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View Full Version : Use an iPod to fold?


Mechcozmo
Feb 26, 2005, 12:55 AM
OK so I got an idea from here (http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=112409). Using the iPod on Linux (http://www.ipodlinux.org/Main_Page) thing and then using the Linux version of Folding at Home, is it possible?

My iPod is the 1G. Dual 90 MHz cores with 32MB of RAM. There are Pentiums folding with stats less than that-- and with a small Linux overhead, I should be pretty good.

I can share the internet connection from my PowerBook to the iPod via FireWire

Sure, it may kill battery life but I do have 10 hours of it. :D

Your thoughts?

FredAkbar
Feb 26, 2005, 01:34 AM
Pretty sweet idea...would the linux F@H run on it, though? The only Linux version offered is for x86, and the iPod's processor is certainly quite different.

Mechcozmo
Feb 26, 2005, 01:41 AM
Pretty sweet idea...would the linux F@H run on it, though? The only Linux version offered is for x86, and the iPod's processor is certainly quite different.

Hmmm. Interesting thought. I guess I'll try and see? But I've gotta get some sleep. Isn't there an "other" catagory with F@H? And is the processor's architecture is similar enough it shouldn't be that big of a deal. Well, it should be but it may not be a deal-breaker. And if they have the source code for F@H release as open-source then I can see about recompiling it for the ARM (I think) in the iPod.

FredAkbar
Feb 26, 2005, 02:29 AM
Yeah, go for it. Let us know if you get Folding running. I assume you can run things like that while the iPod is plugged in, so battery wouldn't really be an issue, would it?

Mechcozmo
Feb 26, 2005, 02:43 PM
Yeah, go for it. Let us know if you get Folding running. I assume you can run things like that while the iPod is plugged in, so battery wouldn't really be an issue, would it?

Folding @ Home can run offline, like, it can run without needing constant connection to the internet. It downloads its little packet, and then starts crunching away.

Littleodie914
Feb 26, 2005, 02:52 PM
Hmm... This is a really interesting idea. Think of all the people that own ipods, and that would probably be willing to do this!

Mechcozmo
Feb 27, 2005, 03:24 AM
Hmm... This is a really interesting idea. Think of all the people that own ipods, and that would probably be willing to do this!

If they fold for Mechcozmo, team 3446. :D

SpaceMagic
Feb 27, 2005, 04:56 AM
Wow! Amazing. I cannot believe that iPodLinux thing!

Think of colour iPods with a custom Linux... could = PDA!

Great find! About Folding at home... I think you'd need to recompile it...

cjc343
Feb 27, 2005, 05:04 AM
Last I knew F@H was not open source because of worries that people would try to falsify results and send them in either just to mess things up or to gain points for themselves/their team.

Other than that, it sounds like a great idea, although I'll probably forget about this thread after this post and never remember to come back...

dotdotdot
Feb 27, 2005, 10:25 AM
Why would you put Linux on an iPod?

Are there advantages?

slooksterPSV
Feb 27, 2005, 10:30 AM
Linux is being put on everything from the PS2 to XBOX to now the iPod. Linux, I love to say this, is the worst OS in the world. It steals from Unix and claims it as its own. It is for the hackers, not the real world users - Macs are for real world users and... PC's are for gamers. Linux is nothing but a cheap knockoff of Unix. I'd rather have Unix over Mac, Mac over Windows and Linux, Windows over Linux. No advantage to having Linux.

brap
Feb 27, 2005, 10:35 AM
Linux is nothing but a cheap knockoff of Unix.Really cheap. Like, free. F-R-E-E.

Just to reiterate, it is a fully featured operating system that costs nothing.

slooksterPSV
Feb 27, 2005, 10:36 AM
What the .... is this?
Intel Strong Arm??? That was unexpected:

brap
Feb 27, 2005, 10:42 AM
What the .... is this?
Intel Strong Arm??? That was unexpected:Intel have bought rights to manufactre some ARM chips, they have done for a long while. A friend of mine has a 220MHz SA110, in his Acorn Risc PC, labeled manufactured by Intel... I believe they partnered on the XScale project, too.

slooksterPSV
Feb 27, 2005, 10:44 AM
Intel have bought rights to manufactre some ARM chips, they have done for a long while. A friend of mine has a 220MHz SA110, in his Acorn Risc PC, labeled manufactured by Intel... I believe they partnered on the XScale project, too.
No no no no, I meant that ipods use strong arm processors, I knew intel used Strong Arm processors, they use them a lot in Pocket PCs, along with XScale of course (I have an XScale Toshiba), but I'm shocked that they use StrongArm in Ipods... then again.. what would the ipods use if they didn't use intel Processors? I don't see them putting G3's in them lol.... still shocking though.

CubaTBird
Feb 27, 2005, 11:11 AM
One word: overheat

daveL
Feb 27, 2005, 12:44 PM
Sorry, but this seems like a pretty silly idea, to me. Don't get me wrong, I can see this as being a fun little geek project, but from a practical standpoint I think the battery, heat and just plain old butt slow performance would be a no-go. Just my take on it.

Mechcozmo
Feb 27, 2005, 01:20 PM
Linux is being put on everything from the PS2 to XBOX to now the iPod.

If it has a processor, some RAM, and a way to input data then you can run Linux on it. Linkety (http://www.uclinux.org/ucsimm/) is really cool. Has a processor, RAM, and a serial connection. It is all done through a SIMM slot. Don't ask me how.

I can see this as being a fun little geek project
That was kinda the point... I know that it isn't really practical but it would be cool, wouldn't it?

I know that it wouldn't churn out a bunch of points, but if I get it to work and then get it Slashdot-ed we could conceivably crash the MacRumors server... :rolleyes: :D

w00tmaster
Feb 27, 2005, 01:49 PM
The iPod does have some impressive computing power, but it lacks a lot of things. It lacks a Memory Management Unit(MMU) which makes programming for it a lot more difficult(but as you can see not impossible) but probably more importantly in the realm of folding the iPod lacks a floating point processor, which means that any floating point operation has to be simulated using integer instructions. This is VERY SLOW!
So it's very doubtful you will ever be able to do much computing using the current generation of iPods(maybe a photo has floating point support? I'm not sure), but who knows what tomorrow will bring.

Mechcozmo
Feb 27, 2005, 02:34 PM
I installed the Linux kernal, started into it, played around some, and then restarted into the Apple firmware. I dumped the Linux F@H onto it. It has a .exe extension, pretty weird for a Linux program I thought. Anyway. It goes onto the iPod and then I start it into Linux (iPod that is). Says that a .exe is an unusable format. I'm not THAT surprised...
anyone has any ideas?

slooksterPSV
Feb 27, 2005, 02:51 PM
I thought linux used .app ? I know Mac uses .app extension. Wait... maybe linux doesn't use an extension... I don't remember, but MOST like 90% no no no 99% of the programs you use on Linux, you have to compile yourself.

Mechcozmo
Feb 27, 2005, 05:43 PM
I thought linux used .app ? I know Mac uses .app extension. Wait... maybe linux doesn't use an extension... I don't remember, but MOST like 90% no no no 99% of the programs you use on Linux, you have to compile yourself.

Adds more reasons to the list of why I am so confuzzled by it being a .exe instead of having none or it being a .app or something. And yes, I know you usually compile it yourself but F@H is said to be closed off so that people can't tinker with it and cheat.