some questions about F@H

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some questions about F@H

Postposted on Thu May 09, 2002 1:54 am

OK so I am going to install the F@H 'screensaver' (not console) client on my main (and only) machine and I just have a few questions:

1) Now, this is a 'background screensaver' application. Does that mean it just uses available CPU cycles at all times, when the computer is in screensaver mode, or if none of the above, then when?

2) Will this 100% load my CPU when I am not using the computer at all?

3) Say I want to run a CPU intensive program, play a game, encode a DivX movie, etc. Will the F@H client only take free CPU cycles? Or do I have to suspend it or something when I want all of the cycles to be available for another program?

4) We have an ancient P100 in the basement, 48MB RAM, no HD that I know powers up and gets into the BIOS. So, should I get that thing folding? If so, how can I do it without buying a HD for it? I'd be willing to throw a $5 NIC in it (I dunno it may be all ISA slots, lol) I know there are Linux distros that can boot off a floppy, can anyone point me to one to use for F@H? Or would that be a waste considering the ancient CPU?

One last thing: glad to be folding for someone. /me runs about stealthily and sees what other computers I can run this on. :)
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Postposted on Thu May 09, 2002 2:03 am

Oh, -[one]- two other things:

1) Since I am running this on an overclocked CPU, how should I check that the WU I submit are 'good' ones and not being messed up by my OC? I have never had any problems with any program running on this computer, just want to know if there is a way to validate my WU's.

2) I read some of the other threads and you guys talk about frames done per WU or something. :) What is that and hwo do I check the 733t-ness of my machine in regards to its actual speed at proceesing WU's?
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Postposted on Thu May 09, 2002 4:31 am

MadManOriginal, I can't answer your questions but I do know this isn't the comments section and there are actually 'edit' buttons here :lol:
"I think computer viruses should count as life. I think it says something about human nature that the only form of life we have created so far is purely destructive. We've created life in our own image." -- Stephen Hawking
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Postposted on Thu May 09, 2002 12:22 pm

element wrote:MadManOriginal, I can't answer your questions but I do know this isn't the comments section and there are actually 'edit' buttons here :lol:


Yes I realize that, thanks. :wink:

I did edit my first post, but then made the second one, dunno why I didn't edit. Maybe I am just trying to get my post count up? *cough* SPAM *cough*
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Re: some questions about F@H

Postposted on Thu May 09, 2002 1:37 pm

MadManOriginal wrote:OK so I am going to install the F@H 'screensaver' (not console) client on my main (and only) machine and I just have a few questions:

Even though I'm a console junkie I'll try my best ;).

1) Now, this is a 'background screensaver' application. Does that mean it just uses available CPU cycles at all times, when the computer is in screensaver mode, or if none of the above, then when?

It looks like there's two versions, the graphical console that runs all the time and the screensaver only version. Since I haven't tried either yet all I can say is try 'em and see.

2) Will this 100% load my CPU when I am not using the computer at all?

Ideally yes. The only time it wouldn't be at 100% is when it's transferring a work unit
3) Say I want to run a CPU intensive program, play a game, encode a DivX movie, etc. Will the F@H client only take free CPU cycles? Or do I have to suspend it or something when I want all of the cycles to be available for another program?

The client is very good at getting out of the way when you want to run something else. When I encode a DivX on one of mine, Core_65.exe gets 0% of the CPU.
4) We have an ancient P100 in the basement, 48MB RAM, no HD that I know powers up and gets into the BIOS. So, should I get that thing folding? If so, how can I do it without buying a HD for it? I'd be willing to throw a $5 NIC in it (I dunno it may be all ISA slots, lol) I know there are Linux distros that can boot off a floppy, can anyone point me to one to use for F@H? Or would that be a waste considering the ancient CPU?

I'm not sure a machine that old can get a WU done before it expires. I tried running it on a P166MMX and I don't think it ever returned a WU on time. Considering what you'd have to do to get that machine working, I don't think it's worth the effort.
One last thing: glad to be folding for someone. /me runs about stealthily and sees what other computers I can run this on. :)

Glad to have you aboard! (And don't get caught ;))
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Postposted on Thu May 09, 2002 1:41 pm

MadManOriginal wrote:Oh, -[one]- two other things:

1) Since I am running this on an overclocked CPU, how should I check that the WU I submit are 'good' ones and not being messed up by my OC? I have never had any problems with any program running on this computer, just want to know if there is a way to validate my WU's.

I don't think there's a way for end users to check the validity of a WU. If you're not having any trouble otherwise I'd say it would be fine.

2) I read some of the other threads and you guys talk about frames done per WU or something. :) What is that and hwo do I check the 733t-ness of my machine in regards to its actual speed at proceesing WU's?

Just check FAHlog.txt and see how long it takes to do a frame.
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Postposted on Thu May 09, 2002 5:32 pm

Thanks Steel. I sort of figured out a lot of the answers by trial and error, but I was anxious to know and made those posts. :)

You are right, it gets out of the way quite easily for other programs.

I found the frame times for the different proteins that have been worked on. It seems to be different for each protein. Are there any comparisons anywhere I can check to tell if my computer is good or bad, relatively, at folding?

Since you never used the screen-saver program, I wonder if anyone else who has used both can say whether one is more efficient than the other. I can't imagine the actual screensaver takes up much CPU time. Other than that, does the console version give a system tray icon as well to check on the status? So that the only real difference is that one has a screensaver and one doesn't?
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how fast a frame gets done

Postposted on Thu May 09, 2002 6:26 pm

In my Athlon 1.4 ghz using win98se one frame from the proteinAg29aNat takes about 11 minutes. Haven´t tried the screen saver version though.
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Postposted on Thu May 09, 2002 6:47 pm

Ok most of you will probably think this is a stupid question. But, what is Folding at Home?
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Postposted on Thu May 09, 2002 7:58 pm

Check out http://folding.stanford.edu/ for more information on Folding @ Home.

:)
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Postposted on Thu May 09, 2002 10:26 pm

OK, I know I saw some people on the front page comments talking about proteinA (the *really* big one with 100 frames.) My computer takes 11:30 (m:s) for one frame to complete. This is on a P4 1.8A @ 2.4B :) 512MB RAM. For others who have done this one, how does this compare?
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Postposted on Thu May 09, 2002 11:27 pm

Is there a log of some sort to see how long frames are taking?
Your bargaining posture is highly dubious.
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Postposted on Fri May 10, 2002 2:09 am

Steel wrote:
MadManOriginal wrote:Oh, -[one]- two other things:

1) Since I am running this on an overclocked CPU, how should I check that the WU I submit are 'good' ones and not being messed up by my OC? I have never had any problems with any program running on this computer, just want to know if there is a way to validate my WU's.

I don't think there's a way for end users to check the validity of a WU. If you're not having any trouble otherwise I'd say it would be fine.

2) I read some of the other threads and you guys talk about frames done per WU or something. :) What is that and hwo do I check the 733t-ness of my machine in regards to its actual speed at proceesing WU's?

Just check FAHlog.txt and see how long it takes to do a frame.


^ Yes ^
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Postposted on Fri May 10, 2002 7:21 am

Coldfirex wrote:Is there a log of some sort to see how long frames are taking?

Yes, just right-click on the client screen, then about, then view log file.

MadManOriginal wrote:OK, I know I saw some people on the front page comments talking about proteinA (the *really* big one with 100 frames.) My computer takes 11:30 (m:s) for one frame to complete. This is on a P4 1.8A @ 2.4B 512MB RAM. For others who have done this one, how does this compare?


I've done it here in my Tbird 1.4 Ghz, and I spent the same time per frame you're spending.
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Postposted on Fri May 10, 2002 8:23 am

thanks radix
Your bargaining posture is highly dubious.
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Postposted on Fri May 10, 2002 4:24 pm

I ran F@H console version (which does not put up a tray icon) on my old P-100 last week. It was very slow, of course, taking almost an hour each frame. But it did get done, and I'm pretty sure it submitted the WU successfully. I discontinued it, though, because it was a waste of time and effort, it put out heat which I could better accept if it was adding significantly to my output, and I decided that for all the electricity being used, I'd do better with another machine for which a 100 MHz difference is nearly negligible.

Meanwhile, I'm finding these 10-frame WU's I've been getting in the last 2 weeks annoying as hell. Every frame takes longer, and that means more wasted work when I logout or shutdown. :evil:
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