2024-05-30 Extensions Project

Attendees:

  • Brecht Van Lommel
  • Dalai Felinto
  • Pablo Vazquez

Meeting to go over open/standing usability topics, in particular regarding bundles and the internet access (and update) notifications.

Topics

Splashcreen

  • Remove all the messages about checking for updates.
  • Leave the message about --offline-mode.

Status bar

  • Only show icon if there is an update available.
    • No need for the INTERNET_CHECKMARK icon.
  • Show the SYNC icon while checking for update.

Welcome message

  • Tweak it so that users can enable online access right away.
    [ Dismiss ] [ Allow Online Access ]
  • Update the text accordingly (mentions that it can be changed later in System preferences.

Drag and drop

  • Implement a similar friendly welcome message if offline.
  • This should allow users to Allow Online Access, before proceeding to the Install Extension dialog (a wizard of sorts).
  • It does not change online access back to offline aftwards.

Install from disk

  • Need to review unification of legacy and extensions !121926.
    • Change icon to URL + make it not emboss.
  • The plan is to also integrate installing into remote repositories #122302.

Portable bundle

If there is a “bundle” folder at the same level as the blender binary, Blender treat them as a new Bundle Repository.

  • The content of the bundle is a bunch of .zip files.
  • They are all considered as installed.
  • They may be shown as a Bundle Repository (or a Local Repository, to be determined).

This is aimed for people that wants to work 100% offline in a studio or school environment.

Legacy bundle

A .zip with all the former 4.1 add-ons (now extensions) to help the transition from the add-ons era to new extensions.

  • This is aimed at people working offline.
  • Recommended to be used as portable bundle.

This has a few issues:

  • This would be a short-lived solution since it wouldn’t be provided for 4.3 and future release.
  • Portable bundle will already address most of the cases intended to be covered by this. And more, since portable bundle will also accomodate add-ons which were not with Blender, it will be a preferrable solution.

Either way, this decision can be revisited during 4.2 beta, since it wouldn’t require changes in Blender itself.

Core add-ons

Proposal, to minimize the disruption by adding as core add-ons:

  • Rigify
  • Node wrangler
8 Likes

The dozens of people asking for this, repeatedly and emphatically, hasn’t conveyed this?

1 Like

A bunch of different things are being looked into to address the concerns:

  • Bundling a few more add-ons as core
  • For working online, better migration from (now reported missing) add-ons to extensions
  • For working offline, better mechanism to install/distribute a chosen set of extensions with Blender
  • Providing a legacy bundle of 4.1 add-ons, as a one time thing for Blender 4.2 but not later versions

What is in question is if the legacy bundle is very helpful, as it is not a permanent solution. Nor is it clear that this specific solution is actually what many are asking for. What is not in question is if addressing the concerns in general is helpful.

8 Likes

I’m wondering if “Core” is the right name for these add-ons, especially if Rigify and Node Wrangler are bundled. To me it would make sense to call these “Essentials”, just like we have an “Essentials” asset library bundled.

3 Likes

Hi,
I’m following up on the add-on migration process for blender 4.2. Specifically, I’d like to confirm if all installed add-ons (paid, free, and bundled) from 4.1 will automatically be migrated and installed in 4.2?

This has been a common question, and I haven’t been able to find a clear answer yet.

3 Likes

The installed bundled ones won’t be automatically re-installed. But we are looking at making it easy to get them from the extensions platform (while right now they show as missing without any way for you to fix this).

The other add-ons should me automatically migrated and shown as “Legacy” add-ons. If they are not already could you please report as an issue so it can be looked at?

1 Like

But automatically is a strong word. I think it should probably be an option on the splash screen when you first launch 4.2 and choose how to migrate your 4.1 settings.

3 Likes

I don’t think they should be called add-ons, they are just features now.

They’re Extensions. :slight_smile:

If that is the case, then no, I’m not so sure that it is all that important, since it doesn’t really do anything to address the ongoing/longer term issues.

In some ways it may even make things worse, as in many people could well expect that a ‘legacy bundle’ is how future releases are going to be. In other words, instead of downloading one file for a new release, people download two.

They will then all get a surprise when 4.3 is released and there is no ‘legacy bundle’.

As such, more work needs to be done and focused on the first 3 points, ideally with a few more as core, Rigify and Node Wrangler being a good start (with Image as Plane already done), likely next on the list should be Looptools.

4 Likes