Bitmain asic SETI crunching

SETI@home and SETI BETA - project now closed, maybe for good :-(
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Slaine
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Bitmain asic SETI crunching

Post by Slaine » Wed Feb 26, 2020 8:28 pm

Just out of interest has anyone used old bitmain asic kit for seti crunching & is it even possible?

damienh
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Re: Bitmain asic SETI crunching

Post by damienh » Wed Feb 26, 2020 8:44 pm

I know some of the guys here made tons of credits via Bitcoin Utopia, and I believe that was via ASICs. They might be able to help.

I hadn't heard of SETI crunching with an ASIC miner before so looked around, as I'm sure you did. Looks like a limited set of applications and pretty fiddly to set up?

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Re: Bitmain asic SETI crunching

Post by Slaine » Wed Feb 26, 2020 9:34 pm

Ta,

I'm just a bit of a hoarder so still have a Bitmain S1, S3 & a S5, they are no use for mining anymore & apart from fan heaters I was just wondering about another tinkering project & whether they were better then standard gpu's for boinc use, if at all.

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Re: Bitmain asic SETI crunching

Post by damienh » Wed Feb 26, 2020 10:04 pm

Yes, seems like you have quite the hardware archive :)

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Re: Bitmain asic SETI crunching

Post by UBT - Timbo » Thu Feb 27, 2020 1:13 am

Hi both

A number of us bought up a few ASICs of many varieties...I have some Butterfly Labs 60 GH/s and RockMiners (both 35 GH/s and some 450GH/s models) in a box somewhere, which I'll get around to selling off at some point - though I started off with Bitmain miner USB sticks - starting with the 333 MH/s version and then getting the 1.6 GH/s version (though I've actually sold off all of these a while back).

The main reason was to earn BOINC credits as the Bitcoin Utopia "BOINC project" gave huge credits for hardly any real work...hence why Mark and I have earned "billions" of BOINC credits and besides which another UK team also started earning BOINC credits and we were in danger of losing our hard-worked for UK #1 position - but we saw them off in the end ;-)

I have seen the articles that SETI and Einstein might allow ASICs to crunch for them but I've not looked into it (though these articles are a few years old, in some cases).

[update]: It looks like someone (on a different website) has got the wrong end of the stick somewhere - originally the SETI and Einstein projects would be given "real money" by the Bitcoin Utopia project, once BOINC members joined Bitcoin Utopia, crunched some Bitcoins and then Bitcoin Utopia would distribute those funds to specific projects...and as I recall one could select on the BU project website which of the "worthy causes" your BTC would be donated to. So, you earned BOINC credits and BU gave the dollar value of the BTC to one of the worthy causes.

As such, up until now, no-one has coded a specific application that could be run on a ASIC miner to crunch "real" project data, in the same way that a CPU or a GPU can do.

Further info:
There's a new article that has just come out (Jan 2020) that says that the Bitcoin "halving" process will take place in May 2020 - so each miner will earn half the amount of Bitcoins (per period) that it would earn in the months beforehand. Which makes using a Bitcoin miner even less rewarding:

https://coindoo.com/are-usb-asic-miner- ... rofitable/

And yes, they are very good (and expensive) heaters to run in the winter months - also pretty noisy too.

regards
Tim

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Re: Bitmain asic SETI crunching

Post by damienh » Thu Feb 27, 2020 7:57 am


As such, up until now, no-one has coded a specific application that could be run on a ASIC miner to crunch "real" project data, in the same way that a CPU or a GPU can do.
This makes more sense to me now. The ASICs, by definition are very specific to solving bitcoin hashing. I couldn’t figure out how they were being used otherwise.

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Re: Bitmain asic SETI crunching

Post by Woodles » Thu Feb 27, 2020 9:15 am

Hi all,

The relevant point is the second letter of the name:
Application Specific Integrated Circuit.

ASICs are created to do one task and do it well. The Bitcoin ones run the Bitcoin hashing algorithm in hardware at a much, much higher rate than could be done in software but that's all they can do.

The Bitcoin ASICS WON'T run the SETI code, you'd need a brand new set of ASICs designing, producing and selling. It's not a cheap process. As mining Bitcoins directly generated money, there was an incentive for third parties to create the ASICs, there is little incentive for third party companies to spend money on generating SETI ASICs that only produce worthless Boinc Credits.

A bit of history. Bitcoin ASICs resulted in BU awarding extremely high Boinc credits but they were proportionate to the work done. Tasks were benchmarked on standard CPUs and then the credit scaled according to how much faster the ASICs could complete the same work, the same idea as GPUs getting ten times the credit of CPUs for doing the work ten times faster. David Anderson himself stated that the credits granted were an accurate representation of the work done.

Unless you have free electricity and already have the miners, these days mining Bitcoins is a sure way of losing money. There are other coins where you CAN make a profit but these use CPUs or GPUs.

Mark

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Re: Bitmain asic SETI crunching

Post by Slaine » Thu Feb 27, 2020 9:49 pm

Thanks for the explanation, fan heaters they shall stay then :)

I did actually use them to heat the conservatory in our old house, power usage was offset a bit by 4 x 170 watt solar panels & a couple of soladin 600 micro inverters, worked pretty well at the time.
But I always bought my stuff cheap, once you had to get bespoke psu's and all that faff on, I packed it in, on the plus side the psu I used for the antminer s5 is now in this pc.

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Re: Bitmain asic SETI crunching

Post by Woodles » Fri Feb 28, 2020 8:03 am

Mine were pretty good fan heaters :)

i swapped the cheap, noisy fans they came with for decent case fans (much quieter) and ran them off standard ATX PSUs. Like you, the fans and PSUs have since migrated to standard PC hosts and are still running today so a useful bit of recycling.

I could do with some free electricity though ... :D

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Re: Bitmain asic SETI crunching

Post by Slaine » Fri Feb 28, 2020 9:46 pm

Woodles wrote:
Fri Feb 28, 2020 8:03 am
Mine were pretty good fan heaters :)

i swapped the cheap, noisy fans they came with for decent case fans (much quieter) and ran them off standard ATX PSUs. Like you, the fans and PSUs have since migrated to standard PC hosts and are still running today so a useful bit of recycling.

I could do with some free electricity though ... :D
I'm guessing you're not too far away, but don't think I've enough cable to supply you some spare wattage :D

Woodles
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Re: Bitmain asic SETI crunching

Post by Woodles » Mon Mar 02, 2020 10:05 am

I don't think I would be (PE27?)

They'd need to be thick cables, my last electricity bill states -
Over the last 12 months you used 23,622kWh
It's renewable so apparently I've also saved 622 trees :D

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Re: Bitmain asic SETI crunching

Post by Slaine » Mon Mar 02, 2020 5:03 pm

Woodles wrote:
Mon Mar 02, 2020 10:05 am
I don't think I would be (PE27?)
I'd probably be able to use an extension lead :lol:

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