Resource Sharing: GPU vs. CPU?

Jesse
Jesse
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Topic 195246

Hey everyone,

I am currently running BOINC Version 6.10.58 on an Intel Core 2 Duo E7500 @ 2.933 GHz & 2 GB of DDR2.

I also have in my system an ATI Radeon HD4350 512MB (dual-display).

Currently in BOINC, I am running Einstein@Home and SETI@home.

Because E@H cannot use my ATI GPU, I have set the web settings to "Use CPU" and "Do not use GPU".

And because using the GPU is relatively faster, I have set SETI@Home's web settings to "Do not use CPU" and "Use GPU".

Currently, the resource share between these two projects is 100 and 100, i.e., they get 50% of the resources available to them.

My question is this: If each of these projects are technically using a different processing unit, how does the resource share allocate the two projects resources, and can we increase both project's values at the same time in order to allow the computing to be more effective?

(I have a feeling there's a really easy answer to this relating to something obvious that I've overlooked, but at least if the question is answered, I'll know then. (: )

I hope everyone understood what I meant - thanks in advance for your help.

Mike Hewson
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Resource Sharing: GPU vs. CPU?

Quote:
Hey everyone ....
My question is this: If each of these projects are technically using a different processing unit, how does the resource share allocate the two projects resources, and can we increase both project's values at the same time in order to allow the computing to be more effective?


I'll give it a go. :-)

What can I say? BOINC is magic. That's the 'really easy answer', however one of our Professors of the Dark Arts that we keep around here may come along and give you The Truth. I've been here for years and I still can't grasp it yet. But then again I took the Orange Pill ( it's a quantum gravity thing .... )

As for increasing the values, don't bother doing that in the belief of making the processors try harder, per se. It's just a way of letting people express their preferred project allocation strategy in an individually explicable manner. So one can avoid funny fractions, naughty prime numbers or surds. ( Yes, surds ). In any case : for a given Project X, BOINC will ( endeavour to ) allocate effort according to the ratio :

( value for Project X ) / ( total stated values for all projects )

I say 'endeavour to' as that's part of the first question. So if you have two projects then specifying 200/200 will be the same as 100/100, or 50/50 for that matter. Say a given contributor wants to run 7 projects, thus 100/100/100/100/100/100/100 is a reasonable way of saying to BOINC 'split effort equally between the seven'. Easier to write than, say, 28.571428 / 28.571428 / 28.571428 / 28.571428 / 28.571428 / 28.571428 / 28.571428 ( 28.571428 is nearly 200 divided by 7 ).

Cheers, Mike.

( edit ) BTW, the only dumb questions are those not asked. :-)

I have made this letter longer than usual because I lack the time to make it shorter. Blaise Pascal

Gundolf Jahn
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RE: And because using the

Quote:
And because using the GPU is relatively faster, I have set SETI@Home's web settings to "Do not use CPU" and "Use GPU".


Are you running the hybrid (third-party?) AstroPulse application at SETI? (I can't check myself, since your SETI account isn't listed here yet.)

I ask, because there are no other ATI applications at SETI.

Gruß,
Gundolf

Computer sind nicht alles im Leben. (Kleiner Scherz)

Gary Roberts
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RE: My question is this: If

Quote:
My question is this: If each of these projects are technically using a different processing unit, how does the resource share allocate the two projects resources, and can we increase both project's values at the same time in order to allow the computing to be more effective?


HI Jesse - Welcome to the E@H project! We hope you enjoy your stay here.

You have two projects sharing your resources. You have set your preferences so that just one is using the CPU and the other is using the GPU. So, regardless of the actual numbers you have set for each individual resource share, E@H should always be running full time on your CPUs whilst Seti should always be running full time on your GPU. I would agree that this is already a good way to support both projects, since the faster GPU processing at Seti should deliver you lots of results there and you can't use the GPU here anyway.

Your next consideration should be whether or not it would bother you if your resources fell idle because of lack of work from a particular project. If it wouldn't, then you are fine the way you are. If it would, you might like to consider a backup project for Seti. The E@H project tends to have high reliability so a backup may not be quite so necessary here. Unfortunately, it's quite a different situation with Seti.

BOINC has a backup project mechanism. If you selected another project which could use your GPU and gave it a resource share of zero (with appropriate other preferences), it would become a backup for Seti. That might be a desirable thing to consider.

Cheers,
Gary.

Ageless
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RE: So, regardless of the

Message 99015 in response to message 99014

Quote:
So, regardless of the actual numbers you have set for each individual resource share, E@H should always be running full time on your CPUs whilst Seti should always be running full time on your GPU.


Not, as Gundolf has already pointed out, if he isn't using the third party hybrid application that runs Astropulse tasks on the ATI GPU. By default, Seti is CUDA, just as Einstein is.

So Jesse setting CPU to no on Seti will get him no Seti work at all if he isn't using the Astropulse Hybrid app (yes, I am pointing at the Seti beta forums there, but the app will work on Seti Main as well).

There is however a big but: Astropulse tasks aren't easy to get, even while they're available in great numbers. This is because due to their size (8MB), they take up quite a lot of bandwidth. Seti only has one 100Mbit connection, which means that essentially only one Astropulse can be downloaded by any person at a time, without them smothering the complete bandwidth available (100/8=12.5MB).

Gary Roberts
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RE: Not, as Gundolf has

Message 99016 in response to message 99015

Quote:
Not, as Gundolf has already pointed out, if he isn't using the third party hybrid application that runs Astropulse tasks on the ATI GPU. By default, Seti is CUDA, just as Einstein is.


When I started my reply, Gundolf had not posted his. I didn't see it until after I had posted mine.

As I don't have time to even browse the Seti forums, let alone read them in any detail, I have no knowledge of what apps are available at Seti and what limitations there might be in using them. The OP stated that he/she was using an ATI card at Seti. I simply took this statement at face value.

Apart from Collatz and Dnetc, I have no knowledge of what other projects there might be that would be able to make use of a single precision ATI GPU. The Milkyway project would seem to be a good fit (science/astronomy) but for its DP GPU requirement. Perhaps the OP might consider selling the 4350 and replacing it with a 4850 purchased say on ebay. That might be quite an easy way of getting into GPU mega-crunching. Such a card on MW@H would complete tasks every 3.5 minutes and second hand 4850s should be quite cheap compared to the much more expensive CUDA capable cards of similar power that could be used on E@H or Seti.

Cheers,
Gary.

Ageless
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RE: Perhaps the OP might

Message 99017 in response to message 99016

Quote:
Perhaps the OP might consider selling the 4350 and replacing it with a 4850 purchased say on ebay. That might be quite an easy way of getting into GPU mega-crunching. Such a card on MW@H would complete tasks every 3.5 minutes and second hand 4850s should be quite cheap compared to the much more expensive CUDA capable cards of similar power that could be used on E@H or Seti.


Aye... Although even new 4850s aren't that expensive. I got mine for around 80 euro's, with 1GB GDDR3.

And it does MW's in 3 minutes. ;-)
But I use it mostly for gaming. Still have to install the other card I got, which I will use for projects. But so far I haven't managed to find time or the mood.

Mike Hewson
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Well there you are Jesse,

Well there you are Jesse, mention an alchemist and 'POP' ! A mob appear .... :-) :-) :-)

Seriously, these guys are cool, so smart and ever hovering to help ( beware there are more yet ... ). They are quite knowledgeable and some frequent other castles too, which is a boon as they bring that experience too.

What you'll sense is that the distributed computing field, hardware, BOINC, and the various projects about are all evolving. Moving targets. Exciting and thought provoking stuff. We're all a bit stoked at present here at E@H, as the project has bagged it's first previously unknown pulsar ..... so if we look like we are glowing a tad, it's probably because of too much time with the pulsar goggles on. Which reminds me, where's my rad badge ? .... :-)

As your profile list includes describing you as 'Bookworm; Tech Geek; Obsessive-Compulsive-Computer-Repairman;' and 'Love customized technological hardware' then you're definitely gonna fit right in with harder core stuff over at Cruncher's Corner. You'll get the pro's and con's, what's in & what's out, what's hot and what's not ..... plus the occasional food fight. ;~)

Cheers, Mike.

( edit ) A moment of advice ( kindly uncle mode ) - make sure the wording in your profile clearly indicates that it's your girlfriend who has 'jaw dropping beauty'. You and I know what you meant, but if she reads it ( as it is ) in the near future you might be in for a spot of bother. Wink. Wink. :-)

I have made this letter longer than usual because I lack the time to make it shorter. Blaise Pascal

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