What Is Autodesk Backburner?

Written by jesse sears
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What Is Autodesk Backburner?
Backburner manages workflow between many computers working on the same task. (computers network image by Orlando Florin Rosu from Fotolia.com)

Autodesk Backburner is a utility included in most Autodesk software to perform rendering, compiling and other input-output functions in the background on one or more machines while other Autodesk functions are still available for use.

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Programs Compatible with Backburner

Most Autodesk software suites employ Backburner in some way. Compatible Autodesk applications are Smoke, Burn, Inferno, Flame, Flare, Flint, Maya, Lustre, 3DStudioMax, Cleaner, WiretapCentral and Backdraft Conform. Because many of these programs work in conjunction with one another, Backburner may be running tasks from several applications at once.

How Backburner Works

At the basic level, Backburner handles rendering and compiling tasks executed from within one or more of compatible Autodesk products. Blocks of data from individual applications are sent to many different render nodes on the same or different machines at once. This allows faster rendering times and frees up processor space for other tasks. Output might come from inputs from multiple applications simultaneously, like video rendered via Flame then sent to Cleaner for mastering and encoding.

Render Farms

Autodesk Backburner allows for the creation and management of render farms. Render farms are a large group of machines all focused on the same rendering tasks to tackle large files in a fraction of the time. Backburner automatically allocates data to each machine on demand, much like downloading pieces of a torrent file from multiple users simultaneously.

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