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Got another brain for Orac


  08:38:00 pm, by The Dreamer   , 601 words  
Categories: Hardware, Software, Computer, BOINC, Storage, Ubuntu

Got another brain for Orac

Well, getting Orac up and running turned out to be a bit more challenging.

First it booted and I saw video...at least that was good, I jumped into BIOS to check settings...and things looked fine already. So, I let it boot up. It started out okay, but then it changed the video settings that didn't work too well. And, then the X display was pretty poor...the normal thing that happens when Orac boots and the monitor isn't active. But, I couldn't make it go 1280x1024, etc.

Did some searching around, and seemed like I needed to go with nVidia's drivers instead of the nv (nouveau) drivers. Though the ones out of the normal ubuntu repo were worse. X wouldn't start at all. Even went into failsafe once. The boot up video problem was solved by blacklisting the vga16fb. Eventually, I found that what I was that I needed go even newer from a PPA - ppa:ubuntu-x-swat/x-updates Invoked its nvidia-xconfig, and at least I got a display when...but the video modes wouldn't go. Had to go online and find the frequency range for my display, and fix the xorg.conf by hand.


Meanwhile, I had peeked at what BOINC was thinking of things, and it was saying no GPU detected. I tweaked some settings and restarted, and it worked. Later I read some of the other google hits, and found suggestion that boinc-client startup should be changed from S20* to S98* to that it starts after the module detection of the card. So, I put that change in, hopefully it'll work.

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Comment from: The Dreamer [Member]  

Not sure if its the GT440 or the stable Nvidia driver I’m using, or the version of BOINC (though recently updated to the latest recommended version from ubuntu.)

But, GPUGRID and Einstein WUs keep failing to complete. (so, I’ve had to take Orac out of GPUGRID and set Einstein to not send GPU WUs.)

But, Milkway and Seti@Home GPU WUs work fine.

I had tried updating both the Nvidia driver (from Nvidia.com) and the 6.12 version of BOINC…but it broke my server, and it was a pain unbreaking things… And, BOINC is just to take idle CPU….

I had tried letting it use GPU all the time, rather than just when idle…but that didn’t help with the crashing GPUGRID/Einstein units….so its back to only use GPU when idle.

07/08/11 @ 12:08
Comment from: The Dreamer [Member]  

Wonder if I’ll ever get around to trying the PCI project….feeling less motivated to buy stuff from eBay as much now….and so far limited options to add it to another order from a different place (or hadn’t thought to look at other times….)

07/08/11 @ 12:10
Comment from: The Dreamer [Member]  

I thought about switching the GT440 in ORAC for the GT420 in Zen to see if it would be better at getting more GPU work done under Windows 7 rather than Ubuntu. ‘cause the Windows7/Zen/GT420 can complete the GPUGRID WUs, it often doesn’t get it in sufficiently under the wire to count. The GT440 would could do better at meeting the deadline.

Anyways…275 was released through the PPA last night, I rebooted after installing and tried a GPUGRID WU, It failed. Guess Orac will just stick to Seti@Home and Milkway@Home GPU workunits.

Meanwhile…the reason I didn’t shuffle the GT440 for the GT420, is that I had planned to get a GTS450 razor (or perhaps a GTX460 razor, if the price comes down a lot.) and cycle the GT420 into GUMBY…hopefully the GT420 is small enough to fit the limited space available for separate video in there (ignoring that the back connector is also non-standard….)

Not sure what I’m going to put in the LHAVEN replacement….Since I’m thinking AMD processor, I may have to find out how Radeon and BOINC get together…..

07/09/11 @ 10:34
Comment from: The Dreamer [Member]  

Well, seems my previous display lockup problem was Nvidia 275. Originally, I had upgraded both Boinc and Nvidia, and downgraded both to recover. So, I wasn’t sure.

But, since my Nvidia driver updated to 275 via PPA (and no upgrade to boinc…) the display lockup problem has returned.

Wonder how to revert to a prior PPA version (but newer than regular ubuntu sources)?

07/10/11 @ 18:14
Now instead of subjecting some poor random forum to a long rambling thought, I will try to consolidate those things into this blog where they can be more easily ignored profess to be collected thoughts from my mind.

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