Rosetta@home

Reasons some people avoid BOINC projects

  UW Seal
 
[ Home ] [ Join ] [ About ] [ Participants ] [ Community ] [ Statistics ]
  [ login/out ]


Advanced search
Message boards : Rosetta@home Science : Reasons some people avoid BOINC projects

Sort
AuthorMessage
Feet1st Profile
Avatar

Joined: Dec 30 05
Posts: 1740
ID: 44890
Credit: 2,500,639
RAC: 2,030
Message 12488 - Posted 22 Mar 2006 4:31:19 UTC

Don't mean to sound negative. The purpose of this thread is to identify valid reasons people are resistent to help with projects like Rosetta, in the hope that many of those reasons can be eliminated (often by a future post explaining how to enable some existing resolution to the concern).

If you restate your idea into the form "resolve THIS and more people will join", then it fits better under this thread.

Security: How can I be sure the program isn't searching my harddrive for private information?

I found this in the wiki
but it doesn't explain how to protect your data.

Someone else pointed me to Trux
but it didn't seem to give me the warm fuzzy that installing BOINC is a safe thing to do. Keeps talking about exposures and risks and how you might not follow all of their suggestions and create an exposure.

I'm looking for something that would actually convince an IT director that BOINC might be an OK thing to allow on a company full of machines, and that explains how THEY control how things will run so that no exposures are created. In fact, something that says "If you're gonna do a DC project, do it with BOINC! ...and here's why". Does anything like that exist?

Hard drive wear: I mentioned Rosetta to a friend of mine that holds a few patents in the hard disk drive field. His first thought was that a standard PC disk drive isn't built to take the wear of being on 24/7, and actually being used.

I realize I can set my preferences to put a timer on how frequently BOINC writes to disk and reduce it's use. And this probably works well for reducing power requirements too, because I can set a high value and let the disk spin down and go idle for periods of time.

...but I was wondering if anyone has outlined how to size and utilize a virtual disk to bare the brundt of the workunit IO? The virtual disk could be on a mapped drive on a server, or a ramdisk or even a memory stick or something. But sizing it properly would seem important, and then how to get BOINC to use it just for specific files that are written during WU processing. Not for all the program code and input files that are only read once.

Overheating: Same friend also mentioned that many standard PCs have undersized heatsinks, and will tend to overheat if CPU is kept 100% busy the way these DC projects tend to do.

A resolution has been posted elsewhere, I wanted to add it here to make a more complete resource for people to reference.

You can use the ThreadMaster to turn the CPU neddle back a few notches and basically NOT be used 100% of the time, thus leaving more time for cooling air to flow through the box.

The Rosetta requirements page points out the overheating problem, but not the solution or how to determine if this will be a problem for you, or what harm (or lack thereof) occurs when your PC overheats.

I appreciate your honesty and not wanting to harm anyone's machine(s), but perhaps it could be reworded so as not to STOP you in the process you've gotten this far in to, to participate in the project. Some will see this as a red flag, and not continue... even though their PC will do just fine.

Power consumption: I read on another thread an estimate that a crunching CPU takes about 60 watts more power than a PC that's on but idle. Has anyone seen any reasearch confirming this number??

If that's right, then the incremental cost, 24/7/365 is about $42 per year (at 8 cents per Kwh). And if you live in Minnesota (like me) half of the year the electricity will actually help cut your heating bills (although if you live in California or other tropical clim. then the A/C costs must be factored in to the cost as well).

PC longevity: Will leaving my PC on more of the time, and running it harder, reduce it's lifespan?

For starters... what happened with your last PC? Did it reach the end of it's life? Or just the end of it's usefulness due to the bigger better faster more effect of time?

I know that from a chipmakers point of view, that with a multi-layered circuit-board you want to leave it at a steady temp. all the time (i.e. minimize expansion and contraction due to heat, by leaving it on all the time). And, therefore, microfractures between those layers won't occur, extending useful life. But is this true for the REST of the machine?

Network bandwidth: But our network is on the brink now! We can't add any workload to it.

For starters, sounds like a network upgrade may be due. But, otherwise, you can control the hours of the day and/or the bandwidth BOINC will consume in the General Preferences.

Let's say we configure a whole cube farm of PCs to allow network usage only between 7PM and 7AM each day (and we bump our General Preference for getting more than .1 days of work at a time). Do you know what happens? The PCs crunch WUs all day, each of them has SOMETHING completed by day end, and ALL the PCs try to send their results at the same time! Thus if anyone IS trying to use the office network at 7:01PM, they aren't able to get anything done.

Does anyone know of a way to tell BOINC to lighten up? "Hey, look man, we got ALL NIGHT to report these results...let's wait our turn". "Wait our turn" would be a solution where the PCs are coordindated by some scheduler or other signal (and if you're doing all that, then prioritize so the PC with no work left gets on the network first, and the one with a result that's almost past due is right behind him). But short of that, is there a way to somehow Randomize when each PC tries to jump onto the network? So maybe they each begin at some random time between 7:00 and 8:30PM, rather than all jumping on RIGHT AT 7:00?
____________
If having a DC project with BOINC is of interest to you, with volunteer or cloud computing resources, but have no time for the BOINC learning curve,
use a hosting service that understands BOINC projects: http://DeepSci.com

Johnathon

Joined: Nov 5 05
Posts: 120
ID: 9360
Credit: 138,226
RAC: 0
Message 12492 - Posted 22 Mar 2006 7:48:42 UTC

Thinking about the harddrive wear one... I've been thinking for my own machines, running BOINC on a CF card (2gb). Its possible...
____________

vavega
Avatar

Joined: Nov 2 05
Posts: 82
ID: 8217
Credit: 519,981
RAC: 0
Message 12498 - Posted 22 Mar 2006 8:56:15 UTC

they'd like to help, but don't understand the science and the pc workings of the program.

to combat these reasons, there should be a clear simple science explanation and the program and setup directions need to be bulletproof so no babysitting is involved. if you're going to have a recruitment drive using mass media (of any sort) be prepared to get people that don't have a large science or pc background and aren't willing to invest too much time. we do it because we love it, but not everyone feels the same way.
____________

BennyRop

Joined: Dec 17 05
Posts: 555
ID: 38837
Credit: 140,800
RAC: 0
Message 12499 - Posted 22 Mar 2006 9:23:44 UTC

PC longevity: Will leaving my PC on more of the time, and running it harder, reduce it's lifespan?

For starters... what happened with your last PC? Did it reach the end of it's life? Or just the end of it's usefulness due to the bigger better faster more effect of time?

Since '88, I've worked in pc repair and networking and for years was the Island's only authorized Novell Netware Reseller.

My systems have all been handed down.. My brother is using my Athlon xp 2600+ based system (and it's performing better with W2k than 3.2Ghz and 3.4Ghz P4 Dells running XP sitting on each side of it.) My sister is using the Athlon XP 1800+ system that was used before that. The 1800+ started 24/7 DC cruching in the summer of 2002. It's been on non stop since that point (although it hasn't run a DC client in the last year and half.) Drives have been replaced often on it - as it's always seemed to have outgrown the drives; so no word on whether drives are dying on it - they haven't been given the chance. 2 months ago, one of the Crucial Ram modules died.
The Athlon 2600+ has been crunching since around Oct of 2003. No major issues other than needing to keep replacing the video card for newer games, and adding ram for the same reason.
These seem to have lasted as long or longer than most of my client's machines - and they're being replaced with new systems when all but the easiest problems appear. (For some reason, users WANT their sub 1Ghz machines to be killed..)

[cpu overheating]
Prior to DC use, I had a 900Mhz athlon on an Asus motherboard - which had random problems that seemed to be related to overheating. After replacing the case, then adding tons of extra fans, then a Noisecontrol Silverado hsf to help cool the cpu - I found out that the motherboard's "default" setting was giving the cpu 0.20 volts more than it was supposed to. The motherboard was instantly replaced.. and the cpu and motherboard went to heaven shortly thereafter. My machines tend to be overcooled now.. but I had more problems with overheating prior to DC.
I've run across a number of overheating problems with client machines; from hsf not installed properly to the fan on the Heat Sink dying. Usually, it causes windows to crash repeatedly when the cpu is being used - and then they bring it in to be troubleshot.
I've used DC projects to help test ram and cpu cooling overnight - doing something useful and validating the cooling on the cpu and the ram. If the system is crashing due to overheating - it's easier to spot when you're running a DC project - rather than spending months trying to track down an intermittent problem. If it failed.. it's easy to run Memtest86 and Spinrite to test out the memory and HD. So for a business location - I'd recommend finding a DC app that doesn't interfere with the business apps being used and test them out.

-------------

Perhaps some of the larger pharmers could give feedback on the lifetime of their systems; especially the ones that stress the hardware even more by overclocking it.

And for HDs wearing out.. I'm seeing a much higher failure rate on client's HDs over the last few years - and these are the machines that aren't even running DC projects. Perhaps someone's testing a large enough group of 24x7 DC drives vs normal use drives and can give an idea of how much difference in lifespan the two groups have. Mine all last being passed down from one machine to another.. until they're put in 24x7 dc only machines. i.e. not big enough for real apps.

It's been pointed out that Compact Flash cards start having failures after about 10,000 write operations (please verify this)- so you shouldn't use one as a replacement for a drive being written to often. (temp files, etc).


____________

Scott Brown

Joined: Sep 19 05
Posts: 19
ID: 524
Credit: 8,739
RAC: 0
Message 12519 - Posted 22 Mar 2006 15:57:42 UTC


Overzealous Moderation (Rosetta only):

I stopped crunching for Rosetta some time ago because I disagreed with the overzealous nature of moderation of the message boards. While I was certainly in favor of some better organization, following moderated threads became overly tedious. More importantly, I suggested that, given the increased level of moderation, a more formal (and visible) statement of Forum policies was warranted (e.g., on the main web page, etc.). This was disregarded. I have watched these boards since and find that the moderation continues at this level, sometimes to the detriment of discussion. While checking offensive langauge is understandable and necessary, I remian uncomfortable with the moderation of posts even to the correction of the 'tone' of one's writing (e.g., see the "Optimized Client?" thread in the crunching forum). Having been involved with research extensively (e.g., reviewer for NSF, NIH grant work, etc.), part of my discomfort comes from a research ethics/rights of research participants standpoint.

I have no idea as to the number of people that share this discomfort (though from post on other projects I know that i am not alone), so I will not even hazard a guess at its potential effect.

(FYI, none of my posts--at least to my knowledge--was ever moderated here).

Dimitris Hatzopoulos Profile

Joined: Jan 5 06
Posts: 336
ID: 47478
Credit: 80,939
RAC: 0
Message 12527 - Posted 22 Mar 2006 21:03:49 UTC - in response to Message ID 12488.
Last modified: 22 Mar 2006 21:32:40 UTC

Security: How can I be sure the program isn't searching my harddrive for private information?

I found this in the wiki
but it doesn't explain how to protect your data.

Someone else pointed me to Trux
but it didn't seem to give me the warm fuzzy that installing BOINC is a safe thing to do. Keeps talking about exposures and risks and how you might not follow all of their suggestions and create an exposure.

I'm looking for something that would actually convince an IT director that BOINC might be an OK thing to allow on a company full of machines, and that explains how THEY control how things will run so that no exposures are created. In fact, something that says "If you're gonna do a DC project, do it with BOINC! ...and here's why". Does anything like that exist?


I pointed to the trux BOINC security doc (for Linux it's a bit terse, but one can just install the Debian/ubuntu package which will install in a "sandbox" anyway).

It's a VALID concern of many people, who are aware of the potential risks of running 3rd party software on their PC. On top of all the security measures offered by BOINC (digitally signed executables etc), one can install BOINC "in a sandbox", so that regardless of potential security issues of the science projects, the system (Linux/WinXP/etc) is unaffected.

I've setup my BOINC so that even if all BOINC security layers were compromised, a "hostile" executable can't read any private files, e.g. in my home directory.

Hard drive wear: I mentioned Rosetta to a friend of mine that holds a few patents in the hard disk drive field. His first thought was that a standard PC disk drive isn't built to take the wear of being on 24/7, and actually being used.

PC longevity: Will leaving my PC on more of the time, and running it harder, reduce it's lifespan?


Science projects write to disk once every several minutes. It's not like some DB app which reads/writes to disk every second.

I've operated most of my PCs (at any point in time I had 6 on average) mostly Unix (Linux/FreeBSD) 24/7 since 1990 (very active harddisk, but not at 100% CPU utilisation). Basically my experience has been that if it runs OK under load for a couple of weeks (memtest86, prime95 etc), they'll last at least 5yr. In almost every case I just retired the hardware after 5-7 years because it reached its limits.

Basically one reason why I can't contribute more to Rosetta is because right now in addition to my P4s, I have 4 PCs which are old (PII and Pentium3), in continuous operation for the past 6+ yr.

And in my opinion, it'd be the rate-of-change (ROC) of temperature at powerup (for PCs which don't run 24/7) that would potentially reduce the lifespan of CPU / mobo etc.

Basically, to make a long story short, security was the biggest issue for me, as I have other data on my PCs (they're not just crunching boxes). Once I took care of that (run BOINC in "sandbox"), I never thought about "wearing out the PC" running it 24/7 or at 100% CPU.

My 2 cents.
____________
Best UFO Resources
Wikipedia R@h
How-To: Join Distributed Computing projects that benefit humanity

Legman Profile
Avatar

Joined: Nov 7 05
Posts: 150
ID: 10074
Credit: 129,568
RAC: 0
Message 12590 - Posted 23 Mar 2006 23:25:34 UTC - in response to Message ID 12488.

Don't mean to sound negative. The purpose of this thread is to identify valid reasons people are resistent to help with projects like Rosetta, in the hope that many of those reasons can be eliminated (often by a future post explaining how to enable some existing resolution to the concern).

If you restate your idea into the form "resolve THIS and more people will join", then it fits better under this thread.

Security: How can I be sure the program isn't searching my harddrive for private information?

I found this in the wiki
but it doesn't explain how to protect your data.

Someone else pointed me to Trux
but it didn't seem to give me the warm fuzzy that installing BOINC is a safe thing to do. Keeps talking about exposures and risks and how you might not follow all of their suggestions and create an exposure.

I'm looking for something that would actually convince an IT director that BOINC might be an OK thing to allow on a company full of machines, and that explains how THEY control how things will run so that no exposures are created. In fact, something that says "If you're gonna do a DC project, do it with BOINC! ...and here's why". Does anything like that exist?

Hard drive wear: I mentioned Rosetta to a friend of mine that holds a few patents in the hard disk drive field. His first thought was that a standard PC disk drive isn't built to take the wear of being on 24/7, and actually being used.

I realize I can set my preferences to put a timer on how frequently BOINC writes to disk and reduce it's use. And this probably works well for reducing power requirements too, because I can set a high value and let the disk spin down and go idle for periods of time.

...but I was wondering if anyone has outlined how to size and utilize a virtual disk to bare the brundt of the workunit IO? The virtual disk could be on a mapped drive on a server, or a ramdisk or even a memory stick or something. But sizing it properly would seem important, and then how to get BOINC to use it just for specific files that are written during WU processing. Not for all the program code and input files that are only read once.

Overheating: Same friend also mentioned that many standard PCs have undersized heatsinks, and will tend to overheat if CPU is kept 100% busy the way these DC projects tend to do.

A resolution has been posted elsewhere, I wanted to add it here to make a more complete resource for people to reference.

You can use the ThreadMaster to turn the CPU neddle back a few notches and basically NOT be used 100% of the time, thus leaving more time for cooling air to flow through the box.

The Rosetta requirements page points out the overheating problem, but not the solution or how to determine if this will be a problem for you, or what harm (or lack thereof) occurs when your PC overheats.

I appreciate your honesty and not wanting to harm anyone's machine(s), but perhaps it could be reworded so as not to STOP you in the process you've gotten this far in to, to participate in the project. Some will see this as a red flag, and not continue... even though their PC will do just fine.

Power consumption: I read on another thread an estimate that a crunching CPU takes about 60 watts more power than a PC that's on but idle. Has anyone seen any reasearch confirming this number??

If that's right, then the incremental cost, 24/7/365 is about $42 per year (at 8 cents per Kwh). And if you live in Minnesota (like me) half of the year the electricity will actually help cut your heating bills (although if you live in California or other tropical clim. then the A/C costs must be factored in to the cost as well).

PC longevity: Will leaving my PC on more of the time, and running it harder, reduce it's lifespan?

For starters... what happened with your last PC? Did it reach the end of it's life? Or just the end of it's usefulness due to the bigger better faster more effect of time?

I know that from a chipmakers point of view, that with a multi-layered circuit-board you want to leave it at a steady temp. all the time (i.e. minimize expansion and contraction due to heat, by leaving it on all the time). And, therefore, microfractures between those layers won't occur, extending useful life. But is this true for the REST of the machine?

Network bandwidth: But our network is on the brink now! We can't add any workload to it.

For starters, sounds like a network upgrade may be due. But, otherwise, you can control the hours of the day and/or the bandwidth BOINC will consume in the General Preferences.

Let's say we configure a whole cube farm of PCs to allow network usage only between 7PM and 7AM each day (and we bump our General Preference for getting more than .1 days of work at a time). Do you know what happens? The PCs crunch WUs all day, each of them has SOMETHING completed by day end, and ALL the PCs try to send their results at the same time! Thus if anyone IS trying to use the office network at 7:01PM, they aren't able to get anything done.

Does anyone know of a way to tell BOINC to lighten up? "Hey, look man, we got ALL NIGHT to report these results...let's wait our turn". "Wait our turn" would be a solution where the PCs are coordindated by some scheduler or other signal (and if you're doing all that, then prioritize so the PC with no work left gets on the network first, and the one with a result that's almost past due is right behind him). But short of that, is there a way to somehow Randomize when each PC tries to jump onto the network? So maybe they each begin at some random time between 7:00 and 8:30PM, rather than all jumping on RIGHT AT 7:00?



I have heard the "wear" excuse. Im not sating you are wrong. But a pc lasts in my house about 4 years.. If Running boinc reduces the life of a harddrive from 7 years to 5 years, then i dont care..

It is my hunch that the "wear" isn't even that extensive.


____________
Secret team meetings and the sharing of 3.2Terabytes of free software -->HERE!... Don't spy, we don't like spies!

Whl.

Joined: Dec 29 05
Posts: 203
ID: 44673
Credit: 275,802
RAC: 0
Message 12596 - Posted 24 Mar 2006 1:32:45 UTC
Last modified: 24 Mar 2006 1:34:15 UTC

This P4 has being running DC projects 24/7/365 since I built it in march 2003 and it has been overclocked to 3.2Ghz in all that time. Its had the same 2x 120GB IDE hard drives in it and same DDR 400 memory as well. No problems so far.
____________

Dimitris Hatzopoulos Profile

Joined: Jan 5 06
Posts: 336
ID: 47478
Credit: 80,939
RAC: 0
Message 12597 - Posted 24 Mar 2006 2:27:56 UTC
Last modified: 24 Mar 2006 2:30:14 UTC

Here is some feedback on the issue (from a company's perspective)

As I always thought, CEO is citing potential vulnerabilities problems. I know that BOINC science projects will try their best, with operating firewalled servers and signing executables on a non-Internet-connected PC, but I prefer to play it safe (especially since modern OSes make it easy).

QUOTE - source:
"I work for an employer with a couple hundred desktop computers. Recently I suggested to the CEO that we participate in a distributed computing project. This was my written request below, I removed any reference to the organization by name.
----------------------------
Currently our work stations are left running 24/7 in order to receive pushed out upgrades and updates. It would seem that we could use this under utilized resource by corporately participating in a non-profit "folding" project, such as the "World Community Grid" hosted by IBM. Folding projects involve processing medical research data when the workstation would otherwise by idle. The processing program is given the lowest system priority, so that it does not affect performance when the computer is actively being used. Other than the initial installation, which is trivial, this process is does not require any interaction on the part of the individual user. More information about the project can be found here;
...

Corporate partners participating in this project are listed here;
...

This could be a great way to do some good and improve our community relations at the same time. All at very little or no cost to our organization.


Thanks for your consideration.
-----------------------------

The response from the CEO was;

It is true that these applications do not normally impact performance; however, we have seen these types of programs negatively impact system performance in the past. In addition, there have been known security vulnerabilities associated with these programs, so the assumption that there is no associated cost with installing and maintaining an application like this is not true. Like other software programs, security vulnerabilities turn up constantly, which then require intervention and resolution.

When looking specifically at the "World Community Grid" project it appears they are moving over to the BOINC client, but their current client seems to have some undesirable characteristics (here's a quote from their forums on their current client: "Whether you have a large or small network, installing the WCG UD agent on multiple machines has always been difficult, as each PC has had to be manually registered with the WCG servers").

It's easy to say that there's no cost associated with something, but when you have to deploy it, respond to questions about why someone's system is running slow and then have to maintain a piece of software when a new critical vulnerability is discovered in it, you get to see the real costs associated with a single application.

With this in mind, I will not recommend that we deploy this application on our desktops.
------------------------------

Anybody have any similar experiences? Any suggestions how I might politely address these concerns?"

____________
Best UFO Resources
Wikipedia R@h
How-To: Join Distributed Computing projects that benefit humanity

Feet1st Profile
Avatar

Joined: Dec 30 05
Posts: 1740
ID: 44890
Credit: 2,500,639
RAC: 2,030
Message 12626 - Posted 24 Mar 2006 16:48:22 UTC - in response to Message ID 12597.

Here is some feedback on the issue (from a company's perspective


Dimitris, thank you for providing such a specific example of what I've been talking about.

Is there any retort to this reasonable and informed CEO?

Confidentiality is one aspect. The closest thing I can think of there would be if BOINC were to come out and declare that it controls the environment like an OS does and prevents the applications within it from doing any snooping. ...but I don't think that's entirely accurate. I think it just controls the access to the project files. But the application COULD still be written to snoop around elsewhere.

I know BOINC has remote control features, although I've not tinkered with them my self. Are they adequate to describe as a single centralized control center for all the BOINC clients (in the office)?? If there were a problem, could an operator click a button and shutdown all the clients?

When a new BOINC version comes out that (in theory) plugs a security hole, can this change be rolled out to all the client systems? ...or does someone have to go to each one, end BOINC, backup the BOINC directory, install the new version, and restart?

Do any of the add-ons support functions like this? These types of functions are the ONLY way you're going to get IT departments on board. Put THEM in control of it, without any manual steps on each PC.

Let's say the IT department feels they trust Rosetta, but not Pirates, or BURP. Is there any way they can BLOCK these applications from running, and "protect" their networks and systems?
____________
If having a DC project with BOINC is of interest to you, with volunteer or cloud computing resources, but have no time for the BOINC learning curve,
use a hosting service that understands BOINC projects: http://DeepSci.com

R/B

Joined: Dec 8 05
Posts: 195
ID: 32624
Credit: 28,095
RAC: 0
Message 12630 - Posted 24 Mar 2006 17:16:13 UTC

I believe this means that any official CD's come from UW / Rosetta center address.
____________
Founder of BOINC GROUP - Objectivists - Philosophically minded rational data crunchers.


Dimitris Hatzopoulos Profile

Joined: Jan 5 06
Posts: 336
ID: 47478
Credit: 80,939
RAC: 0
Message 12638 - Posted 24 Mar 2006 19:37:55 UTC - in response to Message ID 12626.

Here is some feedback on the issue (from a company's perspective


Dimitris, thank you for providing such a specific example of what I've been talking about.

Is there any retort to this reasonable and informed CEO?


IMO yes, because:


When a new BOINC version comes out that (in theory) plugs a security hole, can this change be rolled out to all the client systems? ...or does someone have to go to each one, end BOINC, backup the BOINC directory, install the new version, and restart?


One can roll-out BOINC to an entire network of Windows PCs (and upgrade it remotely) see e.g. automatic BOINC installation on muliple PCs

Let's say the IT department feels they trust Rosetta, but not Pirates, or BURP. Is there any way they can BLOCK these applications from running, and "protect" their networks and systems?


Individual projects are independant. A BOINC project won't load, unless we explicitly JOIN them. It's like visiting a Website. One can go to BBC.co.uk but not to cnn.com (or vv).

I'm not sure what kind of "vulnerabilities" might arise (unless some kind of trojan is planted in the open-source executable), as BOINC only communicates via shttp/http to the project's (e.g. Rosetta's) website. The only way would be to hijack a BOINC project's Website and still the bad guys won't be able to run anything on your PC, since executables are digitally signed.

In any case, one should be able to run BOINC in a "sandbox" under Win. I will provide detailed instructions to anyone who wants to know how to do it under LINUX.
But I'm not sure how exactly to achieve the same effect under Win2k/XP/2003 etc.

Basically, I think from the aforementioned CEO's perspective, he sees it as just another app to maintain, keep up with upgrades etc. From a knowledgeable user's perspective, BOINC is less prone to vulnerabilities than just about any app on my PC which accesses the Internet (Win, Antivirus, MSIE, Outlook, P2P, ICQ, IM etc)

But a less knowledgeable user has to take our word for it, so it only works for people who would blindly trust us on this.
____________
Best UFO Resources
Wikipedia R@h
How-To: Join Distributed Computing projects that benefit humanity

Feet1st Profile
Avatar

Joined: Dec 30 05
Posts: 1740
ID: 44890
Credit: 2,500,639
RAC: 2,030
Message 12716 - Posted 26 Mar 2006 21:39:18 UTC - in response to Message ID 12638.

Individual projects are independant. A BOINC project won't load, unless we explicitly JOIN them. It's like visiting a Website. One can go to BBC.co.uk but not to cnn.com (or vv).


My point is simply that, from an IT director's point of view, they want to CONTROL these things. For example, allow BOINC and Rosetta, but prevent anyone in their user base from running "rogue BOINC project x". I'm thinking they might be able to achieve this by simply blocking that URL in one of those internet monitoring programs. But I'm not familiar with details on how they work. Also, it presumes the IT staff can keep a list of who to block (which is constantly changing, hence "maintenance" required).

I'm not sure what kind of "vulnerabilities" might arise (unless some kind of trojan is planted in the open-source executable), as BOINC only communicates via shttp/http to the project's (e.g. Rosetta's) website.


The vulnerabilities are not the BOINC connections to the internet per se. It's that I'm allowing code to run on my PC. And I've got no great way to PROVE what it's doing.

Perhaps I'm just a bit twisted, but let's say I were a hacker, and wanted to... steal EMail address books. It would be possible to mascuarade as a science project, throw up some spiffy graphics, and meanwhile the application is actually snooping through your EMail client files and extracting the goods. When it's done, it "reports results" to the host, (over an https encrypted connection!) to send back all the EMails it has found.

That's a simple example, and no great loss if it's just EMail addresses, but what if you work in an organization that has a "privacy policy", and what if instead of your address book or EMail archieve it snooped through your corporate data? Or implanted a virus?

It hasn't happened, true. But, technically, it's possible. There were other postings noting another project that let it's domain name expire (WHOOPS!), and it immediately went into the hands of someone that was waiting in line to take it. What if the domain name were suddenly going directly to the hacker rather than to the project?? The hacker now has the ability to send you a "new version" of code, which does a hack rather than science.

Running as a service, under the authority of a restricted or special use user ID (i.e. "in a sandbox") is a step towards addressing my concern. Now, again with your IT director cap on, how do you make SURE all of the users DO install it this way? Block the BOINC website? So they can only get the code from a local server?

Also, I think you get more interest in the project if people can fire up the graphic once and a while and see how they're doin'. And you can't do that when running as a service.
____________
If having a DC project with BOINC is of interest to you, with volunteer or cloud computing resources, but have no time for the BOINC learning curve,
use a hosting service that understands BOINC projects: http://DeepSci.com

Feet1st Profile
Avatar

Joined: Dec 30 05
Posts: 1740
ID: 44890
Credit: 2,500,639
RAC: 2,030
Message 12810 - Posted 30 Mar 2006 2:49:53 UTC
Last modified: 30 Mar 2006 2:53:02 UTC

Ok, I later found you CAN use the graphic when running as a service.

Regarding the bandwidth issue, I've seen a few message board posts, and the BOINC Synergy team website that one should expect Rosetta to take about 1GB of network bandwidth per month, per dual-core CPU. But the chart has no date on when it was revised, and I know the message posts were in Dec. and early Jan. timeframe. That was before the Rosetta preference to chose your work unit size was implemented. And there are other posts discussing various compression possibilities.

So, I'm wondering, does anyone have any figures for the bandwidth requirements of the current implementation? Since I'm connected fulltime and have a wide pipe, I don't notice. But I'm wondering how my friends on dial up are going to do with Rosetta.
____________
If having a DC project with BOINC is of interest to you, with volunteer or cloud computing resources, but have no time for the BOINC learning curve,
use a hosting service that understands BOINC projects: http://DeepSci.com

BennyRop

Joined: Dec 17 05
Posts: 555
ID: 38837
Credit: 140,800
RAC: 0
Message 12817 - Posted 30 Mar 2006 5:30:24 UTC

A couple months ago, during my first 5 days on the project, I averaged 50 megs/day upload&download. In the first 2 weeks, after some small WUs - my >single< 2Ghz Athlon 64 cpu had run through almost 1 gig of upload and download bandwidth. 24/7 crunching.

Now we can tell Rosetta to work on just one WU for 24 hours; so there's just one WU uploaded and downloaded a day. If you set the Max time to 2 hours, you'll get around 12 WUs uploaded and downloaded every day. So the bandwidth depends on your settings.

Perhaps we could get Dr. Baker or one of the programmers to give an idea of the size of the average upload and downloads and you can calculate the bandwidth that will be used by your Max cpu time settings from that.


____________

Dimitris Hatzopoulos Profile

Joined: Jan 5 06
Posts: 336
ID: 47478
Credit: 80,939
RAC: 0
Message 12819 - Posted 30 Mar 2006 6:54:00 UTC - in response to Message ID 12716.

Now, again with your IT director cap on, how do you make SURE all of the users DO install it this way? Block the BOINC website? So they can only get the code from a local server?


Maybe I wasn't clear enough, but as I wrote in my previous post in this thread

"One can roll-out BOINC to an entire network of Windows PCs (and upgrade it remotely) see e.g. automatic BOINC installation on muliple PCs"

it won't be installed by the USERS but by the NET ADMIN via a script and it will run as a service. In many corporate network installations, users can't install arbitrary software on the PC.

E.g. IBM is installing WCG on many of their corporate sites, quote:

"Hi, I just started using WCG recently. I only got it because it was automatically installed on my work machine by software that downloads fixes and other recommended software packages.

This automatic download program is maintained by the company I work for (IBM) and I guess it was recently modified to include WCG as one of the recommended software packages."
see source
____________
Best UFO Resources
Wikipedia R@h
How-To: Join Distributed Computing projects that benefit humanity

Dimitris Hatzopoulos Profile

Joined: Jan 5 06
Posts: 336
ID: 47478
Credit: 80,939
RAC: 0
Message 12820 - Posted 30 Mar 2006 7:08:21 UTC - in response to Message ID 12716.
Last modified: 30 Mar 2006 7:37:16 UTC

It hasn't happened, true. But, technically, it's possible. There were other postings noting another project that let it's domain name expire (WHOOPS!), and it immediately went into the hands of someone that was waiting in line to take it. What if the domain name were suddenly going directly to the hacker rather than to the project?? The hacker now has the ability to send you a "new version" of code, which does a hack rather than science.


It was me who reported it back in Jan06, I spent some time trying to debug the issue and I traced it down to "DNS-cache-poisoning", i.e. a bad guy tricking older DNS server software (still in use by 1/3rd of all Internet sites...) into thinking that a hostname has another IP than the real one, effectively redirecting the user to a new site.

Also see http://isc.sans.org/diary.php?date=2005-04-07, http://vdb.dragonsoft.com/detail.php?id=349, http://isc.sans.org/presentations/dnspoisoning.php

It was a rather unusual config, that could only be exploited if the project's BOINC server didn't have an "A" record, but a CNAME. OOOPS, I just checked and while R@H is fine, RALPH falls in this category. Please change ralph.bakerlab.org from being a CNAME to alpha.bakerlab.org, to having its own A record, like R@h is:

% host boinc.bakerlab.org
boinc.bakerlab.org has address 140.142.20.103

% host ralph.bakerlab.org
ralph.bakerlab.org is a nickname for alpha.bakerlab.org
alpha.bakerlab.org has address 140.142.20.204

Now you reminded me, I wanted to write to the BOINC devs to let projects know about it...

This incident proved to me personally that bad guys were actively trying to exploit the BOINC userbase, in the particular case I encountered just to redirect me to some stupid ads page.

BOINC projects digitally sign their executables, so even if the domain falls in bad guys hands, they won't be able to have you run an invalid executable (unless they implement the whole BOINC subsystem AND it's the first time you connect).

____________
Best UFO Resources
Wikipedia R@h
How-To: Join Distributed Computing projects that benefit humanity

Keith E. Laidig Profile
Forum moderator
Project administrator
Project developer
Avatar

Joined: Jul 1 05
Posts: 154
ID: 15
Credit: 117,189,961
RAC: 0
Message 12834 - Posted 30 Mar 2006 15:41:09 UTC - in response to Message ID 12820.

Please change ralph.bakerlab.org from being a CNAME to alpha.bakerlab.org, to having its own A record

done. -KEL

____________

Feet1st Profile
Avatar

Joined: Dec 30 05
Posts: 1740
ID: 44890
Credit: 2,500,639
RAC: 2,030
Message 15220 - Posted 1 May 2006 21:51:04 UTC

Gentlemen, please take it somewhere else. Many other more appropriate places to discuss Linux and Unix.
____________
If having a DC project with BOINC is of interest to you, with volunteer or cloud computing resources, but have no time for the BOINC learning curve,
use a hosting service that understands BOINC projects: http://DeepSci.com

Feet1st Profile
Avatar

Joined: Dec 30 05
Posts: 1740
ID: 44890
Credit: 2,500,639
RAC: 2,030
Message 16771 - Posted 21 May 2006 17:12:43 UTC

Seems to me that fully half of this thread is now not related at all to the topic which was reasons people avoid BOINC projects, and what, if any steps can relieve their concerns.

The initial point that some people run on operating systems that BOINC and/or Rosetta do not support is well taken. The resolution to that is clear, and it is clear there is nothing from the outside that we can do to relieve that concern.

I propose that all the entries since this one be moved to a Linux/Unix thread on the crunching board.
____________
If having a DC project with BOINC is of interest to you, with volunteer or cloud computing resources, but have no time for the BOINC learning curve,
use a hosting service that understands BOINC projects: http://DeepSci.com

Moderator9
Forum moderator
Project administrator

Joined: Jan 22 06
Posts: 1014
ID: 53254
Credit: 0
RAC: 0
Message 16775 - Posted 21 May 2006 17:40:09 UTC - in response to Message ID 16773.

Seems to me that fully half of this thread is now not related at all to the topic which was reasons people avoid BOINC projects, and what, if any steps can relieve their concerns.

The initial point that some people run on operating systems that BOINC and/or Rosetta do not support is well taken. The resolution to that is clear, and it is clear there is nothing from the outside that we can do to relieve that concern.

I propose that all the entries since this one be moved to a Linux/Unix thread on the crunching board.

Consider it done.

The discussion of Unix/Linux porting that was raised here has been moved to this thread on request from the owner of the thread.


____________
Moderator9
ROSETTA@home FAQ
Moderator Contact

Feet1st Profile
Avatar

Joined: Dec 30 05
Posts: 1740
ID: 44890
Credit: 2,500,639
RAC: 2,030
Message 16805 - Posted 22 May 2006 1:14:46 UTC

adrianxw had a point which got lumped in timewise with another conversation that had emerged here on UNIX and Linux ports. Adrianxw said:

A recurrent theme I've come across in a number of places is the somewhat cynical belief that someone, somewhere is "making money/gaining patents/supporting the US military" out of the freely given resource.

This was true of course in the United Devices type setup.

Yes, Dr. Baker has pointed out several times that he makes the software available to universities and other researchers.

In fact, they've now added the phrase to the introductory paragraph on the homepage saying Rosetta@home is not for profit.

Adrian, do you think that addresses your concern?
____________
If having a DC project with BOINC is of interest to you, with volunteer or cloud computing resources, but have no time for the BOINC learning curve,
use a hosting service that understands BOINC projects: http://DeepSci.com

Sayrs Profile

Joined: Mar 30 06
Posts: 1
ID: 69912
Credit: 70,222
RAC: 0
Message 16808 - Posted 22 May 2006 2:37:58 UTC

Here are two more. I'm familiar with it solely because I'm associated with a local government in the State of Washington.

1) In the State of Washington, there is a constitutional prohibition against the gift of public funds. This extends to the use of public property for someone other than government use.

2) Also, in the State of Washington, there is an obligation for governments to retain and make all records open for public inspection. That is, if we have a file, we have to make it available to people.

I wrote earlier to the project, and got no response. I suggested that there are literally thousands of computers about the State of Washington that could work on this and, since it is a University of Washington project, there is no small probability of utilizing a large percentage of them. In order to do this, however, I need a legal opinion which states that this is not an unconstitutional use of public funds (presumably because it's a state project), and that there is no obligation for the government to maintain these records and make them public (presumably because they are work product, and the final documents are held by the University).

As a city councilmember, I'm always looking for ways for my city government to use its resources to best effect. I'm also always looking for ways to earn the affection of the public, and the fact that we can form teams can really help with that.

I can imagine cities having a freindly competition over which city/residents/companies can do the most for this valuable project.

If there is an attorney, preferably at the University of Washington, who has some expertise on this so that an opinion can be posted on the website, I would really appreciate it.

Thanks
____________

Feet1st Profile
Avatar

Joined: Dec 30 05
Posts: 1740
ID: 44890
Credit: 2,500,639
RAC: 2,030
Message 16810 - Posted 22 May 2006 3:04:14 UTC - in response to Message ID 16808.
Last modified: 22 May 2006 3:04:56 UTC

1) In the State of Washington, there is a constitutional prohibition against the gift of public funds. This extends to the use of public property for someone other than government use.

2) Also, in the State of Washington, there is an obligation for governments to retain and make all records open for public inspection. That is, if we have a file, we have to make it available to people.

Let me see if I understand you here. With #2 you are concerned someone might construe the Rosetta WUs as bring public records and therefore subject to archieve and inspection? Do they have a definition of "records"? I doubt that point would be a problem.

But #1, basically you are saying that we would need the permission of the state before you could use a state-owned PC for Rosetta. This is basically true for anyone that wants to use an employer's machine. So it raises the question, how would one go about getting the state to explicitly permit Rosetta?

____________
If having a DC project with BOINC is of interest to you, with volunteer or cloud computing resources, but have no time for the BOINC learning curve,
use a hosting service that understands BOINC projects: http://DeepSci.com

David Baker
Forum moderator
Project administrator
Project developer
Project scientist

Joined: Sep 17 05
Posts: 704
ID: 122
Credit: 559,847
RAC: 0
Message 16813 - Posted 22 May 2006 4:08:06 UTC - in response to Message ID 16808.

Here are two more. I'm familiar with it solely because I'm associated with a local government in the State of Washington.

1) In the State of Washington, there is a constitutional prohibition against the gift of public funds. This extends to the use of public property for someone other than government use.

2) Also, in the State of Washington, there is an obligation for governments to retain and make all records open for public inspection. That is, if we have a file, we have to make it available to people.

I wrote earlier to the project, and got no response. I suggested that there are literally thousands of computers about the State of Washington that could work on this and, since it is a University of Washington project, there is no small probability of utilizing a large percentage of them. In order to do this, however, I need a legal opinion which states that this is not an unconstitutional use of public funds (presumably because it's a state project), and that there is no obligation for the government to maintain these records and make them public (presumably because they are work product, and the final documents are held by the University).

As a city councilmember, I'm always looking for ways for my city government to use its resources to best effect. I'm also always looking for ways to earn the affection of the public, and the fact that we can form teams can really help with that.

I can imagine cities having a freindly competition over which city/residents/companies can do the most for this valuable project.

If there is an attorney, preferably at the University of Washington, who has some expertise on this so that an opinion can be posted on the website, I would really appreciate it.

Thanks


This would be great!!! There are no problems with rosetta@home running on university of washington or city or state computers. It was running for a long time on the 1000 computers in the UW undergraduate computer lab, for example. I think your team idea is excellent!!

____________

Tarx Profile

Joined: Apr 2 06
Posts: 42
ID: 70932
Credit: 44,708
RAC: 0
Message 16909 - Posted 23 May 2006 13:29:50 UTC - in response to Message ID 12488.

Security:
This one is the hardest one to get around. Often IT staff block any DC projects without further inspection because of it. I know with F@H, this usually was the one that stopped most companies & organizaitons to install it despite tighter controls than with BOINC and Google's security analysis of it.

Hard drive wear:
Temperature and Spin-up/Spin-down cycling are normally the two main items that shorten a hard drive's life. The writing to the hard disk should not be a concern and is not listed as part of the life limit of the drive (unlike solid state drives is different). Shock is of course another issue, but shouldn't apply in most cases (although for notebooks would need to be careful).
Also some hard drives (remember the IBM 75GXP lawsuit) specifially state not for 24/7 use. Although I'm not sure if any still state not for 24/7 use.
With a system running 24/7 at max cpu use, the system cooling becomes critical. Poorly built systems (that can include name brands such as Dell, HP, etc.) end up with a case temperature that is quite high.
Modern hard drives also run quite warm. Although rated for 5C to 55C (or similar), 45C is often viewed as the safe limit for a hard drive for long term use. Active cooling of the hard drive is often suggested, especially for a warm case or drives that are close together.
Spin-up/Spin-down cycling for a hard drive is punishing. Many people have heard of an older server system being shut down and then when it is restarted more than one drive failing! Of course in this case it is both a change in temps as well as a stop/start.
Seagate & Hitachi mentions their drives are good for about 50,000 stop/starts. One of the worst things to do with a desktop drive is to have a power setting to turn off the hard drive with a low setting. 3 hours is a suggested minimum, and preferably none at all. (note: notebooks have much higher rating for stop start, but I would still suggest not going too low).

Overheating:
This applies to various components. This includes the CPU, the motherboard, hard drive, power supply and other system components.
As mentioned before, systems with poor case cooling (more common than one would think, and includes many name brand systems) puts the cooling of all the other components at a disadvantage. If the ambient case temp is 40C, the rest of the system already are struggling with cooling. 30C is the suggest max temp for the case. On hot CPUs, seperate venting for the CPU is often suggested.
The CPU is often the primary heat source (powerful video cards can sometimes exceed that, although often externally vented). Stock heatsinks are usually barely adequate, and that is in a properly cooled case. Heatsinks however often do get clogged up with dust over time without periodic system cleaning (using compressed air, not a vacum!). With OCing (sometimes the high-end CPUs are like factory OCed...) the permitted temperature rating drops (e.g. for an AMD64 from 70C to 65C and lower) - but this becomes especially critical with increase voltages. Often the CPU will make computational errors when overheated (not so good for Rosetta!), but over time (especially with overvolting), the CPU can fail.
Capacitors (found primarily on the motherboard, in the power supply, and on cards) are rated for a specific temperature and also their lifespan depends on the temperature they are operating in. Failed capacitors are often the reason for failed motherboards. Lower temps is very important for longer life, especially for budget motherboards (due to lower quality capactiors) and power supplies.
Fan noise is another concern. Many people stop working on a DC project due to increase noise due to fan control (by the BIOS or by software or manually to keep temps within limit).
Notebooks components permit higher thermals, but the notebook can become uncomfortable to use (hot keyboard, hot to put in your lap, noisy fans).
Adjusting the CPU usage is an important feature that is not yet available with BOINC, but it is something that is in the Alpha development stage, so hopefully we will see it later this year.
And yes, 100% cpu usage is noticeable on many systems. You can often just feel the tiny bit of lag, or running a benchmark such as Aquamark3 (go ahead & try it) can show a noticeable cpu performance drop at 100% (around 85% it is no longer noticeable).

I guess that also in part answers PC longevity. I would say that the budget systems are not build like they use to, especially considering the increase temps they have to deal with.

For power use, it was mentioned in http://boinc.berkeley.edu/energy.php
My basic suggestion is in the warmer months, adjust cpu usage (when it is available) (and OCing if used) so the system doesn't overheat (or get better cooling), and minimize the system use if in an air conditioned area (as much more expensive to run if cooling the heat generated by the system).

I think that the adjustable CPU usage is going to be one of the most important improvements in BOINC. If someone is concerned with heat/noise/power-use/longevity/whatever or just seeing their system pegged at 100% cpu use, adjusting it (even if it is just to a slightly lower value such as 80%) could often make the difference keeping or losing a volunteer.

Lee Carre

Joined: Oct 6 05
Posts: 96
ID: 2884
Credit: 79,331
RAC: 0
Message 43034 - Posted 2 Jul 2007 16:03:35 UTC - in response to Message ID 12488.

I stumbled accross this old thread and thought I'd offer a few additions

Security: How can I be sure the program isn't searching my harddrive for private information?

I found this in the BOINC Wiki: Security but it doesn't explain how to protect your data.

Someone else pointed me to Trux: BOINC Security but it didn't seem to give me the warm fuzzy that installing BOINC is a safe thing to do. Keeps talking about exposures and risks and how you might not follow all of their suggestions and create an exposure.

I'm looking for something that would actually convince an IT director that BOINC might be an OK thing to allow on a company full of machines, and that explains how THEY control how things will run so that no exposures are created. In fact, something that says "If you're gonna do a DC project, do it with BOINC! ...and here's why". Does anything like that exist?
Personally the primary thing to mention is that the user has control over which projects they run; if they don't trust one/some/many of them, they don't have to run them.
Such things can be determined by community acceptance; for example which projects are getting the most CPU time from crunchers.

As stated in the quote, if someone is really concerned about proper security (which is never an easy or simple thing) then they can "lock-down" their machine by running boinc under a highly restricted account.
There are very rarely simple or easy ways (especially not by using defaults that leave a system in a working state) to make something perfectly secure as a default installation - most security requires user-intervention and selection/customisation; eg the user deciding if something is safe or not.

Hard drive wear: I mentioned Rosetta to a friend of mine that holds a few patents in the hard disk drive field. His first thought was that a standard PC disk drive isn't built to take the wear of being on 24/7, and actually being used.

I realize I can set my preferences to put a timer on how frequently BOINC writes to disk and reduce it's use. And this probably works well for reducing power requirements too, because I can set a high value and let the disk spin down and go idle for periods of time.

...but I was wondering if anyone has outlined how to size and utilize a virtual disk to bare the brundt of the workunit IO? The virtual disk could be on a mapped drive on a server, or a ramdisk or even a memory stick or something. But sizing it properly would seem important, and then how to get BOINC to use it just for specific files that are written during WU processing. Not for all the program code and input files that are only read once.
Most disks last longer if they're left on 24/7 compared to being on for only 2 hours a day (as an example). This includes disks in home computers, due to the fundamental nature of the machanics. A disk will die from thermal-stress (mentioned later) before it will die from wear-out. I've been through plenty of disk of many different types, and never seen a disk die from normal wear-out (excepting early failures etc.) before it died from thermal-stress.

Doing as suggested and setting the power options to spin the disk down and back up now and then will greatly reduce it's life, and doesn't save any significant amount of power anyway due to the relatively huge amount of energy needed to get the spindle back up to operating speed - the energy needed to keep a disk spinning at operational RPM is pretty low in comparison.

A server disk would be restrained by the same fundamental mechanical limitations, and flash-memory (eg USB-sticks) are only capable of a finite number of writes - besides the fact that they're generally slower anyway, so you might as well just use a regular disk.

The idea of using a RAM-disk is the same as telling the BOINC core-client that it can't write to disk very often - the data is stored in volatile memory.

This basically comes down to a choice between having frequent checkpoints, and reducing disk I/O.

If a user is really concerned about it, recommend that they purchase a seperate (smaller) disk just for BOINC. But they're likely to need/want to upgrade their operating system before a disk would fail.

Overheating: Same friend also mentioned that many standard PCs have undersized heatsinks, and will tend to overheat if CPU is kept 100% busy the way these DC projects tend to do.

A resolution has been posted elsewhere, I wanted to add it here to make a more complete resource for people to reference.

You can use the ThreadMaster to turn the CPU neddle back a few notches and basically NOT be used 100% of the time, thus leaving more time for cooling air to flow through the box.

The Rosetta requirements page points out the overheating problem, but not the solution or how to determine if this will be a problem for you, or what harm (or lack thereof) occurs when your PC overheats.

I appreciate your honesty and not wanting to harm anyone's machine(s), but perhaps it could be reworded so as not to STOP you in the process you've gotten this far in to, to participate in the project. Some will see this as a red flag, and not continue... even though their PC will do just fine.
this is certainly true of cheaper machines, but machines from quality manufacturers, such as Dell, are generally pretty impervious to this problem.

The real problem is with the PC, not the DC project, but I appreciate that this doesn't help those with cooling problems. I'd advise that people in this category fix their cooling problems in preference to using some kind of process/thread throttling - eg, what if the throttling fails? or they have a really hot day or something?

Most CPUs will turn themselves off if they get excessively hot to prevent damage. So random apparent power-loss (when the supply of power isn't a problem) is usually an indicator of a cooling problem. Temperature monitoring software can be used to get an actual temperature reading to compare to the CPU tollerances detailed in it's relavent spec(s).

As for documentation wording, perhaps a disclaimer-style thing, saying that this shouldn't be a problem for the vast majority, but some machines due to low quality or non-reputable manufacturers may be affected. In which case they should seek a warrenty claim or similar, in general taking the machine back to the company they purchased it from for it to have sufficient cooling added.

My point being that machines should be able to run at 100% capacity 100% of the time without problems (besides general maintainence, such as removing dust).
If this isn't the case, then it's a problem with the machine (it doesn't really make much difference what software is causing the high usage, many demanding apps would cause the same behaviour; such as editing a large image, video/animation editing etc.
Because most "home" users are just doing simple tasks, using say 5% of the capacity (such as web browsing) then manufactures are tempeted to reduce cooling, to reduce costs, to under-cut competitors - and sadly many people will go for the "bargin" machine, dispite the fact that you usually get what you pay for.

Power consumption: I read on another thread an estimate that a crunching CPU takes about 60 watts more power than a PC that's on but idle. Has anyone seen any reasearch confirming this number??

If that's right, then the incremental cost, 24/7/365 is about $42 per year (at 8 cents per Kwh). And if you live in Minnesota (like me) half of the year the electricity will actually help cut your heating bills (although if you live in California or other tropical clim. then the A/C costs must be factored in to the cost as well).
that all really depends on what the type of machine, the type and class of processor, and a few other factors such as how it's used exactly (different types of processing are more/less effecient in varying circumstances).
Even things like power supply units make a difference; they're more efficient the closer they are to 100% capacity.
If you've got one with a huge capacity (say something ridiculous for today's computers, like 3000W) but only say 5% of it's capacity is being used (150W) then the process of conversion taking place (again, due to the fundamentals of physics and that nothing is 100% effecient) then it's going to consume more power than say a 160W PSU, which would be running at ~94%.

For today's computers, however; 60 watts is reasonable, but it stands to reason that if something is doing more "work" (in the physics sense) then it needs more "power" to do that "work" in a given amount of time (compared to not doing the "work").

As for heating/cooling the building in which the computer is housed, that's down to proper placement of the machine.
As in, if you want it to have a heating effect, then placing it more centrally will be better, to get better cooling, placing it near an outside wall with a window that can be opened would be sensible.

Again, fundamental factors such as computers can only run within certain temperatures are a reality that has to be dealt with.
If it's really a problem then the user can set up a processing schedule for the summer so that the computer only processes data when it's cool (eg, at night, or during the winter only)

PC longevity: Will leaving my PC on more of the time, and running it harder, reduce it's lifespan?

For starters... what happened with your last PC? Did it reach the end of it's life? Or just the end of it's usefulness due to the bigger better faster more effect of time?

I know that from a chipmakers point of view, that with a multi-layered circuit-board you want to leave it at a steady temp. all the time (i.e. minimize expansion and contraction due to heat, by leaving it on all the time). And, therefore, microfractures between those layers won't occur, extending useful life. But is this true for the REST of the machine?
I quote agree with the sensible statements made here.
For example old machines (even 486's) can be used for networking purposes, such as NAT routers, firewalls, DHCP/DNS servers etc. to great effect.

From a technical stand-point, leaving a computer (but not the monitor) on 24/7 will increase it's life. As for running it at 100% capacity 100% of the time, I'm not so sure; obviously in some cases you'll reach wear-out (mainly of mechanical devices, such as disks) sooner, but these have such a long life anyway (we're talking decades, even longer with modern disks - I've got some really old server disks which are still running perfectly years after they stopped being used in a real server, this is because they were treated well and were always on (as most servers are).
As for electronics, I don't think it makes any difference as long as they're at a fairly consistent temperature, and don't over-heat. I see no reason why they'd last longer sitting at say 40 degrees all their life, compared to 50-60 degrees all their life, just as long as they're within operational limits.

Just to clarify a few points, other things besides electronics will last longer if they're at a constant temperature (eg, on or off 24/7, but you can only use a computer when it's on anyway, hence "leave it on").
Disks suffer from thermal-stress far more than wear-out, so turning them on/off lots will kill them quicker too.

However, things like monitors, due to the fundamental ways they work, and inherent properties of the technologies, suffer from wear-out far more (when was the last time you saw a monitor "blow-up" as it would from thermal-stress fractures? they usually just fizzle out and die).
Monitors only have a rather limited number of "on" hours, so if you consider their "lifespan" to be how many years they're useful and working (in general, including "off" time) then the less time they're "on" the longer their lifespan will be.
So in short; monitors especially will last longer the less time they're on. I'm not saying they should be turned on/off by the second, if you're not going to use it for an hour or more, then sure, turn it off, but if it's just a few minutes, turning it on/off lots over short periods will probably kill it quicker.
I'm also not saying that people should use their monitor less, I'm just saying that due to the limited number of "on" hours these devices have, they should be turned off when not in use for a reasonable length of time (again, an hour+).

As for power saving, a monitor is one of the biggest users in most systems, so the single most significant power-saving act you can make is turning off your monitor when not in use.

Network bandwidth: But our network is on the brink now! We can't add any workload to it.

For starters, sounds like a network upgrade may be due. But, otherwise, you can control the hours of the day and/or the bandwidth BOINC will consume in the General Preferences.

Let's say we configure a whole cube farm of PCs to allow network usage only between 7PM and 7AM each day (and we bump our General Preference for getting more than .1 days of work at a time). Do you know what happens? The PCs crunch WUs all day, each of them has SOMETHING completed by day end, and ALL the PCs try to send their results at the same time! Thus if anyone IS trying to use the office network at 7:01PM, they aren't able to get anything done.

Does anyone know of a way to tell BOINC to lighten up? "Hey, look man, we got ALL NIGHT to report these results...let's wait our turn". "Wait our turn" would be a solution where the PCs are coordindated by some scheduler or other signal (and if you're doing all that, then prioritize so the PC with no work left gets on the network first, and the one with a result that's almost past due is right behind him). But short of that, is there a way to somehow Randomize when each PC tries to jump onto the network? So maybe they each begin at some random time between 7:00 and 8:30PM, rather than all jumping on RIGHT AT 7:00?


As with most resources, the demand only increases.
This is especially true of computing resources, particularly network bandwidth (and speed too, but that's a whole other discussion).
Users are always wanting more, and companies are devising ways of delivering larger media over networks, such a audio and video (think YouTube and to a lesser extent Skype; although skype is more affected by delay, and doesn't consume huge amounts of bandwidth anyway, due to using rather efficient audio codecs, but again, that's another discussion, the real point is that skype is barely possible over a 56Kbps connection, firstly due to the bandwidth, secondly due to the huge amount of delay (latency) that traditional modems added to packet transmition - that's yet another discussion).

So as stated, if you're near the capacity limit, something would've pushed you over the edge anyway, it just happens to be BOINC in this case.

One way would be to enforce, or force a staggered start, either by giving each client a window in which it's allowed to use the network, or at the network level by only allowing certain IP blocks access between certain times.
The first is preferable, because you're solving the problem at the source.
The disadvantage is that administration becomes quite time-consuming.
Letting all clients connect between say 00:00 (midnight) and 04:00 (4 am) would probably work well, it's rare that anyone will be using/needing the network (at least not internet access) and the clients would exponentially back-off and sort them selves out. Obviously the window size will need to be adjusted depending on how many clients need to connect, if we're talking hundreds/thousans, then a more sophisticated solution is probably needed.

Advanced co-ordination could be achieved by using the GUI RPC function and issuing commands to groups of clients from a "monitoring" PC (or server).
a simple way would be to allow a block of clients access by directly controlling their network access setting (changing from disabled to automatic) then after a period of time, blocking the group again (automatic back to disabled) and allowing the next group.

For the sophisticated requirements described previously, you'd need to either integrate/co-ordinate with an advanced manager (such as BoincView) or probably write your own. The protocol spec is open-source afterall.

One method of reducing high-load would simply be to limit the bandwidth BOINC is allowed to use in the preferences.

I think something that's been forgotten is that the servers have limited bandwidth too, so even if you had just one machine on a 2 meg WAN (internet) connection, it wouldn't use the full 2 megs anyway.
Also by that logic, even if you had lots of boinc clients, you could probably safely have quite a few of them using the WAN connection together.

Other more advanced things such as QoS (Quality of Service) could be implemented to reduce the priority of boinc traffic, or increase the priority of user traffic (such as HTTP for the web).
This could be done many ways, either by classifying the boinc traffic based on type/format etc. (with something similar to L7 from the linux world), or more simply by destination IP address (eg the BOINC project's servers).
The former would be prefered because it has the least points of failure. A simple example is that IP addresses can change.
____________
Want to search the BOINC Wiki, BOINCstats, or various BOINC forums from within firefox? Try the BOINC related Firefox Search Plugins

Lee Carre

Joined: Oct 6 05
Posts: 96
ID: 2884
Credit: 79,331
RAC: 0
Message 43036 - Posted 2 Jul 2007 16:51:01 UTC - in response to Message ID 12597.
Last modified: 2 Jul 2007 16:51:26 UTC

Here is some feedback on the issue (from a company's perspective)

As I always thought, CEO is citing potential vulnerabilities problems. I know that BOINC science projects will try their best, with operating firewalled servers and signing executables on a non-Internet-connected PC, but I prefer to play it safe (especially since modern OSes make it easy).

QUOTE - source

[snip]

Anybody have any similar experiences? Any suggestions how I might politely address these concerns?"
I've had a few cases of people using the "security wild-card" (for those that don't know the joke, "it's a security risk" is used when no valid reason can be given). Even when I went into the details of the security measures, which proved their "concerns" invalid, they still wouldn't budge.

Unfortunetly companies are ruthless these days, anything that even hints at requiring time/money and isn't critically needed is pushed aside.
Even when I've approached charities and non-profits along the lines of "helping out other non-profits" etc. they're still not interested.
This has been the same with educational institutions too, such as local schools/colleges (which where I live adds up to a few thousand (modern) computers!)

As much as I'd like to see BOINC (or something similar) adopted by most of the worlds computers, I have doubts that it will be achieved because it's just another "hassle" to most people (dispite the benifit they'll directly receive from something like medical research).

Even getting people to switch from internet explorer to something better (usually firefox or opera) has proved difficult, even when my main point has been security and showing people how badly infected their computers are (usually due to IE) with malware scanning software.

I don't mean to be pesimistic, but it just seems that unless you're going to change the fundamental nature of people (as in, making them want to do it) you're going to be hard-pressed to get very far.

One way of showing this trend in history is that scientific projects have always had virtually no budget (no funding). If people really wanted to make a difference, then surely they'd donate to such projects?
But as we've seen, this hasn't happened, and even recent projects are still being run on minimal budgets to the point of reducing their effectiveness, or quality of results, which i personally find rather disapointing.

As has been stated before, we do it because we want to. For myself this is entirely true, I believe in the greater good, and the little cost to me for running DC projects is trivial compared to the huge benefit that can be gained.
But that remains my personal view, and no matter how much I believe something is a worthy cause it doesn't change other people's opinions.
____________
Want to search the BOINC Wiki, BOINCstats, or various BOINC forums from within firefox? Try the BOINC related Firefox Search Plugins

Tom Philippart
Avatar

Joined: May 29 06
Posts: 183
ID: 85247
Credit: 834,667
RAC: 0
Message 43038 - Posted 2 Jul 2007 17:15:12 UTC - in response to Message ID 43036.

Boinc security on Windows
Vista has many security layers and a regular user is not an administrator. Furthermore you have UAC with which you can control any admin operations and system changes. So Vista runs Boinc in a kind of "sandbox" too.
____________

Feet1st Profile
Avatar

Joined: Dec 30 05
Posts: 1740
ID: 44890
Credit: 2,500,639
RAC: 2,030
Message 43058 - Posted 2 Jul 2007 20:08:52 UTC

Lee, I think part of the security concern is that as an administrator of a corporate network of PCs, you want the choice of project selection to be YOURS, and not the choice of your user base.

BOINC enhancements now offer relief to two issues:

Heat - You can now define a fraction of CPU % to run BOINC. Running at 80% of CPU rather then 100% can make a lot of difference on fan speed and heat.

Network bandwidth - You can now define and limit upload and download bandwidth that BOINC is allowed to use. It basically sends or received a 16k frame and then waits a number of seconds to achieve the desired lower bandwidth. QoS would be a better approach, establishing priorities on traffic. But short of that, you can just have BOINC use a low transmission speed to avoid it taking any significant % of network bandwidth at any given time.
____________
If having a DC project with BOINC is of interest to you, with volunteer or cloud computing resources, but have no time for the BOINC learning curve,
use a hosting service that understands BOINC projects: http://DeepSci.com

fuzzyburn Profile

Joined: Jul 2 07
Posts: 4
ID: 187736
Credit: 8,566
RAC: 0
Message 43503 - Posted 11 Jul 2007 2:21:21 UTC

I'm looking for info on security with Rosetta/BOINC and this is the only page referencing it. I installed it a week or so a go and just let it run. Last night I selected some link in the interface and wound up looking at my IP. Not the one the rest of the world sees but the one in here behind that one. A link to "Real IP" shows the IP everyone sees normally. I don't know how a lot of this works but I wonder how safe is I with inside the LAN sitting out there on Rosetta's server?

KSMarksPsych Profile
Avatar

Joined: Oct 15 05
Posts: 199
ID: 4774
Credit: 22,337
RAC: 0
Message 43515 - Posted 11 Jul 2007 9:59:24 UTC - in response to Message ID 43503.

I'm looking for info on security with Rosetta/BOINC and this is the only page referencing it. I installed it a week or so a go and just let it run. Last night I selected some link in the interface and wound up looking at my IP. Not the one the rest of the world sees but the one in here behind that one. A link to "Real IP" shows the IP everyone sees normally. I don't know how a lot of this works but I wonder how safe is I with inside the LAN sitting out there on Rosetta's server?



Only you can see your IP and host name. Click on my screen name and you'll see what other people can see.
____________
Kathryn :o)
The BOINC FAQ Service
The Unofficial BOINC Wiki
The Trac System
More BOINC information than you can shake a stick of RAM at.

fuzzyburn Profile

Joined: Jul 2 07
Posts: 4
ID: 187736
Credit: 8,566
RAC: 0
Message 43538 - Posted 11 Jul 2007 20:53:00 UTC - in response to Message ID 43515.

Thanks for the info...

agge

Joined: Nov 14 06
Posts: 63
ID: 129315
Credit: 432,341
RAC: 0
Message 43549 - Posted 12 Jul 2007 8:19:10 UTC

I find that when i try to convince people, computer illiterate people at least, to install boinc, they are generally reluctant because of an unspecified fear that it will kill the computer or that they wont be able to handle the program.
An example of this would be when I asked to install it on my grandmothers PC. At first she seemed to think it was great, but I made the mistake of saying "if it gives you any trouble, you can just call me..." Although i told her it runs by itself, and she doesn't have to do anything to it, she completely refused after i mentioned the unlikely prospect of 'trouble.'
Sorry if this has been covered all ready, i haven't read the whole thread.

Sir Antony Magnus

Joined: Nov 28 05
Posts: 27
ID: 22326
Credit: 138,031
RAC: 0
Message 44003 - Posted 21 Jul 2007 1:06:32 UTC

Actually something I have noticed on a personal level is that when you leave the PC run 24/7 it seems to operate better as opposed to cold starting it. So to me it is more beneficial to leave it on and contribute to a project of choice rather than the latter.

Also with the overheating issues I would like to say that it is problematic at best to ask people to download a seperate program such as threadmaster to minimize any potential overheating issues. I think that perhaps a better solution would be to merge this idea with the BOINC program, or project preferences itself. I mean the average Joe PC user is likely not going to want to become that deeply involved with a project to that degree. BOINC IMO should be the be all, do all 1 stop shop.. Again MO's.

Power consumption is minimal for these newer advanced systems. The average power supply rates at about 200-1000 WATTS. The 350 WATT PSU is about on par with running 6 60 WATT bulbs. To me that is not too taxing on an average electric bill, depending of course on how many PC's one uses and the amount of time run.

Security should always be a priority with projects, from the email address' to the BOINC client itself. Project leadership should not overlook this at all, the moment something nasty is found with either the BOINC client, or the project WU's it is over. I personally would not look favorably upon a lax attitude in this area.

Network bandwidth only matters to dialup users, as I have graduated to the better broadband movement I have found this issue to be non-existent anymore. Lastly the hard disk drive problems can be solved with the prefrences as was stated before. Although what I opted to do when building my almighty cruncher was I decided on a server class HDD, one which is designed for heavy usage.

Just adding ideas and ranting / rambling as usual. :)

Antony



KSMarksPsych Profile
Avatar

Joined: Oct 15 05
Posts: 199
ID: 4774
Credit: 22,337
RAC: 0
Message 44009 - Posted 21 Jul 2007 8:53:19 UTC - in response to Message ID 44003.

...
Also with the overheating issues I would like to say that it is problematic at best to ask people to download a seperate program such as threadmaster to minimize any potential overheating issues. I think that perhaps a better solution would be to merge this idea with the BOINC program, or project preferences itself. I mean the average Joe PC user is likely not going to want to become that deeply involved with a project to that degree. BOINC IMO should be the be all, do all 1 stop shop.. Again MO's...



Antony.

There is currently a CPU throttling feature in the latest release version of BOINC (versions greater than 5.6 have it).

Look in your general preferences on the web.

Use at most
Enforced by version 5.6 and greater 100 percent of CPU time


Note that its granularity is very rough. It checks in 1 second increments. So 50% throttling is 1 second on 1 second off.
See the FAQ for details.
____________
Kathryn :o)
The BOINC FAQ Service
The Unofficial BOINC Wiki
The Trac System
More BOINC information than you can shake a stick of RAM at.

fuzzyburn Profile

Joined: Jul 2 07
Posts: 4
ID: 187736
Credit: 8,566
RAC: 0
Message 44142 - Posted 24 Jul 2007 7:49:23 UTC

It doesn't seem to matter what I put in as a search term I always come up with this page in the results...
Unfriendliness. The BOINC application is as inscrutable as an MS error message and comes with no "OK" button. There is no "Help" or user manual. Like Linux there are pages and pages of links everywhere. I've got it running on three machines. The last one I've added has been a case of constantly reading pages of links in order to find an answer to the myriad of problems and oddities. All three machines are running same operating system, same firewall and same BOINC client. This later item is due to the fact that third machine was problematic and I noticed the client version was later. I updated the other two and they run fine still (the server now shows them as duplicates and Merge doesn't work...)
The program is complicated and not user friendly. I do re-installs and installations for people who know how to use the applications because of their work or study. I can install most things and work out if it is function as intended but as for using them... I don't have a clue. Most people are astonished to see their BIOS or Windows directory. I tried BOINC a couple of years ago and gave up after a month. Today I woke up BOINC couldn't find the net, the other two machines just chugging along fine. Firefox on all three find whatever I point it at and on the troubled machine seemed to have pointed it out to BOINC as the error had disappeared. Yesterday I clicked the tray icon of BOINC and ZAPro says Spoolsv.exe is trying to access the internet..? I deny it. BOINC won't come up. I figure its something to do with loopback so I allow 127.0.0.1 Have to reboot the machine after which BOINC works OK for awhile then ZA tells me screensaver is trying to access the internet. The first morning after I'd installed it I woke up to a similar message from ZA plus one from BOINC saying I should re-install and set it to load at boot. There's no Help or User Manual. I had intended to put five machines on Rosetta and go back to carving and screenprinting which I've done little of since I got me first computer about four years ago... but I think two will do as I haven't the patience. There's no help or user manual so why bother? I've had malaria three times.... and I'm in a bad mood after reading pages of links all day...
____________

FluffyChicken
Avatar

Joined: Nov 1 05
Posts: 1260
ID: 8137
Credit: 317,557
RAC: 0
Message 44151 - Posted 24 Jul 2007 10:23:38 UTC

Fuzzy burn , the ZAPro and other quite paranoid software firewalls will always come up with messages for any program the relies heavily on networks.
Given the ZAPro triggers on version updates of Rosetta or similar project applications auto update to make your life easier (boinc itself doesn't yet though). Other then defining in ZA that it shouldn't trigger on programs in the BOINC folders (if you can or similar) you will always get it with ZA. That just ZA doing it's job, not BOINC causing a problem.

Remove ZA and all the problems you having go away.

But the program is not pretty, particularly friendly and misses a lot of what Windows people are used to. But then that is one problem of making the program cross platform and not targetting it specifically at Windows. Help is online, though not layed out in a nice easy help file or 'folder orientated way' but they hopefully will get around to improving that if they move fully to their new systems (note there are not many people developing 'boinc' in itself. There are more projects using boinc than people developing it :(

If you get bored pop to the Windows lead developers site http://www.romwnet.org/ though he's not been posting to it lately.


P.S. spoolsv.exe is a printing process (printers, fax, pdf creating etc..) nothing to do with boinc. If it's asking for internet access (not local lan access) then block it as it may be a trojan hiding as the service. What AV program do you use ?
____________
Team mauisun.org

Greg_BE Profile
Avatar

Joined: May 30 06
Posts: 4835
ID: 85645
Credit: 2,969,735
RAC: 81
Message 44152 - Posted 24 Jul 2007 11:22:42 UTC

personally zone alarm is a joke
i find some nice software from comodo for both firewall and malware protection to be more user friendly and much more informative of what application is try to do what. such as requests from a program within firefox to be launched, it tells you what program it is that it doesn't know and what program is requesting that program to be launched. i use this with avg free and ive got all my security bases covered. on occasion i go use the online version of housecall to check things and always come up clean.

BOINC does not cause any trouble once comodo learns it. Any upgrades that I might do to BOINC have to be registered with comodo, but once that happens its happy.

I think the reason some people avoid BOINC projects is that they are over paranoid about what they perceive to be a problem created by BOINC. You are at more risk downloading videos or freeware and general web surfing than you are from getting any sort of virus from a BOINC project. The computer illiterate just need a little convincing from people that the BOINC projects are safe and that just about any computer can handle a BOINC project.
____________

FluffyChicken
Avatar

Joined: Nov 1 05
Posts: 1260
ID: 8137
Credit: 317,557
RAC: 0
Message 44325 - Posted 26 Jul 2007 14:53:32 UTC

Well BOINC projects that have some credentials.

Anyone can set a BOINC project up. Trojan@Home, FoolsRYou@BOINC or similar :D
and the application could be anything it want's
But if it's a trusted project i.w. don't just jump on any small project unless you can verify the background. Or, only attach to project on the Attach to Wizzard list. Then you should be pretty safe.
____________
Team mauisun.org

adrianxw Profile
Avatar

Joined: Sep 18 05
Posts: 535
ID: 402
Credit: 1,210,812
RAC: 3,748
Message 44388 - Posted 27 Jul 2007 7:16:02 UTC

Or, only attach to project on the Attach to Wizzard list. Then you should be pretty safe.

The list does not always appear, and when it does, is lacking several mainstream projects however.
____________
Wave upon wave of demented avengers march cheerfully out of obscurity into the dream.

FluffyChicken
Avatar

Joined: Nov 1 05
Posts: 1260
ID: 8137
Credit: 317,557
RAC: 0
Message 44392 - Posted 27 Jul 2007 7:58:11 UTC - in response to Message ID 44388.

Or, only attach to project on the Attach to Wizzard list. Then you should be pretty safe.

The list does not always appear, and when it does, is lacking several mainstream projects however.


Always appears for me, at least in the latest BOINC version which is what new people would be installing or trying out with.

Which mainstream project. They are only project D. Anderson can vouch for and verify are good and afaik, it will never include test projects (aka alpha/beta's)

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="ISO-8859-1" ?>
<projects>
<project>
<name>World Community Grid</name>
<url>http://www.worldcommunitygrid.org/</url>
<general_area>Biology and Medicine</general_area>
<specific_area>Humanitarian research on new and infectious disease, natural disasters and hunger.</specific_area>
<description>To further critical non-profit research on some of humanity's most pressing problems by creating the world's largest volunteer computing grid. Research includes HIV/AIDS, cancer, muscular dystrophy, dengue fever, and many more.</description>
<home>IBM Corporate Community Relations</home>
<image>http://boinc.berkeley.edu/images/wcg.jpg</image>
</project>
<project>
<name>Tanpaku</name>
<url>http://issofty17.is.noda.tus.ac.jp/</url>
<general_area>Biology and Medicine</general_area>
<specific_area>Biology</specific_area>
<description>To predict protein structure and function from genetic sequences, using the 'Brownian Dynamics' (BD) method. This method enables us to simulate more efficiently than conventional methods.</description>
<home>Tokyo University of Science</home>
<image>http://boinc.berkeley.edu/images/tanpaku.jpg</image>
</project>
<project>
<name>Malariacontrol.net</name>
<url>http://www.malariacontrol.net</url>
<general_area>Biology and Medicine</general_area>
<specific_area>Epidemiology</specific_area>
<description>Simulation models of the transmission dynamics and health effects of malaria are an important tool for malaria control. They can be used to determine optimal strategies for delivering mosquito nets, chemotherapy, or new vaccines which are currently under development and testing. Such modeling is extremely computer intensive, requiring simulations of large human populations with a diverse set of parameters related to biological and social factors that influence the distribution of the disease. </description>
<home>The Swiss Tropical Institute</home>
<image>http://boinc.berkeley.edu/images/africaathome.gif</image>
</project>
<project>
<name>Rosetta@home</name>
<url>http://boinc.bakerlab.org/rosetta/</url>
<general_area>Biology and Medicine</general_area>
<specific_area>Biology</specific_area>
<description>Determine the 3-dimensional shapes of proteins in research that may ultimately lead to finding cures for some major human diseases. By running Rosetta@home you will help us speed up and extend our research in ways we couldn't possibly attempt without your help. You will also be helping our efforts at designing new proteins to fight diseases such as HIV, Malaria, Cancer, and Alzheimer's</description>
<home>University of Washington</home>
<image>http://boinc.berkeley.edu/images/rosetta_at_home_logo.jpg</image>
</project>
<project>
<name>SIMAP</name>
<url>http://boinc.bio.wzw.tum.de/boincsimap/</url>
<general_area>Biology and Medicine</general_area>
<specific_area>Biology</specific_area>
<description>Calculate similarities between proteins. SIMAP provides a public database of the resulting data, which plays a key role in many bioinformatics research projects.</description>
<home>Technical University of Munich</home>
<image>http://boinc.berkeley.edu/images/simaplogo.jpg</image>
</project>
<project>
<name>Predictor@home</name>
<url>http://predictor.scripps.edu/</url>
<general_area>Biology and Medicine</general_area>
<specific_area>Biology</specific_area>
<description>Protein structure prediction starts from a sequence of amino acids and attempts to predict the folded, functioning, form of the protein. Predicting the structure of an unknown protein is a critical problem in enabling structure-based drug design to treat new and existing diseases.</description>
<home>Scripps Research Institute</home>
<image>http://boinc.berkeley.edu/images/predictor.jpg</image>
</project>
<project>
<name>Climateprediction.net</name>
<url>http://climateprediction.net</url>
<general_area>Earth Sciences</general_area>
<specific_area>Earth sciences</specific_area>
<description>To investigate the approximations that have to be made in state-of-the-art climate models. By running the model thousands of times we hope to find out how the model responds to slight tweaks to these approximations - slight enough to not make the approximations any less realistic. This will allow us to improve our understanding of how sensitive our models are to small changes and also to things like changes in carbon dioxide and the sulphur cycle. This will allow us to explore how climate may change in the next century under a wide range of different scenarios.</description>
<home>Oxford University</home>
<image>http://boinc.berkeley.edu/images/cpn_logo_world_1.jpg</image>
</project>
<project>
<name>Chess960@home</name>
<url>http://www.chess960athome.org/alpha/</url>
<general_area>Mathematics and strategy games</general_area>
<specific_area>Game-playing</specific_area>
<description>This project studies Chess 960, a variant of orthodox chess. In classical chess the starting position of the game never changes. In Chess 960, just before the start of every game, the initial configuration of the chess pieces is determined randomly.</description>
<home>Chess-960.org</home>
<image>http://boinc.berkeley.edu/images/chess960athome.jpg</image>
</project>
<project>
<name>ABC@home</name>
<url>http://abcathome.com/</url>
<general_area>Mathematics and strategy games</general_area>
<specific_area>Mathematics</specific_area>
<description>Search for 'abc-triples': positive integers a,b,c such that a+b=c, a &lt; b &lt; c, a,b,c have no common divisors and c > rad(abc), where rad(n) is the product of the distinct prime factors of n. The ABC conjecture says that there are only finitely many a,b,c such that log(c)/log(rad(abc)) > h for any real h > 1. The ABC conjecture is currently one of the greatest open problems in mathematics. If it is proven to be true, a lot of other open problems can be answered directly from it.</description>
<home>Mathematical Institute of Leiden University / Kennislink</home>
</project>
<project>
<name>PrimeGrid</name>
<url>http://www.primegrid.com</url>
<general_area>Mathematics and strategy games</general_area>
<specific_area>Cryptography</specific_area>
<description>Primegrid is generating a public sequential prime number database, and is searching for large twin primes of the form k*2<sup>n</sup>+1 and k*2<sup>n</sup>-1</description>
<home>Private</home>
<image>http://boinc.berkeley.edu/images/primegrid_logo.png</image>
</project>
<project>
<name>Riesel Sieve</name>
<url>http://boinc.rieselsieve.com/</url>
<general_area>Mathematics and strategy games</general_area>
<specific_area>Mathematics</specific_area>
<description>Find prime numbers of the form k*2<sup>n</sup>-1</description>
<home>Riesel Sieve community</home>
</project>
<project>
<name>Rectilinear Crossing Number</name>
<url>http://dist.ist.tugraz.at/cape5/</url>
<general_area>Mathematics and strategy games</general_area>
<specific_area>Mathematics</specific_area>
<description>What is the least number of crossings a straight-edge drawing of the complete graph on top of a set of n points in the plane obtains? From very recent (not even published yet) mathematical considerations the rectilinear crossing numbers for n=19 and n=21 are also known. So the most tantalizing problem now is to determine the true value for n=18, which is the main focus of this project.</description>
<home>Graz University of Technology (Austria)</home>
</project>
<project>
<name>SZTAKI Desktop Grid</name>
<url>http://szdg.lpds.sztaki.hu/szdg/</url>
<general_area>Mathematics and strategy games</general_area>
<specific_area>Mathematics</specific_area>
<description>Find all the generalized binary number systems (in which bases are matrices and digits are vectors) up to dimension 11.</description>
<home>MTA-SZTAKI Laboratory of Parallel and Distributed Systems (Budapest)</home>
<image>http://boinc.berkeley.edu/images/szdg1_small.jpg</image>
</project>
<project>
<name>Einstein@home</name>
<url>http://einstein.phys.uwm.edu/</url>
<general_area>Astronomy/Physics/Chemistry</general_area>
<specific_area>Astrophysics</specific_area>
<description>Search for spinning neutron stars (also called pulsars) using data from the LIGO and GEO gravitational wave detectors. Einstein@Home is a World Year of Physics 2005 project supported by the American Physical Society (APS) and by a number of international organizations.</description>
<home>Univ. of Wisconsin - Milwaukee, Albert Einstein Institute</home>
<image>http://boinc.berkeley.edu/images/einstein.jpg</image>
</project>
<project>
<name>LHC@home</name>
<url>http://lhcathome.cern.ch/lhcathome/</url>
<general_area>Astronomy/Physics/Chemistry</general_area>
<specific_area>Physics</specific_area>
<description>The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) is a particle accelerator which is being built at CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, the world's largest particle physics laboratory. When it switches on in 2007, it will be the most powerful instrument ever built to investigate on particles proprieties. LHC@home simulates particles traveling around the LHC to study the stability of their orbits.</description>
<home>CERN (European Organization for Nuclear Research)</home>
<image>http://boinc.berkeley.edu/images/lhc.jpg</image>
</project>
<project>
<name>Leiden Classical</name>
<url>http://boinc.gorlaeus.net/</url>
<general_area>Astronomy/Physics/Chemistry</general_area>
<specific_area>Chemistry</specific_area>
<description>Surface science calculations using Classical Dynamics. In contrast to other projects, Leiden Classical allows volunteers, students and other scientist to submit their personal calculations to the grid. Each user has his own personal queue for Classical Dynamics jobs. In this way students have used the grid to simulate liquid argon, or to test the validity of the ideal gas law by actually doing the simulations through the grid.</description>
<home>Leiden University, The Netherlands</home>
<image>http://boinc.berkeley.edu/images/leiden_classical.png</image>
</project>
<project>
<name>Quantum Monte Carlo at Home</name>
<url>http://qah.uni-muenster.de/</url>
<general_area>Astronomy/Physics/Chemistry</general_area>
<specific_area>Chemistry</specific_area>
<description>Study the structure and reactivity of molecules using Quantum Chemistry.</description>
<home>University of Muenster</home>
<image>http://boinc.berkeley.edu/images/logo_oben.jpg</image>
</project>
<project>
<name>Spinhenge@home</name>
<url>http://spin.fh-bielefeld.de/</url>
<general_area>Astronomy/Physics/Chemistry</general_area>
<specific_area>Chemical engineering and nanotechnology</specific_area>
<description>The study of molecular magnets and controlled nanoscale magnetism. These magnetic molecules may be used to develop tiny magnetic switches, with applications in medicine (such as local tumor chemotherapy) and biotechnology.</description>
<home>Bielefeld University of Applied Sciences</home>
<image>http://boinc.berkeley.edu/images/rotating-fe30-h90px.gif</image>
</project>
<project>
<name>uFluids@home</name>
<url>http://www.ufluids.net/</url>
<general_area>Astronomy/Physics/Chemistry</general_area>
<specific_area>Physics/Aeronautics</specific_area>
<description>The uFluids project simulates two-phase fluid behavior in microgravity and microfluidics problems. Our goal is to design better satellite propellant management devices and address two-phase flow in microchannel and MEMS devices.</description>
<home>Purdue University</home>
<image>http://boinc.berkeley.edu/images/ufluids.gif</image>
</project>
<project>
<name>SETI@home</name>
<url>http://setiathome.berkeley.edu/</url>
<general_area>Astronomy/Physics/Chemistry</general_area>
<specific_area>Astrophysics, astrobiology</specific_area>
<description>SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) is a scientific area whose goal is to detect intelligent life outside Earth. One approach, known as radio SETI, uses radio telescopes to listen for narrow-bandwidth radio signals from space. Such signals are not known to occur naturally, so a detection would provide evidence of extraterrestrial technology.</description>
<home>U.C. Berkeley Space Sciences Laboratory</home>
<image>http://boinc.berkeley.edu/images/seti_logo.png</image>
</project>
</projects>

____________
Team mauisun.org

FluffyChicken
Avatar

Joined: Nov 1 05
Posts: 1260
ID: 8137
Credit: 317,557
RAC: 0
Message 44393 - Posted 27 Jul 2007 8:02:22 UTC

So which mainstream project is not in the list, I cannot see any major ones missing ?
http://www.boincstats.com/index.php?or=3
____________
Team mauisun.org

adrianxw Profile
Avatar

Joined: Sep 18 05
Posts: 535
ID: 402
Credit: 1,210,812
RAC: 3,748
Message 44424 - Posted 28 Jul 2007 12:03:40 UTC

Always appears for me, at least in the latest BOINC version which is what new people would be installing or trying out with.

The reason I said that was because yesterday, when reading this thread, I called up the list to check it. It did not appear. It is a 5.10.n core, don't remember exactly which, but that machine has only been crunching for 2-3 weeks, so that kind of vintage.

The reason I wanted to look is because when I last saw it, the list looked a bit short. I just did a rough count of the XML you give and there are ~20 projects, whereas BOINCStats you link show ~45.
it will never include test projects (aka alpha/beta's)

QMC is still Beta but appears on the list, MCDN and UFluids are also technically Beta, but appear. Predictor is still knocking the bugs out of an all new client, and LHC is in whatever state it is in this week, yet they appear as well.

Proteins and Docking are amongst the projects I have been crunching for ages, yet they do not appear on the list.

Some of those on the list are hardly "mainstream projects".

I suppose it is a matter of definition, and as soon as you have peoples opinion involved, (David Andersen for example), there will be disagreement.




____________
Wave upon wave of demented avengers march cheerfully out of obscurity into the dream.

FluffyChicken
Avatar

Joined: Nov 1 05
Posts: 1260
ID: 8137
Credit: 317,557
RAC: 0
Message 44427 - Posted 28 Jul 2007 12:16:08 UTC - in response to Message ID 44424.

Always appears for me, at least in the latest BOINC version which is what new people would be installing or trying out with.

The reason I said that was because yesterday, when reading this thread, I called up the list to check it. It did not appear. It is a 5.10.n core, don't remember exactly which, but that machine has only been crunching for 2-3 weeks, so that kind of vintage.

The reason I wanted to look is because when I last saw it, the list looked a bit short. I just did a rough count of the XML you give and there are ~20 projects, whereas BOINCStats you link show ~45.
it will never include test projects (aka alpha/beta's)

QMC is still Beta but appears on the list, MCDN and UFluids are also technically Beta, but appear. Predictor is still knocking the bugs out of an all new client, and LHC is in whatever state it is in this week, yet they appear as well.

Proteins and Docking are amongst the projects I have been crunching for ages, yet they do not appear on the list.

Some of those on the list are hardly "mainstream projects".

I suppose it is a matter of definition, and as soon as you have peoples opinion involved, (David Andersen for example), there will be disagreement.





True, some of them are beta looking at the list now it's there and checking on the porjects.
what I actually said though was
and afaik, it will never include test projects (aka alpha/beta's)
afaik = as far as I know (hence please check for yourself ;)

Dr. Andersons opinions are what counts as it all falls back on him if something goes wrong. He said he was only going to add projects he could verify and trust. I do remember him saying something about only fully fledged projects which I assumed to mean beta/alpha projects excluded. Guess not :-(
Probably because the list would be very short :D

Anyways, what I was trying to say is if you stick to them, you can be assured they should be fine to not be malware (i.e trojan@home project scenario) I did not say you couldn't use other projects.
It was in response to the post above mine (greg_be) about peoples fears for not running BOINC project. The list gives some credential to a project.


____________
Team mauisun.org

FluffyChicken
Avatar

Joined: Nov 1 05
Posts: 1260
ID: 8137
Credit: 317,557
RAC: 0
Message 44438 - Posted 28 Jul 2007 17:29:59 UTC

Proteins & Docking are probably not on as they are either not running or invite only (I think docking is both of them isn't it ?)
____________
Team mauisun.org

adrianxw Profile
Avatar

Joined: Sep 18 05
Posts: 535
ID: 402
Credit: 1,210,812
RAC: 3,748
Message 44465 - Posted 29 Jul 2007 13:09:46 UTC

Docking is on hiatus whilst the servers are moved. Yes, it is invite only which equates to having account creation closed, which is also the case with MCDN which is on the list. Not running, or being erratic does not prevent LHC being on the list.

I agree with you, the list maybe gives some kind of legitimation in the eyes of some people, but is pretty poor as a list of projects goes.

as it all falls back on him if something goes wrong.

That raised my eyebrow. Are yo saying that if a bogus BOINC project was set up to spam for example, Andersen would get it in the neck? I really doubt that. If there was a risk of that kind of thing, and the crucifying litigation, things like BOINC would never exist.
____________
Wave upon wave of demented avengers march cheerfully out of obscurity into the dream.

FluffyChicken
Avatar

Joined: Nov 1 05
Posts: 1260
ID: 8137
Credit: 317,557
RAC: 0
Message 44492 - Posted 29 Jul 2007 19:58:00 UTC - in response to Message ID 44465.
Last modified: 29 Jul 2007 20:04:21 UTC

as it all falls back on him if something goes wrong.

That raised my eyebrow. Are yo saying that if a bogus BOINC project was set up to spam for example, Andersen would get it in the neck? I really doubt that. If there was a risk of that kind of thing, and the crucifying litigation, things like BOINC would never exist.


BOINC is endorsing the projects, since they are on the list on the main program that is needed to run BOINC projects. So people could come back to the BOINC developers, I installed BOINC and picked xxx project it is your fault. Hence I assume why the list is selective to which projects are on it.
Dr. Anderson leads the project so it must be his neck ;)

As for other projects, well that is up to the user to decide if it's safe or not, BOINC has made no judgment. If you want to join a dodgy project, so be it that up to you.


I'm not saying that is true, what happens, it's just how I would interperet it.


P.S. I assume people running online for users account managers would be similar, if you joined through them I would bet some law could be found to say they are liable for what happened. But that would be down to lawyers. I would certainly, if I was them, do some serious checking of new and unknown project to be joined willy nilly through the system. That maybe why grid republics list of projects is small.

____________
Team mauisun.org

Luuklag

Joined: Sep 13 07
Posts: 262
ID: 205058
Credit: 4,171
RAC: 0
Message 47864 - Posted 19 Oct 2007 16:06:07 UTC - in response to Message ID 44492.

I read a lot here about what if the client needed to be shut down at all desktops, as far as i know, is that at our school all aplications run on servers, there are like 20 in the basement. so if you install boinc on a server, and you let the desktops acces it, then you would create a kind of supercomputer, so it can be turned off with 1 touch of the mouse, and only 1 machine needs internet acces, wich is a server so that wouldn't be a big problem. now that they have made such a thing a the IBM thingie you could ask dr baker about the rewrited program, and with a few tweaks it could work like this. to bad im not a programmer.

Luuklag

Joined: Sep 13 07
Posts: 262
ID: 205058
Credit: 4,171
RAC: 0
Message 47865 - Posted 19 Oct 2007 16:08:44 UTC - in response to Message ID 44492.
Last modified: 19 Oct 2007 16:29:15 UTC

sorry for dubble post

Luuklag

Joined: Sep 13 07
Posts: 262
ID: 205058
Credit: 4,171
RAC: 0
Message 47866 - Posted 19 Oct 2007 16:08:44 UTC - in response to Message ID 44492.
Last modified: 19 Oct 2007 16:30:02 UTC

and for tripple, internet got stuck, and i was just to happy and kept cliking the post button, im still waiting for a button, remove my post!??

Mr. Majestic
Avatar

Joined: Dec 18 07
Posts: 35
ID: 228507
Credit: 6,285
RAC: 0
Message 49929 - Posted 22 Dec 2007 3:08:20 UTC - in response to Message ID 12498.
Last modified: 22 Dec 2007 3:14:40 UTC

they'd like to help, but don't understand the science and the pc workings of the program.

to combat these reasons, there should be a clear simple science explanation and the program and setup directions need to be bulletproof so no babysitting is involved. if you're going to have a recruitment drive using mass media (of any sort) be prepared to get people that don't have a large science or pc background and aren't willing to invest too much time. we do it because we love it, but not everyone feels the same way.


I completely agree.
____________

Message boards : Rosetta@home Science : Reasons some people avoid BOINC projects


Home | Join | About | Participants | Community | Statistics

Copyright © 2017 University of Washington

Last Modified: 10 Nov 2010 1:51:38 UTC
Back to top ^