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PostPosted: Sat May 03, 2003 2:17 pm 
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I'm totally new to folding, so maybe most of you here have already seen setups like these before...

Monsters :shock:

And here's one that's specifically used for Folding@Home:

Folding Farm

It's running for team "Sudhian Media" which is currently in 15th place.


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PostPosted: Sat May 03, 2003 3:17 pm 
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jeez glass now you've got me looking around... I think you could build a unit with an Athlon 1700 for $250 (not counting shipping) from newegg that would meet SPCR specs (as long as you don't need a case) now, I'm gonna see if I can find a little more price effective set up. Well, for starters, a better processor, like a 2200+ for $30 more.


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PostPosted: Sat May 03, 2003 3:44 pm 
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glassjoe wrote:
... so maybe most of you here have already seen setups like these before...
Nope. These guys are serious!

How do you run those things, they seem to lack mice, keyboard, monitor & harddisk?
Boot off LAN?
What OS (cause you need some network support)?
How do you persuade BIOS to POST without a keyboard?

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PostPosted: Sat May 03, 2003 3:56 pm 
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Okay, here's what I found (boy, I need some better hobbies.... ) all from newegg

The best I got was 6.66 Mhz/$ with:
$100 - Athlon XP 2400+
$18 - Uber cheap generic 128MB PC 2100 DDR
$30 - Fortron 300W- cheapest SPCR acceptable PSU I know :)
$67 - 40 GB Seagate 7200.7 - cheapest seagate
$54 - Generic VIA KT266 mobo with integrated video and lan

I don't think I'm missing anything. Since F@H is dependent on CPU calculations, it should perform pretty well.. now, everyone go make a few dozen for the team! :)


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PostPosted: Sat May 03, 2003 4:03 pm 
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dukla2000 wrote:
How do you run those things, they seem to lack mice, keyboard, monitor & harddisk?
Boot off LAN?


YES!
It seems some boards can boot from a USB-drive...

dukla2000 wrote:
What OS (cause you need some network support)?

Mostly Linux, connecting to a linux or Windows server


dukla2000 wrote:
How do you persuade BIOS to POST without a keyboard?


I believe Mark F. modded the BIOS :shock:

Mark F. is a very helpful guy, who is kind of busy right now.
When you subscribe to the Sudhian forum they will help you if you really want to do that.

WARNING:
At Sudhian they get worried when they can't hear their rigs folding. :lol: :lol:

@ Dukla:
I'm folding for ASUSboards that passed Sudhian a few weeks ago.
Feeling kind of happy at 13th place :lol:

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PostPosted: Sat May 03, 2003 4:56 pm 
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Hmm, booting from USB, hadn't thought of that...
btw I forgot an SK-7 heatsink and panaflo fan, it all comes to $300.

But my comp will post without keyboard etc, its a bios setting I think.

They're all just basically beowulf clusters, there's plenty of linux/windows software out there for working with them.

btw I think most of those had hard drives.


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PostPosted: Sat May 03, 2003 5:02 pm 
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Here is Mark F's web page about building a folding farm.

http://www.talix.com/Folding/Folding_Farm.html

Interesting read.


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PostPosted: Sat May 03, 2003 5:27 pm 
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Frys' tends to sell Athlons and ECS motherboard at various pricelevels from $80-120+. Recently they had a XP2000 and motherboard for $80. That's probably the cheapest you'll find aside from used stuff.


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PostPosted: Sat May 03, 2003 10:10 pm 
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TRC-13 wrote:
This is beginning to be fun. Now that we are in the top 100 I’m going to add a few more machines to my pool. I’m also going to try to get a few of my buddies to join in on the fun for our team. Most of them have high end machines and should be able to help pump out a few 100 points a day. Last Wednesday marked my first week of doing this and I haven’t been watching the team’s numbers before I joined but I have seen some graphs and read the forums it looks like we are climbing rapidly and are destined to make it to the top!

Can't help notice your race up the ranks with 22 processors!!! :shock: Did you rope a bunch of friends' machines, hijack your company's servers or what? At the rate you're going, looks like you'll be a significant individual contributor soon! :lol:

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PostPosted: Sun May 04, 2003 12:06 am 
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When I looked at the pictures of those monster racks, my first thought was "All those PSUs must be loud. The motherboards are stripped, so they cannot be using more than 100w each, so 350w PSU could run three of those and will be much quieter."


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PostPosted: Sun May 04, 2003 11:44 am 
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MikeC wrote:
Can't help notice your race up the ranks with 22 processors!!! :shock: Did you rope a bunch of friends' machines, hijack your company's servers or what? At the rate you're going, looks like you'll be a significant individual contributor soon! :lol:


I'm actualy only running my AMD Athlon XP 1800+ computer at work. I am the IT at my company and could load it on 20 more computers but it would take them a week each to pump out a unit. It's just not worth it. At home I am running an AMD XP 2500+ Barton with 1.5 GB of DDR-2700 for my main machine and 4 other AMD XP 2000+ machines with 1 GB of ram. I have a buddie that lives in the same apartment complex with me on my LAN who is also running an AMD XP 2500+ Barton whos system is almost identical as mine and a few lesser machines of his own. And we can't forget my good friend Steve he has a dual Athlon MP 2.4GHz system with 3 GB of ram plus two other boxes. other than that I have 2 or 3 other LAN party friends who are also pitching in for our SPCR folding effort. So in short it's just not me :oops: , but most of it is between my friend and I who basicaly live together. I have one extra Athlon XP 1800+ that just needs a new quiet case so I can put it together and add it to my pool and help SPCR climb to the top 10! 8)


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PostPosted: Sun May 04, 2003 11:50 am 
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:shock:

will it ever end? :P

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PostPosted: Sun May 04, 2003 2:41 pm 
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MikeC wrote:
Can't help notice your race up the ranks
Was that as he passed you Mike? :D

But notice on the official top 100 we just made 90th.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 05, 2003 5:07 am 
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For anyone who's interested, a lot of these just became available today.

Cheap (well, sort of) and silent.

http://www.rackshack.net/english/bargain.asp


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PostPosted: Mon May 05, 2003 8:22 am 
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Had the idea a few weeks ago to build up a small farm (as I now know it is called), but dismissed it for being ideotic to spend all that money just to get more points. Now I see there are even bigger nutters out there I'm toying with the idea again. :) Or better said, can't make myself stop thinking about it even though I should be working now. :roll:
Anyways, 195 euros (1$ = E1.1) is the cheapest setup I can come up with so far. (ECS KM266 based mAtx mobo, XP 2000+). That is with a cheapo PSU and fan replaced by a papst NGL to shut it up. You can cut down on the costs by running 2 or 3 units on one 400W PSU (and get a really silent one), but you'd have to find a place to get mobo power connectors (or find another way to connect the power).
It would be great building a (closed) rack with 5 or 10 of these AND make it as silent as possible, for the fun of it. And with minimum costs that is... 10xSLK-800 + 10xNexus PSU adds too much to the costs. For example make one central duct, connected to all cpu (passive) heatsinks, and with one big outtake on the top of the cabinet with one or 2 silent 120mm fans. Would it work?
Dunno if I'll ever build this, but it's fun to hypothesize. :)

Oh, and you don't have to buy 10 units all at once ($2000+ :shock: ), can also buy them one at a time when you can spare the money.

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PostPosted: Mon May 05, 2003 9:06 am 
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Its getting hard to just stay in the top 25 without a second processor around here! I think I should downgrade my expectations (or bring that 1700+ XP online :roll: )

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PostPosted: Mon May 05, 2003 9:13 am 
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Or just build a farm. :P

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PostPosted: Mon May 05, 2003 9:34 am 
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despite the rapidly decresing prices of computer components, I think I want to save up for that Acura RSX first :P I think I'll live with top 30 on SPCR.

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PostPosted: Mon May 05, 2003 1:06 pm 
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Well, my plan is to convert my bed into a rack mount set up, so the cold wisconsin night will be warmed by 10 70 watt processors : ) my goal is to break the fuses in my dorm room at least once a month! There are only two things left to complete my plan! First; I must keep my grades high enough that UW doesn't revoke my acceptance, and second, I must win the lottery :)


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