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If one developer of a feature (i.e Fracture Modifier) produces a full version of Blender incorporating their modifier, as opposed to just creating an add-on, and then another developer working on a different modifier (i.e. Manta Flow liquids) produces a full build incorporating their work, do I have to have two versions of Blender in order to use them both? I'm new to Blender and this whole Open Source thing, so I'm not sure how it all works.

Thanks, Brian

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    $\begingroup$ "Do I have to have two versions of Blender in order to use them both?" Yes, that is why users often push to see their favorite experimental features merged to master/trunk/official builds. "incorporating their modifier, as opposed to just creating an add-on" Blender addons don't currently have the facilities to implement new modifiers. $\endgroup$ Jan 14 '18 at 18:40
  • $\begingroup$ Thank you. So, if I created a scene using the Fracture Modifier build version, and spent a lot of time creating an effect with it, but then wanted to use the Manta Flow modifier, to create another effect in the same scene, how would that be accomplished? $\endgroup$
    – BrianG
    Jan 14 '18 at 20:10
  • $\begingroup$ You would be best advised to not use those experimental features on serious production work at all, even less mix them. Luckily if you open it in another build your data would be intact, but I wouldn't bet on it. Things might break or corrupt. Either render them in separate scenes, or composite them in layers, or mix them at your own risk $\endgroup$ Jan 14 '18 at 20:20
  • $\begingroup$ Very good advice. Thank goodness for After Effects, and thank you. $\endgroup$
    – BrianG
    Jan 14 '18 at 22:05
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In short: until both features are merged into the same build of Blender, you should treat those Blenders as two different applications.

I would suggest to use a file format like Alembic to bridge the different applications you want to use. For example, use the Fracture build of Blender to produce fractured objects, then export those to Alembic. You can then use the Manta Flow build of Blender to import those Alembic files and work with MantaFlow.

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    $\begingroup$ Ah! Thank you so much. I will look into that. $\endgroup$
    – BrianG
    Jan 14 '18 at 22:04

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