WORK IN PROGRESS
This post is an effort to provide the information you may want or need to understand Folding @ Home and hopefully decide to participate.
I've started to go through the info at the FAH site and I am going to attempt to present it in a simple, easier reading format. I find the site can present a difficult read and this may discourage possible donors
. This is all FAH info and can be found at http://folding.stanford.edu/
and it's various links, I've only modified the presentation a bit. I hope this is helpful
Folding@Home is a distributed computing project that takes advantage of computing resources made avaliable by donors to study protein folding, misfolding, aggregation, and related diseases. Scientists have sequenced the human genome, giving us the blueprint for all of the proteins in biology. This project allows the proteins to be studied in order to understand what they do and how they do it.
A protein is a necklace of amino acids, a building block of biology. A protein can perform many functions; as an enzyme they drive all the biochemical reactions that make biology work. As structural elements, they are the essential parts of bones, muscles, hair, skin and blood vessels. As antibodies they recognize "invaders" and allow the immune system to remove them.
In order to perform its function a protein must first self-assemble, a process known as "folding". Scientists believe that diseases such as Alzheimer's disease, cystic fibrosis, BSE (Mad Cow disease), an inherited form of emphysema, and even many cancers are the result of misfolding. These misfolded proteins can clump together or "aggregate" and build up in the brain.
Become a Donor:
You can participate in the research as a donor by downloading a client(s) to run on your hardware. The clients are designed to run in the background with minimal effects to daily use. They take advantage of the resources you are not using at the moment and release them if you should need them. There is a selection of clients, so choose the best fit for you.
Unlike other distributed computing projects, Folding@home is run by an academic institution (specifically the Pande Group, at Stanford University's Chemistry Department), which is a nonprofit institution dedicated to science research and education. They will not sell the data or make any money off of it. Moreover, they will make the data available for others to use. In particular, the results from Folding@home will be made available on several levels. Most importantly, analysis of the simulations will be submitted to scientific journals for publication, and these journal articles will be posted on the web page after publication. Next, after publication of these scientific articles which analyze the data, the raw data of the folding runs will be available for everyone, including other researchers, on the Folding@Home web site.
This is a link for the FAH home page:
This is a link to the FAH pdf Executive Summary, it provides a brief descrpition of the FAH project:
This link gives a more detailed explanation of protein's and folding:
There are different types of clients ready for download . Clients have been designed for Windows, Linux, Mac, and PS3. For each os/platform, there may be more than one client to choose from. The non beta release clients are known to be more stable and should be considered if adequate attention isn't available or instabilities will have negative impacts on other tasks the hardware is responsible for. Some beta clients are tested less and have a higher risk of failed work units; because of the "experimental" nature of these clients, bonuses are awarded for completed work units.
Depending on what you want to do and what hardware you run, you can utilize different single clients or a combonation of clients.
The gpu client utilizes a small percentage of processing power from a single cpu core while taking advantage of the gpu processing power for folding. The available cpu clients can utilize the remaining processing power. Again, depending on your cpu, a choice of clients are available. For single core processors the choice would be the single core client. For multicore processors you can use either the single or multicore clients. In the case of a single core client on a multicore processor, you can copy the downloaded executable file to multiple folders and run a client on each available core. A client will run on the core that is handling the gpu client, but because it it sharing the core, it will be less productive. The smp client will take advantage of all remaining processor power (all cores) with one client and at this time has a higher ppd value("experimental" nature of the beta with bonuses). If you use a passkey with your folding name, afaik the smp does not support passkeys.
To run the gpu client along with a cpu client(s), program priorities may need to be adjusted to ensure the gpu client gets the cpu time it needs to run. When installing the clients, set the cpu client priority to idle and the gpu client to just above idle. If these settings don't allow the gpu client to run, the process priorities may need to be adjusted in the task manager. When running the gpu client it is best to avoid running programs with high graphics demands. (turn off the gpu client until you are finished)
Downloads can be found here
and Windows high performance beta clients
Clients and Faq/install page:
windows supports 8 clients at the moment, 5 that are beta releases, and 1 backwards compatable.
1. Windows 2000/XP/Vista Graphical client V 5.03
2. Windows NT/2000/XP/Vista text-only console (with built-in Windows-service-install option) V 5.04
3. Windows XP/2003/Vista/2008 System tray client w/installer 6.10 Beta
Read this forum post first! http://foldingforum.org/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=1459
4. Windows XP/2003/Vista/2008 Console client (with service install option) V 6.10 Beta
5.Windows: V6 Beta
GPU2 Client V 6.12 Beta 8 (ATI 26xx+, nVidia)
read this http://foldingforum.org/viewtopic.php?t=3186
6. Windows XP/2003/Vista/2008 SMP client console V 5.91 Beta
7. Windows XP/2003/Vista/2008 SMP client console V 5.92 Beta
upgrade from 5.91,
Read this forum post first! http://foldingforum.org/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=1783
8. Windows 98/ME Graphical client V 4.00
(not recommended for Windows 2000, XP, or Vista)
Linux supports 1 client and at present it only supports 64-bit
1. Linux (x86) and BSD *combined uniprocessor and SMP client* (64-bit required for SMP) V 6.02 (full release)
Mac supports 6 clients at present, 2 being beta versions
1. Mac OS X (Intel) SMP OS X 10.4+ V6.10 Beta
2. Mac OS X (Intel) SMP OS X 10.4+ V 6.02 Beta
2 (console release version)
3. Mac OS X Graphical client (PPC) V 5.02
4. Mac OS X (PPC) OS X 10.3+ V 6.01 Beta
5. Mac OS X Screensaver (PPC) V 5.02
6. Mac OS X Text console (PPC) V 5.02
There is one client available for the Platstation 3
1: Playstation 3 V 1.3.1
this will tell you about dual gpu configurations:
FAHMon is a useful program for monitoring the progress of your clients.
There are site's hosting stat pages that provide some interesting data as well.
Our Team Stats:
Something to keep in mind:
this will use power and produce heat. If your pc's are in a location where either of these two factors will have a large negative impact, configure the clients to suit what you can manage.
There is a decent amount of information available on Folding, people to share it too
If you have more questions I'm sure someone can provide some answers