Stats were down this month in OpenSim, with the public grids reporting both fewer regions and fewer active users.
It’s not an auspicious start to the year, especially since OpenSim stats declined in 2019 overall as well.
This was the third consecutive month in which the total land area fell.
Part of this was due to seasonal fluctuation, and part due to grid outages or reporting changes.
For example, HGluv stopped publishing its stats. Last month, the grid reported 973 regions.
Logicamp, which had 180 active users last month, was down this month, as was its main website. There was no news on its Facebook page, either. A friendly reminder to grid owners — if your grid is down, let your users know. Put a note on your website, your Twitter page, something to let people know what’s going on, and what’s going to happen next.
These stats do not include most of the grids running on OutWorldz’ DreamGrid distribution of OpenSim, or private company or school grids who used other installers. OutWorldz‘ Fred Beckhusen is currently tracking 2,342 installations of his DreamGrid software.
OpenSim is a free, open source virtual world platform that’s compatible with the Oculus Rift. It allows people with no technical skills to quickly and cheaply create virtual worlds, and then teleport to other virtual worlds. Those with technical skills can run OpenSim worlds on their own servers for free, while commercial hosting starts at less than $5 a region.
A list of hosting providers is here. Download the recommended Firestorm viewer here. And find out where to get content for your OpenSim world or region here.
You can also add your grid in the stats if it is not being crawled by OutWorldz. OutWorldz also provides OpenSim users with free mesh items, OARs and free seamless textures that you can download and use on your grids.
Top 25 grids by active users
When it comes to general-purpose social grids, especially closed grids, the rule of thumb is: the busier, the better. People looking to make new friends look for grids that already have the most users. Merchants looking to sell content will go to the grids with the most potential customers. Event organizers looking for the biggest audience… you get the idea.
Top 25 most popular grids this month:
- OSgrid: 4,816 active users (HG hg.osgrid.org:80)
- Virtualife: 2,888 active users (HG hg2.virtualife.cloud:8002)
- DigiWorldz: 1,876 active users (HG login.digiworldz.com:8002)
- Tag Grid: 1,672 active users
- Metropolis: 1,611 active users (HG hg.metro.land:80)
- Kitely: 1,103 active users (HG grid.kitely.com:8002)
- Eureka World: 1,093 active users (HG 18.104.22.168:9000)
- ZetaWorlds: 913 active users (HG hg.zetaworlds.com:80:Welcome)
- Foundation Grid: 886 active users (HG gridfoundation.ddns.net:8002)
- VartownGrid: 853 active users (HG vartown-grid.ddns.net:8002)
- Exo-Life: 818 active users (HG hg.exo-life.onl:8032)
- Party Destination Grid: 802 active users (HG partydestinationgrid.com:8002)
- Discovery Grid: 794 active users (HG discoverygrid.net:8002)
- Free Life: 536 active users (HG freelife.outworldz.net:8002)
- Tranquility: 489 active users (HG tranquility-grid.info:8002)
- Virtual Dream Grid: 488 active users (HG virtualdream-grid.com:8002)
- DreamNation: 483 active users
- 3rd Rock Grid: 477 active users (HG grid.3rdrockgrid.com:8002)
- Craft World: 471 active users (HG craft-world.org:8002)
- Pacification Grid: 419 active users (HG grid-pacification.info:8002)
- Utopia Skye: 375 active users (HG utopiaskyegrid.com:8002)
- OpenSimulator Community Conference: 372 active users (HG cc.opensimulator.org:8002)
- Dynamic Worldz: 363 active users (HG grid.dynamicworldz.com:8002)
- Neverworld: 359 active users (HG hg.neverworldgrid.com:8002)
- Freedom Grid: 321 active users (HG freedomgrid.world:8002)
The actives list is based on active, unique 30-day user login numbers that grids report on their stats pages. Those grids that don’t report their numbers might be just as popular, but we wouldn’t know. The active user stats are also used to generate the popular hypergrid destinations list, which is useful if you have a hyperport and want to put up gates to the most popular grids, or include the most popular grids in an in-world directory.
This list is also a good place to start if you want to open up new stores or hold events, or are just looking for places to visit.
I measure active users by counting both local residents and hypergrid visitors. After all, hypergrid visitors attend events and spend money just like anybody else. If I’m looking for a happening grid, I want one with a lot of people on it — and I don’t really care where their home avatar is based. In fact, several grids are encouraging users to have their avatars on other grids, such as Kitely or OSgrid, in order to reduce the load on their own servers. Many grid owners are also increasingly willing to rent land to visitors, and even give free store space and homes to visitors as well. Their money, after all, is just as good.
Yes, this means that people are double-counted, based on all the grids they visit. But they’d also be double-counted if they created new avatars on each grid. So it comes out even in the end, as far as I’m concerned.
Here some information on how and why you should set up a stats page for your grid. Of course, not all grids need a stats page, especially grids that aren’t open to the public, like school grids, private company grids, small family grids, and so on. From prior surveys, this “dark metaverse” of OpenSim grids might actually be bigger than the one we know about, because those grids don’t need to promote themselves, and we never hear about them.
Craft celebrated ten years this week, concluding its anniversary celebration today, January 27.
The grid’s artists and educators exhibited their works on the Gala region, at hypergrid address craft-world.org:8002:Gala.
Valentine’s Day on OSgrid
OSgrid is holding an all-day Valentine’s Day party on Friday, Feb. 14. The party starts at 8 p.m. Pacific time and runs through 8 p.m.
The hypergrid address is hg.osgrid.org:80:Event Plaza.
Virtuality Grid is rebuilding after a difficult year in 2019.
Last summer, Virtuality grid stopped hosting with DigiWorldz and decided to switch to using the code from the now-defunct Avination grid.
“For a few months afterwards we weren’t taking new members due to so much that needed done,” grid founder Candi Infiniti told Hypergrid Business. “During that time, quite a few people left to go to other grids while others were sometimes impatiently waiting for the ability to register.”
The new website wasn’t up and functional until November with automated user signups and a region ordering system. Virtuality also had to add hypergrid functionality — Avination had been a closed grid, with no hypergrid access.
“While we are still without smaller automated processes, we do have a fully functioning grid and are slowly beginning to grow again,” said Infiniti.
The grid has also had personnel changes, she added, with one team member leaving due to medical issues and two new ones coming on board.
“John Hamming is now our events manager and his partner, Rachel Hamming, is now our grid photographer and will be moving towards taking over marketing,” said Infiniti. “Johnny Depp is now my grid manager, Leah Leirdrow is builder’s support and Fee Edenbaum is our creator’s support. Adrienne Infiniti is member support and Kitty Sarrasine helps members with scripting when needed as she was also in Avination and knows the code very well.”
Melanie Thielker, the former owner of Avination, is now handing the technology for Virtuality, and heading up the software development team as well.
Virtuality Grid will be celebrating the Karneval festival in February, described as the “German Mardi Gras.”
“Last year we had a blast and will be making this a yearly event,” said Infiniti. “All other events are posted in OpenSimWorld and are always open to everyone in the OpenSim community to come and enjoy with us. Due to our large European member base, we not only celebrate North American holidays and special events but also many European holidays and celebrations.”
Another grid that celebrated a birthday this month was Tranquility, which had its second birthday party on January 12 and 13.
The grid has been trying to upgrade to the latest OpenSim version but has been having trouble.
“Last weekend we tried upgrading from OpenSim 8 to OpenSim 9,” said Steve Stewart, also known in-world as Chris Tranquility. “However, no matter what we tried there were going to be too many lost assets to be acceptable.”
As a result, the grid decided to start with a completely fresh grid running the latest version, he told Hypergrid Business.
“This has now been created and we have started moving accounts and regions over to the new grid,” he said. “It is going very smoothly with just a few minor glitches needing to be sorted, usually within a few minutes.”
The grid’s new website is tranquility-life.info and the new loginURI and hypergrid address is tranquility-life.info:8002.
Both the old grid and the new grid will be up and running during an overlap period to allow residents to transfer content and avatars. Creators can also ask the grid to transfer over their inventories in the form of IAR files.
“The new grid obviously has all the OpenSim 9 features and residents will have the choice of physics and scripts on their own regions,” said Stewart. “The grid overall is set to BulletSim physics and Xengine scripts. However, Ubode and Yengine can be on individuals regions.”
Another improvement is that hypergrid visitors can now buy and use the local Tranquility currency.
“This means they can enter contests, tip performers and spend in the malls,” he said. “The currency stays with the grid so that they have it again when they return.”
The grid invites the public to come to its regular parties on The Pier region, from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Pacific time on Sundays through Thursdays. The hypergrid address is tranquility-life.info:8002:The Pier.
OSCC 2019 videos posted
The videos from the 2019 OpenSim Community Conference are now up on YouTube.
Discovery Grid hosts tribute concert to Tom Petty
Discovery Grid’s Seismic Events Concert Group, led by Jeff Edwards, presents Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers in a tribute concert on February 1, at 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. grid time.
Seismic Events has presented tribute concerts on Discovery Grid since June of 2019. Before that, Edwards did the same in Second Life for two years.
The tribute concert will feature songs selected from various Heartbreakers concerts and edited seamlessly together for an enjoyable music experience. Avatars from Discovery Grid will be playing animated guitars in a stage presentation. Past concerts presented by Seismic events in Discovery include Santana, CCR, Journey, Pink Floyd and the Beach Boys.
The concert will be held in the modern Japanese city build on Celestial Japan in Discovery Grid. The build is owned by Jillian2000 Quintessa and features buildings built by both Jillian and Moon Satoshi.
The hypergrid address is discoverygrid.net:8002:Celestial Japan.
Moonlight Grid still down, deciding on which OpenSim technology to pursue.
“As you have noticed we have disappeared,” the grid announced on its website.
The grid was last up in December and was running the Halcyon version of the OpenSim software, donated to the OpenSim community by the now-defunct InWorldz grid.
“The Halcyon developers have promised a ‘Glorious Future’ and we anxiously await that future,” the grid owners announced. “However, we feel that right at this moment Halcyon isn’t the right fit for us.”
According to the grid owners, Halcyon runs great and things work right out of the box. But it has some disadvantages. “Sure, it can be a bit of a beast to install and maintain but so is a Porsche or Jaguar.”
The grid is looking at several options for OpenSim code, as well as other hosting platforms.
“We need to consider a lot of things in order to decide which simulator is right for us at this time,” the grid owners said. “There are a few options out there, some good, some bad. We are also working on other endeavors and projects that would benefit from an already populated grid. We do plan on establishing a grid presence, whether it be self hosted or part of another established grid — we have yet to decide.”
Phantom Rose grid holds grand opening
The Phantom Rose grid held its grand opening on January 24.
The non-commercial grid is hypergrid-enabled, but does not offer local avatars or land rentals.
“I am not registering avatars or renting land” said creator and owner, Lannorra Sion. “Phantom Rose is a safe place for all my creations over the years and new ones to come,” creator and grid owner Lannorra Sion told Hypergrid Business. “The grid is non-commercial, with free legal gifts throughout the regions.”
The Welcome sim is a recreation of the original Phantom Rose in Second Life, featuring the well known Opera House.
Opened in 2007, Phantom Rose hosted many events and visitors in its eight years, until closing in 2015.
“The newly recreated Opera House has some differences due to licensing, but is very recognizable to anyone familiar with the original,” she said. “It’s not a replica. I have actually given more space to the Opera House, which allows for an expanded Phantom’s Lair underneath. You still have to search for the entrance!”
Other themed regions include The Nile, Steam, Ocean, Nature, Sanctuary and Ad infinitum. Each has a variety of activities, hunts and free gifts, said Sion. Phantom Rose Grid also houses Linda Kellie regions for her original freebies and her Clutterfly mesh items. along with a collection of documented legal free items from other creators.
The hypergrid address is phantomrose.outworldz.net:8002.
That Place grid is also down for repairs.
“We’re moving to a new, more powerful server,” the grid announced on its website. “It’ll take some time to migrate, so for the time being the grid is offline but we’ll be back asap!”
The Neverworld Grid is having 1st month free special for all new region offered in January. Check the land sales page for details.
Virtual Dream Grid
The Virtual Dream grid invites the public to a weekly dance party, every Thursday, starting at 9:30 p.m. Paris time, or 12:30 p.m. Pacific time.
The event is on the Event Breach region, hypergrid address virtualdream-grid.com:8002:Event Beach.
Top 40 grids by land area
The list below is a small subset of existing OpenSim grids. We are now tracking a total of 1,474 different publicly-accessible grids, 300 of which were active this month, and 239 of which published their statistics.
All region counts on this list are, whenever available, in terms of standard region equivalents. Active user counts include hypergrid visitors whenever possible.
Many school, company or personal grids do not publish their numbers.
The raw data for this month’s report is here. A list of all active grids is here. And here is a list of all the hypergrid-enabled grids and their hypergrid addresses, sorted by popularity. This is very useful if you are creating a hyperport.
You can see all the historical OpenSim statistics here, including polls and surveys, dating all the way back to 2009.
Below are the 40 largest grids by total land area, in terms of standard region equivalents.
- OSgrid: 19,760 regions
- Kitely: 17,811 regions
- Discovery Grid: 9,507 regions
- DigiWorldz: 6,773 regions
- ZetaWorlds: 2,457 regions
- Metropolis: 1,251 regions
- 3rd Rock Grid: 1,239 regions
- PMGrid: 1,012 regions
- Gevolution: 631 regions
- Tag Grid: 596 regions
- Anettes Welt: 436 regions
- HD Skin World: 353 regions
- DreamNation: 346 regions
- Tangle Grid: 333 regions
- Nemesis 3D: 305 regions
- Neverworld: 285 regions
- Encitra Home Grid: 278 regions
- Littlefield: 272 regions
- GerGrid: 240 regions
- Open Virtual Worlds: 231 regions
- EdMondo: 215 regions
- FrancoGrid: 207 regions
- Craft World: 201 regions
- Grid Nirvana: 185 regions
- Encore Escape: 168 regions
- RAKis World: 155 regions
- Japan Open Grid: 155 regions
- Insight Concepts: 154 regions
- 3rd Life Grid: 133 regions
- Virtual Dream Grid: 131 regions
- Caledonia: 121 regions
- Virtualife: 116 regions
- Dreamlife: 114 regions
- Amaryllis Grid: 114 regions
- MisFitz Grid: 109 regions
- Adreans-World: 102 regions
- Infinite Grid: 93 regions
- Counter Earth: 91 regions
- Dynamic Worldz: 91 regions
- The Verse: 89 regions