Skip to comments.Folding@Home - New Software for the PS3
Posted on 12/22/2007 12:29:27 PM PST by texas booster
As we approach one million PLAYSTATION 3 consoles participating in the Folding@Home program, we continue to improve the FAH client. With the new Firmware v2.1 we also prepared an updated version of FAH, which can soon be automatically downloaded by clicking on the FAH icon. This updated version includes the following new features:
If you happen to be one of the people that wants to leave their machine running after they finished their late-night gaming session, but wish to shut it down after a limited period of time, we have a great tip for you:
Go to Settings menu, select Automatic Shutdown and then After Current. You will see a little clock appearing on the top right hand corner of the screen. When this clock reaches zero, the machine will power off completely so you can sleep quietly through the night. In this option the machine will power off after sending the data back to Stanford University so your contribution to the project is maximized.
You may also choose to shut down after a limited period of time (for example, 3 or 4 hours). To do that choose the Automatic Shutdown option and click on the “In 01h:00m” timer. You will now be able to change the timer settings. After rotating the timer to a new time, you should now see your selected timer appear at the top right corner of the screen. This timer will count all the way down to 0 and then power off the system.
To disable active timer at any time, go to Settings, choose Automatic Shutdown and then Disable.
What’s a better Holiday addition to Folding than playing music? We’ve added a great feature in this version in the form of a background music player:
To activate the music player select Music and then a channel. The channels are automatically populated with songs you have stored on your Hard Disk Drive! For holiday music I prefer to choose Dramatic (yeah!) and voila - music is playing.
If you wish to skip to another track, just use a combination of X + left or right arrow. You can also change the channel by choosing X + up or down arrow. Happy listening!
To stop music from playing, select Music again from the main menu and choose “disable.”
Your music playback selection will be saved between consecutive runs of Folding@home.
We hope that these enhancements help improve your FAH experience. The response from PS3 owners really has been spectacular, and thanks to you, the most powerful distributed computer network in the world continues to grow.
Additional information can be found at:
Ping to a new F@H thread, highlighting new PS3 software for all those $399 Blu-Ray players that we purchased for delivery on Tuesday.
Ping to a new F@H thread, highlighting new PS3 software for all those $399 Blu-Ray players that we purchased for delivery on Tuesday.
Ping. I think.
How does it work?: You download a safe, tested program (see link below) that is certified by Stanford University. It gets work from Stanford, runs calculations using your spare computer power, and sends the results back to the University.
Is it safe? Yes! Folding@Home rarely effects computer performance in any way and won't compromise your privacy in any way. It only uses the computing power you aren't using so it doesn't slow down other programs.
How do I get started folding for Team FreeRepublic?:
1.) Download the folding program from Stanford University's folding download page (Folding@home Client Download). Type in your desired user-name.
2.) Type in 36120 for the team number. THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT - if you get the number wrong, you won't be folding for team FreeRepublic!
3.) The third question asks, "Launch automatically at machine startup, installing this as a service?" - We recommend you answer YES. Otherwise you will have to manually start the program after every reboot.
How can my computer help? Even if they were given exclusive access to all of the world's supercomputers, Stanford still wouldn't have as much processing power as they get from the supercluster of people's desktop systems Folding@home relies on. Modern supercomputers are essentially a cluster of hundreds of processors linked by fast networking. But Stanford needed the power of hundreds of thousands of processors, not just hundreds.
There's no reason to not get involved! It's free, easy, and you can know you're helping every minute without lifting a finger.
List of Relevant Folding Links
Why Fold - Watch This !!
Other Useful Stuff - Links
Fahmon Third Party Monitoring Software
Past FreeRepublic Folding threads
The Folding@home software is painless to install, and the life you help save may be your own!
My favorite improvement is to allow the PS3 to turn itself off AFTER the work unit is complete, enabling people who use it on the weekend only to complete work units, rather than powering down after a gaming session and letting the work unit results get stale.
Now, if Santa would be so kind ...
I love the idea here (and the PS3 is a folding beast) but the electricity costs just make this incredibly impractical for me. I’m not hurting for money, but burning $20/month just to power this thing (predominantly for folding) is not high on my list of priorities.
Fold one for the Gipper.
It speaks volumes about the PS3 that this is its most successful application.
No argument there about the money.
I personally would generate more F@H points if I just sold all my computers and bought two PS3s. I have 4 - 6 systems running 24/7 in the house.
I think that the new software will incent those that play their PS3 occasionally to let the system fold to completion, after they are finished playing. I have heard that Stanford gets several thousand PS3 work units every week that need to be resent for processing during the week.
Are you folding with your computer? You don't need to leave the PS3 or computer on, as the folding works in the background when you power up. Below is somewhat old cost data for a computer if you do leave it on. I assume it's about the same if you leave the PS3 on.
How much power/money is used by keeping a FAH running 24/7 on a computer?
Roughly, a CPU uses about as much power as a watt light bulb. Here's a report on computer power management from Lawrence Berkeley government labs, and there are other references on the web you can find. Although power supplies on most computers are rated at 400 watts, average usage is lower. On average, a Pentium-type computer uses about 100 watts (if the monitor is off). So, the daily difference between off and running FAH is about 24x100 = 2.4 kWh. At $0.15 per kWh ( from PG&E here in California), this works out to about $0.36 per day. In general, lighting and climate control use a much larger share of household power than computers do. So the best bet for cutting costs and conserving energy would be to turn off lights, turn off your computer monitors (which use more power than a CPU), and turn down the heat.
SO how does this work?
I’d usually search this info myself, but do I need to install Yellow Dog linux to run the F@H on the PS3?
The idea is to use your unused CPU cycles to complete nano-research projects involving protein folding. Misfolded proteins are implicated into many diseases, but especially Alzheimer’s Disease, Parkinson’s Disease, Huntington’s Disease, Mad Cow and some cancers.
A breakthrough here would lead researchers down promising paths rather than deadends.
Yo, I downloaded the folding software and it’s running (for the Gipper), but the little window just says working and I’ve got 0.00% complete. When am I going to start seeing some results?
Would if I did. I pinged Swampy because I know he's involved. Don't have a PS3 myself.
What is the power consumption of the PS3 running the FAH client? Is it safe to run the PS3 24X7?
We expect the PS3 to use about 200W while running Folding@Home. We have several PS3's running in our lab, running Folding@Home 24/7 and have had good results so far.
Granted, this is likely based on the original, 60 gig model (the one I own), but that is a massive power draw and far more than my dual core PC draws when running F@H in the background.
Just out of curiosity...how many Freepers participate?
200 watts is not even 2 amps, comparable to my dual core system. Yes, it is not insignificant, but not that much draw in my all electric home.
I guess I am kinda jaded with my teenage daughters running their blow dryers, the electric dryer and having the LR TV on with no one in the room. Then turning the AC down because they got too hot. You know the story.
I decided several years ago that my $2 per day of electricity was a small enough part of our overall household budget that the cost paled beside the possibility of discovering a potential cure for a disease that has robbed family members of their personality. Yes it cost money, but that cost was less than what we spent on medical care for my parents, and certainly less than what it would cost me if I or my wife succumbed to the illness.
More than half a million computers across the globe have run Folding@home simulations since the distributed computing project began in 2000. Each computer in the mix boosts performance, allowing scientists to tackle more difficult problems and solve research puzzles faster or more accurately.
About 6 - 10 new folders join every month. I have the FReepname of half of them, since you can put any name into the F@H User Name. Its just easier for us if you use your FReepname for us to communicate.
According to the latest stats, we have about 900 systems that report on a regular basis, from about 250 FReepers. There are about a dozen folding for our group that are friends and family and that do not FReep.
The number 1 reason for folks not contributing is getting a new system and not loading F@H. Regular postings like this help to keep everyone folding.
DU has about 60 folders with 140 systems generating about 9,000 ppd. DU will hit 7,000,000 points around Jan 15.
We generate about 85,000 ppd and will hit 40,000,000 points around Jan 1.
Over 500 at one time...currently about 140. http://folding.extremeoverclocking.com/team_summary.php?s=&t=36120
Nevermind- I’ve got 1.00% now. Took about 45 minutes to get there, and my iBook is toasty warm.
I guess what I’m suggesting is to not leave it on 24/7. However, load FAH and if you switch the PS3 on in the morning...play like there is no tomorrow, and in between times, such as meal break, you will be folding. Switch the PS3 off for the night. The incremental cost is like 80 cents an hour (or not, my math may be off)
I don’t have a PS3 but I set up my computer to run it since it’s on 24/7. I have another pc on my network but they use the same connection, through a router. Is it worth it to set the program up on that one also? It’s also on 24/7
I would like to have a PS3 for a workstation. I think it would kick butt!
Sorry for the delay. Download and go.
Just make sure that your team is 36120 and your FReepname is there so you get credit.
Work on as many systems as you need.
I have watched the stats pretty closely, and whether F@H stats or ExtremeOverclocking, it seems that we have about 200 - 250 actually running and contributing at any time.
Theres something fishy about the 50 day rule that isn’t reflected in our actual contributors.
It is CPU intensive, and the level one and two CPU cache has an extraordinary effect on the completion speed of F@H.
So crank up every computer that you can get, use team 36120 and your FReepname, and get them folding.
If the system is on 24/7, anything over 550 MHz works well. If on occasionally, then about 1.0 gHz for a true P4 or about 1.2 gHz for a Celeron will complete before the deadline.
I have read about folks that put Linux on a PS3, and it seems to work well.
I am not sure that using a Cell processor just to surf the Internet makes sense, but to each his own.
The Cell is just incredibly fast when you can tighten the code and run natively in the Cell. The is even a Beowulf Linux cluster that runs on eight PS3s, and it rocks.
:’) Thanks TexasB. Nice development! Thanks again for telling me about the project in the first place.
Sony Might Have Gotten It Right with the PS3 from the Beginning
Softpedia | November 5th, 2007 | Filip Truta
Posted on 11/25/2007 1:38:14 PM EST by SunkenCiv
I use SpeedupmyPC to keep track of my stats. It's true network usage is near zero but CPU usage has stayed at 100% since I installed it. I have an AMD Athlon 64 CPU 2.4 Ghz on this PC and a 2.8gHz Celeron on the other. I guess I'll crank that one up now and give it a try but I may have to pause it when doing things like burning DVDs.
Will it mess anything up if I use the same screen name on 2 different pcs?
Regarding usage, the folding of proteins is a molecular simulation written in very tight code, such as JMOL. You will see names such as GROMACS thrown around - these are the kernals that do the work and are very well known by molecular dynamicists.
The secret is large L1 and L3 caches and fast cores in the CPUs. Usage stays at 100% because it is supposed to. Very little network traffic, and if you build a folding farm you will find bursts of data back to the hard drives but little sustained activity.
I would expect that one HD could manage several systems, so if you cobbled together 8 systems running off a server across a network it would work just fine with the standard Console or GUI kernal.
Once we start talking about SMP cores and specialized GUI cores then the bandwidth patterns change. But for standard console F@H, it runs very well.
Most folks run SMP on dual core systems, but for X2s with smaller caches (under 1 meg) then I usually just run two cores.
Run the new updates and see a purported speed increase of 10%.
There have been some reports of hanging PS3s after the update to 2.10 BIOS and F@H 1.3. It seems to be related to a bad download of the update, but it has happened a few times so we need to be aware of it.
Noam Rimon, the author of the article above and the lead Sony F@H developer, is watching this thread at the new F@H forums located above. Please post him a note if you have problems.
Thank him if you are running smoothly!
The F@H program is free, but it is a tremendous success, no doubt.
I do think that there are PS3 titles that have sold more copies than have been D/L.
BTW, the songs that F@H plays are in the MUSIC collection on the PS3 hard drive.
Thanks again. I wonder if this one’s gif sig is generated on the fly?
Must be then...
She seems to belong to several DC’s.
I just want to see if my numbers will change. They should.
FAHMonitor is currently offline. The server it sits on is in pieces in my shop. I was hoping to have the application converted to a new platform, and running on a different server (ASP conversion to RubyOnRails), but the new version is not yet ready for prime time.
My apologies to those of you who use the tool on a regular basis!
Bummer. I know that lots of folks use it, literally across the world, including folders that are not part of FR.
Good luck getting it going. Hey, you have Tuesday morning free don’t you? ;’)
That means that your folding installation on whatever platform is working well.
Please ping if you have any questions.
Can you imagine the PMS quotient in that operation? :^)
I added one of my computers yesterday and a second the today, I used the same login name on both. Will this work?