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I created a master object library file from which concrete projects can link in the objects needed for our scenes. The goal was that if we needed to touch up an object we could then do so in the master object library file and re-render from scenes in project files. The snag we ran into is that a couple of the master objects are used for two purposes: 1) Cast shadows but not be visible to the camera in one scene, and 2) Be visible to the camera in another scene.

So we were surprised to find that Ray Visibility options are grayed out on linked objects.

If it's not possible to change the options, we'll need to come up with a different approach.

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Many properties are defined in the master blend file where all changes should be made. We can't change these properties in a linked file as they are always read from the master.

In most cases the only linked items that we want to modify in a scene file are armatures. To be able to modify an armature we make a proxy of the armature in the linked file (CtrlAltP), this can also be applied to other objects. The drawback of making a proxy of a mesh object is that we loose any modifiers in the proxy.

Apart from loosing modifiers other changes made in the master file will still show up in the linked file, this includes mesh changes, materials, textures, but you can change various properties of a proxy object like Ray Visibility.

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  • $\begingroup$ Is there an appropriate forum to discuss this... more appropriate than the question and answer nature of stack exchange? $\endgroup$ – tobinjim Feb 24 '14 at 20:03
  • $\begingroup$ There is blenderArtists or the chat room here -not always in use- or #blender on irc. $\endgroup$ – sambler Feb 24 '14 at 23:38

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