Posts by Michael Goetz

1) Message boards : Number crunching : Much longer Runtime?! (Message 1382)
Posted 20 Nov 2021 by Profile Michael Goetz
10+ years ago, for about $50, I bought a cat5 cable kit, probably from Newegg.

Best networking investment I ever made.

500 feet of cat 5 cable, 100 connectors, and a crimping tool. I forget if it came with the cable tester, or if I bought that separately.

After all these years, I still have plenty of cable and connectors left.

Besides making normal short run cables, it's invaluable for running cables through walls or ceilings because I can drill a hole the size of the cable and not have to worry about making holes larger enough for the connectors. Run the cable first, then put the connectors on as the last step.

Best part is I always know the cables *work*, because I made them myself.

And when you need that super long 150" cable, it's no harder to make than a 5" cable.

I only run 1GB ethernet, so CAT 5 is sufficient. More than that is wasting money.
2) Message boards : News : iThena: News (Message 1288)
Posted 25 Sep 2021 by Profile Michael Goetz
This is not a very usefull [sic] answer.

It is, of course, your choice. There's significant benefit to you, (i.e., learning a new skill), and all it takes is an investment of some time. You could wait for someone else to solve your problem for you, or you can take matters into your own hands and solve it yourself (today). I gave you a way forward, but only you can decide if it's the path for you.

(I suggested this because this is actually a fairly easy step even for novice users. If you have ever used a command window in Windows, or DOSBOX, or anything like that, and know how to use Google, you probably won't have much trouble getting this working.)
3) Message boards : News : Application: iThena OONI Probe (Message 1286)
Posted 25 Sep 2021 by Profile Michael Goetz
We have added support for architecture: i686-pc-linux-gnu (v1.05).

32 bit application + 2GB memory requirement
Where can I find suitable computers? ;-)

32 bit version of Linux running on 64 bit hardware. I keep a 32 bit Linux VM in cold storage for use in emergencies. :)
4) Message boards : News : iThena: News (Message 1285)
Posted 25 Sep 2021 by Profile Michael Goetz
I want to but you don't have released a Windows version.

Since when does that need to stop anyone? Well, it shouldn't, anyway. I had tens of thousands of hours running Linux BOINC apps before actually building a (real) Linux computer last year.

Install the (free) Virtual Machine software of your choice: Oracle VirtualBox is a good choice because it's optionally included with BOINC, VMWare Player works well too, and there's others also. Then create a virtual Linux machine using any of the many (also free) flavors of Linux are available. Ubuntu is a good choice for people new to Linux.

There are many Linux-only projects. There are even more Linux-only apps. Even if you only have Windows or Mac computers, you can still participate in Linux projects (except for the extremely rare Linux-only GPU apps.)

I have three Windows computers running BOINC full time -- but there's also four Linux virtual machines running on two of the Windows computers. Since there's very few Mac-only projects (probably zero, actually), once you set up a Linux VM you can pretty much run anything except ARM-specific apps. It works very well.
5) Message boards : Number crunching : Points/Credit (Message 568)
Posted 23 May 2020 by Profile Michael Goetz
Tasks can be assigned at random.
At this point the scheduler has not yet been modified.
I'll probably modify it this weekend.

It has been my anecdotal experience that:

1) I did not start receiving the PERF tasks on Linux computers until *after* I filled out the information form for that Linux computer.

2) Whenever there's an outage where iThena is down, i.e., the server was restarted,, afterwards I do not get any PERF tasks on Linux computers until I resubmit the forms for those computers.

It's entirely possible that this is a coincidence, or that my observations are flawed.
6) Message boards : Number crunching : New applications in the test phase [before the introduction of BOINC iThena] (Message 557)
Posted 17 May 2020 by Profile Michael Goetz
Check out Primegrid as they have added 10 extra groups (Sun, Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Pluto).
So more groups can be added but I am not sure how they did it.


They (meaning me) did it by changing the server's code.

If I remember correctly, you only need to change the website (PHP) code. You don't have to change anything in the scheduler (C++) code. It's just a matter of making the appropriate changes to several .inc and .php files.

That being said, I don't think this is a good way to do it. But it would be better than nothing.

I use the groups to determine what apps to run, and how to run them. That's not necessarily going to correspond to where each machine is located. I may have the same set of tasks running on computers X, Y, and Z, but X may be a desktop in my house, Y is a laptop I carry around, and Z is a cloud server on the other side of the planet.
7) Message boards : News : Geolocation of network points data (Message 237)
Posted 9 Jan 2020 by Profile Michael Goetz
One more detail, but this is actually rather important:

The information you collect about each host should be "versioned". This isn't normally how BOINC stores host data; each host has one row in the host table.

For this location/connection data, I recommend that it include a timestamp and that each host have multiple rows in this table, each with a different timestamp.

Both location and connection data can change over time, especially for portable devices. But even home desktop computers can get their Internet connection upgraded, and people move to new homes. If you're trying to correlate the information gathered by the app with this location/connection data I imagine you'll need to deal with the problem of the location/connection data changing.

In the case of someone using a laptop both at home and at work, you're going to need to get smart about how you handle the data. You can't expect the user to enter new data every time the laptop moves, and even if they did, you would need to somehow de-duplicate the locatation/connection data.
8) Message boards : News : Geolocation of network points data (Message 236)
Posted 9 Jan 2020 by Profile Michael Goetz
In the case of cloud servers, where you only know the general region where the server is located, what information do you want?

I would suggest, rather than the information you're asking, which seems appropriate if the BOINC host is in my residence or in my office, that you ask for alternative information for cloud hosts:

* Cloud provider
* Region

Usually, exact location and connection data won't be known, although one can reasonably assume that most of the time the connection is going to be some kind of high speed wired connection.

Likewise, you may want different data for mobile devices such as laptops or phones that aren't always connecting from the same location.
9) Message boards : News : Badges for beta stage - iThena CNode (Message 227)
Posted 23 Dec 2019 by Profile Michael Goetz
A few minutes I did "total credit" cloning for iThena CNode.
Does it look a little better? ;

Yes it does. Thanks!
10) Message boards : News : Badges for beta stage - iThena CNode (Message 224)
Posted 22 Dec 2019 by Profile Michael Goetz
I have over 0.01 credit, but no badge. I don't understand:

Total credit 0.01921667
Recent average credit 0.00059460
iThena CNode credit 0.00013333 total, 0.00001290 average (40 tasks)
11) Questions and Answers : Web site : HTTP(S) error? (Message 166)
Posted 17 Nov 2019 by Profile Michael Goetz
Do you sometimes have temporary problems loading the iThena website?

The temporary problem when after reloading the page (refresh) is already ok.

Have you noticed something?
I don't mean here longer breaks.
I mean quick problems with reloading the page.

Yes, that did happen to me with the first webpage I loaded today. F5 resolved the problem, and it has not recurred today. I don't recall the exact error message.
12) Message boards : Number crunching : No work (Message 101)
Posted 2 Nov 2019 by Profile Michael Goetz
There's no tasks available. Did something break, or is this the intentional maintenance that was scheduled for yesterday?
13) Message boards : Number crunching : Can't get any work ? (Message 70)
Posted 3 Oct 2019 by Profile Michael Goetz
Yes. This is a pretty cool solution.
Theoretically, I could even prepare a tutorial with detailed instructions;) we only have very limited time sometimes ;)

It's actually easier for you. Getting users to set up a VM is hard unless they're already very technical.

But what you can do is imbed your linux app in a vbox VM, and ship that out as your Mac and Windows apps. It's a larger download that needs to be shipped to the hosts (once), and the users still have to install the vbox version of BOINC (and turn on VT-X), but it's worlds easier for them than learning how to use Linux.

You, of course, have to learn how to encapsulate your app in a linux VM, but you only need to learn that once.

That's much easier than building separate Linux, Windows, and Mac apps. Especially the Mac apps. Windows you can build on Linux, but Mac is a pain.

It's better to have native apps -- but a VBOX app is better than nothing at all.
14) Message boards : Number crunching : Can't get any work ? (Message 68)
Posted 3 Oct 2019 by Profile Michael Goetz
In my opinion, this is the easiest way to run Linux apps on a Windows machine:

1) Go into the computer's BIOS and turn on VT-X.

2) Re-install BOINC *with* VBOX.

3) Start VBOX manually, and create a Linux VM.

Now you can start your VBOX VM to run Linux apps (there's a lot of them out there) whenever you need. It also will allow you to run BOINC vbox apps (there's also more and more of those). Two capabilities added for one download!

If you already have the vbox version of BOINC installed, you can skip step 2, but do NOT skip step 1.
15) Message boards : Science : What Is Our Mission At iThena? (Message 46)
Posted 30 Sep 2019 by Profile Michael Goetz
Many thanks for the link!
I didn't know this project;)
A valuable source of information.

Depspid worked a little differently and had different purposes - if I understand correctly after reading the information quickly.
Depspid mapped domains / subdomains / sites / directories etc.
iThena is currently mapping the logical / physical structure of hops limiting itself to IPv4 addresses (in theory DNS should not be very involved but in my software there is probably a bug).

The current application (only one) uses the network. This is not sooooo great use when we run one application.

Over time, I may add more computational applications. However, this is a more distant future.

Let me give you a little warning about DepSpid. It was an interesting and fun BOINC project -- but it was also VERY dangerous. It wasn't malicious, but running it had some serious and not-so-obvious risks.

Running it on one computer worked just fine.

Running it on two or three computers could swamp my home's Internet connection. Essentially, although it was working as intended, it had the same effect as a DDOS (Distributed Denial of Service) attack against your own network. My house has wired gigabit ethernet and at that time my Internet connection was probably about 30Mb down and 10MB up. You do the math. :)

Some users have access to data centers full of servers and have legitimate authority to run BOINC on those servers. If they run an app similar to DepSpid on a lot of computers, they will bring their company's Internet connection to a grinding halt. That might affect their employment status, obviously, but there's also potential risk for you. Depending on the damage that is done, you (or your employer) may find yourself on the wrong side of a lawsuit in some court somewhere. In some jurisdictions you might even face criminal liability. In this scenario, the argument would probably be that software which you created and distributed caused financial harm to company X. It's not an unreasonable argument.

What really sucks is that I don't think there's an easy fix for this. Making the network access slower doesn't really help because there's always going to be someone with a lot more computers and/or a much slower Internet connection.

Please keep this in mind. People running this kind of app can inadvertently cause serious network disruptions. In my case, I had to deal with my kids complaining about the Internet being slow. That's much better than having a really awkward talk with my boss about how the network problems of the last day or two were traced back to that BOINC thing they let me run on computers "for science." :)
16) Message boards : Science : What Is Our Mission At iThena? (Message 43)
Posted 30 Sep 2019 by Profile Michael Goetz
Two sentences of the project description are available from the very beginning:

The iThena distributed project concerns experimental mapping of network structures included in the Internet. The project is in closed beta phase. Currently, the only application available in the project (iThena CNode) performs a sequence of traceroute procedures from client computers. The resulting data is sent back to the server and submitted to the main database, where it can be further analyzed.

Network structure mapping summaries will be available online.

Simple data visualisation:

Thank you.

In 2008 there was a BOINC project called Depspid (wayback link: Depspid used BOINC hosts to crawl the Internet to essentially create some sort of map. Is iThena similar to that? It doesn't consume CPU, but instead is using network resources?

If iThena is indeed similar to Depspid (i.e., the app is constantly sending outgoing traffic to the Internet), I'm curious how you avoided the pitfalls (reverse DDOS) that affected Depspid?
17) Message boards : Science : What Is Our Mission At iThena? (Message 41)
Posted 30 Sep 2019 by Profile Michael Goetz
Well ...
I didn't have enough time to complete the website 'About iThena' during the weekend.
In the next week I will do it ;)

Considering you're asking people to donate their computer time to you, for nothing in return, how about sparing a minute or two for a couple of sentences on the forum?

What does your project do?

* It analyzes protein structures
* It factors large numbers
* It solves chess problems
* it's solving n-body orbital mechanics problems

See?, It's not that difficult.

It's also not that difficult to click on "No New Work"

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