Welcome to MilkyWay@home

Posts by Andrew McFarland

21) Message boards : Number crunching : HD7970 on the horizon .. (Message 52041)
Posted 23 Dec 2011 by Andrew McFarland
Post:
Another (thorough) review...
http://www.hardwarecanucks.com/forum/hardware-canucks-reviews/49646-amd-radeon-hd-7970-3gb-review.html
22) Message boards : News : New Server (Message 51843)
Posted 5 Dec 2011 by Andrew McFarland
Post:
NEW SERVER SPECIFICATIONS:

Memory: 64GB Memory (8x8GB), 800MHz 2R LV RDIMMs at Std Volt for 1 Proc, Optimized

Processor: Intel® Xeon® X5647 2.93GHz, 12M Cache, 5.86 GT/s QPI, 4C



Nice CPU choice. However, thats an strange number of DIMMs for a triple channel cpu, unless you've picked one of those entry level boards (like the TYAN S7002AG2NR) that has 8 slots (3+1 per CPU.) On the other hand, that board requires both CPU's to be popluated in order to utilize all 8 slots, and you only mention one here. Are you going dual cpu (not core) or single? For that matter, what motherboard are you using? Looking forward to the new arrival! :-)
23) Message boards : News : Recent Problems with the Database (Message 51785)
Posted 30 Nov 2011 by Andrew McFarland
Post:
We've determined that the SQL database is melting down...We are in the process of ordering a new server...


Excellent! This will, no doubt, make for a bunch of happy crunchers.:-) I'm guessing the hardware nerds among us would also love to hear the specs once the deed is done. My only $.02 (USD) is that there's no such thing as too much memory for a database server; think an order of magnitude > than the current machine. Fingers are crossed...

Thanks and keep up the good work.
-Tony
24) Message boards : Number crunching : separation_assimilator Not Running (Message 51442)
Posted 18 Oct 2011 by Andrew McFarland
Post:
plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose.

___

"If you build it, they will come..."
http://www.antikythera.us/adopt-a-dimm.html
25) Message boards : Number crunching : Frustration! (Message 51411)
Posted 13 Oct 2011 by Andrew McFarland
Post:
Are the "update" and "reset project" buttons working as expected?
26) Message boards : News : Making Milkyway@home Better (Message 51399)
Posted 12 Oct 2011 by Andrew McFarland
Post:
There's a strong consensus that the Milkyway server hardware is not to blame. It appears that the OS is buggy, being fairly old and forced to run modern database software (among other things).

Perhaps. I'm not a DB specialist, but methinks that that modern database may want more than -->8GB<--.

We have access to funding for a new server, but
...[snip]...
We only need to raise a few hundred more dollars to meet the salary goal."

Hmmm. You have 3 fresh years of funding and enough cash to turn your nose up at a $3k modern server, but you need only hundreds to pay the temp? Call me a skeptic, but people have been donating cash for a while now, and money doesn't seem to be the problem. I'm concerned that the goodwill may be wearing out. Is it really going to be different this time? Maybe it would help if you gave us a concrete dollar figure to work towards, instead of the usual donate-into-a-black-hole.

Matt A. needs a few GPU's to continue his dev work...


Matt, check you inbox.


Ok. I'm breathing deep now. Sorry. I only get wound up because I like this project and want to help. Can I at least interest you in just a little more memory for the tired old Xeon ;-)

Keep up the good work.

27) Message boards : News : Visualization/Screensaver Work (Message 51395)
Posted 12 Oct 2011 by Andrew McFarland
Post:
You'll forgive my resurrecting this thread from the dust bin, but being a newcomer around these parts I have been taking some time to get familiar with things around here and seeing what folks have talking about.

From the looks of things the whole screensaver/visualization project appears to be on indefinite hold as of now. Hopefully the kind folks here at MWAH will reconsider this–resources allowing–as I'd like to put my vote towards having such such a nicety. Count me in with the camp of folks that like to get some visual feedback as to what the work is all about!


I think your thoughtful assessment is spot on. Alas, there are bigger fish to fry right now, but this is high on my wishlist also. I wonder if community coders could contribute significantly to this? (I'm primarily a Java programmer, but could work with C++ if needed) I don't know if there's a framework/api for the BOINC screensavers; this might be an interesting topic to look into.

Fwiw, I would vote for option #3. It should be total eye-candy - certainly something that shows large scale structure to give the work units some context, and possibly some sense of global progress.

Crunch on!
28) Message boards : Number crunching : Hardware proposal for new Milkyway@Home server (Message 51375)
Posted 11 Oct 2011 by Andrew McFarland
Post:

...but I am of the belief that if the community had a tangible goal to strive for we could then move onto how to how make it happen.


Welcome aboard Jimmy! I like the way you think, and you sound like a man of action. I have visions of an adopt-a-dimm /drive program (we adopt-a-highway in the U.S.) to make it more concrete. People might even just send the parts.

At any rate. I've begun an email conversation with a couple of folks from the RPI cs department so there's hope. What I've gleaned so far: Our biggest hurdle may be availability of man-hours to complete a server replacement (i.e. software migration.) The hardware is definitely ready for upgrade. Here's the current setup: (yes, that's 8GB ;-)

hw.machine: amd64
hw.model: Intel(R) Xeon(R) CPU X5355 @ 2.66GHz
hw.ncpu: 4
hw.physmem: 8578330624
Don't know about the disks.


Stay tuned...
29) Message boards : News : sending out work again (Message 51373)
Posted 11 Oct 2011 by Andrew McFarland
Post:
We appreciate it. Keep up the good work!
30) Message boards : Number crunching : Hardware proposal for new Milkyway@Home server (Message 51358)
Posted 10 Oct 2011 by Andrew McFarland
Post:
This has been brought up a lot over the years. This is part of why the Donations page was put up. Whatever money was raised before didn't seem to do much of any improvement. Many have offered in the past to buy/ donate parts, it hasn't happened. But, Maybe one day they will actually get a better setup.


I hear you. That's why I'm not interested in donating cash that will go to more pizza and staplers, but rather actual hardware. The purse strings are probably held by some administrator far removed from the technical concerns of us crunching clients/donors.

I'm talking about nailing down a single person who understands the technical problem and has the power to do something about it, then personally shipping them a box of parts. Any idea who this person might be? Travis? Blurf? Who's actually in the same location as the server? Talk to me!
31) Message boards : News : feel free to cancel any in progress WUs (Message 51356)
Posted 10 Oct 2011 by Andrew McFarland
Post:

If we increase the cache, then this type of database crash would happen significantly more often. We just don't have a powerful enough server to increase the size of the workunit and result tables that much.


On that note...
This is my idea of a budget (best value/cost ratio) server. All prices are USD, quoted from US retailer Newegg.com on Oct 10, 2011(I do not work for them) I think we as a community could come up with this. I will put up $500 seed money.

I have started a seperate thread for this in the cruncher section. All feedback, especially from those with experience with server configurations, is welcome.

Not Included: Case/mounting hardware, power supply, raid hardware, which are all better left to whoever sets it up.

Qty. Product Description Total Price
1 ASUS KGPE-D16 SSI EEB 3.61 Server Motherboard Dual Socket G34 AMD SR5690 DDR3 800/1066/1333
Item #: N82E16813131643 $429.9

2 AMD Opteron 6128 Magny-Cours 2.0GHz Socket G34 115W 8-Core Server Processor OS6128WKT8EGOWOF
Item #: N82E16819105266 $499.98

16 Kingston 8GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 ECC Registered w/ Parity Server Memory Model KVR1333D3Q8R9S/8G
Item #: N82E16820139280 $1,215.84
Though i would discourage it, if we can get by with 64GB, we could save ~$600

2 Mushkin Enhanced Chronos Deluxe MKNSSDCR120GB-DX 2.5" 120GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
Item #: N82E16820226225 $499.98
System/boot drive. 2x120GB is for possible raid or swap/pagefile. If neither is wanted we could get 1x240 for the same price or just save ~$250

2 Western Digital AV-GP WD20EURS 2TB SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
Item #: N82E16822136783 $189.98
I don't know if this application needs much local storage, but its cheap.

2 Thermaltake CLS0015 70mm 1 Ball, 1 Sleeve CPU Cooler for AMD Socket G34 1U
Item #: N82E16835106158 $71.98
------------------------
$2,907.75
32) Message boards : Number crunching : Hardware proposal for new Milkyway@Home server (Message 51353)
Posted 10 Oct 2011 by Andrew McFarland
Post:
This is my idea of a budget (best value/cost ratio) server. All prices are USD, quoted from US retailer Newegg.com on Oct 10, 2011(I do not work for them) I think we as a community could come up with this. I will put up $500 seed money.

All feedback, especially from those with experience with server configurations, is welcome.

Not Included: Case/mounting hardware, power supply, raid hardware, which are all better left to whoever sets it up.

Qty. Product Description Total Price
------------------------
1 ASUS KGPE-D16 SSI EEB 3.61 Server Motherboard Dual Socket G34 AMD SR5690 DDR3 800/1066/1333
Item #: N82E16813131643 $429.9

2 AMD Opteron 6128 Magny-Cours 2.0GHz Socket G34 115W 8-Core Server Processor OS6128WKT8EGOWOF
Item #: N82E16819105266 $499.98

16 Kingston 8GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 ECC Registered w/ Parity Server Memory Model KVR1333D3Q8R9S/8G
Item #: N82E16820139280 $1,215.84
Though i would discourage it, if we can get by with 64GB, we could save ~$600

2 Mushkin Enhanced Chronos Deluxe MKNSSDCR120GB-DX 2.5" 120GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
Item #: N82E16820226225 $499.98
System/boot drive. 2x120GB is for possible raid or swap/pagefile. If neither is wanted we could get 1x240 for the same price or just save ~$250

2 Western Digital AV-GP WD20EURS 2TB SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
Item #: N82E16822136783 $189.98
I don't know if this application needs much local storage, but its cheap.

2 Thermaltake CLS0015 70mm 1 Ball, 1 Sleeve CPU Cooler for AMD Socket G34 1U
Item #: N82E16835106158 $71.98
------------------------
$2,907.75
33) Message boards : News : feel free to cancel any in progress WUs (Message 51332)
Posted 10 Oct 2011 by Andrew McFarland
Post:
(snip)... We just don't have a powerful enough server to increase the size of the workunit and result tables that much.


What. Don't you have some nice NSF grant money you could throw at it? ;-)

But seriously, what kind of hardware would we be talking about? (please be specific)

I've already spent $1500 USD on my first cruncher, specifically buying double precision Radeons because I liked this project. If we're talking about a single machine built from off-the-shelf parts, I bet if you asked around the boards, enough people would rise to the occasion to make it happen. I'd be willing to get the ball rolling with, say, $500 USD. Just chip in what you can folks.

Really.
34) Message boards : Number crunching : More WU's? (Message 51276)
Posted 1 Oct 2011 by Andrew McFarland
Post:
That's excellent! My creaky old 5850 runs about 20-25% slower than that, so it sounds about right.

BTW, you can select a task and hit the "Properties" button to get the apps estimate of your GFLOPS/Second. My gpu tasks read 382.32 while the poor Phenom cores rate 2.6 each! How did we ever crunch without GPU's, eh? :-)
35) Message boards : Number crunching : More WU's? (Message 51273)
Posted 1 Oct 2011 by Andrew McFarland
Post:
Mmmmm. 6950. yum. I have to ask, how long does take to do a work unit ? :-)
36) Message boards : Number crunching : PCI-e lanes & GPU bottlenecks (Message 51189)
Posted 23 Sep 2011 by Andrew McFarland
Post:
Hello,
I'm planning a cruncher with a PhenomII 6 core and Radeon 6950's. In an effort to maximize density, am considering (possibly) running some at 8x (instead of 16x)

I wouldn't generally want to hamstring a card like this with 8x if I were using it for display purposes, but I'm not sure it would be as critical for crunching, and even if it was, I might accept a modest inefficiency.

Any thoughts / details about what kind of PCI-e bandwidth M@H would use in this instance. Would 8x be a significant bottleneck?

Thanks. -Andrew


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