what is folding@home all about?

Discussion in 'Distributed Computing' started by twoodcc, Feb 28, 2011.

  1. macrumors P6

    twoodcc

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2005
    Location:
    Right side of wrong
    #1
    What is folding@home?
    Folding@home is a distributed computing project run by Stanford University that uses protein folding to help find cures for diseases like Alzheimer's, ALS, Huntington's, Parkinson's disease, and many cancers. Learn more here

    Why join folding@home?
    This is a way to directly have an impact on finding cures for diseases. You use your computer at home to help scientists process data that would take a supercomputer to do. Instead of donating money (which you can do) to cancer research, you actually help take part in the research itself, so you know that the research is being done.

    Which computer platforms work with folding@home?
    For CPU folding - Mac, Linux, and Windows
    For GPU folding - Windows natively, Linux through wine

    More to come on how to install and setup folding@home.

    guys, above is the post that we are gonna use to get more people on the forum on the folding team. the avatar that i'm using is in the current folding faq post. please let me know if you think i need to add/change anything in this post before we blast it on the forum.

    thanks
     
  2. macrumors 601

    OrangeSVTguy

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2007
    Location:
    Northeastern Ohio
    #2
    You should also mention it in your sig? I've had it in mine for a while but I wonder if it's doing any good?
     
  3. thread starter macrumors P6

    twoodcc

    Joined:
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    #3
    yeah i'll probably put it in there soon. but hopefully with the mods and stuff helping us promote our team will help the most. so does this sound like a good start?
     
  4. thread starter macrumors P6

    twoodcc

    Joined:
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    #4
    anyone want to help us out and make some install tutorials with screenshots and everything? let me know, and i think we'll put it in the community forum, to try and promote our team!
     
  5. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2010
    Location:
    UK
    #5
    Hi,

    I've put together a guide for the console version that I'll run through and will aim to post tomorrow for comments etc.

    I don't mind trying to do the prefpane client as well, but I'd need help from someone with more experience of uploading and posting screenshots.

    Also, worth bearing in mind that the guides will probably go out of date pretty quick with the imminent 6.34 (and even 7.0) clients coming out, so not worth going overboard with them.

    Gotta go now and see why a search and rescue chopper is hovering outside my window!

    Rob
     
  6. macrumors 65816

    cantthinkofone

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2004
    Location:
    Missouri, USA
    #6
    I had been wanting to get back into this but never got around to it. I just installed it and it keeps saying "Folding@home needs to install its helper tool" and then does nothing after I click install. Ideas?
     
  7. macrumors 601

    OrangeSVTguy

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2007
    Location:
    Northeastern Ohio
    #7
    Probably the FBI/DEA investigating why you're using up so much electricity.

    I guess I can try a do a write-up on the smp client or even how to setup single/multiple GPU clients. Will do screenshots as I do t know if there is a free app that record your screen?
     
  8. macrumors 601

    OrangeSVTguy

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2007
    Location:
    Northeastern Ohio
    #8
    Are you trying to fold on your MBP or G4? Are you using the tray or console client?
     
  9. thread starter macrumors P6

    twoodcc

    Joined:
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    #9
    thanks so much for helping out Rob!

    that would really help out a lot! thanks! i know you can record your screen with quicktime in OS X, i'm not sure about windows though.
     
  10. macrumors 65816

    ClutchThese

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2010
    Location:
    Alexandria, VA
    #10
    i just bought a new MBP 15'' i7 quad core... would this work for folding?
     
  11. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2010
    Location:
    UK
    #11
    Definitely!
    Mine is "out on van for delivery" this morning, so hopefully I'll be able to run through my console guide on it and post some performance figures later.
     
  12. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2010
    Location:
    UK
    #12
    Ok, here is an attempt at an OSX console guide. Any comments or feedback are welcome!

    Installing and running the Folding@home 6.29 Mac Console Client

    First, choose a username. You will probably want this to be unique to yourself, so search here to check that no one else is using it.

    Next, obtain a passkey from http://fah-web.stanford.edu/cgi-bin/getpasskey.py
    (See http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1073565 for why you want a passkey)

    Now, from a terminal window (/Applications/Utilities/Terminal.app or Go>Utilities>Terminal.app) execute each of these commands in order:

    Code:
    #	1. Create a new directory for folding
    mkdir ~/Library/Folding@home
    
    #	2. Navigate to new directory
    cd ~/Library/Folding@home
    
    #	3. Use curl to download the folding package
    curl -O http://www.stanford.edu/group/pandegroup/folding/release/FAH6.29-OSX-Intel-Console.tgz
    
    #	4. Untar the download
    tar xzf FAH6.29-OSX-Intel-Console.tgz
    
    #	5. Run and configure folding for the first time
    ./fah6 -smp -configonly 
    The folding client will now start and prompt you to configure it for the first time.

    At the "User name" prompt enter your chosen name

    At the "Team Number" prompt enter 3446 (this is for "Macrumors.com - Team Folding")

    At the "Passkey" prompt enter your passkey (copy and paste this to make sure you don't make a mistake)

    At the "Ask before fetching/sending work" prompt accept the default [no]

    At the "Use proxy" prompt accept the default [no], unless you really are using a proxy!

    At the "Acceptable size of work assignment" enter big

    At the "Change advanced options" prompt accept the default [no]

    Configuration should now be complete!

    Now to start folding:

    Code:
    #	6. Run folding with detailed logging
    ./fah6 -smp -verbosity 9
    The client will start, contact the Stanford servers to request and download a Work Unit, download the necessary core and if all goes well, you will now be folding your first Work Unit!

    To stop folding, press "ctrl" and "c" together when in the terminal window.

    To restart folding, navigate back to the folding directory and execute again:

    Code:
    cd ~/Library/Folding@home
    ./fah6 -smp -verbosity 9
    Command line flags / switches

    There are a number of common options that can be invoked from the command line (you've already used a few when setting up):

    -configonly : this flag tells the client to just run the initial configuration and then quit

    -smp (2-n where n is your number of processing cores) : The -smp flag must be included to run multicore projects. The number is optional and specifies the number of cores to use (defaults to n) Eg. to leave a core free on a quad core system, run using "-smp 3", to use all four, just use "-smp"

    -verbosity (1-9) : specifies how detailed the log file is. "-verbosity 9" gives the highest level and is useful for troubleshooting

    -bigadv : Allows the client to request (very) big Work Units that come with a correspondingly high points reward for rapid return. These units have tight deadlines and requires a minimum of 8 cores. The quad core iMacs with hyperthreading (8 reported cores) should just make the deadline if running 24/7

    -advmethods : DO NOT USE TOGETHER WITH BIGADV. Allows the client to request late beta / experimental work units. They may give higher points, but may be less stable.

    -oneunit : The client will download and run one Work Unit or, if a unit is already started, complete the running Work Unit, upload, then quit.
     
  13. thread starter macrumors P6

    twoodcc

    Joined:
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    #13
    looks good to me! thanks Rob! :)
     

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