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Renderman shader parameters in SHOP

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Hey Wizards:

Take pity on me guys. I learned this whole renderman/maya/houdini thing on my own.

I use slim to make shaders and apply them by name onto houdini on the object level mostly. I would like to add them to my shop operator RIB menu and control the parameters. I created the dialouge scripts blablabla with the .ds files...yay

Then there is this whole directory structure where you have to make a shop folder and then sub-directories corresponding to the type,ie shader,displacement, what have you. then there is that whole matter of having a blank file with no extension. Inside is the label with the names and the icon type etc. (I'm foggy on where this file should be placed, In the SHOP folder?) do I need to set an environment variable?

I have done this before with vex shaders with version 4.1 years ago as part of this underwater caustic tutorial that I have been unable to locate these days. I'm clear on that.

anyhoo...I have the shaders (slc,slo and the .ds) I look inside the houdini shop folder where there used to be the file where all the Shop entries were listed and It's all different in version 6.1.208 all I see is this palette folder.

where do I put the .ds scripts? where do I put the directory tree ie shop with the surface, displacement etc. do I have to set a variable or something.

I read the renderman houdini tutorial here on odforce but I must be dumb because I still don't "get" parts of it. the manual is even more confusing.

HELP !!!!!!! I need to controll the parameters of my renderman shaders.

Houdini 6.1.208

Pixar RAT 5.0

Windows XP pro service Pack 1 P4 2.0 GHz 512 mb DDR RAM


This is what the Environment variables under System Variables look like



"C:\Program Files\Pixar\prman-10.0\lib\shaders"


C:\Program Files\Pixar\docs-5.0


C:\Program Files\Pixar\rat-5.0


"C:\Program Files\Pixar\prman-10.0\lib\textures"


C:\Program Files\Pixar\prman-10.0


C:\Program Files\AliasWavefront\Maya5.0\bin;C:\Program Files\Shake-v2.51.1116;C:\Program Files\Shake-v2.50.0810;%SystemRoot%\system32;%SystemRoot%;%SystemRoot%\System32\Wbem;C:\Program Files\Common Files\Ulead Systems\MPEG;C:\PROGRA~1\COMMON~1\ULEADS~1\MPEG;C:\Digital Domain NUKE v3.2.63\setup\d2software.nuke3.0\nuke\usr\dd\lib;C:\Program Files\backburner 2\;PATH = %RATTREE%\bin;%RMANTREE%\bin;C:\Program Files\Pixar\prman-10.0

sincere thanks



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It's been streamlined a bit for the newest release of Houdini. All you really have to worry about.

prman\bin has to in your path


needs to be set so Houdini can find the RMan shaders (slo)

now, use rmands to make an otl out of the shaders

rmands -l myshader.otl myshader.slo

Go into Houdini and install the OTL from the file menu. As long as the paths are set, houdini should be able to find the shader and render it with PRman.

Additionally, you can throw as many shaders as you want into a single OTL.

rmands -l myshader.otl myshader01.slo

rmands -l myshader.otl myshader02.slo

rmands -l myshader.otl myshader03.slo

rmands -l myshader.otl myshader04.slo

Will yeild a single OTL that contains 4 shaders provided you directing rmands to the same OTL each time. You can stick whatever you want into this single OTL, VEX tools you've put together, HDA's from your scene, whatever you want.

To get at the parameters from within Houdini you will have to export the paramters. In slim, this is as simple as changing the colored box next to the parameter before you render an icon to generate the slo file. I think the export color is teal, but I'm not sure. Slim should tell you.

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