Monday, April 19th 2021

Chia - The Cryptocurrency Gunning for Your SSD and HDD Space That Could Bring Another Tech Sector Pricing Up

A new cryptocurrency going by the name of Chia could bring about a boom in demand for HDD and SSD, which have been kept relatively untouched by the latest mining and supply constraints. However, optimistic predictions of falling prices for NAND (optimistic for consumers, that is) could prove to be erroneous. Apparently, the new cryptocurrency, which saw its whitepaper being published in February 9th and has already led to shortages of high-performance SSDs from China's Jiahe Jinwei.

The cryptocurrency was designed to be mined in SSDs and HDDs, looking to cut on electricity cost from proof of Work (PoW) cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and (still) Ethereum. The intention is for the cryptocurrency to have as broad an appeal as possible, by excluding the need for prohibitive investments in either ASICs (for Bitcoin) or GPUs (for Ethereum and other Dagger/Hashimoto-based calculations). It also leverages that which is most widely available and oftentimes left empty of any workload - storage space. Due to this, it's been reported that Chinese miners are already buying HDDs (4 TB through to 18 TB) and SSDs (mainly NVMe solutions) in bulk. This could prevent technologists from ushering in the current trend of falling storage pricing - if demand becomes as crazy as it has become in the GPU space.
Chia was designed by BitTorrent creator Bram Cohen, and uses a specific type of consensus and ledger-assurance system that's described as Proofs of Space and Time. The blockchain is farmed via Proof of Space, which is done inside your HDD or SSD via computing through already-in-storage models, and then contacts Chia's servers for Proof of Time - which essentially ensures that a required amount of time has passed between the block's generation and its actual inclusion in the network, to prevent any ill-intentioned farmer from assuming control of the network.

There are several advantages to farming a cryptocurrency such as Chia over the more general proof of work models. HDDs and SSDs take up much lesser space than a rack of GPUs, whilst consuming much less power, generating much less heat and noise, and thus allowing for much higher scalings in farming scenarios (which is what Chia calls its mining, because it's more ecologically sustainable than the usual mining workloads).
Sources: Chia Project Home, via Tom's Hardware
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101 Comments on Chia - The Cryptocurrency Gunning for Your SSD and HDD Space That Could Bring Another Tech Sector Pricing Up

#51
InVasMani
Shouldn't they targeting Optane or system memory not HDD's and NVME drives also this just makes it look like cryptocurrency's real goal is to scalp different system components and drive up the costs of them and somehow get away with the price fixing of them at a mass scale.
Posted on Reply
#52
Shihabyooo
64K
Hell, if miners could find a way to mine crypto from programmable coffee makers then there would be no coffee makers for sale anywhere except from scalpers charging 3 times the MSRP.
There are as many kitchen appliances capable of mining crypto as there are idiots who think strapping a processor and a modem on an oven is a good idea, times a million. Google "IoT cryptojacking."
Fortunately, the said idiots were cheap enough to use slow silicon. Your coffee maker will have to settle with being a lowly node in some Russian botnet... </s>
Posted on Reply
#53
PooPipeBoy
zlobby
What's next? Crypto mined on PSU or RAM?
Introducing WindCoin, the cryptocurrency that can be mined by your PWM fans! More fans, more RPM, more CFM, more dBA and more RGB = Profit!!!

Whoops, now those 140mm fans you were going to buy cost over $200 each and are out of stock!!
Posted on Reply
#54
zlobby
PooPipeBoy
Introducing WindCoin, the cryptocurrency that can be mined by your PWM fans! More fans, more RPM, more CFM, more dBA and more RGB = Profit!!!

Whoops, now those 140mm fans you were going to buy cost over $200 each and are out of stock!!
:D:D:D
Posted on Reply
#55
Wirko
mechtech
If aliens see/seen the stuff humans did/do we would be the laughingstock of the galaxy.
You got it all wrong. That Hashi Hashimoto guy is an alien who was sent to Earth by the galactic command. They saw that the human race is progressing at a much faster rate than planned, and her (his?) task was to do something. Seeding the first cryptocurrency, a brand new and untested invention, didn't initially sound like a good idea. However, after the Earth completed fifteen orbits around its star, it turned out to be effective like nothing before it.

Hashi Hashimoto is now head of civilisation control department. Crypto has been used on several planets at a similar stage of development, with great success every time.
Posted on Reply
#56
MIRTAZAPINE
I think it had begin online. I don't see my 14TB elements or easystore on stock on amazon anymore :(. Should have an extra 18TB ultrastar for my archieval need. Sad day for data hoarders and internet historians. I guess time to buy 2.5 inch 5TB for me and the SSD I need.

A couple of year back in 2017 cypto craze, hdd minimg with burstcoin was thing that thankfully died out. Looking at the world now with covid and shortage of tech in general. Its not looking positive.
Posted on Reply
#58
shilka
MIRTAZAPINE
I think it had begin online. I don't see my 14TB elements or easystore on stock on amazon anymore :(. Should have an extra 18TB ultrastar for my archieval need. Sad day for data hoarders and internet historians. I guess time to buy 2.5 inch 5TB for me and the SSD I need.

A couple of year back in 2017 cypto craze, hdd minimg with burstcoin was thing that thankfully died out. Looking at the world now with covid and shortage of tech in general. Its not looking positive.
The Seagate Ironwolf Pro drives are better faster and more quiet than the Ultrastar drives i have a 14 TB of both and the Ironwolf Pro is superior in every way other than price
Posted on Reply
#59
MIRTAZAPINE
shilka
The Seagate Ironwolf Pro drives are better faster and more quiet than the Ultrastar drives i have a 14 TB of both and the Ironwolf Pro is superior in every way other than price
I going with price per GB with decent reliability rather than all out performance which many of the WD carry. I am strictly WD or HGST for 3.5 inch drive after a bad seagate experience which luckily I recover the data from after a few months. For 2.5 inch drive I am in seagate as their the only one that offered the 5TB size.
Posted on Reply
#60
shilka
MIRTAZAPINE
I going with price per GB with decent reliability rather than all out performance which many of the WD carry. I am strictly WD or HGST for 3.5 inch drive after a bad seagate experience which luckily I recover the data from after a few months. For 2.5 inch drive I am in seagate as their the only one that offered the 5TB size.
The only drives i have had problems with or had die over the last few years was WD and Seagate has always worked without a problem but i have only bought Ironwolf Pro´s
The 18 TB Ironwolf Pro i ordered a few hours ago will be my 9th Ironwolf drive

Would never buy another Ultrastar its too slow and loud and the WD Black has that annoying lubrication thing where the drive heads move every few second
Cant say anything about the WD Gold since i never bought one of those but i had a ton of problems with the non Pro WD Red and one of those is the only dead drive i have had in the last 5 years

Cant say if either of us has good or bad luck with either but i know i would not buy WD or HGST again but maybe and thats a big maybe i would try theWD Gold
Anyway off topic
Posted on Reply
#62
R-T-B
Thefumigator
You won't believe this... but there really is a cryptocoin named shitcoin....
There's a lot worse than that.
Posted on Reply
#63
tabascosauz
PooPipeBoy
Introducing WindCoin, the cryptocurrency that can be mined by your PWM fans! More fans, more RPM, more CFM, more dBA and more RGB = Profit!!!

Whoops, now those 140mm fans you were going to buy cost over $200 each and are out of stock!!
Finally! I can use 7000rpm 120x38mm thick Delta and Sunon spinners and my bleeding ears will at least have the consolation that all the racket is making me money :roll:

www.frozencpu.com/products/8147/fan-500/Delta_Mega_Fast_120mm_x_38mm_Fan_-_252_CFM_-_Bare_Lead_PFB1212UHE-F00_No_RPM.html?tl=g36c781s562&id=fHIM5kZc
Posted on Reply
#64
R-T-B
tabascosauz
Finally! I can use 7000rpm 120x38mm thick Delta and Sunon spinners and my bleeding ears will at least have the consolation that all the racket is making me money :roll:

www.frozencpu.com/products/8147/fan-500/Delta_Mega_Fast_120mm_x_38mm_Fan_-_252_CFM_-_Bare_Lead_PFB1212UHE-F00_No_RPM.html?tl=g36c781s562&id=fHIM5kZc
You described my garage in the height of my mining days. 90 Degrees in the winter, delta fans, and very very loud.

I don't miss it.
Posted on Reply
#66
R-T-B
PooPipeBoy
7160rpm and 35.9mmH2O, good god! Those things must sound like they're about to explode :eek:
I had some 5500rpm variants and you aren't far off.
Posted on Reply
#67
spectatorx
R-T-B
There's a lot worse than that.
My fav out of joke-coins is titcoin. Maybe i will buy some just for "lolz".
But in this titcoin joke one thing is impressive: its logo is amazing, simple yet very obvious what it portrays.
Posted on Reply
#68
yotano211
HDs can already be mined with burst coin. I dont know if burst coin is still around but when I started getting into mining many years ago, burst coin was just starting out.
64K
Hell, if miners could find a way to mine crypto from programmable coffee makers then there would be no coffee makers for sale anywhere except from scalpers charging 3 times the MSRP.
who needs coffee anyways. coffee should onky be used bt trucj drivers and people who haven't slept for over 24hrs.
Posted on Reply
#69
bobbybluz
"If you dig a hole deep enough, everyone will want to jump into it" Firesign Theater
Posted on Reply
#70
yotano211
R-T-B
You described my garage in the height of my mining days. 90 Degrees in the winter, delta fans, and very very loud.

I don't miss it.
I had a 1 bedroom apartment maxed out with 13 mining machines in the last mining boom, 3 years ago now. I was maxing out all the breakers in that apartment. I had 2 in the bathroom with huge box fan. The apartment's thermostat maxed out at 99F in the spring and summer time. I dont miss that, I would work full time and take care of those machines, it was like another full time job.
Everyday, something always would happen to1-3 machines, and about every 2 days I would need to install the OS again.
Posted on Reply
#72
Valantar
silentbogo
Yes, it is possible, just like mining on a TI-84 calculator. The cake is a lie. You should get into habit of being skeptical of clickbaits.
Posted on Reply
#73
silentbogo
PooPipeBoy
7160rpm and 35.9mmH2O, good god! Those things must sound like they're about to explode :eek:
LoL. Just yesterday I was testing my freshly-acquired 2U supermicro chassis. It has two 80mm hotswap Nidec UltraFlo 9500rpm fans, and those things are so powerful, they nearly blew my electric pot off the table (it was almost empty, but still... made out of metal and standing on a rubberized stand).
Posted on Reply
#74
Valantar
CheapMeat
Sadly, this is what basically everyone does when the world cares about money above all else. There are many people who'd rather mine than live off minimum wage or go to work 40hrs a week with an hour or more drive and back. Basically everyone is trying to find a way to get out of basically slavery and find true freedom. And lots and lots of people have made hundreds of thousands to millions now since coins went from example $0.002 to $1, that's massive. The current crypto scene is at it's all time high. So everyone is chasing the next cheap one to pump and dump. That's how it works if you want to gain quickly instead of waiting 40+ years to retire and live on Social Security. I'm just going to assume the naysayers are well off right now and financially in a good place, so don't truly care. I'm not a fan of all our PC hardware costing more of course, heck I buy used parts because that's what I used to be able to afford and now even used is 2x/3x the price. I'll never get my dream builds now. But I totally understand what's going on and why.
Wow, that's a lot of delusion and twisting of the truth for one post. I mean, is it true that a certain amount of people have gotten modestly rich (i.e. have made a few thousand dollars or more) off crypto that weren't before? Sure. I would guesstimate something in the mid tens of thousands globally at best. That does literally nothing at all to change the global distribution of wealth, combat poverty, or fight for a fairer and more equitable society. (According to the World Bank, around 700 million people live in extreme poverty, defined as living on less than US$1.90/day. How many of those do you think can buy a crypto rig?) It wouldn't even make a dent in the US alone, where 34 million people live in poverty. In fact it does the opposite, by cementing mechanisms in which the already wealthy are given further avenues of making their money grow. Not to mention, of course, that a likely similar if not higher number of people lost tons and tons of money the last time crypto crashed.

You need to start from a position of relative privilege to get off the ground mining crypto at all. You need knowledge and access to relevant equipment, most of which is expensive, so you need access to either cash or loans. That already excludes the vast majority of the global poor - but crucially also the vast majority of the poor in rich countries like the US - but also opens the door wide for the wealthy, for whom the cost of entry is essentially irrelevant. If you're used to trading stocks or commodities in the tens of thousands of dollars or more, setting up a couple of crypto rigs in a warehouse somewhere is a cheap gamble. Paying someone to set it up for you is also a negligable cost for the wealthy.

But ultimately, what you're arguing for here is just the virtuousness of selfishness in a predatory capitalist society. Which ... I mean, I get it, but it's counterproductive and only serves to maintain the status quo. Rather than take meaningful political action to make the society you're in work better (by, say, taxing the rich and through that ensuring living wages, universal healthcare, good working conditions, paid sick leave, vacation pay, livable pensions, etc. etc., i.e. resisting and fighting to change the current state of the system of government that has been shaped to dramatically benefit the wealthy over the past half century) you're arguing for a "everyone for themselves" ideology. Again: understandable given the circumstances, but also highly cynical and ultimately only serving to maintain a bad situation. There will always be more losers or people unable to take part in something like this than winners. The illusion that "anyone can win" is what keeps predatory capitalism going, as it lulls poor people into thinking they can be the one to get rich, when the odds of that in reality are near zero. Class and social mobility in the US has near stagnated over the past decades while the wealth of the richest has exploded, and neoliberal economic policies (which, to be clear, are also propagated by so-called "conservatives") serve to ensure that the wealth of the rich is never threatened, but rather consolidated and made safer. For any real change to take place, that needs to change, and saying "screw everyone else, I can get rich on crypto" is just a) a huge gamble, given the risk of a crash, and b) presenting selfishness as a virtue in lieu of fighting for meaningful change.

As for those of us critical of this being "well off right now and financially in a good place": sorry, but that's pretty myopic. Many of us are likely either living in societies where people are treated better than in the US, or know of the very real possibility of such a society. You're treating the current absolute shitshow that is working conditions in the US as a natural and unchangeable default ("live off minimum wage or go to work 40hrs a week with an hour or more drive and back" etc.), and you're falsely presenting the gamble of getting moderately rich off crypto as "true freedom". But within a system where money is the only determinant of success and the only real measure of power, no such thing as true freedom can ever exist. Everyone is a slave to money, whether it's the poor who don't have it or the rich who become obsessed by hoarding it through fear of losing it (as losing it would entail a total loss of security). Thankfully, all of this can relatively easily be moderated through political action. I don't know of any form of society where "true freedom" is possible (that leads us into some really heavy philosophical questions), but more freedom for more people is very easily achievable through better taxation and redistribution of wealth, even within capitalist systems. Just look to the nordics - our wages aren't quite as high as in the US, but our standards of living are higher, we're healthier, safer, trust each other and our governments more (largely due to the societies being more just and thus ultimately more free), we live longer, have more free time, are happier, etc., etc. You're presenting giving in to a hostile system as a way out of that system. That's just self-delusion.
Posted on Reply
#75
JeffF
I swear the Hardware manufactures are the ones forcing/creating this crypto crap upon us. There is no other explanation for it. They are the ones profiting from it more than anyone.
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