Avatar Render Weights (Avatar Complexity)

Please check your Avatar Render Weight, it should be less than 150,000  -  starting with Jewellery you may need to remove items you are wearing to bring your render weight down to a reasonable level.

!!!Render weights are in no way connected to scripts!!!

All Viewers:  Enable Advanced Menu = CTRL + ALT + SHIFT + D

FIRESTORM:    Advanced (at the top) > Performance Tools > Show Render Weight
SL VIEWER:     Advanced > Performance Tools > Show Draw Weight for Avatar
SINGULARITY: Advanced > Rendering > Info Displays > Avatar Rendering Cost

Avatar render weight shows how each avatar affects the rendering performance of the viewer.
The higher the score, the more work the graphics card has to do to draw you in, both on your viewer and for other players when you are within their draw distance.

Render weights are not connected in any way to how many scripts you have enabled.  They are purely based on the complexity of your avatar and the performance degradation they will cause to you and others.

The higher your render weight, the slower everyone else's session becomes. 

The average weight for a reasonable avatar is anywhere from 20,000 to 80,000 although you will see many people on the borderline of causing problems ranging from 100,000 to 150,000.

Beyond 150k render weight, an avatar will begin to affect the performance of other players in the region and they will start dropping frames and their experience will be similar to a stop-motion video.

In London City, we eject players from the region when their weight goes beyond 200,000 and send them home to fix it.  Sometimes this causes upset when the player takes offence saying they were not told about their weight issues and the first thing they knew was when they were teleported out of London City.

The reason we do it this way is because often the player disputes the reading, or says they have never heard of render weights and wants a full explanation, or wants to stay in the region whilst they fix it, or wants our team to give them a blow by blow account of their current weight (This is why this page exists, so you can check your weight yourself!).  This process can take an eternity and continues to lag other players experience.  We believe that the pragmatic approach is to inconvenience the resident causing the problems, instead of the innocent players who are having their performance degraded, thus we send users with high render weights out of the estate, before we contact them.

A side effect of massive render weights is you crashing out whilst teleporting.  If we crashed you by teleporting you home, this should really demonstrate even further what a problem your avatar currently is to you and others and the need to fix it.

The main cause for high weights is complex high prim Jewellery, elaborate shoes with many hundreds of tiny prims and rigged mesh.    The reason this happens is because often each angled face of the object has a different texture.   If you imagine a diamond, it has many hundreds of flat sides to it.  If each of these has a different texture which needs to be drawn, this will significantly raise your render weight.

Being that SL is all user content created and anyone can sell anything, as beautiful as those boots may look, there is every chance that the creator never considered nor checked the weight of them and the likely performance impact they would cause.   This is a downside to Second Life!

If a member of our team directed you to this page, it is likely that your render weight was in excess of 220,000.  To fix this issue, go into the render weight settings as described above and try removing items likely to be causing problems.  Pay particular attention to jewellery.   When your render weight is below 150k, you are most welcome to come back to London City.

People sometimes say that in all the years they have been in Second Life, they have never been told that their avatar has caused lag due to render weight and they move around on other simulators without anyone complaining.    London City is a very busy estate and it is likely to be the busiest regions you visit in Second Life and that is why render weight from you and from hundreds of other players matter so much here.

We have a duty of care to the majority of residents with reasonable render weights and we hope that an estate kick whilst you fix yourself, does not cause too much upset.  
Thank you for reading.
Shows Avatar with render weight of 112k.  This is a reasonable weight.
Note regarding Singularity Viewer:   This still defaults to using the old style Costs, instead of Weights.  To change Singularity to show the new Weight equivalent, please follow the instructions for Singularity below.


 Always use an approved viewer for stability and security.

Approved Third Party Viewers are listed here

Beware of third-party viewers that are not in the Viewer Directory: they have either declined to self-certify their compliance with Linden Lab policies or been refused for noncompliance with the policies.

Most viewer preferences are explained in detail here:

Linden Lab produce their own viewer, but many seasoned users opt for one of the third party alternatives. 

There are many viewers available for Second Life. Use one that you trust and always download it from their main site.

Two 3rd Party viewers clearly stand out ahead of the rest.  They are FIRESTORM based on Viewer 3 and SINGULARITY based on Viewer 1.

Firestorm viewer has outstanding support, in world groups staffed by the development team and other enthusiasts and has a comprehensive site full of help, tips and tricks.
You can visit their site here to view various help scenarios or to download the viewer:


Singularity is a viewer packed with features, many of them unique to this viewer.  It uses the smallest footprint of all viewers and is therefore our recommended choice for laptops.

Singularity is developed by a friendly team who will often offer one-to-one help with their product. The main focus of their support is via the in-world Singularity Viewer group.
For the very latest versions you can join the alpha cycle here

Most of the settings described here relate to the Alpha builds.  They will be compiled into the next official release:

Are you  part grey or are prims not attaching properly, missing cuffs, missing hair?
Right click yourself > Tools > Reload.     done!

Not seeing things that you know are there?
CTRL+SHIFT+V will reset the vertex buffers and redraw the area.

CTL+SH+ALT+C for Avatar Cost.   Cost and Weight can be toggled via Debug, see below.

Derender Trick: Right mouse-click and derender an object.   Go to Singularity > Asset Blacklist and clear the list.   Change your active group to something else.  Wheel the mouse back so the region vanishes... hold it there a moment... Press ESC and the item will reappear.

Some useful Debug settings:

CTL+P > System > Security  autoteleport when region is restarting (drop LM in here)

LiruShowTransactionThreshold = 2 Do not pop up a notification box for amounts less than this value.
UISndRestart = UUID of sound to play on restart (replaces Torley Linden)
AlchemyRegionRestartShake = true  Shake the screen when region restart is imminent
ShortDateFormat  for European format:     %Y-%m-%d   change to   %d/%m/%Y
LiruLegacyLandmarks = true/false  Landmark saved with position e.g. (22, 258, 23)
LiruSensibleARC = False   Show new style render Weights not Costs
ShowSimChannel = True    Shows the Server name on About land top bar next to region name
LiruMapShowAvCount = True    Map shows amount of avatars on sim next to region name
AvatarNameColour = override the default name colours, you can still colour friends in vanity
LiruShowLastNameResident =  Turn on or off  last names ending in 'Resident' (on CTL+P too)
LiruNewARCLimit = Change threshold colour on Av Weight (suggest 120k value for >230kARC)
FontScreenDPI= (default is 96.0) try 104.0 for slightly bigger lettering
RadarNameSystem=3  Show Legacy (display)
FriendNameSystem = 3 Legacy (display)
GroupMembersNameSystem = 3 Legacy (display)
IMNameSystem = 3 Legacy (display)
VoiceCallsRejectGroup = True  Rejects voice calls from groups
RightClickTurnsAvatar = False.  Stop avatar facing things/people you click

Splash screen missing on starting the viewer?  to Fix:

SingularitySplashPagePath - should be blank
SingularitySplashPagePrefix - change to:

Combining the beloved look and feel of viewer 1.23 with the very latest technology.  Updated regularly and fully supported.

For those on an older computer, Singularity is lighter than most other viewers.  You can optimize it further by reducing the LOD setting (bottom far right of the screen) and try reducing it to 1.00 or below.  Mesh and Sculps will not rez as well, but your speed and stability will not be compromised by them any more.

For even older PC's or just for those crashy time, try these settings:

Click to enlarge

If you have an Nvidia graphics card, you might like to try these settings in Nvidia control panel to optimize your settings:

Recommended settings last updates: March 2018
Movelock in Singularity?

Here's a little tweak.  If you drop a regular pose (or several) into your Singularity AO folder (even though you use an add-on AO like most of us do), you can then make this stand(s) your default groundsit and turn "GroundSit whilst away" to on (in debug), you have your own Singularity move lock.

For more info check out Singularity > Animation override from the top menu.  Be sure to turn off any ground sits you use in your regular AO.

The latest release of Singularity Viewer is now Windows DPI aware.

This means that instead of having to scale the fonts and user interface as you currently do on all viewers, that Singularity automatically picks up your font scaling preferences from Windows.

Because I had my (settings) User Interface set to 1.050 (instead of default 1.0) and had  (Debug) FontScreenSize set to 106 (instead of the default 96), when I first ran the new version, I experienced a much bigger interface than I would usually expect.

However on reverting both of these settings to their default, I am pleasantly surprised to see that Singularity now matches my Windows settings (105%) exactly.

This further means that any changes I make in Windows will now automatically be carried forward to my viewer!

If for any reason you do not wish to avail yourself of this feature and wish to carry on using your tweaked UI and Font settings, you can do this by selecting Override high DPI scaling in the properties box that launches the viewer.

However, I recommend you try the new scaling first.  It's impressive.

Singularity viewer remains our favorite viewer for Laptops, thanks to its lighter than average footprint when compared to other viewers.

For more information about Singularity viewer and the settings we use, see (half way down) the Resources page here

The following information is very old and should be considered deprecated. It remains for posterity.. you never know!

Singularity, the very closest viewer you will get to the old Phoenix viewer, (not surprising when considering they are both forked by Snowglobe), but with more functionality and features and is infinitely more stable!  It also has an extremely dedicated team of developers actively working on this project constantly.

However, when coming from Phoenix, remember that both viewers make use of same directory, C:\users\yourname\appdata\roaming\secondlife to store various "per user settings".

It doesn't matter too much, unless you use both viewers!   If you use both viewers, expect some strange results as one will corrupt the "per user" settings on the other and lose many of your user defined settings such as keyword alerts and auto-responses etc.

My advice is if you use either Phoenix or Singularity that is fine, but NEVER use both on your system at the same time.

If you are moving from Phoenix to Singularity (or want to give Singularity a thorough road test) the following will preserve your Phoenix settings in case you wish to revert:

First remove the old Phoenix desktop shortcut.. You don't want to undo all your hard work by accidently launching Phoenix and losing your Singularity settings.

Since Phoenix is now defunct as it will not support SSB and Singularity supports Server Side Baking, my work around was to rename the directory to C:\users\yourname\appdata\roaming\secondlife-phoenix to mothball my old settings and chats (which I can copy across later).   Now on starting Singularity, I can be assured that only Singularity is using the directory C:\users\yourname\appdata\roaming\secondlife thus preserving my settings from corrupting.

If for any reason I find that Singularity is unworkable for me and I want to return to Phoenix from where I left off, I can safely delete C:\users\yourname\appdata\roaming\secondlife  and rename C:\users\yourname\appdata\roaming\secondlife-phoenix back to C:\users\yourname\appdata\roaming\secondlife

I am told that you can copy the language files from Phoenix too if English is not your native language.

Extra Tips

The Bridge Detach Crash: If you're coming from Phoenix or Firestorm, detach the Bridge created by these programs first before you log out of them.  They don't do anything useful and can mess up your Singularity experience. (Detach is now automatic in the alpha releases, but not in the April 2013 release, so don't forget to do it!).  You will know if you forgot as Singularity will do all the logon stuff and the instant you think you're arriving in-world, you will crash to desktop.

Although you can copy across the old Phoenix fonts, you might be creating a lot of unnecessary work for yourself as a lot of development has been put into more recent Singularity releases to improve the appearances.  So before installing the old fonts, do try Singularity as it is.   If the size is too small, try this:   Advanced > Debug, type in FontScreenDPI and change it from 96 to 104  (or even 108 or 112, although above 104 gives me a tab on use profiles to go to notes which I dislike).

Slow rezzing?  If rezzing is slow and grey forever, go to the Network tab and uncheck "Use HTTP for Textures".  (Note: As of October 2013 Linden Lab are re-developing the way 'get HTTP ' works, so you may find it now suits you to keep this enabled).

Head bobbing around or eyes rolling when you move the mouse around?
Preferences > System > Security  - uncheck Do not look at objects.

Want to run more than one instance of Singularity with Voice enabled?   Check out the debug setting: VoiceMultiInstance  (Singularity will use a unique voice port each time)  isn't that clever!
Also lots of cool additional features are available in the pre-release version available from

As per above, see settings in Preferences > Graphics > Hardware.  Unchecking "Enable OpenGL Vertex Buffers" can add an additional layer of stability against graphics crashers, however the trade off is a slight hit on speed.

Other settings also exist to prevent you being a victim of graphics crashers.  Although these settings do indeed work, they do so by reducing your experience in effect breaking some of your rendering, so use these settings with caution.  If you suspect someone of using a graphics crasher, contact our team and we'll remove them, its a lot easier than reducing your experience!

Debug Settings:
RenderAutoHideSurfaceAreaLimit 114
RenderAutoMuteSurfaceAreaLimit 2100
RenderAttachedLights FALSE

Finally Finally....

On my set-up, yours may vary.  The settings that most mimic Phoenix is in Preferences General > UI Size 1.025

In Debug: Font Screen DPI: 104

I have found no other need to meddle with Fonts.XML or to copy the old Phoenix fonts across, the new build of Singularity (available from the Alpha download and slated for release shortly) is perfect and I wouldn't know I had changed viewers, except that this has more features and doesn't topple over like Phoenix did constantly.   You can even upload pictures to your profile feed..  that's something Phoenix didn't support and something FS cannot do reliably!

Speed up your Cache with a Ramdisk

Mechanical drives are slow to access files such as your Second Life Cache, and whilst Solid State drives are much faster, constant 'writing' shortens their lifespan.

Enter the Ramdisk, which is 100x faster than even the fastest Solid State drive, because it resides in your computers RAM, the very fastest memory there is.

Forget the Ramdisk of yesteryear where everything was wiped from memory as soon as your computer was switched off,  they have come a long way.

Modern Ramdisks create an image file automatically when your computer is switched off or rebooted and saves this to the hard disk.  When Windows is started, it copies this image back into the Ramdisk so you can continue seamlessly.

On a 16GB computer, we allocated 1.5GB of memory to Ramdisk, leaving us with 14.5GB for normal running.  This 'loss' of memory is unnoticeable, and what is more, the totally free Ramdisk by ROG/ASUS uses Dynamic memory allocation up to the 1.5GB we stipulated.  This means that if that amount of 'disk space'  is not being used, then the Ramdisk decreases in size, releasing the memory back to the computers main pool.

To set this up for Second Life, you need to download your choice of Ramdisk, we're using the ASUS one available here: 

Extract the x86 files folder and run set-up.  Then tell it how much memory you wish to allocate.  It will ask to reboot your computer.    Once you have done this, load your Second Life viewer, and in preferences, under Network, select the location of your Ramdisk, but be sure to set the size of the cache just slightly below the size of the Ramdisk.   Cache's larger than 1GB seldom offer any benefit, so keep it around that size or only slightly more.

For added streamlining, tell your Antivirus software to exclude the Ramdrive.

You are now set up and ready to go.

A couple of pointers..
You may need to disable 'Fast boot ' in Windows as sometimes this can shut down the system ahead of the Ramdrive being written when dismounted.

You may become a little more aware of your CPU fan at times of high traffic.

Viewer Problems - Grab a Backup of an old and loved viewer.

Ever have days when your viewer absolutely will not behave, even though you have changed nothing at all since the day before?
For days like that, have a back up viewer also installed on your system.

The old lightweight and reliable Snowglobe viewer is still available for download.  It lacks features, but is great as a standby viewer and because it is so light,  it runs at lightening speed with amazing frame rates.

An additional benefit is that if your viewer problems are being caused by the asset server at Linden Lab end, snowglobe uses a completely different server from v2, 3 & 4 and may well fix your problems for that session.    This is also a great viewer to have on a laptop or any desktop that lack that certain oomph needed for Second Life.   Not intended as a replacement, but a great back-up to get you back in the world.
Available from the second life repository:

I want to be a DJ!

Here is a great tutorial on Youtube that shows you how to install Winamp and the DSP plugin that you need to use for streaming your music into Second Life

Also see, how to stream in Second Life here:

How watch a movie in the Cinema in Second Life

Can't See The Movie?
(Instructions for all viewers)

1.  Do you have Quicktime Installed?
SecondLife uses Quicktime from Apple to show movie images.   If you don't have it installed, go to   and download your copy, free.

2.  Enable Media
In your viewer, Press CTRL+P and go to the Audio & Video (Sound and Media in Viewer 2.0)  Tab.   Tick, "Enable Media" (in Viewer 2.0 this button is next to the Media volume slider)

3.  Press play
There is a little Icon of a camera on your secondlife tool bar .  Press the play button next to it.  (Viewer 2.0,  there is only one play button - it's at the top right of your screen.  Clicking it will start or pause all media playing.  hover your mouse over it for more options).

Sometimes it take a minute for the movie to start.  If you have waited 60 seconds and nothing has happened, there may be further complications. Contact Torric Rodas or Billy Arentire and we will do our best to help.


Fancy experimenting outside of SL?  Here's how...

Go to OSgrid and create a user account, it's dead easy:

Most viewers have a grid selector in them and you can just scroll down from Second Life to Osgrid to connect.  This is the Grid Manager from Phoenix viewer (click it to enlarge):

If your browser does not support a Grid Manager, you can set OSgrid or any other grid from the command line as follows:

Right click your desktop and create New Shortcut.
Press Browse and locate your viewer.  Usually something like this C:\Program Files\Secondlife\Secondlife.exe
Then press Next and call it OSgrid and an Icon will be created.

Almost there,  Right click the Icon and Select properties:

Lastly, change the target to (changing the viewer to match the same as yours, so something like "C:\Program Files\Secondlife\Secondlife.exe" then the rest of the stuff afterwards, thats the important bit..

"C:\Program Files\SecondLife\SecondLife.exe" --loginuri --loginpage

Click Apply and you're ready to logon.  Double click the icon and you should see the Osgrid splash page.  Login as you would in SL.

And finally....

You can navigate around our site by remembering links:
Our main is

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