Guru3D Folding@Home Information/Help Thread Team Stats At-A-Glance: This thread is to help new members and uninformed users about Folding@Home (a.k.a. FAH, F@H, F@h) and how to support our team, The Guru3D. Feel free to join us FAQs Sounds good, but wouldn't it bog down my computer by using my systems resources? The short answer is No. This is because F@H will use only free/unused clock cycles, and will give up the clock cycles when an application needs them. This article shows performance impact on a system. Under default settings, the F@H Client(s) is configured for idle priority hence running day-to-day applications will a have higher preference over F@H Client(s). The only difference you will notice is that the power consumption (and heat output) of your PC has increased which will be reflected on your electricity bill. Great! How can I get started? Well all you need is a computer and an active Internet connection. Download the appropriate Client(s) for your machine, configure it with the correct settings and run it. Can I use this on any platform? Pretty much Yes. Currently Standford supports Windows, Linux, OSX, PS3. GPUs (ATI/Nvidia) are exclusive to Windows. What Clients are there and what are the differences? Almost all Clients come in two versions: GUI (Graphical User Interface) - It displays a windows where you can edit all the parameters for the F@H Client. CLI (Command Line Interface) - It is a no-nonsense client that is configured using the Command window. Available Client types are: Classic Client - It is a set-and-forget type where it will be using only one core/thread of your CPU. It works on all platforms. GPU2 Client - It is a high performance Client which uses the GPU to process the WU instead of the CPU. Officially, it is supported on Windows only. GPU3 BETA Client - It is a high performance Client which uses the GPU to process the WU instead of the CPU. Officially, it is supported on Windows only. (Unofficially, it can run on Linux: <Click>) SMP2 BETA Client - It is a high performance Client that is available in CLI Version only. It runs on all platforms and can use 100% of the CPU or less, depending on how you configure it. It works on all platforms. Note: BETA Clients are not finalized so you can expect a few rough edges. If found, please report them in the Official Folding Forum. Which is the fastest Client(s)? All Clients use the same FahCore_XX.exe (it will vary according to the OS and WU type) to process the WU so there is hardly any difference. The CLI version is a no-nonsense one and under some conditions, can be easier to setup when compared to GUI version. Note: When a new FahCore Version is released, it may decrease/increase the time taken to process the WU. Which Client(s) should I use? You should first choose the Client Version: GUI Client - It has its own installer and will place the necessary shortcuts. But its simplicity can be taken at a cost as the GUI Client may interfere with some games and may affect Client performance and stability which is why the console Client is usually recommended in those cases. Do note that when using GPU intensive applications, you should either exit or pause the Client. CLI Client - Shows progress in a simple Command window, also it can be setup as a service regardless of who's logged in. The downside is that it's slightly more complex to install and you'll have to make all your own shortcuts. This doesn't have a pause feature like the GUI Client. After you have decided what Version of F@H Client you want, you should then choose what Client type you want. These are my suggestions for choosing a F@H Client: Use Classic Client if: 1) System isn't running 24/7 2) You want a set-and-forget client that doesn't need any monitoring 3) Not savvy for points and would like to do your best with the least amount of effort 4) Points aren't your priority 5) You want F@H to remain unobtrusive Note - If you have a powerful system but run it for <15 hours, you can install multiple Classic Clients (one per CPU) Use GPU2 Client if: (Officially on Windows Only) 1) You have a discrete GPU (preferred Nvidia Non-Fermi only (Fermi isn't supported) due to current situation with GPU2 Client) 2) System is on for 15+ hours 3) Would like to get some more points with some effort Use GPU3 BETA Client if: (Officially on Windows Only; Unofficially, it can run on Linux: Details) 1) You have a discrete GPU (preferred Nvidia Fermi as they give high Points when compared to Non-Fermi) 2) System is on for 10+ hours 3) Would like to get some more points with some effort Use SMP2 BETA Client if: (normal; Details) 1) You have a powerful system 2) Know their way around with F@H cores 3) System is on 24/7 4) Would like to contribute significantly to F@H in terms of scientific value and get the advantage of high points Use SMP2 BETA Client if: (bigadv; Details) 1) You have an extremely powerful system 2) Know their way around with F@H cores 3) System is folding 24/7 4) Would like to contribute the most to F@H in terms of scientific value plus get the advantage of massive points How do I install my Client(s)? Quick Classic Client Installation Guide: <Click> Detailed Classic Client Installation Guide: <Click> Detailed GPU2 Client Installation Guide: <Click> GPU2 -> GPU3 Transition Guide For Windows + Link To Linux: <Click> Detailed SMP2 Client Installation Guide: <Click> Additional Detailed Guides: <Click> Note: The Guru3D Team number is: 69411 Currently, the Nvidia GPUs outperform the ATI GPUs by a significant margin. This will hopefully change in the future If the SMP2 Client isn't configured with the -smp flag, it will download the Classic Client WU and FahCore which will only use one core of your CPU regardless of how many you have If you use the SMP2 Client, you should use the passkey so that you can take advantage of the Bonus Point system If you have chosen to install the GPU Client on an ATI GPU system, you should be using Environment Variables to maximize the Client efficiency: <Click> Flags, what are they? Simply put, flags are used to apply settings when the client is started up (special instructions). Some of the most commonly used flags are: -advmethods: This will increase the WU selection for your Client but it also increases the probability of you getting EUE (Early Unit Ended) -forceasm: Instruct the core to use SSE/3DNow assembly instructions if possible, even if it has previously made the determination that the machine may not be handling this well. -verbosity 9: Sets the level of output detail that is written to the FAHLog file. -verbosity 4, for example, will output less than -verbosity 9. This is helpful for troubleshooting the Client. -smp X: Used for SMP2 Clients only. It can also be -smp which would use 100% of the CPU or you can use -smp X where X=N-1 where N is the total number of CPUs the OS sees, e.g. for Intel Core i7-860, -smp 7 will tell the Client to use 7 threads out of the available 8. Using -smp only will tell the Client to use all available threads. -send all: The Client will check for any wuresults_XX file and will try to upload them to the Servers. After that it will exit and won't process any WU. -configonly: The Client will read the config.cfg file and will allow you to change any parameters, save and exit without processing the WU. -oneunit: The Client will process one WU only and after it uploads the results, will exit. Note: A detailed list can be found here: <Click> Should I use flags, if yes, which ones? I recommend this flag for all F@H Clients: -verbosity 9 If you are using the SMP2 Client, you must use either: -smp (for dedicated) -smp X (for non-dedicated where X = N-1 where N is the total number of Core that your OS sees. For Windows, use Task Manager) When setting up I see an option to set core priority, what should I use? I recommend the following: Use low priority on a dedicated folding rig. The core will run at all times. Use idle priority on an everyday use rig. The core will only try to run when nothing else is active/use spare cycles. Note: Idle is the default and is exactly what I would recommend for most users. If you have installed a F@H GPU Client and F@H CPU Client, make the priority of the GPU is set to low and the CPU is set to idle. Never change the core priority with task manager as this will lead to undesired results. What do I do for multiple folding machines/rigs? Set it up the same way for each machine depending on what Client(s) you have chosen and your system specifications. Note: When folding with more than one machine, you do not change the Machine ID, as this is for Rigs that run more than one instance of F@H Clients. How do I setup a Multi-Core/Threaded Machine? If the machine has a two physical CPUs, you may want to use the two instances Classic Client for optimum production (Installation Guide) However, if you have more than two physical CPUs, you can use SMP2 Client (Installation Guide) Note: There isn't any hard and fast rule about dual CPUs. You can experiment with two instances of Classic Client or single instance of SMP2 Client. Just make sure that you have followed the guide and can finish folding the WU before the Preferred Deadline. You must set the Machine ID to unique value for each F@H Client installed on that Rig. If you own a P4 System with HT, READ THIS What should I know about my F@H directory? The following are some important files present in your F@H directory: Work Folder – Contains files that your F@H Client is currently working on or waiting to upload. client.cfg – Contains the configuration information for your client. You can not edit this with a text editor, doing so would a violation of EULA and you may corrupt the data present in it . If you delete it and are using the CLI Version, it will run through the configuration process the next time you launch it, for the GUI, it will display the Configuration Window FAHlog.txt – This is the log file of your clients activity. The “-verbosity 9” flag adds more details to the log. FAHlog-Prev,txt - This is the previous log file. unitinfo.txt – Tells you the details and progress your F@H Client has made on the current WU. queue.dat – The queue of the last 10 WUs you Client has processed. Note: Different Clients will have different files located in the directory. The above list is a common file list that is same across all the Clients. It may change from OS to OS and in future F@H Clients. What is a WU I hear you ask? WU Means Work Unit (acronym if you will), this is the term used by Standford for a single simulation run. Each donor get a unique WU that they process and send back. Under certain circumstances, duplicate WUs are handed out. If there is a shortage of WUs, your Client will be sitting idle instead of folding duplicate WUs. Note: A duplicate WU is given when a WU has crossed its Preferred Deadline and the Donor hasn't returned it. A duplicate WU is also sent out if the original WU gives an error message. Are all WU's the same? No, Each WU is unique and is identified by its PRCG, which stands for: P = Project X R = Run X C = Clone X G = Gen X So a normal Wu would be identified as: Project: 6013 (Run 0, Clone 50, Gen 140) More info: <Click> How long does processing a WU take? There isn't any specific answer as there are a lot of variables involved. Wus from different Projects take different time to finish even if the same machine is used to process the WUs. It can take anywhere from 1 hour to 3 days depending on what Client you are running, what flags you are using and the hardware used. However, you should understand the effect of Deadlines on the WU that is assigned to you: Classic Client WUs: Before Preferred Deadline - You will get assigned Credit. Exceed Preferred Deadline - WU will be reissued, You will get assigned Credit. Exceed Final Deadline - WU is useless. You won't get any Credit. GPU2 Client WUs: Before Preferred Deadline - You will get assigned Credit. Exceed Preferred Deadline - WU will be reissued, You will get assigned Credit. Exceed Final Deadline - WU is useless. You won't get any Credit. GPU3 BETA Client WUs: Before Preferred Deadline - You will get assigned Credit. Exceed Preferred Deadline - WU will be reissued, You will get assigned Credit. Exceed Final Deadline - WU is useless. You won't get any Credit. SMP2 BETA Client WUs: Before Preferred Deadline - You will get Bonus Credit (The Bonus varies from system to system and increases for faster completion and return). Exceed Preferred Deadline - WU will be reissued, You will get Base Credit (It is much less when compared to Bonus Credits). Exceed Final Deadline - WU is useless. You won't get any Credit. How does the scoring system work? Note: Some people will only fold WUs that give them the highest PPD (Points Per Day). and will be dumping the other WUs, This is considered cherry-picking and we strongly recommend against such unfair practice. You may face consequences from Stanford if found guilty of such practice. Doing this will only delay the Project as your dumped WU will not be reassigned until its Preferred Deadline expires. My current WU is corrupt, How do I delete It? If this is the first time a WU gave you an error, then you may consider it as corrupt. If errors appear frequently, then it indicates a hardware problem. The commonly used method for "delete and move on" is: Stop the Client using Crtl+C. Locate the folder where the F@H Client is installed. Select the Work Folder, Queue.dat File and delete them both. (you can also select the FahCore) Start the Client and hopefully, you will be assigned a new WU. Note: You can report a bad WU by posting the FAHLog in the Official Folding Forum. My log file says I can’t send/receive WUs, What do I do? Make sure that there isn't any firewall setting that is blocking the F@H Client from connecting to the Servers. If you are sure that the problem isn't on your end, it would then indicate a possible problem on the Standford Server side. You can check the Server Status: <Click> Note: If you want, you can report your situation in the Official Folding Forum where you can get a more appropriate and accurate response. How well will my computer(s) perform at F@H? It is important to know that regardless of what F@H Client you are using (Classic, GPU2, GPu3, SMP2, PS3), all of them are producing Scientifically important data. Just because you are using the Classic Client, doesn't mean that your contribution isn't significant. The fact of the matter is that some WU calculations can only be done on Classic Client and not on SMP2 Client or the GPU3 Client. Note: You can check our new Guru3D Points Per Day Index and if you can, please contribute: Guru3D Points Per Day Index FahInfo.org How much bandwidth does F@H need? It depends on what Client(s) you are using and how they are configured. F@H Clients give you the option to configure for: Small WUs: <5 MB Normal WUs: 5 MB - 10 MB Big WUs: >10MB Note: SMP2 BETA Client is hard-coded for Big WUs. If you have a powerful GPU, it will fold the WUs very quickly hence will be utilizing more bandwidth. How can I check my score? You can check your/team score at the following sites:. Official Donor Stats: <Click> Official Team Stats: <Click> Extreme OC Donor Stats: <Click> Extreme OC Team Stats: <Click> Kakao Team Stats: <Click> Hardfolding Team Stats: <Click> Xtreme CPU Team Stats: <Click> Free-DC Team Stats: <Click> Note: After you finish a WU and upload it successfully to the Servers, the Official Stats will take 1 hour to update while the other third party Stats will take up to 3 hours to update your rank and statistics. In case the WU hasn't been credited, you may want to report it in the Official Folding Forum How do I monitor multiple rigs? You will require a Third Party Application. Some of the commonly used ones are: HFM.NET: Highly recommended as it includes all the latest features. FahMon: Useful if you are not running the SMP2 Client as it doesn't support the Bonus Point Calculation. Folding Observer: Good for Mac use. Note: A more diverse list of application along with their description: <Click> Useful Links StressCPU: This is specifically designed by F@H developers to stress the CPU. It is used for checking system stability especially of you are getting many EUEs. MemtestG80: This is specifically designed by F@H developers to stress the GPU Memory. It is useful for checking the system stability especially of you are getting many EUEs. Orthos: Useful for testing stability when Folding. You can use this to work out EUE problems. TrayIt: This can be used to hide the Console client's window. HideIt: Another utility to hide windows. Folding@Home Wiki: More information on F@H Clients. Folding@home Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) Index: The Official listing of FAQs for F@H. Folding Forum: The Official Forum where you can go for more help if required. Vijay Pande on Twitter: The Official link to Prof. Vijay Pande, PhD who is the Director of Folding@home Distributed Computing Project. Folding@home Blog: The Official Blog of Prof. Vijay Pande, PhD who is the Director of Folding@home Distributed Computing Project. FAH-Addict: A website that is dedicated to provide the Official information about F@H. The Guide was originally written by Aircool, PantherX has updated the guide to reflect the current status of F@H. If there are any mistakes, please PM Aircool or PantherX so that corrections can be made. If you feel that any section is missing or lacks important details, please point it out so that it can be modified.