RANCHecker Reference Guide

This guide serves as documentation and help for the plugin RANCHecker for Maya.

RANCHecker 5 for Maya 2022 and above

RANCHecker is a Maya plugin developped by Ranch Computing which prepares your project before uploading it to the RANCH farm.


1. Download RANCKecker archive on your computer and unzip it. The .gif below should help you out to see how it works:

If the folder plug-ins doesn't exist yet in the folder \Documents\maya, we recommend to create it.

What is it good for?

RANCHecker does all the dirty work for you: it gathers all the textures used by your scene, includes the GI maps if used, verify that you have correctly set up the rendering parameters, change file paths if necessary and finally compiles your projects in a .VUA archive file, ready to upload to the RANCH! With RANCHecker, sending a project to the RANCH is a trivial task.

Important information about scene preparation

It is very important that you read this section carefully before submitting a scene. It will help you avoid common mistakes.

  • Please verify before sending the scene that you have saved it with all the correct parameters. It is the user's responsibility to provide the scene with every parameters correctly set. The scene will be rendered exactly as you send it.
  • Please always specify individual frames rendering for animations output (.exr, .bmp, .tga, .rla, etc.). We cannot directly render an animation to a video file format (.avi, .mov, .wmv…) due to multiple differences between video formats, codecs, platforms, 64-bit incompatibilities, etc. In any case it is always better to render individual frames, for a lot of reasons: more security, better quality, ability to do compositing, ability to try different compression methods afterward with your video editing software, etc.
  • The RANCH only supports .mb scenes. If the file extension of your scenes are .ma, please convert them to .mb.
  • To make the rendering smoother, please avoid external scene references (.ma or .mb): Use Maya → File → Reference Editor and import the objects into your main scene.

Best Practices

Please make sure to use the last RANCHecker version available on the website. Test your rendering before sending a full project on the RANCH. You can send on the Farm a Render of 6 to 10 significant frames (even at a lower resolution). The render time will make sure that:

  • All your assets, caches, render parameters are generating the expected results on the Farm.
  • The rendering time and price of your project fits within the Cost Estimator.

How to use it ?

Only few steps to get your archive ready!

1- Info tab

  • General information to check, necessary for the customer to know before preparing the archive.

2- Our supported plugins and render engine

  • On these two tabs we display in real-time all the plugins and the render engines we support with the versions number.

3- Settings tab

4- Job Name

  • By default, the .vua archive file is created with the name of your scene. If you want to use a custom name for your project, you can use the “job name” field to change it.

5- Archive destinations

  • By default, the archive is created on the desktop of your computer. If you want to use a custom destination, you can enable the “Archive destination” option to select a new path.

6- Priority

  • The priority only appears if the user is logged in. For more information, please refer to this page: Choose a priority.

Use RANCHsync V4 to submit

You can upload your jobs and download the images by using our tool RANCHsync V4.

  • 1- Start RANCHsync. If RANCHsync is not installed yet, go to RANCHsync V4 in the RANCHecker menu, then click on “Install RANCHsync V4”
  • 2- Enable the field “Use RANCHsync V4” in the Settings panel
  • 3- Click on “Upload RANCH” to upload the project to the farm

The ranchecking process can take more or less time depending on the scene size and complexity

  • If your scene takes some time to save/load, then it could increase the ranchecking time.

© 2022 Ranch Computing

maya/ranchecker-new.txt · Last modified: 2023/02/20 17:54 by ranchadmin