Render Licenses

Rendering with Houdini requires a full or an "Engine" license per client.

If you use Mantra, then it require a Mantra render license.

Please enter the number of your Houdini licenses in rrConfig to verify that RR does not start more instances that you have licenses.

Plugins / Packages

General Information

First some general information

There are two ways to install plugins into Houdini.
It depends on the plugin which way they have choosen.

1) Via environment variables
You need to define all environment variables required for Houdini to find the plugin and optional env vars of the plugin itself.
The env vars could be set in the OS.
But they are usually set in the houdini.env file c:\Users\%USER%\Documents\houdini19.0\houdini.env

2) Via package files

Packages have a .json definition file.

It defines all environment variables required for Houdini to find the plugin and optional env vars of the plugin itself.

Package definition files can be located for example in these folders:

  • c:\Program Files\Side Effects Software\Houdini xxxxxxxx\packages
  • c:\Users\%USER%\Documents\houdini19.0\packages
    Note that this second path works for your user only.
    It does not work for Royal Render as RR uses a different preference path than your user.

Add Plugins to Houdini in Royal Render

If you want to add Redshift, Arnold, Renderman or VRay, please check the help page 3rd Party Renderer.

1) Via environment variables
 Instead of creating an houdini.env on each rrClient, RR uses the rrEnv file 

You can define any env var that you define in the houdini.env.

  • You must NOT use "&" in any variable. 
    RR automatically adds & to the end of all common Houdini env variables.
    Using it twice causes Houdini to print error messages.

  • The first modification of an env var looks like this. 
    It creates or replaces any data in the env var.
    HOUDINI_PATH  = myPluginFolder
    HOUDINI_PATH  = myPluginFolder;AnotherPluginFolder

    If you want to append another plugin folder in a seperate line, you have to use
    HOUDINI_PATH  = AnotherPluginFolder;<HOUDINI_PATH>

2) Via package files

The .json definition file has to be in a path that Houdini scans.

So it has to be located in 

  • either the installation path of Houdini c:\Program Files\Side Effects Software\Houdini xxxxxxxx\packages
  • or in a direrctory set by the env var HOUDINI_PACKAGE_DIR.
    You can add any path to the env vvar HOUDINI_PACKAGE_DIR. 
    Please see "1) Via environment variables" how to add an env var to Royal Render.

If you have copied the package, then you might need to check if the paths in the .json file are right for the copied path.

Note RR version 9.1.xx and upcoming versions:
There is a pre-defined path for packages that you can use.
Please open any Houdini render log in rrControl and search for "RRs predefined package dir is set to"

The advantage of packing your json file and the plugin subfolder into this packages directory is that the whole packages folder is synced to the local drive of the rrClient.
And therefore faster to load.


You can use takes in Houdini. 

Do not forget to use $ACTIVETAKE in your file names if you want to use one output node for multiple takes.

Note: If you set your mantra node to a take, then the rrSubmitter will load this mantra node with this take.

If you have not set a specific take (set to "current"), the rrSubmitter creates a job for each take.

Example scene: