That’s right, the folding@home hostgator.com team is a reality and we’ve broken into the top 1,000 ranked teams!
Although we’ve kept this fairly low profile on our forum post here , we do have a large amount of users starting to come on board, so I’d like to present something a hosting company is doing to better the world.
The Folding@Home project by Stanford University is a distributed computing project used to create one of the largest supercomputers in the world. The client has long been used used as both a metric to measure processors and machines efficiency and also to help the cause. The project is distributed much in the way Seti@Home was, however, with a more direct human goal.
Just in case you’re wondering, “what is protein folding and why does this matter to me?”; the Folding@Home project simulates complex mathematical formulas about how these proteins fold, unfold, and misfold with the goal to hopefully one day learn better how many well known diseases, such as Alzheimer’s, Mad Cow (BSE), CJD, ALS, Huntington’s, Parkinson’s disease, and many Cancers and cancer-related syndromes actually work and occur. Results? Darn right! The project has already come up with a number of notable scientific results, and is with our help and yours, continues to go somewhere tangible as you can see at Stanford’s whitepage papers
As for how this all came about; I was first introduced to the project when I was looking for something better to do with my Spare CPU cycles than let them idle. A lot of people are worried that clients like this will hog CPU, but the beauty of this software is it scales and re-nices it self so well, so you can be running it and it will use a defined amount of CPU at all times, but when any other process needs the CPU it will throttle itself. You can literally play high end games with the client running, as it will just scale back.
I really began to get involved in the project when I picked up a PS3. I wanted to put the powerful Cell processor through it’s paces so I immediately downloaded the client and started running work units. Now, as an administrator here I began thinking how helpful it could be if some of the machines we have that idle certain days of the week at HostGator were to fold in the background while the machine was not in use. NAS boxes were the perfect solution, and now we’re about to break the 1,000,000 point milestone.
So, do you want to help humanity and have a chance at free hosting? Well help us out and we’ll help you! Here’s what to do :
- Go to http://folding.stanford.edu/ and download the appropriate client for your operating system, and if you have a dual or quad core make sure you get the High Performance SMP client. (If you have a PS3 you can install it directly from the PS3 crossbar interface)
- Install folding@home and use team number 122600 , you can enter anything for your Donor name but we would prefer you use either your forum name so we can better contact you for your prize(or your wordpress login name)
- Start folding and leave it running. Don’t be surprised if it takes a while for you to start getting work units (these things are huge), the more machines you have it running on and the faster the machines, the quicker you will break milestones.
Prizes will be calculated by contributions to the team based on performance. Dead line to see who can get the most milestones will be on 07/01/2008. At that time winner will need to claim prize by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org with their donor name.
1. GRAND PRIZE (1 winner)
The top contributor who contributes the most points to the team will get a free year of hosting on our Aluminum reseller plan or equivalent in credit to existing HostGator plan if already a customer.
2. FIRST PRIZE (1 winner)
Runner up will receive a free year of hosting on our Swamp hosting plan (or equivalent).
3. SECOND PRIZES (8 winners)
Following 8 runners up will receive 6 months of free hosting on the Baby hosting plan (or equivalent)
I’d like to extend a special thanks to every team member both from our employee pool and some of our very active forum members and customers currently active (over 345 active CPU’s) and especially to both our owner Brent Oxley and our CTO David Collins for allowing me to run this on each and every one of our network backup servers to create a huge grid.
Statistics links :