Boinc doesn't use Gpu on Mac osx?

Discussion in 'Distributed Computing' started by waloshin, Jul 20, 2009.

  1. waloshin macrumors 68040

    waloshin

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    Oct 9, 2008
    #1
    Boinc on Osx 10.57 doesn't crunch with the Nvidia 9400m?

    While I was trying out Win 7 I installed Boinc and Seti@home was crunching with the cpu and gpu.
     
  2. Bernd macrumors member

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    Sep 4, 2003
    #2
    As far as I know Nvidia and ATI have bugs in the drivers that will not be fixed for GPU crunching until snow leopard is out and new science apps are written to take advantage of it. I think Open CL is the programing API that fixes this with new drivers and OSX side stuff. I am told the science apps will need to be recompiled and maybe rewritten. I have questions posted on the BOINC and SETI message boards asking about this.
     
  3. twoodcc macrumors P6

    twoodcc

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    #3
    i'm glad you are posting about this. snow leopard is out. i hope they working on it
     
  4. Bernd macrumors member

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    Sep 4, 2003
    #4
    Last I heard on the SETI boards they need some folks that know how to program on Macs. The PC guys said they could give out raw code for windows but are not sure what needs to be done for a port. They said to ask NVIDIA, ATI, Apple to volunteer some programing help. They said ATI has not been helpful for doing a GPU port for windows so they are even less likely to help with a OSX port. I don't have a clue where to ask for help at Apple or NVIDIA.
    The SETI GPU guys said they don't know about Open CL they are using the older NVIDIA programing language and until the Open CL kit comes out for windows they can't/don't know how to help. Open CL for Windows/Linux is set for sometime in the spring I heard.

    When the SETI project scientist asked ATI for help with writing a GPU application; ATI responded by sending an older card and the SDK kit and basically said here you figure out we are to busy to help.
     
  5. ayeying macrumors 601

    ayeying

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    #5
    That sucks. I'm really looking forward to putting my 9400M into computing power whenever that gets out.
     
  6. CIA macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 17, 2003
    #6
    BOINC doesn't support OpenCL or CUDA beyond being a 'gateway' for the apps that use BOINC to enable it. The apps themselves that run in BOINC are the ones that must do the legwork of incorporating OpenCL or CUDA support into the programs. CUDA support on the mac is very limited compared to windows, so you don't see any MacCUDA clients. OpenCL is very promising, but it's still a pretty new technology so I don't expect programmers to really use it much for the time being, but as time goes on that will improve. Also with CUDA much farther along on Windows, which in turn is a majority of BOINC users, there isn't much incentive to use OpenCL yet. OpenCL is 10.6, and 10.6 is a small percentage of Mac, which in turn are a small percentage of BOINC users.
    See the problem? Again this will change over time, but for the moment don't expect much GPGPU support in BOINC for macs.

    Let's hope this changes!
     
  7. Bernd macrumors member

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    #7
    CIA you are correct that Boinc only provides hardware recognition to the project the Projects must each write a science app that can use the GPU for each platform. Looking at the BOINC alfa builds 6.10.xx set have GPU recognition turned on for OSX. Both ATI and Nvidia. Now when I asked the question on the SETI forums around the release of SL one of the GPU opti app writers said right now no one knows how to port the window or linux science app over to OSX 10.6. He said right now they are having difficulties writing the ATI GPU app for windows and linux. He said because OSX never supported it in the past no one has OSX experience porting to GPU and with the new API (Open CL). He said some of the folks doing CPU opti aps for OSX are peeking at it but not much is happening right now. Now if any one has friends at Apple I am sure the chief scientist and Dev crew would love for some help. A good place for them to ask in the Forums at seti and other projects you or they have an interest in.

    Edit I would offer to help but I have no HW that supports GPU crunching at this time and I have done no programing in 20 years.
     
  8. lordonuthin macrumors 6502

    lordonuthin

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    #8
    Programming is something I could never get my brain wrapped around, RAM leak I think... otherwise I would love to help out :apple:
     
  9. Azrel macrumors regular

    Azrel

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    Jun 8, 2005
    #9
    I've done some CUDA on the Mac, there's little difference between CUDA on Linux and Mac (I think?), at least from what I've done. I know the Mac CUDA kext is still 32bit, and nVidia hasn't supported Mac as well as Linux. In terms of CUDA code though, its hardly different?

    I have a tonne of projects on at Uni, but when I have some time I'll have a look at the BOINC code, maybe I can help out.
     
  10. waloshin thread starter macrumors 68040

    waloshin

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    Oct 9, 2008
    #10
    So i now have 10.6.2 and...

    I have the latest Boinc Client running and in the messaging center it says no useable gpus found?

    So CUDA still isn't supported on the Macbooks Nvidia 9400m?
     
  11. ayeying macrumors 601

    ayeying

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    #11
    It's supported. You have to install the CUDA drivers though. It's available on the nVidia website.
     
  12. waloshin thread starter macrumors 68040

    waloshin

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    Oct 9, 2008
    #12
    Even on Mac osx?
     
  13. CIA macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 17, 2003
    #13
    First you need to download and install the Mac CUDA Drivers from nVidia http://www.nvidia.com/object/cuda_get.html

    You should already be running the latest version of BOINC.

    Once you have done these things, you, in theory, are ready to start using your supported nVidia GPU in OSX BOINC to crunch stuff.....

    Why isn't it crunching?

    Because no apps inside of BOINC (Seti@home, Aqua@home, etc etc etc) have been re-written to take advantage of CUDA on the mac.

    It seems Einstein@home is getting close, but for the moment (As of Feb 6th, 2010) nothing in the OSX BOINC world supports CUDA, or OpenCL. Not to be a downer, but don't expect that to change anytime soon. There just aren't enough volunteers with programming knowledge (or programmers that own the proper hardware to test their knowlege) in this area to make it happen quickly.
     
  14. ayeying macrumors 601

    ayeying

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    #14
    Yes. Refer to the post below.

    Please refer to this post. Only a few number of projects can use CUDA on a mac, Collatz Conjecture is one of them that is available right now

    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=852659
     
  15. CIA macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 17, 2003
    #15
    I was just editing my post to mention that Collatz has made some great progress but you beat me to it!

    Let's hope this is a harbinger of things to come across many BOINC mac apps!
     

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