc file
* auto-config: application-specific flags for multiprocess execution
2.3. Optimizations
* Multi-GPU NVidia optimization
* load_equalizer: split along longest axis in 2D mode
* InfiniBand RDMA: significant performance increase using a different
underlying implementation
2.4. Examples
* eqPly: Add command line option to disable region of interest
* eqPly: Parallel kd-tree construction when using gcc 4.4 or later
* eqPly: runtime-changeable model unit scaling
* eqPly: Create all VBOs/display lists during the first frame
2.5. Tools
* eqPlyConverter: New offline tool to generate binary cache for eqPly
2.6. Documentation
The following documentation has been added or substantially improved since
the last release:
* Full API documentation for the public Equalizer API
* The Programming and User Guide has been extended to 107 pages and 60
* Tile compounds using a pull-based task distribution for volume
rendering and interactive raytracing
2.7. Bug Fixes
Equalizer 1.4 includes various bugfixes over the 1.2.1 release, including
the following:
* 149: Channel::configInit initID always 0
* 147: Repeated Canvas::useLayout OFF/ON causes violation of DRAW_SYNC
thread ordering
* 139: Tile compound readback broken
* 120: Async readback deallocation
* 118: OS X: Async readback doesn't work
* 137: 1-window.DFR broken
* 136: compositor assertion when using custom frames
* 135: Command line option --eq-layout broken
* 131: seqPly --help launches application
* 127: Problem with getdomainname() in SocketConnection::listen()
* 124: Upload plugins are not freed
* 121: Packaging: netperf conflicts with other packages
* 117: Race with async channel tasks
2.8. Known Bugs
The following bugs were known at release time. Please file a Bug Report if
you find any other issue with this release.
* 138: Windows: PBO error when rendering
* 78: AGL: assertion on interaction with multiple GPUs
* 77: 7-window.DB.PIXEL.eqc broken
* 76: does not load-balance
* 49: eqPixelBench crash with double free
* 19: zoom readback with FBO
* 18: zoom: depth readback does not work
* 17: AGL: Window close does not work
3. About
Equalizer is a cross-platform toolkit, designed to run on any modern
operating system, including all Unix variants and the Windows operating
system. A compatibility matrix can be found on the Equalizer website.
Equalizer requires at least OpenGL 1.1, but uses newer OpenGL features
when available. Version 1.4 has been tested on:
3.1. Operating System Support
Equalizer uses CMake to create a platform-specific build environment. The
following platforms and build environments are tested:
* Linux: Ubuntu 11.10, 12.04, RHEL 6.1 (Makefile, i386, x64)
* Windows: 7 (Visual Studio 2008, i386, x64)
* Mac OS X: 10.7 (Makefile, XCode, i386, x64)
3.2. Window System Support
* X11: Full support for all documented features
* WGL: Full support for all documented features
* AGL: Full support for all documented features
3.3. Documentation
The Programming and User Guide is available as a hard-copy and online. The
API documentation can be found on the Equalizer website.
As with any open source project, the available source code, in particular
the shipped examples provide a reference for developing or porting
applications. The Developer Documentation on the website provides further
design documents for specific features. XCode users can download a
Documentation Set.
3.4. Support
Technical questions can be posted to the Developer Mailing List, or
directly to
Commercial support, custom software development and porting services are
available from Eyescale. Please contact for further
4. Errata
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