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Author Topic: HOWTO: Set up and optimize your mining computer!  (Read 14502 times)
humanage
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February 05, 2012, 02:47:28 AM
 #1

I have created a tutorial on how to optimize your mining rig after days of trying out different settings and looking for things one at a time. If you are reading this, I assume that you already have a computer for mining and that it has AMD graphics cards / GPUs.

1. Find the right drivers for your card(s).
The absolute first thing you'll want to do is find the right drivers for your AMD card. Most users report that 11.4-11.12 drivers work for them best. You can find these at AMD's website: http://support.amd.com/us/gpudownload/Pages/index.aspx

2. Find the best SDK for your card(s).
SDK is a "Software Development Kit" needed to run GPU mining software. Most users report that SDK 2.4 and 2.5 work best for them. I suggest you try 2.4, then upgrade to 2.5(change back to 2.4 if you got better results with it)
AMD's official SDK can be found here: http://developer.amd.com/sdks/AMDAPPSDK/downloads/pages/AMDAPPSDKDownloadArchive.aspx

3. Find the best mining software for your card(s)
Mining software is used to mine bitcoins. There isn't simply a best mining software, you have to experiment with them and their options. Some good ones to try are "cgminer" and GUIMiner". I use GUIMiner because I get better hashrates with it(more bitcoins per second) and because it is user friendly. It therefore what I strongly recommend to beginners. To find the latest version, simply search "GUIMiner" on Google.


4. Find the best flags for your mining software
This process is very simple. You will be putting this into the "Extra Flags" box in GUIMiner. A good place to find a set is: https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Mining_hardware_comparison#AMD_.28ATI.29

5. (Optional) Overclock your graphics card and underclock memory
Before you start this step, please note that doing this improperly may cause damage to your graphics card(s) and I am not responsible for this. If you are afraid to overclock, you may skip this step. If you would like to overclock, I'd suggest searching the safe voltage, temperature, and clocks for your graphics card on Google. To overclock, you need a software such as MSI Afterburner(works with all brands): http://event.msi.com/vga/afterburner/download.htm
You can search for tutorial on overclocking using Google. Smiley Note: underclocking memory to an extent generally increases mining performance, core clock overclocking ability, and lowers temperatures.

6. Select a mining pool
You need to select a mining pool(a site where you can work with others to get bitcoins into you wallet more quickly). There are quite a few. You can find one that suits your needs here: https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Comparison_of_mining_pools
You can also search the web for a pool with good reviews. Smiley

7.  Disable Windows Aero
If you are running a Windows based computer on Windows 7 or Vista, this will squeeze out a few extra Megahashes per second: http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/windows-vista/disable-aero-on-windows-vista/

You are now set in the realm of GPU Bitcoin Mining! Cheesy

Tip for users with multiple graphics cards: Disable crossfire! Crossfire enabled gives you less performance while mining!

If you found this tutorial useful, please consider donating a small sum here: 15E9xBNWWvuURi2LLx8T6cMU1LyckiQntY
If you have any questions or anything for me to add to this tutorial, please comment below. Smiley

Mining rig(s): MH/s
2x 5970 @ 820MHz Core/300MHz Memory ~ 1480MH/s
GTX 570 @ 840MHz Core/1900MHz Memory ~ 129MH/s
Consider donating if I helped: 15E9xBNWWvuURi2LLx8T6cMU1LyckiQntY
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deslok
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February 05, 2012, 02:58:39 AM
 #2

interesting little tutorial, you missed poclbm/pheonix (both of which are included in guiminer) as the actual miner. you've also got some typos (uderclocking in the last line of section 5 sticks out, i didn't know cows had a clockspeed)

you also forgot to mention pool selection, assuming anyone who is reading this isn't large enough to consider solomining (which should be anyone below the 10gh mark currently) they're going to want to find a pool that results in the lowest stales (this is affected by a few factors on both your and the pools end)

"If we don't hang together, by Heavens we shall hang separately." - Benjamin Franklin

If you found that funny or something i said useful i always appreciate spare change
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humanage
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February 05, 2012, 03:01:56 AM
 #3

interesting little tutorial, you missed poclbm/pheonix (both of which are included in guiminer) as the actual miner. you've also got some typos (uderclocking in the last line of section 5 sticks out, i didn't know cows had a clockspeed)

you also forgot to mention pool selection, assuming anyone who is reading this isn't large enough to consider solomining (which should be anyone below the 10gh mark currently) they're going to want to find a pool that results in the lowest stales (this is affected by a few factors on both your and the pools end)

I'll look at my typos and add a pool part. Smiley

Mining rig(s): MH/s
2x 5970 @ 820MHz Core/300MHz Memory ~ 1480MH/s
GTX 570 @ 840MHz Core/1900MHz Memory ~ 129MH/s
Consider donating if I helped: 15E9xBNWWvuURi2LLx8T6cMU1LyckiQntY
cypherdoc
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February 05, 2012, 05:14:03 PM
 #4

i looked at my AMD driver and have APP SDK RUNTIME.  hashing at 402Mh/s with my 6970's.  would this improve with APP SDK 2.5?
deslok
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February 05, 2012, 05:24:27 PM
 #5

i looked at my AMD driver and have APP SDK RUNTIME.  hashing at 402Mh/s with my 6970's.  would this improve with APP SDK 2.5?

current updates to the SDK are likely to focus on supporting and improving perfrormance of 7xxx series cards, if you see an improvement it'll likely be outweighed by the time taken to upgrade the SDK(however do check it's changelog anyway for refrences to 6xxx series cards just to double check)

"If we don't hang together, by Heavens we shall hang separately." - Benjamin Franklin

If you found that funny or something i said useful i always appreciate spare change
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February 09, 2012, 06:57:46 PM
 #6

A very nice overview toot. Not bloated with excessive details and yet gives a very good idea of the processes involved.

For Bitcoin to be a true global currency the value of BTC needs always to rise.
If BTC became the global currency & money supply = 100 Trillion then ⊅1.00 BTC = $4,761,904.76.
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Elmojo
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February 09, 2012, 07:54:48 PM
 #7

Great straightforward tutorial, thanks!
Tapeworm3
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February 11, 2012, 05:18:33 PM
 #8

Thanks
Miner612
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February 11, 2012, 08:57:35 PM
 #9

7 is nice and all ... but a lot easier to just change your computer to "run for best system performance" and it disables all that bullshit

I buy and sell GPUs, most 5850s and 7970s. 
jimzolorenzo@gmail.com  -- Make an offer.
http://myworld.ebay.com/i_buy_5850s  -- current inventory
I have a couple bare bone mining rigs for sale as well.

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I bought silver from [TECSHARE] -- shipping still
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