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If you have a question regarding commercial use or distribution of POV-Ray, please contact the development team coordinator via the address listed at http://www.povray.org/povlegal.html. Please do not email us directly for technical support - use the below-mentioned forums. We generally do not answer emails requesting support if the sender has not first asked in the forums or read the documentation.
See our web site and particularly our forums for online peer support. The forums have a bug reporting group; please however discuss the issue in the povray.general group and check our bugtracker at http://bugs.povray.org/ prior to lodging a report as we may already know of the issue (or it might not even be a bug).
Note: The following license applies to POV-Ray version 3.7 and later. It does not apply to any earlier version, including the 3.7 beta-test and release candidates.
GNU AFFERO GENERAL PUBLIC LICENSE Version 3, 19 November 2007 Copyright (C) 2007 Free Software Foundation, Inc. <http://fsf.org/> Everyone is permitted to copy and distribute verbatim copies of this license document, but changing it is not allowed. Preamble The GNU Affero General Public License is a free, copyleft license for software and other kinds of works, specifically designed to ensure cooperation with the community in the case of network server software. The licenses for most software and other practical works are designed to take away your freedom to share and change the works. By contrast, our General Public Licenses are intended to guarantee your freedom to share and change all versions of a program--to make sure it remains free software for all its users. When we speak of free software, we are referring to freedom, not price. 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IN NO EVENT UNLESS REQUIRED BY APPLICABLE LAW OR AGREED TO IN WRITING WILL ANY COPYRIGHT HOLDER, OR ANY OTHER PARTY WHO MODIFIES AND/OR CONVEYS THE PROGRAM AS PERMITTED ABOVE, BE LIABLE TO YOU FOR DAMAGES, INCLUDING ANY GENERAL, SPECIAL, INCIDENTAL OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES ARISING OUT OF THE USE OR INABILITY TO USE THE PROGRAM (INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO LOSS OF DATA OR DATA BEING RENDERED INACCURATE OR LOSSES SUSTAINED BY YOU OR THIRD PARTIES OR A FAILURE OF THE PROGRAM TO OPERATE WITH ANY OTHER PROGRAMS), EVEN IF SUCH HOLDER OR OTHER PARTY HAS BEEN ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES. 17. Interpretation of Sections 15 and 16. If the disclaimer of warranty and limitation of liability provided above cannot be given local legal effect according to their terms, reviewing courts shall apply local law that most closely approximates an absolute waiver of all civil liability in connection with the Program, unless a warranty or assumption of liability accompanies a copy of the Program in return for a fee. END OF TERMS AND CONDITIONS How to Apply These Terms to Your New Programs If you develop a new program, and you want it to be of the greatest possible use to the public, the best way to achieve this is to make it free software which everyone can redistribute and change under these terms. To do so, attach the following notices to the program. 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Also add information on how to contact you by electronic and paper mail. If your software can interact with users remotely through a computer network, you should also make sure that it provides a way for users to get its source. For example, if your program is a web application, its interface could display a "Source" link that leads users to an archive of the code. There are many ways you could offer source, and different solutions will be better for different programs; see section 13 for the specific requirements. You should also get your employer (if you work as a programmer) or school, if any, to sign a "copyright disclaimer" for the program, if necessary. For more information on this, and how to apply and follow the GNU AGPL, see <http://www.gnu.org/licenses/>.
If you wish to contact us for purposes other than technical support, the following means are available:
team-coord-[three-letter month]-[four-digit year]@povray.org
email@example.com should be used if at
the time you send the email it is the month of June 2004. The
changing email addresses are necessary to combat spam and email viruses.
Old email addresses may be deleted at our discretion.
Via postal mail:
The following postal address is only for official business. Please note that it is preferred that initial queries about licensing be made via email; postal mail should only be used when email is not possible, or when written documents are being exchanged by prior arrangement.
Persistence of Vision Raytracer Pty. Ltd.
PO Box 407
Copyright © 2004, Industrial Light & Magic, a division of Lucasfilm Entertainment Company Ltd. Portions contributed and copyright held by others as indicated. All rights reserved.
Redistribution and use in source and binary forms, with or without modification, are permitted provided that the following conditions are met:
THIS SOFTWARE IS PROVIDED BY THE COPYRIGHT HOLDERS AND CONTRIBUTORS "AS IS" AND ANY EXPRESS OR IMPLIED WARRANTIES, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, THE IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY AND FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE ARE DISCLAIMED. IN NO EVENT SHALL THE COPYRIGHT OWNER OR CONTRIBUTORS BE LIABLE FOR ANY DIRECT, INDIRECT, INCIDENTAL, SPECIAL, EXEMPLARY, OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES (INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, PROCUREMENT OF SUBSTITUTE GOODS OR SERVICES; LOSS OF USE, DATA, OR PROFITS; OR BUSINESS INTERRUPTION) HOWEVER CAUSED AND ON ANY THEORY OF LIABILITY, WHETHER IN CONTRACT, STRICT LIABILITY, OR TORT (INCLUDING NEGLIGENCE OR OTHERWISE) ARISING IN ANY WAY OUT OF THE USE OF THIS SOFTWARE, EVEN IF ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGE.
To reference POV-Ray (e.g. in academic papers), you may use one of the below:
Note: The year should be replaced with the year of your publication.
Persistence of Vision Pty. Ltd. (2013) Persistence of Vision Raytracer (Version 3.7) [Computer software]. Retrieved from http://www.povray.org/download/
Persistence of Vision Pty. Ltd. (2013). Persistence of Vision Raytracer. Persistence of Vision Pty. Ltd., Williamstown, Victoria, Australia. http://www.povray.org/
Primary POV-Ray 3.7 Core Architects/Developers: (alphabetically)
With Assistance From: (alphabetically)
Past POV-Team Members and other Note-Worthy Contributors: (alphabetically)
We would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has helped make POV-Ray what it is over the past two decades. We can't possibly list you all here but be assured that we appreciate your support - without you this project would not be here!
This documentation assumes you already have POV-Ray installed and running however the POV-Team does distribute this file by itself in various formats including online on the internet. If you do not have POV-Ray or are not sure you have the official version or the latest version, then the following sections will tell you what to get and where to get it.
Note: We strongly recommend that you obtain POV-Ray directly from the POV-Ray website (or your company/school intranet, if applicable). Some websites have been known to re-package the POV-Ray software in an installer that bundles adware. If the installation package is not signed by Persistence of Vision Raytracer Pty. Ltd., then it is not from us and may have been tampered with. The official installer supplied by us contains no adware or third-party software of any kind.
POV-Ray can be used under Windows™ XP or newer, x86 Apple™ Macintosh™, and Linux™ & UNIX™ on numerous hardware platforms. See section Where to Find POV-Ray Files for more info.
Older versions of POV-Ray supported many platforms no longer in regular use; we preserve such old versions in our archives if you wish to access them.
If your platform is not supported and you are proficient in compiling source code programs written in C/C++, then you may like to retrieve the source for POV-Ray from our website and attempt to built it yourself.
As of POV-Ray version 3.7 the Windows versions of POV-Ray require Windows XP and later. We have had reports of v3.7 working on Windows 2000 with all service packs installed, however we cannot guarantee that this will remain the case indefinitely, as we do not test against W2K. If you have an older system you may like to look at POV-Ray version 3.6, which works on Windows 95 and up.
We supply both 32 and 64-bit versions of POVWIN which have been tested to run with AMD™ and Intel™ x86 and x64 processors. As of version 3.7, SMP systems are fully supported; by default POVWIN will use all available processing cores when rendering. For 32-bit systems, we supply both non-SSE2 and SSE2-enabled binaries. The installer will determine which is the most appropriate for your system at install time and install shortcuts to that executable (note however all executables are always placed in the bin folder regardless of the platform). For 64-bit systems there is only a single executable - a separate SSE version is not needed as all x64 CPU's have SSE2 available.
We recommend 100mb free disk space (the installation does not require that much, but room for temporary files during rendering is generally required) and at least 1gb free (i.e. available to POV-Ray at runtime) memory. POV's actual RAM requirement can vary greatly; it's possible to render files with as little as 30mb of free RAM, but typical needs are much greater than this. The actual use depends on what SDL files are provided for rendering and the image output options in use. We strongly recommend that you have sufficient RAM for rendering your scene files without resorting to swap - if a render hits the pagefile regularly it will completely destroy rendering performance.
Note: Accelerated graphics hardware (such as 3D cards) will not improve rendering performance. This technology is not currently aimed at raytracing but is, generally speaking, optimized for single-precision scanline rendering as used in games or other simulations. POV-Ray, like all raytracers, requires double-precision floating-point in order to be able to accurately render scenes.
Note: System admins/lab techs who wish to do custom installs of POV-Ray for Windows should refer to the windows platform-specific documentation for more details.
Because Linux/Unix run on a wide variety of hardware, the POV-Team cannot provide executable versions for every variation. Instead, we distribute a generic, portable C++ source code package suitable for generating binaries on Unix or Unix-like platforms. It is known to compile and run correctly on recent versions of GNU/Linux for x86/x64, and should be fairly straightforward to get running on any POSIX-compliant Unix-like operating system with a Bourne-compatible shell.
You will need a recent C++ compiler which follows the ISO C++ standard as closely as possible (g++ 4.x is known to work), and (optionally) SVGAlib for GNU/Linux based systems if you wish to enable render preview display.
Required POV-Ray files: povray-3.7.tar.bz2 - the C++ source code of POV-Ray for UNIX. Contains generic parts and UNIX/Linux specific parts. The package includes sample scenes, standard include files and documentation in HTML and plain text ASCII format.
All versions of the program share the same ray-tracing features like shapes, lighting and textures. In other words, a Windows PC can create the same pictures as a supercomputer as long as it has enough memory and you are willing to wait enough time.
Beside the POV-Ray material mentioned in Books, Magazines and CD-ROMs, there are several good books or periodicals that you should be able to locate in your local computer book store or your local university library.
The POV-Team no longer recommends books from CRC Press.