UPDATED! InWorldz: What Can You Do to Save Your Inventory Before the Grid Shuts Down?

INworldz GoFundMe.png
InWorldz GoFundMe page

Here are some tips for people who want to preserve as much of their InWorldz inventory as possible before InWorldz shuts down and a new grid is set up by Beth Reischl and her team.

First, if you want to support InWorldz and their efforts to start up a new replacement grid, you can donate to their GoFundMe campaign. (UPDATE: This has now been closed.) If they don’t raise enough money, there will probably be no replacement grid. They have stalled just short of their goal of US$17,000, because some people who originally thought they were paying to keep InWorldz going (rather than pay to start up a new grid) have since withdrawn their pledges. As Beth Reischl has stated:

So here’s where things stand. I asked in Discord this afternoon, once we hit our goal, then what? What about next month? After much agonizing and upset, it was suggested by the residents that we use these monies to start a new grid. We’ll be able to move OARs, profiles, groups. Inventory can only be taken that can be put in a box to be OAR filed. We’ll be opening the sandbox for people who have no region to place their items and can get them back.

If you are NOT ok with this, I urge you to please withdraw your support on the page. I do not want to take anyone’s money who is not ok with this! Otherwise, please start boxing your items up on your region or ask a friend or tomorrow I’ll be opening the Sandboxes up for people!

The best and most complete advice comes from InWorldz staff member Jim Tarber. You might want to go over and read his entire comment in full, but here’s a summary:

Okay, let’s talk instead about what we can save.  We’re in emergency mode due to the unavoidable sudden news that the servers will shut down Friday, so the “plan” has been under constant change while Elenia tries to keep you informed and yet we also try to adjust it as we learn more information.  It’s not so much something planned, as much as an emergency response.

When the servers are shut down on us, there will be no more assets. There will be no more inventories.  We have large arrays of both and the sheer size of the data means we can’t possibly copy it somewhere else in time, even if we could afford to double up the storage temporarily and pay for the very large bandwidth costs to copy outside Rackspace. So we need to plan for the loss of user inventories and assets.

There are many wonderful places to visit in InWorldz, and so saving the regions where possible is obviously a priority too. Fortunately, we can grab is an object archive (OAR) file for each region.  There’s an option to store assets which we don’t normally include, because we normally have the assets on their on servers.  We can save each region’s contents into an OAR file with assets.

Now I want to impress upon you that this isn’t an orderly evacuation, the house is on fire due to the timing of the server shutdowns and this is your chance to grab the important stuff before it burns down.  What you consider important is up to you, and how much effort you put into it as well.

To allow us to capture as much content as possible, for anything that you consider important enough to be worth your effort, please take that inventory item and rez it in a region either that you own, or one of the InWorldz Sandbox regions. If it’s not an object, rez a box label the box, and add the inventory item to the Contents of the box.

If you do not have a sim on which to rez your inventory items, Beth Reischl has just turned off the auto-return on four of the six InWorldz sandboxes this morning (you can find them by opening your map in your viewer and searching for “InWorldz Sandbox”). Use InWorldz Sandbox 1, 2 3, or 4, NOT 5 or 6. InWorldz staff will do an OAR archive of items placed on the sandbox sims, as Beth says:

OK all 4 sandboxes are opened up
I will do an OAR tonight for it
clean it off
do an OAR tomorrow night
clean it off
then another OAR
that way everybody has a chance
5 and 6 are NOT open
those are PLUS regions and I can’t touch them, they are hardcoded

Here is a picture of me rezzing out some of my items on the InWorldz Sandbox 1 sim. I have also placed a copy of some items that cannot be rezzed (such as body shapes and alphas) into a box:

Rezzing Inventory on a Sandbox.png

Hopefully, that is enough to be able to save them. But there are no guarantees here. As Jim Tarber states:

Now, I don’t know where these OAR files might get used. We haven’t tested loading them on an OpenSim region, just Halcyon servers. It’s difficult to test all the combinations of things. It’s a “best effort” in short time. There are lots of possibilities of where to go from here, everything from:

  • revive IW later (with a clean slate of servers), to
  • establishing a smaller new grid, to
  • creating an only place you can log in and access these OAR files already rezzed up in a region, to
  • just telling everyone to take them to a SimOnAStick installation or an OpenSim grid.  All of these are problematic in some way.

I prefer something in the first three, but there are all kinds of legal, financial and logistic problems with them.  I keep looking at the third case as a possibility, at least for me personally, as a favor to everyone who has been a part of InWorldz (and as the person who implemented the permissions system here!)

Hopefully, this information will be useful to you. You have to do this before Friday, which is when the InWorldz servers will be shut down by Rackspace.

Note: If you are an InWorldz content creator who does NOT want your items ported over to a new grid, you must post a message to this thread in order to request that your items are deleted from any OAR backup that is made by InWorldz.

Here’s a summary of the latest plan of action regarding OARs:

Sounds like this is the current plan on OARs: Ele (Beth Reischl) will make two OARs for each region. One will only be able to contain items you created yourself. That one can be taken to any grid you wish. The second one will be unfliltered, meaning that it will contain items you did not create but own. Those will only be able to be uploaded to the new IW grid. When they are uploaded there they will show you as owner but still show original creator and maintain all perms as you had in your inv before And any creator who wants their items to be removed from the database may do so so if a creator did that and you owned an item that one would not port to the new IW grid.

InWOrldz Rezzing Boxes.png
People rezzing boxes of inventory on one of the InWorldz sandboxes

UPDATE 12:34 p.m.: Beth Reischl has just decided to stop donations to her GoFundMe page, citing “too much vitriol” as the reason. Jim Tarber has added in the official InWorldz Discord server:

There are some false ideas rolling around, causing a lot of commotion, and even drowning out Elenia (Beth Reischl) here in Discord when she tries to show how it should not be a concern. For example the “license” stuff, the “just take content to other grids” stuff, the claims of IP violations, etc. The process hasn’t been decided but she tried to point out that we can take two OAR files, one to back up the full region (for us) and one that is filtered by creator for the user that you can take anywhere. This is no different than the previous ability to export your own creations. But that got lost in the noise in here I think. I’ve suggest she stop trying to communicate in here since there are just too many people flailing instead of listening. Post more concise summaries in the forum instead, or a new FAQ. But people, you can’t imagine the pressure this constant marathon of an AMA (ask me anything) takes on a person. Give her a bit of a break, especially considering we still have a lot of work to get done by Friday. All to try to save as much of your content as possible. I don’t know for what, but if we don’t save it now we’ll have no options.

SECOND UPDATE 8:57 p.m.: Beth has posted a schedule of which InWorldz sims will have OAR archiving done, so you can check it to see how much time to have to rezz out your inventory items. She adds:

InWorldz Sandboxes 1 – 4 will be nightly backed up and items removed for others.

After we produce the OAR file, the items will be cleared from the region and it will be taken down. This way you’ll know when the OAR file has been done. I know everyone wants more time, but we don’t have any more time to give. So by producing a full OAR, we can process them over the next week to get items filtered out and moved on to their region owners.

Jim adds:

Further clarification, by “processing the OARs”, what this means is “saving what’s rezzed in the region”.

User inventories will be lost, so to preserve desired items (I know this is often a lot and way more than can be saved, but do your best, at your discretion and desires), you can rez things from user inventory into the region and thereby include it in these content saves.

There are no guarantees here, we’re just trying to grab as much as possible before Rackspace takes down the servers, but your best chance of preserving anything from inventory that isn’t already rezzed depends on the type of inventory item:

  • Objects (with the object/box icon) need to be rezzed directly in the region (anywhere) in order to be more confident that they will be found in the saved data. Note that this includes things you might not think of as objects, such as HUDs, AOs, etc. If you aren’t sure, use the icon to determine if it’s actually an object.
  • Non-objects (textures, notecards, scripts, etc, things you can’t rez directly into a region) are safe inside a box rezzed in the region.

Note that objects/boxes inside objects/boxes probably won’t make it. Our tests seemed to indicate problems there.  So for example, if you have a rezzer of some kind that you want to preserve, and it’s not already rezzed, rez it.  That covers a lot, and for some things that are no-mod that you can’t pull out nested objects from, there isn’t really much that can be done. We will lose some things, probably a lot.  Normally a grid closes you lose everything, but we have a small amount of time to be different.  That’s why there is so much effort going on to try to save as much as possible.

Creators: it’s still just as okay to put out your objects as it was in the past, your creations aren’t going to other grids unless you take them there yourself. Any OAR files given to end users for the purposes of a move to another grid will be filtered by creator, so customers won’t be able to take your creations unless you present them on the other grid.

I’m not really sure what Ele’s plans are for rebirth here, an IW 2.0 or whatever, but at this time we’re working hard to focus on preserving the InWorldz grid data, including user accounts, profiles, partnerships, groups, memberships, friends lists, mute lists, etc.  If she can bring it back up (and she has indicated she intends to!), you should be able to log back in again with your current credentials when the time comes.

Unfortuntely keeping the Rackspace servers up is not going to happen.  Your support and encouragement to continue anyway by rebuilding, especially in the GoFundMe campaign, has encouraged this attempt to continue.  And a reminder that if you have contributed there but would like a refund, please initiate that refund request on the website and Ele is more than willing to confirm the refund for you.

UPDATE July 26th: Someone asked me to add the following note: The OAR archives will be taken whole, but they are NOT going anywhere until Elenia/Beth gets them scrubbed of any content where its creators that have requested it to be removed, and the OARs going to non-InWorldz destinations will be totally scrubbed to have user-created content only. Otherwise they won’t upload because of permission issues.

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