Mobile NRC monitoring



New to LightWave 2020 is the ability to monitor network rendering on an Android device remotely. This allows you to fire off your render and keep an eye on how it's doing when away from the studio.

Setting Up

When you start LightWave 2020 NRC for the first time it will generate a unique identifier for use with the mobile app. This is the NRC Key in the new NRC preferences Monitoring tab:

NRC Monitoring Prefs in Windows and macOS

Items on this tab are as follows:

  • NRC Key - Unique identifier for the NRC Controller generated on the first run
  • NRC Identifier - Human-readable name for the controller (optional). If none is set here or in the mobile app, the NRC key value will be used instead
  • Enable Monitoring - This needs to be checked for monitoring to work at all, and should be checked befoqre you ````start rendering. Once checked, there are two further options:
    • Direct Access - The default access method for monitoring; this requires that you open an IP address and specific port in your Windows services.msc tool. This method allows viewing of rendered images
      • Server Port - The default port number is 4431
    • Hosted - A more limited way of monitoring. Image viewing is not available with this method. Hosted links to an NT-hosted NoSQL server that keeps the log results of NRC. If you choose Hosted, further options appear:
      • Manually - Only when you request an update
      • Automatically - You can specify an interval between 5 and 60 seconds (default 10 seconds)

Getting started with the app


The Google Play store has the application under the name NRC Monitor. It is free and will only work with LightWave's distributed rendering method NRC.


The App Store is where to go to get the iOS version of NRC Monitor. It is free and will only work with LightWave's distributed rendering method NRC.

Starting the app for Android or iOS for the first time presents a screen urging the user to create a server to monitor:

As the message says, hitting the + icon at the bottom of the screen will open a new window where you can add an NRC Key - all that's necessary for the monitor to function. Adding an Identifier is optional, and in any case, your device will refer to the specific controller by its NRC key. If you enter an Identifier here, it will propagate to the Controller on your Windows or Mac desktop machine where you are running NRC; the same is true in the other direction.

To add a controller, you need an NRC key first, which can be found in the NRC Controller preferences window > Monitoring tab. Copy this carefully onto the app and then proceed with your choice of Direct, or Hosted modes


You will need to enter an IP address along with the port number to be used. Until you have something that the NRC Monitor is happy with, you will see the following icon on the controller card:

Once the connection is made, the bar will be removed:


With Hosted mode, the NRC Monitor links to an NT-hosted NoSQL server that keeps the log results of NRC. The same iconography shows whether the connection has succeeded or not:

Here there have been no tasks assigned to the renderfarm yet.

Using the App

Once you have your controller added, with no bar, it's time to start your scenes working. Both Direct and Hosted work the same way to begin with. Both have the same cards showing an overview of how many tasks have been assigned. You can tap on this card to see an overview of individual tasks:

When a task is started, as shown left above, it will have no renders to show hence the line through the eye icon. Once renders are available the eye will be unbarred and can be clicked on to show previews of rendered images, right. Each buffer is treated as a separate task inside the scene.

With Hosted mode, the eyeball will always be barred because images cannot be previewed. In Direct mode, when the eyeball becomes unbarred you can click on the card to see thumbnails of all images rendered so far, and clicking on a thumbnail will display a full-scale image.

The three-dot menu on the right of each card will show the log for the task