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How to Set-up Notfred's VMware SMP for CPU

Discussion in 'Folding@Home' started by BUCK NASTY, Dec 22, 2009.

  1. BUCK NASTY

    BUCK NASTY F@H Mod & 4P Enthusiust Staff Member

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    How to set up Notfred's VMWare Virtual Appliance with VMWare Player.

    1. Obtain and install VMWare Player. (VMWare) (Filehippo) Filehippo doesn't require registration. I think the only option during install is the install directory. Other than that, any good firewall will probably pop up asking if you want to allow the newly added virtual network cards to have access to your computer or LAN. Make sure you allow these.

    2. Obtain the virtual appliance image. (Notfred's link)

    3. Open the zip containing folding.vmdk and folding.vmx. Extract these to whatever directories you want to use, say C:\folding\vm for example. If you have a quadcore and are planning to use 2 VMs with static IP addresses (suggested, for monitoring purposes), name it something like vm1 and make a copy of it and call the second directory vm2. If you are using DHCP you can copy it AFTER you make the configuration changes in step 8.

    4. (Optional) for management purposes, you may want to change the name of the VM. Right click on the .vmx file and open it with wordpad. Where it says displayName = "Folding@Home", you can change what is in the quotes to whatever you want to help you keep track of which is which if you have a quadcore and are running 2 VMs. You need to do this for both directories.

    5. You can now run the virtual machine by double clicking the .vmx file or by opening it through VMWare Player. At this point it will boot up and detect your architechture and launch the appropriate configuration. Assuming it has access to the internet, it will download the SMP client and start folding (under notfred's username).

    6. When the VM boots up, take note of the IP address given on the console. Now go to your web browser and go to http://<IP address of VM>. It will bring up the status page. Click "Reconfigure this host and any USB drives". This page is where you will configure your VM.

    7. Configure it however you'd like. Remember to change the username and team! Here are some of the options that might not be obvious.

    * SMP Instance per - This is how many CPUs to use. I don't think there's any point in using more than 2, as VMWare Player won't use them.
    * Remote Reboot - This enables a link on the status page that will let you reboot the machine.
    * Install to USB drives on boot - When the VM boots it will try to install to a USB drive for use on another computer or on the same computer for diskless folding. I've never messed with this, so I don't know if it works.
    * Console blank time - Simply blanks the VM's window.
    * Windows Networking - This will enable samba file sharing on the VM, so you can browse its files from the computer it's running on.
    * Login shell - This enables you to login from the VM to run commands. It's very limited and you probably won't need it, but it doesn't hurt to enable it.


    8. Click reconfigure. It will tell you it has to reboot. Let it do its thing. After a few seconds it will be back up and folding under your name.

    9. Repeat 4 - 9 if you have another static IP VM to set up. If you used DHCP, now would be the time to make a copy of the first VM and get it up and running.

    10. (Optional, but suggested) You may want to set the priority to vmware-vmx.exe to low. It may provide a slightly higher PPD yield from the GPU2 clients, especially if they require more than 1-2% CPU. It will also make it less likely to bog down the rest of your computer. If running GPU2 clients, you should also set their priority to slightly higher via the GPU2 client (not task manager) if you haven't already.

    11. (Optional, but suggested) To avoid loss of data, you should set your virtual machines to go into a suspend state when closed, rather than powering down. To do this, go to "VMWare Player" at the top of the VMWare Player window, go to "Preferences..." and change the option of "When exiting:" to "Suspend the virtual machine" if the radio button is not already in that position. Now when you hit the X in the upper right hand corner it will take a minute to to save the machine's state to your hard drive for restoration later. Keep in mind that having them shut off for too long can make you miss the deadline! I have about a 12 hour window for having them shut off on my Q6600.

    1 If it doesn't have access to the internet, try switching between bridged and NAT and rebooting the VM. You can switch between bridged and NAT by right clicking the two computes in the bottom of the VMWare Player window. This is circled in red in the image below. Also make sure your firewall is allowing it out. It will probably ask you if you want to allow it's virtual network cards when you install VMWare Player.


    Monitoring with FahMon

    1. Download Fahmon, if you don't have it already. You can get 2.3.99+ here.

    2. In the main window right click "Add a client". Fill in the name as whatever you'd like to describe it. I find it helpful to use the name I gave it with displayName= in step 4.

    3. In the location box you can either use the IP (if it's static) or the client's hostname. To find the host name you can either look at the console, or go to the client's built in webpage. This name will be something like FOLD-XXXX. In the location box enter \\<either the IP, or the hostname>\c\etc\folding\1\

    4. Check the box that says "Client is on a Virtual Machine" and click OK.

    5. (Optional) You may want to go to FahMon -> Preferences -> Monitoring and check the "Ignore Asynchronous Clocks" option if you are still having problems with it saying it is hung.

    Common Problems


    1. You get an out of RAM error. This crashes your folding core and you have to reboot the VM. Unless you move up the RAM, this can happen again.

    To increase the amount of RAM, go to VMWare Player on the title bar of the VMWare Player, then go to Troubleshoot, then Change Memory Allocation. At minimum I would use 864, but some people have said it requires more. It has also been reported that being a multiple of 32 helps. Then go to the configuration webpage and reboot the virtual machine. NOTE: this doesn't seem to actually use up more RAM. What it DOES seem to do is increase the size limit of the .vmem file in your folding directory. If your system doesn't have much RAM, don't be afraid to move this up.

    2. You lose work when powering off your Virtual Machine.

    Remember to set the priorities/affinities for your clients.
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2009
    Crunching for Team TPU More than 25k PPD
  2. dhoshaw

    dhoshaw

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    Great job Buck! All the information in one handy place. :toast:
     
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  3. bogmali

    bogmali Moderator Staff Member

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    Sticky:D?
     
  4. Error 404

    Error 404

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    Last edited: Dec 23, 2009
  5. BUCK NASTY

    BUCK NASTY F@H Mod & 4P Enthusiust Staff Member

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    Thanks for throwing it in there. It's mostly intact(I edited a few things);). Gotta love plagiarism.

    I have had the same problem connecting today. Reset the VM player if you fail to connect.

    [​IMG]
     
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  6. Error 404

    Error 404

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    More problems! :D
    [​IMG]
    I've managed to reconfigure it, but I don't have a clue what to do at this point.
     
  7. LCB001 New Member

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    The VM is now Folding,

    Take note of the IP address (192.168.3.129) and put in your browser window to reconfigure the client, see step 6 in Nastys guide above
     
  8. LCB001 New Member

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    Just wanted to point out that with the new 3.0 VM Player you can use up to eight (8) cores per VM.

    Using one 8 core instead of multiple small VM's saves on resources and overhead and is well suited to the i7 proc's if you don't want to go -bigadv...
     
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  9. Error 404

    Error 404

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    I've already reconfigured it. So I don't need to type anything in where it says "Login as "root" with no password required. fold-071A login: _" ?
    I don't think it is folding at this point, because the VMware thread isn't showing high enough CPU usage for it to be doing anything but idling.

    EDIT: Nevermind, it appears to be working, and FahMon can see it!

    MORE EDIT: Even more problems! FahMon is not able to see the client type, PPD, and credit information for the VM client. :\

    Oh, and this just popped up:
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2009
  10. dhoshaw

    dhoshaw

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    Hey LCB001, a familiar name from HWC; welcome to TPU. :toast:
     
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  11. dhoshaw

    dhoshaw

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    I've got my two vm's running each using all 4 physical cores on their respective quads. Their points are starting to register; my average PPD is now 30K+. :)
     
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  12. BUCK NASTY

    BUCK NASTY F@H Mod & 4P Enthusiust Staff Member

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    I have cut my VM's down to 1 client across all cores and have picked up 750-1000 ppd per rig(as well as using less memory). To reconfigure a single VM to run across all cores:


    • Open the VMware virtual machine configuration file with notepad

    [​IMG]


    • Edit the config file by changing the number only as shown.

    [​IMG]


    • Re-start the VM. It will show an error for number of CPU's.

    [​IMG]


    • Discard the previous suspended state and re-start the VM.

    [​IMG]

    You are now running a single VM across all your CPU cores. Remember to delete the other VM or let it complete it's work unit and then delete it.
     
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  13. Easy Rhino

    Easy Rhino Linux Advocate

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    is the status quo still to run 2 separate vms running 2 cores if you have a quad core?
     
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  14. [Ion]

    [Ion] WCG Team Assistant

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    I think that what Buck was saying is to run 1 VM across all 4 cores on a quad.
     
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  15. Easy Rhino

    Easy Rhino Linux Advocate

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    ok that is what i am doing.
     
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  16. BUCK NASTY

    BUCK NASTY F@H Mod & 4P Enthusiust Staff Member

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    Which CPU are you going to run the VM on?
     
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  17. Easy Rhino

    Easy Rhino Linux Advocate

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    q9650
     
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