Happy birthday to the hypergrid, which turns seven today

On this day in 2008, Crista Lopes, a professor of informatics at the University of California, Irvine, sent an email to the OpenSim developers mailing list.

Crista Lopes

“I started working on an extension to OpenSim that makes it work in peer-to-peer mode… I’m really excited to say that this is working!” she wrote.

The email went on to detail some behind-the-scenes details of how the hypergrid was implemented, and where folks could download the code and try it out.

By the spring of 2009, several major grids were hypergrid-enabled, including OSGrid.

By November of that year, of the 33 known public OpenSim grids, 22 were hypergrid-enabled.

By November of 2010, there were 60 public grids, of which about half were hypergrid enabled. I use the word “about” because some grids turn hypergrid on and off, while others allow only outbound hypergrid teleports but not inbound ones, so it can be hard to tell which ones are hypergrid-enabled and which aren’t.

By November of 2011, there were 90 public grids, of which 51 were hypergrid-enabled.

Today, there are more than 300 active grids, of which 222 are hypergrid-enabled.

Hypergrid grids

That means that around three quarters, or 74 percent, of all grids are hypergrid-enabled. In addition, about 93 percent of regions are located on hypergrid-enabled grids, as are 66 percent of all active users.


Total regions on the hypergrid and on closed OpenSim grids. (Hypergrid Business data.)

Total regions on the hypergrid and on closed OpenSim grids. (Hypergrid Business data.)

When the hypergrid was first invented seven  years ago, it was missing several key functions we take for granted today.

For example, users could not access their inventories after they teleported to a new grid.

Today, not only can hypergrid travelers access their inventories and even buy stuff on foreign grids, they can also make friends on other grids and send messages to them, save hypergrid landmarks, and create groups with members from many grids.

There is also a multi-grid marketplace, the Kitely Market, which delivers to more than 100 different grids.

In addition, more and more event organizers are promoting to the entire hypergrid, as this week’s dozen-plus Halloween events amply demonstrate.


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Maria Korolov

Maria Korolov is editor and publisher of Hypergrid Business. She has been a journalist for more than twenty years and has worked for the Chicago Tribune, Reuters, and Computerworld and has reported from over a dozen countries, including Russia and China. Follow me on Twitter @MariaKorolov.

9 Responses

  1. isisophelia@gmail.com' Isis Ophelia says:

    I started hypergridding begin of April as I joined Digiworldz. Before I had only used closed grids. The less I could find a motivation to spend my time creating items, the more I asked myself over the purpose to be online and if I shouldn’t shut down mit viewer and let the virtuality go for good. But then I found in Hypergrid Business an article about Digiworldz and it was said that the grid is HG enable. I decided to try that next. Took me a while to understand how the Hypergrid works and now 7 months later I so love it!
    Hypertravelling to so many events and exploring regions just one click or a landmark away and there I go. Who needs SL when the Metaverse has so many creative places to go, tons of nice people to talk with and 100s of people sharing their know-how? I don’t.

    Thank you Diva Canto and Core Devs who made this all be possible. Many thanks Diva also for my Standalone HG enable, that is not that little as I can connect with 100s of grids, even with 1000 of regions. Thanks so much 🙂

    • trrlynn73@gmail.com' Minethereé says:

      And I like seeing you around the hypergrid enjoying yourself Isis-)

      Happy Birthday Hyperverse!

      Something I notice on the graph is also how much and how quickly the hyperverse grows while over that same five years the closed grids remain almost flat (and most are declining in actives, much less in regions).

      I think over this next year we will see that trend even more clearly.

  2. bunagalow234@hotmail.com' Catherine says:

    Will someone take over Sim on a stick ? no one can get a variable region version or what is related to this article “a version with fixed Hypergrid!”

    No one seems to care about Sim on a stick users in my opinion. well if bets were made likely we make up half the Metaverse!.. but have no way to use the Hypergrid! =(

    Not everyone can afford or wants to rent someone else s simulator. just to have access to get around.

    • isisophelia@gmail.com' Isis Ophelia says:

      Hello Catherine,
      You can have varregions in Diva HG standalone, the one I used to set my Standalone. And as Sim on a Stick is based on Diva, you could change the size in Regions/ RegionsConfig.ini. You add to the region you want to change:

      SizeX = 512
      SizeY = 512

      If you are using megaregions, make sure this is changed to false in the MyWorld.ini
      CombineContiguousRegions = false

      Important to read before you create varregions:

      Here you can get many free terrains also for varregions (courtesy of Magnuz Binder)
      HG: hypergrid.org:8002:terrains

      In case you’d like to try to use Diva to set your Standalone, I wrote a how to doc you can follow using this link

      The doc file its inside the Diva HG folder.

    • delanaquinn@gmail.com' Delana Quinn says:

      SOAS was abandoned and the Diva option is way too technical. Notice how the suggestion was to go read the open sim wiki stuff… whereas every single piece of software on the planet in 2015 is click, click, install, done. OS is going to be abandoned long before it’s updated, modernized and made user friendly. If I were you, I’d invest time in platforms people will be using to create worlds, levels, environments and games. OS is nice and could be amazingly useful for the masses but only about 14 people care enough to do anything with it.

      Maria, try to restrain your urge for censorship. It’s starting to look like you want to hide the truth from people or cater to the devs whenever you run delete the comments you don’t agree with or like. Truth is what it is. It’s not a shot at the devs. It’s frustrating to me and everyone else that opensim is such a convoluted nightmare to use when they could just make it easy to set the settings, install, change, oars and assets. Click, click install done. I wish they would but in 7 years the only one who bothered was Ener with SOAS and she bailed and left it hanging. New World Studios was awesome and easy…but they abandoned it for other things too (actual game engines). It’s because they see there’s little incentive for OS outside the drama queens of SLUniverse, SL and these drama grids that you and the others seem to cater to over and over.

      I would love to see the devs whip up an easy installer with a 2015 era tutorial on how to do all these nifty things and show what OS can really do. But you and I both know it’ll never happen…and we both know why.

  3. I’m writing in a response to a comment from Delana Quinn that was moderated (for unrelated reasons) where Delana said: “It’s frustrating to me and everyone else that opensim is such a convoluted nightmare to use when they could just make it easy to set the settings, install, change, oars and assets.”

    Delana — Please feel free to repost the comment per our moderation guidelines (you should have received an email from Lawrence specifically about why the comment was moderated).

    I, too, would love to see someone else take up Sim-on-a-Stick. Or create a simple installer like these folks did for ArribaSim:


    (I was AMAZED by how easy it was to set up!)

    But, at the end of the day, OpenSim is server software. It’s closest other open source equivalent is the Apache server. Running your own OpenSim grid is a lot like running your own webserver — except much more complicated!

    Typically, folks who have the technical skills to run OpenSim don’t mind having a console-based system because they like the control it offers.

    And the folks who don’t have the technical skills to install OpenSim as it is usually also don’t have the networking skills to run it and just rent land or rent mini-grids from providers.

    There are a few people in the middle — educators running OpenSim for their students, or creators running OpenSim at home as content warehouses, or hobbyists running mini-grids for themselves and their friends and families.

    If there are enough of these folks, we could get them together and raise a bounty and hire someone to package up OpenSim. It’s not a difficult project to create the packages, just annoying and time-consuming, with little reward (and a lot of complaints).

    New World Studio, which had a wonderful installer, couldn’t make a go of it — not enough folks were willing to upgrade to the $20 premium edition to make it worth it to maintain the packaging.

    I personally would be happy to contribute towards a crowdfunder for a simple installer for OpenSim. Ideally, one with a built-in upgrade function so that we wouldn’t have to do another funding campaign each time a new version of OpenSim comes out! 🙂

    • geir.noklebye@dayturn.com' XMIR Grid says:

      Sounds like you want something like what the WhiteCore guys are setting up to provide. The installation process was pretty straightforward and they have been working at the upgrade headache too. Hypergrid is still missing though…

  4. serenejewell@gmail.com' Serene Jewell says:

    Happy Birthday, Hypergrid! Thanks so much to Crista Lopes for inventing it. Also, thanks to you, Maria, for keeping track of these things.

    It seems to me that if we want simplified interfaces and sim on a stick, we should be able to set up some Kickstarter or Indiegogo campaign to make it so. I’ll gladly work on this is some folks will work with me on the details. This always makes me think that it would be great to have a nonprofit dedicated just to promoting opensim projects, but that’s a bigger project. For now, anyone want to try to get some nice interfaces to our awesome Metaverse?