I was looking for new and more efficient ways to manage tools and plug-ins in a production environment. As you may know I have developed a system called "Tool Server" which can be obtain for free.
However, based on comments from my clients and users of the system, I decided to develop something even better. Tool server does not use "Maya Environment Paths" and executes everything at the startup. Since my clients use third party tools and plug-ins as well, they needed to have something which uses "Maya Environment Paths".
Arsenal is a MEL based tool which allows you to create Maya.env file based on your folder structure that you have created for your tools and plug-ins. It uses two logics in order to establish proper tool environment.
It searches all folders under one particular directory and stores these paths as;
Arsenal works exactly same way as "Tool Server" works. At startup, it sources all MEL scripts, add all directories and sub directories as python path, and loads all .mll and .py plug-ins. It loads plug-ins based on the version of Maya in use. Arsenal detects the version automatically.
As a result of the combination of these systems, we have dependable and easily manageable system for our tools. Unlimited folders/subfolders can be created in this system. Arsenal does take care of everything you need.