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Message 56098 - Posted: 5 Nov 2012, 1:17:09 UTC
Last modified: 5 Nov 2012, 1:39:46 UTC

Hello. I just signed up for this a few hours ago. Finally something that can use more than 10% of my i7-3930K on a regular basis (other than benchmarks and stress tests).

I set it up to limit usage to BOINC to about 80% so I can still seamlessly run other programs and games. My GPU (EVGA GeForce GTX 680 FTW+ 4GB GDDR5) doesn't seem to notice BOINC running, so I haven't limited its use there.

I had overclocked the CPU to 4.6GHz @ 1.342 Vcore (dynamic, maximum), but decided to lower it to 4.2GHz and stock Vcore since the CPU is being used a lot more now.

It's kind of funny that there isn't more mainstream software that can take advantage of above average computer resources.

Bonus: This should help keep our apartment warm in these coming cold winter months.
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Message 56099 - Posted: 5 Nov 2012, 10:15:34 UTC - in response to Message 56098.  

Start crunching with that graphics card and stay even warmer!
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Message 56100 - Posted: 5 Nov 2012, 11:05:36 UTC - in response to Message 56099.  

He is doing both, cpu and gpu crunching ;)
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Message 56101 - Posted: 5 Nov 2012, 12:43:39 UTC - in response to Message 56098.  

Hello. I just signed up for this a few hours ago. Finally something that can use more than 10% of my i7-3930K on a regular basis (other than benchmarks and stress tests).

I set it up to limit usage to BOINC to about 80% so I can still seamlessly run other programs and games. My GPU (EVGA GeForce GTX 680 FTW+ 4GB GDDR5) doesn't seem to notice BOINC running, so I haven't limited its use there.

I had overclocked the CPU to 4.6GHz @ 1.342 Vcore (dynamic, maximum), but decided to lower it to 4.2GHz and stock Vcore since the CPU is being used a lot more now.

It's kind of funny that there isn't more mainstream software that can take advantage of above average computer resources.

Bonus: This should help keep our apartment warm in these coming cold winter months.


I hope this works for you but be aware that SOME people have had problems limiting the cpu to anything less than 100%. IF you do please come back here as there ARE other settings you can change instead to achieve the same end result.
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Message 56106 - Posted: 5 Nov 2012, 13:44:23 UTC - in response to Message 56101.  

1.
I hope this works for you but be aware that SOME people have had problems limiting the cpu to anything less than 100%. IF you do please come back here as there ARE other settings you can change instead to achieve the same end result.


2. BOINC applications run at very low priority. Usually it should not be necessary to slow them down in any way, other programs run at much higher priorities and get all they need.

3. If it should be necessary to limit the CPU usage of the BOINC apps, limit the amount of cores they are allowed to use. Currently they are running 80% of the time @100% and 20% of the time they sleep. That does not really help, since the other programs do not need CPU cycles only when the BOINC apps sleep.
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Message 56108 - Posted: 5 Nov 2012, 15:01:34 UTC - in response to Message 56106.  
Last modified: 5 Nov 2012, 15:43:29 UTC

Thanks for the feedback and tips guys. It seems to be running fine though at 80%, and my computer is still "snappy" where it seemed to have just a bit of lag of responsiveness in games before. I'll go over the work it's done to make sure it's verified that everything is running correctly. Keep in mind that my computer typically never gets above 10%, even playing newer video games.

On multiprocessors, use at most
Enforced by version 6.1+ 80% of the processors


This is the setting I'm using that seems to be working. Checking the CPU threads, they seem to fluctuate between 50% to 100%, but sometimes lingering lower or at 100%. It looks like the work is getting distributed well, and unlike most programs, actually uses all my threads. Total average usage is about 75%.

I'll let you guys know if I have any problems with it.

I do have a question though: I have a fair amount of RAM that's not seeing much use as a RAM drive (about 20GB of the 32GB I currently have). Can BOINC benefit from having a lot (at least for desktop PCs) of available RAM? Or maybe it could take advantage of the fast RAM drive? I may be upgrading this computer to 64GB eventually too.

Thanks.

Oh, also, when do I get to see this rendered in Celestia? ;)
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Message 56110 - Posted: 5 Nov 2012, 17:57:17 UTC - in response to Message 56108.  

On multiprocessors, use at most
Enforced by version 6.1+ 80% of the processors


This is the setting I'm using that seems to be working. Checking the CPU threads, they seem to fluctuate between 50% to 100%, but sometimes lingering lower or at 100%.

That setting does exactly what others have suggested; limit the number of cores used. Windows' SMP scheduler will to some extent switch the processes back and forth if it can, making the overall load appear more evenly spread than it actually is at any given instant.

If you're not happy with the responsiveness of the computer without that 80% limit, what you've done is the proper way to reserve some of the CPU.
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Message 56111 - Posted: 5 Nov 2012, 17:57:48 UTC - in response to Message 56108.  

Thanks for the feedback and tips guys. It seems to be running fine though at 80%, and my computer is still "snappy" where it seemed to have just a bit of lag of responsiveness in games before.

Eventuall lag in games will occur because of the tasks on your GPU, not CPU. If you should have a game that needs the entire card for itself you might need to specify it as a exclusive_gpu_app, see client configuration.



I'll go over the work it's done to make sure it's verified that everything is running correctly. Keep in mind that my computer typically never gets above 10%, even playing newer video games.

My computers are @100% since 2003 when I started crunching for SETI, no issues at all.



On multiprocessors, use at most
Enforced by version 6.1+ 80% of the processors

That's the setting, that does not cause any issues, so it's OK.



I do have a question though: I have a fair amount of RAM that's not seeing much use as a RAM drive (about 20GB of the 32GB I currently have). Can BOINC benefit from having a lot (at least for desktop PCs) of available RAM? Or maybe it could take advantage of the fast RAM drive? I may be upgrading this computer to 64GB eventually too.

For Milkyway: no, it uses just few MB per task. There are projects, which use more, Rosetta for example can use up to 1GB per CPU core. A rule of a thumb for the amount of RAM: if you can use it without a pagefile, you have enough.

RAM drive won't help anything, BOINC is not writing much to the disc, more important is not to loose anything in case of system crash or power outage.

If you want to optimize anything, first thing to start with is using all CPU cores, second thing would be pushing the GPU harder by adjusting the command line options or running more than one WU at once like I do. Next would be overclocking. But thinking about RAM drive is just a waste of time IMHO.
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Message 56112 - Posted: 6 Nov 2012, 1:03:35 UTC
Last modified: 6 Nov 2012, 2:01:03 UTC

The workload seems to be broken up fairly evenly (on average) between the threads/cores, and while a specific thread will fluctuate quite a bit, the overall CPU workload is hovering right around 74% to 75%.

My CPU is currently overclocked at 4.2GHz (down from the 4.6GHz where I had it before running BOINC/MW), about 110% of the normal "turbo" (dynamic clocking) of up to 3.8GHz. I'm keeping a more modest overclock to maintain a high available potential and limiting BOINC/MW usage to help keep core and CPU temps conservatively low, have less strain on the CPU, perhaps maintain a somewhat more efficient use of power, and leave enough CPU resources readily available.

BOINC/MW is using about 74% of 110% of my CPU's normal maximum crunching power.

With these settings, I'm not noticing any "lag" (momentary drops in FPS and stuttering) in video games where I was when allowing up to 100% CPU usage. Maybe it's just a fluke or a coincidence, but either way, it seems to be working seamlessly now.

I haven't changed any video card/GPU settings since running BOINC/MW.

For Milkyway: no, it uses just few MB per task. There are projects, which use more, Rosetta for example can use up to 1GB per CPU core. A rule of a thumb for the amount of RAM: if you can use it without a pagefile, you have enough.

RAM drive won't help anything, BOINC is not writing much to the disc, more important is not to loose anything in case of system crash or power outage.


Thanks. Just checking.

Mostly irrelevant now, but I do also backup my RAM drive.
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Message 56115 - Posted: 6 Nov 2012, 13:50:08 UTC - in response to Message 56112.  

The workload seems to be broken up fairly evenly (on average) between the threads/cores, and while a specific thread will fluctuate quite a bit, the overall CPU workload is hovering right around 74% to 75%.


One thing to know is how Boinc actually does the 80% setting you are using....Boinc will run at 100% for 8 clock ticks and then take 2 clock ticks off, then run 8 clock ticks at 100%, take 2 clock ticks off etc, etc. This results in the 80% average of your setting.

The key thing is though if it works for you and you are contributing to MW, it is okay the way it is!!
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Message 56118 - Posted: 6 Nov 2012, 14:34:29 UTC - in response to Message 56115.  
Last modified: 6 Nov 2012, 14:40:30 UTC

It doesn't seem to be doing that.

Isn't that this setting?

Use at most
Can be used to reduce CPU heat 100% of CPU time


It seemed to behave as you describe when I had set that to 80%, but it doesn't seem to be now, instead hovering right at 74% to 75% (total average of the threads).
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Message 56120 - Posted: 6 Nov 2012, 16:43:51 UTC

Here's a picture of what I mean:

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Message 56122 - Posted: 7 Nov 2012, 12:48:52 UTC - in response to Message 56120.  

Here's a picture of what I mean:


EXACTLY, you can see some being full speed, or nearly full speed, while others are not, but each is fluctuating quite a bit. What most of us do is change the settings so some run full speed all the time while others don't crunch at all. You do that by telling Boinc to only use x% of the processors. For instance on my dual core laptop I have Boinc only using 50% of the processors, while on a quad core I have Boinc only using 3 of the 4 cores, 75%, as the video card uses most of the other cpu. I do all this on a pc by pc basis, thru the Boinc Manager which you can get to down by the clock, as I have multiple pc's and each is slightly different.
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Message 56126 - Posted: 8 Nov 2012, 1:24:29 UTC - in response to Message 56122.  
Last modified: 8 Nov 2012, 2:20:40 UTC

You do that by telling Boinc to only use x% of the processors.


This is the setting I was using when I took that Task Manager window print screen (from the web settings interface, which is also listed in the corresponding BOINC program Preferences processor usage settings):

On multiprocessors, use at most
Enforced by version 6.1+ 80% of the processors


All of my threads are being used well over their base amount at this setting (which is usually around 0% to 1% with just the regular background processes running). The workload is being distributed more or less evenly between the threads on average, which I like.

Though recently I started upping it to 100% while I'm not actively using the computer for gaming, since my CPU core temps (which I've been logging) are staying cool enough at 100% at the 4.2GHz overclock. I'm not using 100% all the time, since I'm still noticing some "lag" while playing games with that setting.

I think I'll just put it at 90% though, so I won't bother changing it back and forth. I think the games should still be responsive then, but I'll test it out and see.

Thanks for all the feedback guys.

I may be getting into Rosetta eventually too since it can take more advantage of my RAM, but I think I'll stick it out here for quite a while. :)

I might also start a team and get some of my friends to join in. They showed interest in it when I mentioned BOINC and the various projects to them.
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Message 56129 - Posted: 8 Nov 2012, 12:58:55 UTC - in response to Message 56126.  

I may be getting into Rosetta eventually too since it can take more advantage of my RAM, but I think I'll stick it out here for quite a while. :)

I might also start a team and get some of my friends to join in. They showed interest in it when I mentioned BOINC and the various projects to them.


As for Rosetta just be aware that some people have problems there while others do not. I have soooo many problems that I had to leave and move on, it particularly didn't like the pc crunching a gpu unit for one project while using the cpu for Rosetta. Rosetta does not have gpu units and for me that would be a deal breaker, so I am crunching with my cpu's elsewhere for now.

As for the Team, the more people crunching the better it is for everyone!
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Message 56132 - Posted: 8 Nov 2012, 20:44:44 UTC - in response to Message 56126.  

I may be getting into Rosetta eventually too since it can take more advantage of my RAM, but I think I'll stick it out here for quite a while. :)

If you are searching for RAM hungry projects, this page might help you, Rosetta seems not to the most hungry one out there.
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Message 56227 - Posted: 19 Nov 2012, 15:00:57 UTC

I went back to 4.6GHz since it seems like a safe enough OC, keeping an eye on the core temperatures though, at about 75 °C normal max, and peak max at 80 °C. Hoping to reach my initial goal of 1,000,000 credit soon. :)
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Message 56242 - Posted: 20 Nov 2012, 12:23:18 UTC - in response to Message 56227.  
Last modified: 20 Nov 2012, 12:24:03 UTC

I went back to 4.6GHz since it seems like a safe enough OC, keeping an eye on the core temperatures though, at about 75 °C normal max, and peak max at 80 °C. Hoping to reach my initial goal of 1,000,000 credit soon. :)


I think at almost 40K per day you will be there before you know it! Keep going and you will be at 2 million next!
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Message 56253 - Posted: 21 Nov 2012, 4:07:38 UTC
Last modified: 21 Nov 2012, 4:17:05 UTC

Yeah, hopefully not too long here. It's kind of weird how it calculates the recent daily averages though. I think my actual daily average is somewhere between 45 and 50. (798463 credits ÷ 17 days ≈ 47K per day) I might be averaging a little higher now though with the 4.6GHz overclock. Either way, not too long here. Looking forward to 1 quintillion FPO too.
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Message 56254 - Posted: 21 Nov 2012, 8:14:06 UTC - in response to Message 56253.  

RAC needs about 6 weeks to get to the right value, after just 17 days it might be still quite a bit too low.
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