06 June 2015

6th of June

A slightly different approach to the blog this week. Rather than write about what the farm is doing I thought I would show it in the screen shots below. They are taken from BOINCtasks showing the various groupings of machines.

This lot are what I call the Intel-GPU machines. They are all i7-3770's with integrated HD4000 graphics. As you can see we are only using half the available threads. That is because the climate models seem to take around 50% longer if run on all threads.

This is the Nvidia-GPU machines. Actually its only two of them, the 6 core/12 thread machines. As you can see they too are running climate models on half the threads. With a bit of fiddling I could have them also running GPU work on their dual GTX750Ti's but given the climate models come in burst of work and then none haven't bothered.

This is the Raspberry Pi part of the farm. There are three Pi2's and a B+ in there. As you can see they are all running Einstein work.

There are also a couple of Parallella's but I haven't bothered taking a screen shot of them. They are running Einstein work as well.

I got a one question survey from Adapteva (the people who make the Parallella) asking what we wanted to see on it. My answer was "FFTW running on the Epiphany chip". The reason being that a lot of the projects use FFTW and if it can run on the Epiphany and is able to do them quicker than the ARM cores then we can get a performance boost for a number of projects.

Farm news
In other news the shop got the RAID card that I wanted to put into the file server but it didn't come with any cables so they now need to source a cable before I can make use of it. I haven't paid for it yet. If they can't get the cable then its useless and they can return it to their supplier.

A couple of the Pi2's have been having issues recently. I ended up re-imaging them with the same image the the one reliable Pi2 had. They've been running for the last 3 days so hopefully that has cured the reliability issues. It could have been the overclock or the frequent kernel updates that made them unreliable.

Windows 10
There is a fair bit of chatter in the message boards about Windows 10 and Microsoft having rolled out a number of updates to Windows 7 and Windows 8 users that gives an icon to do the upgrade when its released on July 29th. Most of the crunching machines are running Win7 so its a free upgrade for me. The Parallella's and Pi's are running Linux. There is Windows 10 available for the Pi2 but I can't see myself switching them to Win10.

I haven't installed the Win10 preview so I am not too sure how its going to look. I have seen some of the video clips of the preview which shows a lot of features that I don't want or need on a number crunching machine. The preview updates daily and may not look like the final product yet. I will look at putting it into a virtual machine and see what it looks like on there before deciding if I will be upgrading the Win7 machines.

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