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Author Topic: Setting up miner  (Read 932 times)
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June 19, 2011, 09:47:06 PM
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Hi, I'm running a Windows 2008 32 bit server as my domain controller and file server and web server and thought I could run a bitcoin miner on it as it is running anyway 24 hours a day. The only problem is that it is running on very old hardware (around 5-10 years old), so no GPU support and even the CPU is slow (Pentium 4, 2.8GHz). But as it doesn't cost my anything to let some software run permanently on it, should I do it or is it not worth it? I would also have an unused latest generation (around 6 month old) Mac Mini, but I would have to turn it on which costs energy (0.1787 CHF/kWh at day, 0.1167 CHF/kWh at night). Also I have several PCs available that could get the software installed, so they mine in the background, but none has strong graphical power.

Questions:
1. When I run the official Windows client, is it mining? Or is this client only for transactions?
2. Why is the official client using exactly 50% CPU? If it's mining, then I would expect 100% CPU, if not I'd expect ~0%.
3. What software should I install on my old server to do CPU mining?
4. What are the security risks running a miner on a server having the ports open? Or can mining be done "offline", transferring the results only manually once a day or so?
5. Is it worth powering up the Mac Mini running any miner? If yes, which one?
6. Is it worth letting *any* mining software run on the server or is this way to slow anyway?
7. The official client didn't ask me any setup questions. Where are my bitcoins if I get any through mining or transactions?
8. How would I join a mining group? Do I need special software for that? The official client has no options.

Please no guessing. But if you have a clear answer to any single question, I'd greatly appreciate the answer. Or ask if you need to know more details. Thanks for helping.
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June 19, 2011, 10:26:23 PM
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CPU mining isn't worth it at all.
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June 19, 2011, 10:44:49 PM
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What if we mine using CPU while mining whith GPU.
Haventr tried that out yet.
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June 19, 2011, 10:59:41 PM
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1) The official Windows client does not mine and is only for transactions. You need a separate mining application for that. In fact, you can pool mine without installing the Windows client, but you can't get your payments until you have an address.

2) I know you don't want a guess, but you really did not give enough information. My guess, though, is that you have a dual core and have -threads=1 or some some thing. You will want 2 threads to use 100% CPU.

3) You shouldn't CPU mining is good for a proof of concept, but the electricity costs of running your CPU at 100% are higher than your btc revenue. You should never do CPU mining. If you really insist, I've had good experience with rpcminer-cpu.exe in my own POC.

4) The security risks are minimal since it is outgoing connections, but there are still some. I don't really want to go into a long discussion on this, but you have more risk from your operating system than from this one utility. I'm not sure if you can solo mine offline, but you cannot pool mine offline and the only way you will see anything appreciable is if you pool mine on deepbit with PPS.

5) No

6) It is not worth it. It is too slow. If you do not believe me, run rpcminer on deepbit and see how much btc you get. A few days of this won't break you.

7) Don't know. This part is still a little abstract for me.

8 ) This is easy. Go to http://www.deepbit.net and sign up. Then you run your miner like this:
rpcminer-cpu.exe -url=http://deepbit.net:8332 -user=%USER% -password=%PW% -threads=2
If you don't know how to run command line stuff, you might want to use GUIMiner instead.

Once you have 1 bitcent (my guess is this will take two weeks or so), you can cash out to the address in your Windows client.




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June 20, 2011, 09:02:19 PM
 #5

Thanks Fjordbit. Although it doesn't answer all my questions, it's a real good start for me and really helps. Thank you!
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June 20, 2011, 09:14:45 PM
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Open questions are: 1, 2, 7. For 2: yes, I have an old dual CPU (each single core) motherboard as my client PC (running Vista 32). But I didn't give any thread limitations and I was talking about the official client, not about any miner. So the question remains why it's using CPU at all.

And if I understood you correctly, it's not worth running *any* mining software on the server (although the server is running anyway), because the miner would increase CPU usage causing more electricity costs not worth the results. Correct?
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June 20, 2011, 09:39:07 PM
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Open questions are: 1, 2, 7. For 2: yes, I have an old dual CPU (each single core) motherboard as my client PC (running Vista 32). But I didn't give any thread limitations and I was talking about the official client, not about any miner. So the question remains why it's using CPU at all.

What version of the client are you using. My understanding is that old clients do have miners in them, so that might be why you are seeing this. I am using 0.3.32-beta and there is no miner.

And if I understood you correctly, it's not worth running *any* mining software on the server (although the server is running anyway), because the miner would increase CPU usage causing more electricity costs not worth the results. Correct?

That's correct, but at the same time I encourage you to download and try it just as a proof of concept to understand how it works. I think doing these steps is worth it.
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June 21, 2011, 04:25:06 PM
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What version of the client are you using. My understanding is that old clients do have miners in them, so that might be why you are seeing this. I am using 0.3.32-beta and there is no miner.
Yes, I'm using 0.3.23 Win exe, downloaded from the start page bitcoin.org.

That's correct, but at the same time I encourage you to download and try it just as a proof of concept to understand how it works. I think doing these steps is worth it.
Ok, thanks.
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June 21, 2011, 04:31:11 PM
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Yes.  CPU mining will definitely cost more in electricity than you're likely to see in coins.

With GPUs, you're roughly 10:1 ahead at the moment (though that number is decreasing quickly as difficulty rises).

edited to clarify: 

When I wrote that, CPU mining was already behind electric costs.

GPU mining was 10:1 ahead of electric.   It's down around 5:1 with ATI cards now, and nvidia cards are probably not breaking even anymore.

1HpByTQ6gCCpV8BdJFTy64EUQckrTE5JSw
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June 21, 2011, 04:54:33 PM
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I used my quad core 2.6GHz cpu and I was getting 10mHash/s.  I dropped in a 6970 and I'm getting like 335mHash/s.  Big difference.
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