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Old 25-02-2010, 08:21 AM   #1
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Default Out of Memory

Hi all

I'm working on making a short science fiction movie with all the special effects (blizzard, cloth, hair, explosions, lasers) in Maya 2008 Unlimited and I occassionally run into out of memory messages.

I have a Pentium-4 PC with 2GB RAM, 13.6GB hard disk (only Maya is installed) running Windows XP Pro 32-bit and NVidia's GeForce 400 graphics card with 256MB RAM. I've limited the undos to 5 and set the swap size to between 2048MB - 4096MB and turned on the /3GB switch in boot.ini.

But I'm still getting out of memory occassionally and interactive animation viewing in Maya is slow (like cloth and hair). I often use high poly model (such as man mesh) and then import another high poly model (such a suit mesh) and when I do things like extensive scaling and running animation on cloth and hair, my PC crashes. I also have not been able to batch render a 200 frame animation scene involving particles for a snow blizzard scene. I have done it from the command line, etc but Maya batch render crashes usually when I get to Frame 74. When I start to render from Frame 74 onwards, the particle animation seems to have stopped and Maya says I do not have a cache file. How do I set one up?

I also do high poly head shots - importing the head.mb and eyes.mb and then creating a hair system. My PC normally crashes when I start to do interactive test animations to see the behaviour of my hair.

I want to know how the Hollywood guys do all those superb animation scene - complex, full of details and at high speed without experiencing a crash. Do they use Linux and Maya for Linux and Linux machines with large memories such as 32-64GB? How would such a machine compare with the latest Windows graphic machine (64-bit Windows Vista or 7 with say 8-16GB RAM) when creating all those complex special effects of Hollywood?
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Old 25-02-2010, 10:13 AM   #2
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I think that your main problem is your PC unfortunatly with regards to crashes, if your working on high poly stuff and/ or cloth RAM is very important. And you possible would want to go 64 bit with 8 gig.
"No pressure, no diamonds" Thomas Carlyle
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Old 25-02-2010, 10:29 AM   #3
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Another problem is you have switched on the 3gb switch when you only have 2gb of memory
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Old 25-02-2010, 03:58 PM   #4
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A Pentium 4 machine with 2 GB RAM and a Geforce 400 is at this point in time "low end" especially for a 2008 edition of Maya and many of the other programs involved in making a movie. And with 13.6 GB of hard drive space total, I don't know if you'll even have space to render everything out and comp it (wouldn't particle caches pretty much eat right through that?). I think the Maya help covers particle caching and to be honest, I'm surprised your just "occasionally" running into these issues.

The reason why its crashing when you batch via Maya is because your system has to 1. run the OS 2. Run Maya and 3. Run the batch process, and with such limited resources something is going to buckle. And your interactive viewing is slow because the video card isn't up to the task.

I don't know but I wouldn't waste time comparing what hardware these studios use (as they've invested thousands upon thousands of dollars in that alone) to that of what one guy who is trying to get his animating on, its always good to know but that's about it. It's time for a new machine with a decent processor and as Steve said, a 64 bit OS and 8 GB RAM. Oh yeah, and a 500 GB hard drive is a good start.
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Old 26-02-2010, 07:05 AM   #5
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Default Sob sob sob

Thanks all, really great, helpful replies but sob..sob..sob....$....$...$. I'll show you guys my movie...if I finish it that is! :-(
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