Tuesday, April 5th, 2011 Posted by Jim Thacker

Thinkbox Software announces Deadline 5.0

Thinkbox Software is to release a new version of Deadline, its high-end renderfarm-management system.

Deadline 5.0, which adds tools aimed at managing globally distributed render farms, as well as options to monitor rendering jobs via iOS or Android phones, and improved user security, will be officially unveiled at the NAB show next week.

Deadline costs $175 per node.


Thinkbox Software announces Deadline 5.0, the company’s popular render farm management solution for Windows, Linux and Mac OSX-based render farms. Deadline 5.0 will be unveiled at the National Association of Broadcasters Conference (NAB) April 11-14 in Las Vegas, NV.

Deadline is a hassle-free administration and rendering toolkit that offers a host of management options for render farms of all sizes, and the flexibility to run the software on the industry’s widest range of platforms and rendering packages. Because Deadline enables studios to communicate seamlessly across locations, the tool is gaining popularity among visual effects companies boasting massive global render farms.

Global VFX studio Pixomondo recently standardized Deadline as their render farm tool-of-choice for their 10 facilities worldwide. Felix Fissel, Head of IT Los Angeles at Pixomondo, said, “We’re an international company with literally a 24/7 production cycle, and Deadline 5.0’s remote rendering feature allows us to control and manage our render farms across our entire operation. This means if our facility in Shanghai has a huge project to render, the work can be parsed out to another one of our locations that isn’t as busy. This feature has resulted in incredible time savings.”

Key new features in Deadline 5.0 include:

  • Remote Mode
    Allows companies to control and manage massive global render farms across multiple worldwide facilities, from one remote office.
  • Deadline Mobile for iPhone and Android
    Enables users to monitor their Deadline jobs from anywhere.
  • Auto Configuration
    Slaves can pull their configuration information such as repository and license server settings from Pulse each time they launch, improving system rollout times and repository relocations.
  • Improved User Security
    Prevent users from impersonating others by configuring Deadline to use the system user as the Deadline user.
  • Monitor Interface Improvements
    Save and load Monitor layouts, use the new Slave Availability Filter to diagnose job problems, and view job statistics and save them to disk using the improved Graphing controls.

“We’re seeing many of our customers grow exponentially in recent years so it’s becoming all the more crucial that these facilities have a rock-steady rendering pipeline,” said Chris Bond, President of Thinkbox Software. “We’ve heard time and time again from users that Deadline has become a critical backbone that streamlines workflow and allows companies to be more efficient with their rendering resources and most importantly – their time. That’s why our key goal in the ongoing evolution of Deadline is to continue to automate as many processes as possible and allow artists to use idle resources in the most efficient way, whether it’s across the hall or in another continent.”

Read more about Deadline 5.0