Firestorm Viewer Communications to the Firestorm Server
How Firestorm handles:
When the firestorm viewer launches it “reads” a couple files on our server which give it some instructions. These files can be seen below along with what instructions they provide the viewer and why. All of this is transparent and always has been. (NONE of the login information you input like username and password are sent to our server. This data is sent only to LL and we have no way to read this information.)
This file lists viewer versions which we have implemented a block. When the viewer launches it checks this file to see if its version is on this list. If it is.. it will not login and will display to the user a reason we can edit as to why it is not allowed. This is how we implement viewer blocks and as you can see it is not a virus or Trojan or backdoor to the viewer. If we were to let LL handle blocking the viewer the user would receive only “Unable to log in” message. This would cause a lot of confusion and leave users with no idea what is going on. We feel our system is much more friendly to you by allowing us to explain why you cannot log in, and where to go to get an update.
It is important for us to have this capability because of the high usage of our viewer, 2 out of 3 users in SL are on Firestorm. So many users that it is easily possible we could release an update with a bug which could knock SL offline, so we need to be able to block releases in a hurry. More recently however we are using it to block old out of date versions due to pressure from LL with the 'Shared user experience policy' and from content creators who have customers buying merchandise but not seeing it correctly due to these customers being on old viewer versions. This capability is us being responsible.. period.
This file contains the Message of the Day. This is the message you see on screen along with the login progress indicator after you click login. This gives us the ability to communicate important information and messages to all our users at once. We use this to notify you of important things like new releases and events that benefit you and/or charities.
This file contains a list of all of our staff. When you open the profile of one of our staff you will see either “Support”, or “Developer” in the payment info used box. This is in place so that YOU know who is official and who is not since many claim to be part of our team and try to scam folks. It also allows our staff to request system information from you while in world (Which you have to approve when requested). It also loads up which groups are our official support groups and is how in our groups at the top is an option you can enable to include what version you are running next to your name in group chats. This makes providing support for you easier since we will know what version you are running.
This is the list the viewer loads in order to offer grids in the Opensim version of the viewer. With this we are able to remotely add new grids to the viewer grid manager without having to issue viewer updates.
This is the login splash page you see on screen. Besides the obvious graphics you see on this, it also has a section where we can issue update notifications which look like stick-it notes. This works by checking what version the viewer you launched is vs what is the latest version we have released. If your version is older.. it will give you a notice that there is a new version.