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51 GPU Folding@home setup is a beast

51 GPU Folding@home setup is a beast

With forty six GPUs running folding@home calculations this is a seriously impressive setup.

Yesterday we reported that Nvidia had publicly released support for PhysX and other CUDA applications for its 8,9 and GTX 2xx series of graphics cards. It seems that this has certainly caught the attention of Folding@home teams, with the parallel processing power of a high end GPU seemingly far ahead of quad core processor or even PS3 based Folding.

It really shouldn't have come as a surprise to see someone take this new technology and run with it, which is exactly what forum member nitteo has done over at overclock.net.

With forty six seperate 8 series Nvidia GPUs, mostly 8800GTs and 8800GS' running in a variety of quad, tri and standard SLI set-ups nitteo has created an epic folding farm and he's not done yet, with an eventual target of 51 GPUs!

Even at its current state, the folding farm is able to produce an incredible 265,200 points per day - impressive when you consider that the whole bit-tech folding@home team have only crunched through 5,999,851 points since the team was created in 2003! In less than a month he's going to overtake us!

Folding@home is certainly a worthier cause to lend all that hardware too than trying to run Crysis (although we still doubt that farm could run it at 2560x1600 at very high, but that's beside the point) and it's certainly a noble contribution to pay for all the electricity required to power all that hardware - we don't want to think how much all the juice required to power this setup would cost.

If you fancy lending your 8,9 or GTX 2xx series Nvidia graphics card to the Folding@home cause, why not join the bit-tech team?

Do you think Folding@home is a good use of computer hardware? Or is it just a big waste of electricity and hardware? Will you bother running Folding@home with fuel and electricity costs continuing to rise? Let us know in the forums.

24 Comments

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Paradigm Shifter 14th August 2008, 11:35 Quote
I agree that Folding@Home is for a good cause... but my electricity bill is already higher than I would like, and I don't leave my systems running when they don't have to be. Of course, my electricity bill is probably so high because of a horribly power inefficient freezer. :(
Bionic-Blob 14th August 2008, 11:37 Quote
if he's got the money to buy that many GPUs, i doubt electricity will be a problem xD

props to him though
wuyanxu 14th August 2008, 11:55 Quote
go Bit-tech team! come on people!

the thing is, i highly doubt the power-to-calculation ratio that farm produces. surely it'd be more effecient to put an IBM's new super computer at work than to use a home-made processing farm. apart from the GPU's stream processors, there's also got to be CPU and hard disk/flash to power.
TomH 14th August 2008, 12:03 Quote
I would hate to see his electricity bill!
ChaosDefinesOrder 14th August 2008, 12:04 Quote
"It really shouldn't of come as a surprise"

you mean shouldn't HAVE come as a surprise

*sigh*
Krikkit 14th August 2008, 12:10 Quote
That looks like an awesome setup.

The good thing about this is we will probably start to see larger institutions (interested in parallel processed research) building large numbers of these kinds of clusters - given the cheap power of the GPU, and how easy it is to get them fitted into a small space, it'd make a very effective thing indeed, rather than having big clusters of normal PC's.
kenco_uk 14th August 2008, 12:15 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChaosDefinesOrder
"It really shouldn't of come as a surprise"

you mean shouldn't HAVE come as a surprise

*sigh*

Correct it, or I'm reporting you to the Grammar Police and they're not a nice bunch of people. I've heard they're now involving some sort of revolving bull as an instrument of torture.

2nd para 'It really shouldn't of come as a surprise' - it's HAVE. HAVE. ffs.
Timmy_the_tortoise 14th August 2008, 12:21 Quote
Bit-tech has a folding team?

I'm joining that.. I want to be in a team!
rjkoneill 14th August 2008, 12:52 Quote
i agree it is for a good cause

i read "folding will cure disease and lead to a brighter future for next generations"
thats not going to happen if the planet dies first though is it

carbon footprint of that rig must be massive
i understand research must be done - the intention of folding is good - but the logistics of it make it a hypocracy
Veles 14th August 2008, 13:33 Quote
Oh don't worry, he can offset his footprint with carbon credits
Timmy_the_tortoise 14th August 2008, 15:45 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Veles
Oh don't worry, he can offset his footprint with carbon credits

EW!
ComputerKing 14th August 2008, 15:58 Quote
dude do you image the HEAT ! I don't care about the bill, But HEAT + NOISE! that dude will kill him self soon !!!
devdevil85 14th August 2008, 16:07 Quote
This guy has way too much money. Atleast it's going towards a good cause, right?
ParaHelix.org 14th August 2008, 16:55 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bionic-Blob
if he's got the money to buy that many GPUs, i doubt electricity will be a problem xD

props to him though

Too true, too true lol. That must have cost a shed full of cash.
p3n 14th August 2008, 17:05 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by TomH
I would hate to see his electricity bill!

He could have some sort of solar/wind generators in which case they would probably pay HIM some months :)
pendragon 14th August 2008, 17:50 Quote
that's amazing.. I wish I had that kind of money. The folding project is genius - what a great way to help the rest of the world with geek power!
ZERO <ibis> 14th August 2008, 20:03 Quote
I used to run it whenever my system was not in use, then I went to college and I can not afford to keep this thing on to play games let alone 24 hours. I am still trying to figure out a way to smart manage the energy of my home server before implementing it.
robaal 14th August 2008, 20:57 Quote
Huh, he only needed 500W PSUs for the quad-GPU rigs... one of them even uses a 430W Antec.

btw. assuming 13 rigs (52GPUs) with a power draw of 430W each and a price per kWh of 0.1USD his monthly bill for the farm would be about 400USD.
Jojii 14th August 2008, 21:24 Quote
If you read the forum at overclocker the guy financed the purchase through his nursing company were he takes care of people about to die and he lost some family members to cancer. He believes that the folding project will help stimulate research for the issues he has to deal with.

oh and he said that price/performance ratio is way better than using quads. aparently he sold a c2q farm to help with the initial purchase price.

edit: oh and he is running vista
LordPyrinc 14th August 2008, 23:07 Quote
At least he can save a little bit in heating bills. The heat from that room alone could be blown by fans and ductwork to other rooms to minimize his home heating costs during the winter months.
Amon 15th August 2008, 01:04 Quote
I don't think it's worth it. Too many cycles are wasted from missed deadlines. The whole distributed computing schema needs to be revised for improved, assured returns.
Crunch77 15th August 2008, 08:09 Quote
That is just amazing. Good job. :)
Quote:
Originally Posted by kenco_uk
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChaosDefinesOrder
"It really shouldn't of come as a surprise"

you mean shouldn't HAVE come as a surprise

*sigh*

Correct it, or I'm reporting you to the Grammar Police and they're not a nice bunch of people. I've heard they're now involving some sort of revolving bull as an instrument of torture.

2nd para 'It really shouldn't of come as a surprise' - it's HAVE. HAVE. ffs.

The above can bear repeating. It even irks me, as a foreign English speaker. ;)
Icy EyeG 15th August 2008, 11:14 Quote
I must say I'm very impressed with this folding farm. I really can't imagine his powerbill...
On the hand, NVIDIA's client for F@H is a great contribution: take a look at its TFLOP count!
sadlydefiant 19th August 2008, 12:57 Quote
To put together just one of those setups with 4 x 8800gt's would cost a few thousand AU dollars.
I do seti and folding on the one machine and it would rake me many, many years to get the kind of points that he would acheive in one day..
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