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What's new in Alienbrain 8.2 ?


Text Differencing Tool

In the options dialog of Alienbrain 8.2 you can now configure your own differencing tool and don't need to use the one shipped with Alienbrain.

Change Set View

A new ChangeSet view was added to the standard layouts. This view shows the content of the currently active ChangeSet as list. You now have all items of your active ChangeSet visible in one glance. You can easily drag and drop them to other ChangeSets.

Submit Pending Changes

In previous Alienbrain versions you sometimes got the error message that a change could not be submitted because of the items parent had pending changes as well which needed to get submitted first. You now have the option to automatically submit those pending changes on parent objects as well.

New Search Options

Two new search options have been added to the search pane.

Standard search: “Files or folders not changed on the server in the last n days”

History search: “Search only bucketed versions” (Please note that searches on the Alienbrain history can be time expensive.)



Two new options were added to the bucketing template creation:

1. An option to automatically move buckets offline after the bucketing operation.

2. An option to automatically delete a bucket after it got moved offline (see 1.).

Option 2 in conjunction with the other bucketing options, e.g. Regular Expression, is very useful to clean out your file server from files you definitely never use again.

Shared Client Cache

Manage Configurations: This new pane in the Administration Client helps to easily create and manage configuration files for the Shared Client Cache feature.

Manage Mirroring Scripts: This new pane in the Administration Client helps to easily create and manage mirroring scripts to automatically fill the Shared Client Cache with the all versions of your assets of specific projects. Please note that Robocopy needs to be installed in order to run the scripts created by this pane. Robocopy is part of the "Windows Server 2003 Resource Kit" from Microsoft.


64bit Support

Alienbrain 8.2 provides 64bit integrations to the most popular 3D artist tools:

  • Softimage|XSI 7 64bit
  • Autodesk 3dsMax 2009 64bit
  • Autodesk Maya 2008 64bit

List of Integrations

  • Softimage|XSI: 5.0, 5.1, 6.0, 6.5, 7.0 (32bit/64bit)
  • Autodesk Maya: 8.0, 8.5, 2008 (32bit/64bit)
  • Autodesk 3dsMax: 9.0 (32bit/64bit), 10.0 (2008) (32bit/64bit), 11.0 (2009) (32bit/64bit)
  • Autodesk StudioTools/AliasStudio: 13.0, 2008
  • Photoshop: 8.0 (CS), 9.0 (CS2), CS3
  • Visual Studio: VS2003, VS2005, VS2008

Visual Studio Integrations

The performance of the Visual Studio integration was optimized when connecting to remote Alienbrain servers (using the RCS or a slow network connection).

Resolved Issues

  • On some machines the Alienbrain installer crashed when installing DirectX 3D libraries.
  • The Java Client installer of Alienbrain 8.1 for Macintosh operating systems failed to install all client components.
  • Auto-bucketing Tool (Only available on the Alienbrain forum) didn't work correctly when used on Japanese machines. The bucket size was ignored on Japanese machines.
  • In rare situations the Alienbrain server ignored newly installed licenses when older licenses expired.
  • In rare situations the Alienbrain server tried to allocate a huge amount or memory. Depending on the amount of memory requested the server either shut down due to a low memory condition, or became unresponsive until memory could get released again.
  • Sometimes the projects automatically got removed from the active projects list of an Alienbrain server.
  • Custom Administration Client views did not work on Vista.
  • When running the Alienbrain Client on a 64bit operating system Araxis Merge didn't run correctly. You received an error message that the file system plugin (fsplugin) could not be found.
  • The Alienbrain Client was locking all customzation .Net modules. If multiple instances of the Alienbrain Client were running only the first instance could load the modules correctly. Now the instances no longer lock the modules. They can now be loaded into all running Alienrbain Client instances.
  • When running the differencing tool of Alienbrain on two identical items, you get asked if you would like to continue to show the differences of those two items. This confirmation dialog could not be dismissed with "ESC".
  • Importing items from a network share was not possible.
  • The Pre_Move_Dialog was fired after the dialog was displayed.
  • The Pre_Rollback_Dialog wasn't fired when calling "Rollback" on a folder object.

What's new in Alienbrain 8.1 ?


Windows Vista Support

Alienbrain 8.1 now supports Windows Vista as a client platform. You will notice that on Windows Vista the Alienbrain Client installation is split to two different locations. While the “alienbrain\Client\Application” path by default is still located in the “C:\Program Files” folder, the “alienbrain\Client\Customizations” and “alienbrain\Logs” folder are stored in “C:\ProgramData”.

Mac OS X Leopard Support

Alienbrain 8.1 now supports Mac OS X Leopard as a client platfrom for the Cross Platform Client.

Direct X

The preview functionality of Alienbrain 8.1 was extended. Now DirectX Files (.x files) can be previewed in 3d.


Starting from Alienbrain 8.1 the property inheritance of shares changed. Now the following inheritance order is used: - The share itself - The shares target (not inherited) - The parent of the share (inherited)

Execution '.lnk' Files

The “Run” command can be found in the Alienbrain context menu of each executable file (*.bat, *.exe, *.cmd, *.com). Now this command can also be found on .lnk files linking to executable files. Starting from Alienbrain 8.1 all executable files will be started in the working path directory. In earlier versions the “Run” command executed these files in the Alienbrain installation directory.

Branching Feature

In earlier version the branch feature was turned on by default after a clean installation of the Alienbrain Client application. Now branching is turned off.

Recycle Bin

Showing the recycle bin was turned off in earlier versions of Alienbrain by default. Now after a clean installation the recycle bin will be displayed in the tree and list view of the Alienbrain Client application.


Support for

  • Photoshop CS3
  • Autodesk 3ds Max 2008
  • Autodesk Maya 2008



The functionality to create bucket templates which was introduced in Alienbrain 8.0, is now moved to a separate view in the Administration Client application. Templates created with this view can also be used for the automated bucketing tool.

Resolved issues

  • In unsupported setups where multiple Alienbrain Client instances were running on the same machine with changes done in each client, the change sets didn’t refresh upon submit. Only the visible changes got submitted. Now a change set will be refreshed automatically before the submit command is executed.
  • When activating a project in Alienbrain 8.0 this project got automatically synchronized to the CCS before the user got the chance to disable synchronization. Alienbrain 8.1 fixes this issue.
  • The package installer now writes a more informative error message to the log file if the installer cannot find the file that needs to be installed.
  • UserManagement: Special characters, such as characters used in regular expressions, caused synchronization issues when used in user names. Alienbrain 8.1 fixes this issue
  • Renaming a project caused the loss of the messenger history. This issue has been fixed.
  • If showing of disk items was turned off the search for unimported files led to broken links when displaying the search results.
  • The custom location for assets when creating a project was ignored in Alienbrain 8.0.
  • The SDK of Alienbrain 8.0 showed the progress bar on specific operations although it was told to hide them.
  • The size unit (mb, gb, tb) in the bucket info filed of the “Fill Bucket” view (Administration Client) was missing.
  • Long user names were not completely shown in the Manage Workflow Dialog drop down list. Now the dropped down list is extended to show dynamically show longer names as well. A tooltip showing the complete user name was also added.
  • QuickTime: In some installations the preview of local QuickTime movie files did not work correctly.
  • Renaming a project caused the loss of the messenger history. This issue has been fixed.
  • The preview of messenger attachments was not working correctly for image attachments. The previewed image was removed from the preview when hovering into the preview.
  • Araxis Merge did not work correctly. An error message was displayed in Araxis Merge.
  • The column order of the list view got resetted when adding or removing columns.
  • Copying an URL from the Alienbrain address bar and pasting it to a different application corrupts the URL if it contains unicode characters.
  • (Japanese Release): In the Japanese version of Alienbrain 8.0 the import command might fail if the involved file contains special Japanese characters (KATAKANA + number).

What's new in Alienbrain 8.0 ?


Branching: Immediate Version Split

Goal: Enable distinct sign-off workflow for each branch after a branch split

Implementation: The Branch creation now contains a new option, allowing users to specify whether they wish to have:

Items in the new branch sharing properties (meta data) with their parent items (those in the parent branch) until a new version of the item is created in one or the other branch. This was the default and unique behavior until now. OR items in the new branch being, at the time of the branch creation, meta data independent from their parents (they will not share the same properties). This is now the default behavior.

Remote Client

Goal: Improve performance for remote users.

Implementation: The Remote Client set-up is a set-up applied to your full-featured client and designed to speed up browsing operation via a remote or an otherwise slow or insufficient client-server connection. The Remote Client set-up can be activated or deactivated at any time.

Shared Cache

Goal: Improve the speed of GetLatest operations when working remotely on an Alienbrain server.

Implementation: A shared file cache repository will be created at each remote site. If several people are using the same file from the Alienbrain server, the file needs only to be streamed once from the remote Alienbrain server. All subsequent GetLatest operations will retrieve the file from the cache.


Fill Bucket Re-design

Goal: Robust and powerful Bucketing User Interface, faster search for bucketable items on the server.

Implementation: The bucket feature in the Administration Client has been redesigned in order to provide a specific view instead of the Bucketing wizard. New search criteria’s and the use of user defined templates have been introduced. Buckets will be runnable through standard search or templates on the selected project(s).

Central License Server (CLS)

Goal: Manage licenses centrally across several Alienbrain servers (for example in case of load distribution).

Implementation: Every project server will forward license requests to the CLS. Every new user who connects to a project (from any machine) will lock one of the available licenses. This license will have no time restriction and will strictly belong to this user. The CLS offers a function to free this license should the user stop connecting to projects. This license can then be assigned to another user. If the CLS is unavailable or unreachable, project servers will fallback to their local license cache thus enabling already licensed users to connect to projects.

Project Grouping

Goal: Grouping projects together for easier project administration (enable bulk operation such as Database Backup and Consistency Check across projects)

Implementation: Administrative groups will be used to select projects and apply pre-defined tasks to all of the selected projects, such as:

Scheduled Backups: Backups schedules can now be configured for backup project groups in the Administration client. Consistency Checks Consistency checks schedules can now be configured for Consistency check project groups Administration client. Further Changes Administration client/User Management: The Search for user feature enables now to search for substrings and to display all possible users that match the substring. Service Health Monitor license warning: License count can be displayed in the Service Health Monitor. The threshold the warning can be configured in the Administration client/Central License Management.


CLR for .NET Framework SDK

The Common Language Runtime (CLR) loader is an optional component of the Alienbrain SDK for .NET. If chosen, it is installed into the Alienbrain client installation folder (into subfolder '\Client\Customizations\Bin'). When the client is started, the CLR loader scans the subfolder '\Client\Customizations\modules.net' for .dll or .exe files to load.

These modules stay loaded until the client is closed. They can access the client instance via Namespace.GetInstance and then register event listeners for the client. With this loader you can now implement event handlers (e.g. Pre_/Post_[command] events or context menu events) in any .NET language.

The CLR loader does also recognize files with extension .cs, .js or .vb and tries to compile these files automatically with the corresponding compiler (CSharp, JScript.NET or VB.NET). It will recompile a source file only, if it is newer than the corresponding assembly file. Otherwise it will use the existing assembly file.

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This page was last modified 02:47, 26 Aug 2008.
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