23 November 2013

23rd of November

Farm news
During the week I rebuilt the old file server. Its now back to its former self with the RAID controller deciding to work, although I did have to work out how to setup the RAID all over again. I have removed the 56k modem for the time being.

This weekend I picked up a new KVM to replace the broken one. That meant I could now access the machines that it services. They've been off for about a month. There were windows updates, BOINC updates, Nvidia driver updates and even SSD software updates. Repeat that for 5 of them so that took a while.

While I was at the computer shop I also picked up another 2Tb hard drive. Its destined to go into the file server. I'll probably do it tomorrow.

BOINC testing
7.2.28 was release to the public last week. This week they found a problem with notices containing images for one particular project. There was a quick update to disable messages and this version (.31) is now the recommended one.

The Raspberry Pi's still have 7.0.27 in the Debian repo at the moment. 7.2.28 is in the experimental releases so don't expect it to make it into the main repo any time soon.

13 November 2013

12th of November

Farm news
The Intel-GPU part of the farm has been busy doing Asteroids and Einstein BRP4 work.

CPDN uploads have stopped for the moment as their server has run out of disk space. I still have 2 machines left to clear via the 56k dial-up.

I spent about 4 and a half hours on Saturday night swapping out the hard disks for larger ones. The process of physically removing the old ones and add new ones was easy enough. After realising one has to define the RAID to the BIOS and watching the boot up messages a few times to find out what the hotkey was, it was up and running. Then I found out I had a 2010 version of the Intel Rapid Storage Technology software that only supported a RAID with a total size of 2Tb. I go to the Intel site and download the up to date version. It didn't install properly. It was a bunch of INF files and a driver. After stuffing around for about 30 minutes I gave up with the Intel software and decide to partition the drives via Windows. I picked the wrong boot sector method as it defaults to MBR, which only supports 2Tb so I end up with 2 logical drives. Back into the BIOS delete the RAID, reallocate the RAID and then back into Windows and do it right this time. I then go back to the Intel site and find a setup program for the Rapid Storage Technology software and give that a go. That fixes the Intel software and I can now manage the RAID. After that I restore the backup which went through without issue, but by the time it was all done it was 2am.

BOINC testing
We got a 7.2.28 which was also released to the public this week. It was really just a change to the installer so no real change to the software. I recommend people upgrade to this one as it adds some new features since the last release (7.0.64/65) and fixes some bugs in the process.

03 November 2013

3rd of November

Farm news
Some good news this week. Firstly the replacement power supply for the Drobo arrived, so it was pressed into service the day it arrived.

Also I picked up the 2Tb hard disks which I will be putting into the file server soon. I needed the Drobo to backup the existing drives first.

The older file server is now an additional proxy server, the one I mentioned rebuilding last week. It and the dial-up have been going all week to upload CPDN tasks. I have cleared 2 out of 5 machines so far but its very slow going. Files take 10 hours to push through. I had a wasted day where the wife kept trying to use the phone and that meant the 56k modem kept being disconnected.

I am still waiting on a replacement KVM so I can't access half the farm. That's the half with the Nvidia GPU's, but then its been too hot to use them anyway.

BOINC testing
Just after I wrote last weeks post we got 7.2.26 which is expected to be released on Monday as a the "production" client. I have installed it on the few machines that were running a slightly older version. Everything seems to work as expected.

Project news - Asteroids
They've release some details of work we've been crunching. We have managed to calculate the shapes of 114 more asteroids which brings the project up to 390 so far. The link to their results is http://asteroidsathome.net/scientific_results.html