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Loki Render - create your own render farm


lokimasterLoki Render is a cross-platform job queue manager for rendering 3D frames. Commonly called a "render farm" or "distributed network rendering", it serves Blender render jobs to a group of computers. Rendering 3D frames is CPU intensive and can take a long time, so having several computers work together can greatly decrease the total time needed. The more computers you have, the faster you can crank out those frames.

Daniel Petersen wrote:

A new version of Loki Render has just been released!

Loki Render allows you to create your own render farm, serving Blender render jobs to a group of computers. Loki is easy to setup, and runs on Linux, Windows or Mac, making it a quick, flexible and painless distributed network rendering solution!

The most notable new feature is that it runs on multiple platforms, (thanks to the Mono framework), so now you can roll out a mixed platform render farm! A lot of effort has been put into usability; making the setup as painless as possible, being intuitive to use, and providing real-time meaningful feedback during use.

Note that Loki Render hands out frame by frame tasks in the render farm, but doesn't split up frames for parallel rendering. Loki Render was designed for cranking out frames for animation;^)

So, check it out, and happy blending/animating:-)


About the Author

Avatar image for Bart Veldhuizen
Bart Veldhuizen

I have a LONG history with Blender - I wrote some of the earliest Blender tutorials, worked for Not a Number and helped run the crowdfunding campaign that open sourced Blender (the first one on the internet!). I founded BlenderNation in 2006 and have been editing it every single day since then ;-) I also run the Blender Artists forum and I'm Head of Community at Sketchfab.


  1. good info,Although I think GLSl is tomorrow real time render which will make present farming rendering that of a 1901 technology. I hope that a developer will code a two rendering system in one with a convention data matrix to output to photo in real time. Ok, the light source need to be constrain to the object not in the 3d environment. 3d environment is infinitive and will absorbed data to max.yes,this how scientist think its call "crazy thinking". got that Ton!

  2. With the Mono framework. It's an alternative to the Microsoft .NET framework and will (generally speaking), run .NET compiled applications, or Mono compiled applications. The Mono framework can be installed on Windows, Linux or Mac OS X.

    To use Loki Render on Mac OS X:

    1. Go to the Mono download page here:

    2. Click on 'Mac OS X'

    3. Click on 'Mono 2.4_7 Framework - Universal', download and install the package.

    4. Go to the directory where you saved the loki_0.5exe file.

    5. Either from the command line or a shortcut/launcher, use the line 'mono loki_0.5.exe' to start Loki Render!

  3. Fired this up on a couple of (Windows) machines at home, works nicely very simple and straight forward. Would like to thank the author since it's a real nice little util and has a great potential to be developed further!

  4. Loki Render 0.5.1 minor release

    This minor release brings some great features and bug fixes.
    New features:

    * Job and task progress is now automatically saved between Loki master sessions. This means that all current job and task info is saved when you quit Loki master, then restored the next time you start Loki Master.
    * Loki now supports a no GUI/command line grunt mode. This makes it possible to launch Loki grunt from scripts; great for automation on large farms. Simply pass the 'gruntcl' argument to Loki on startup. (e.g. 'mono loki_0.5.1.exe gruntcl')


    * The Select Role window now correctly exits when user closes the window.
    * On Loki master startup, 'Total cores:' now correctly reports '0' when no grunts are connected.

    Please report any bugs to the tracker:


  5. Tom (not Ton) on

    Cool, I had a pile of computer parts on that my wallet is much lighter I've got another computer up and running and so far so for the other 3 on the way.

    Just setting it up I had to learn how to do some stuff, so that alone is a good thing.

    One question, and I plan to post over there in the forums once I register, but is there any way to report render times somehow? I'm not familiar with this kind of thing.

    Also, clicking the "online help" killed loki running through mono on XP SP2

  6. Hi,
    Sorry I haven't visited this announcement in a while ,so I didn't see you questions. If you post questions on Loki Render's forum here:

    I'll see them come in and be able to get to them faster:-)

    To run loki on Mac OS X:
    1. Open a terminal window (go to Applications -> Utilities).
    2. Type 'mono loki_052.exe' from the directory where you put the loki exe file.

    If you need more information on how to use a terminal, this looks like a good resource:

    And here's more information on using mono on Mac:

    I don't own a Mac so can't test this, but it ought to work. Let me know how it goes.

    Tom(not Ton),
    The latest version (0.5.2) now reports the last task time in the grunts list, so you can see how long each of the grunts is taking to render frames.

    Yikes, is clicking 'online help' consistently killing the whole app? I only have access to a Vista machine right now, so I can't test on XP. If you could provide more info that would be great (the Loki forums is a good place to talk). Thanks for letting me know!

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