22 November 2014

22nd of November

Farm news
Weather hot, like in the mid-30's (degrees C) hot for a couple of days this week so the entire farm was off. Its back into the upper-20's so I have the Parallella's and Raspberry Pi's going again. I have been running the Intel-GPU's overnight as well.

The Intel-GPU machines are all doing Asteroids work. Credits are around 14 million so still quite a way to go before it catches up to the other projects. The Parallella's and Pi's are doing Einstein work. I have 2 Parallella's and 6 Raspberry Pi's.

I was in the computer shop this morning dropping off parts for the 2nd new build machine. They are still waiting on memory before they can be completed. It seems DDR4 memory is still in fairly short supply at the moment.

Pi B+ rebuild
A day after I did the last post I went and upgraded the B+ Raspberry Pi and after rebooting it refused to come back. I ended up wasting the next 4 hours restoring from the official image (downloaded back in June) and then having to upgrade it to get it back to what it had and remembering all the things that I normally change from the standard Pi image. I have since taken a snapshot of it so at least I have an image I can just dump onto it should it happen again.

Before anyone asks "why didn't you use one of the other Pi's images" I would point out they are all B models. Their image is a bit different and doesn't work on the B+ which is why I had to go back to the official image and then upgrade it.

Ideally I would like a stripped down image that doesn't have all GUI stuff that wastes space and CPU time. X11 and the desktop stuff are all useless when remotely accessing the Pi. I do remove some of the packages that come with Raspbian but not enough to get rid of x11 entirely.

15 November 2014

15th of November

Farm news
After an almost complete shutdown earlier in the week when the temperatures were in the mid-30's we're now back up and running the Intel GPU machines. When I say "almost complete" the file server and router were off as well as most of the computers. I left the Parallella's and Raspberry Pi's running even though they had no network access.

There is more hot weather forecast for the coming week.

BOINC news
7.4.26 (Mac) and 7.4.27 (Windows) were released to the public. Nothing new for me as I was already running .27 on most of the machines anyway. There have been a couple of fixes done since but we haven't seen a new build yet..

CPDN issues
This morning I picked up a bunch of CPDN work units. They showed up in BOINCtasks as using zero CPU time and were using less memory than some of the other CPDN work units. I left them running for 10 hours. When I checked again they still had the same symptoms so I went and looked on one of the machines and there were Visual Fortran pop-up boxes with error messages. Once I pressed the Okay button the tasks fail. I had 15 of these across 3 machines.

Strangely enough another 5 of them are running and using CPU time, more memory, not to mention doing checkpoints.

Upon reading the CPDN forums for Visual Fortran errors regarding a different climate model, it seems they don't like Windows and Intel iGPU's. Its something to do with the graphics the model can show while running, not that I ever bother with the graphics. It doesn't seem to effect Linux computers.

Seti news
It seems they are scraping around for data to process. They have some older data that needs reprocessing with new apps but that is about all they have from the Arecibo radio telescope. They do have data from the Green Bank telescope but no apps or back-end plumbing (work unit splitters, validators, etc) for it yet. They are also sorting through database issues.

This isn't causing me an issue as I have been concentrating on Asteroids more recently but it seems they now have more processing power than they can handle.

08 November 2014

8th of November

Farm news
We're working nights. I generally have the machines off (except the Parallella's and Raspberry Pi's) during the day and get some of them going overnight. I have been doing some GPUgrid work as well as concentrating on Asteroids.

I got to 14 million for Asteroids, only to have them run out of disk space today, so I have a pile of work units waiting to upload. Oh well back to doing Einstein and Seti.

While doing BOINC upgrades on the Parallella's I noticed that one hadn't been rebooted for 80 days and the other for 51 days. I decided they needed cleaning and a reboot. Due to the fan arrangement they had a layer of fine dust all over their insides. The only real way to get to it is a paint brush and blow it out. They should be good for another 3 months now.

BOINC testing
We got 7.4.27 this week. The only change is to back-out the checking for Nvidia compute capability 1.x devices and the CUDA 6.5 drivers on Windows. Its still there for the Mac.

Thanks to LocutusOfBorg's ppa I also got 7.4.27 for Ubuntu. If I relied on Ubuntu I would have to wait a year due to their long-term-support versions not updating anything until their next major release.

With Debian Jessie the last version that made it in before their change freeze was 7.4.23. They are currently frozen while they finalise what will be in the Jessie release. The Pi's will have to stay on this version for a while.

02 November 2014

2nd of November

Farm news
Well most of its been off for the week, I have fired up all the Intel-GPU machines today as the weather has cooled off a bit. They are all doing Asteroids work at the moment.

I got another pair of GTX750Ti's which I plan on putting in the 2nd of the 6 core/12 thread machines. I am still waiting for the 1st one to be built. The memory was out of stock so that has held things up a bit.

BOINC testing
Late ths week we got 7.4.26 which along with other changes has some code to detect CUDA 6.5 drivers and warn the user that Nvidia no longer support cards with a compute capability less than 2. I have installed it on all the Intel-GPU machines and they don't seem to have any issues so far.

I was waiting for Debian Jessie to get 7.4.23, which it got yesterday. Debian were going to have a change freeze in November so they could finalise the Jessie release. I am not too sure if that means they will have to stick with .23 or if they will be able to get .26 into the Jessie release.

Meanwhile Ubuntu has an even older BOINC client. LocutusOfBorg's PPA is having issues building 7.4.23 with it failing to build for the arm architecture. The latest version I got from the PPA was 7.4.13. I use this on the Parallella's as the Ubuntu repos are even more out of date.