Saturday, March 2, 2024

2nd of March

The cluster is currently off, but as the weather cools down a bit it will start running sporadically.

I managed to get a single Pi5 (4GB model) which I was going to use for Chia storage, but am now thinking I might use it as a support node for the cluster. The supplier would only let me buy one and I have to wait 28 days before I can order another which is rather frustrating.

I had an order to get updated Edge Cluster 12's with Pi5's but have heard nothing since last year. Time to chase up BitScope to see if they have an ETA. Given the other suppliers limiting orders I would expect they are waiting on stock like every one else.

Saturday, December 30, 2023

Progress as of 30th of December 2023

This is where Marks Rpi Cluster is as of the 30th of December for Einstein@home. Total credit is 27,714,004 and recent average is a measly 4,632 credits.

As you can see I have restarted the cluster a number of times only to have to power it down again when it gets too hot.


Cluster make up
As of the 30th of December the cluster is made up of:

3 x Pi4 (2GB) as support nodes
24 x Pi4 (8GB) as compute nodes

I have ordered Pi5's but am still waiting on my supplier. They thought they would be available in December 2023 but clearly that was wrong.

Saturday, December 9, 2023

10th of December

Marks Rpi Cluster is running overnight due to summer heat. It had a 3 week break while I went on a cruise, but now I am back we are running when the temperatures drop.

ext4 file corruption
Debian discovered the kernel they are pushing out in their 12.3 point release (kernel 6.1.64) has an ext4 file system corruption bug. It was fixed in the 6.1.66 kernel but Debian haven't updated to it yet. How does this effect the Raspberry Pi I hear you ask, well they are on the 6.1.63 kernel as I write this, which presumably has the bug but the Raspberry Pi foundation apply additional patches to their kernel so it may not be an issue. The bug effects older kernels (5.10 and 5.15) as well.

No news yet on when I can expect to receive Pi5's for the cluster. I was told December 2023 however most Australian websites where you can order them are suggesting no new stock until February 2024.

Some users on the einstein@home forums have Pi5's and have been running benchmarks for the various BOINC projects. Asteroids@home and Universe@home both had good improvements but the einstein@home BRP4 app hardly improved suggesting their app is inefficient. 

Friday, October 27, 2023

Fan casualty

Marks Rpi Cluster is back to running 24/7.

Fan Casualty
Last week I opened up the 2nd EC12 (Edge Cluster 12) so I could re-image the micro SD cards with Raspberry Pi OS 12. Yes I still use SD cards. While I had the back off I decided to give it a clean using a paint brush and air blower. I put it back together and got all the Pis going but there was a lot of fan noise when under load. After a bit of investigating I found one of the 80mm fans was not spinning.

There are two fans on the back of the EC12 to draw the warm air out of the case. The fans on the EC12 are only 10mm thick, normal fans are 20mm so I couldn't just swap it with a regular PC fan. I got in contact with Bitscope and went to their office this week and they gave me a couple of spare fans for free.

We're back to running on all 24 Pi4's now (each EC12 holds 12 Pis) and its running the Einstein@home BRP4 work.

Pi5s ordered
I've ordered a couple of additional EC12's with 24 x Pi5 8GB but Bitscope don't have firm dates for when they will get stock of the Pi5. They think it will be December 2023. It seems Raspberry Pi are limiting the current stock to hobbyists, so a limit of one per person. This gives Bitscope a bit of time to make changes to support the Pi5.