Folding@home: We test the £32000 Orion X2, And let you know how you can join the fight!
If you own a PC you can donate some of its spare computing power to help accelerate research against Covid-19 and other diseases such as Alzheimer's, Cancer and Parkinsons. Gaming PC just so happens to be perfect for the job due to that all-important GPU and unless you’re in the middle of a gaming session it’s often sat idle. After all, you’re not using your RTX 2080 to its full potential when you’re just browsing Reddit.
PC Gamers, let’s put those GPUs to work. Join us in supporting folding@home and donating unused GPU computing power to fight against COVID-19
Check out how fast folding@home is on the beastly Orion X2!
What is Folding@Home?
The piece of software you need to download to start putting your system to work is called folding@home. You might have heard the name before as it was developed in 2000 by Stanford University and people have been running it on computers, gaming consoles and even some phones ever since. It takes its name from protein folding which is the mechanism all this processing power is being used to simulate. Understanding how different proteins move and interact is an important part of developing new life-saving therapies. Trying to run these simulations on a single PC would take years so folding@home uses distributed computing to share the load.
“Viruses also have proteins that they use to suppress our immune systems and reproduce themselves. To help tackle coronavirus, we want to understand how these viral proteins work and how we can design therapeutics to stop them.”
-Greg Bowman, Folding@Home Director
How to use folding@home
- Step one is to visit foldingathome.org and download the installer. Within a few seconds, you will be able to open the program which also opens a browser window. The browser window is how you control and monitor your folding progress.
- You are given the option to begin straight away anonymously or create an identity so you can earn points. If you’re competitive this allows you to appear in the folding statistics which is essentially a leaderboard of top-performing individuals and teams.
- If you want to focus your efforts on Coronavirus research make sure to select “Any disease” from the “I support research fighting” menu as various Covid-19 Work units are prioritised.
- As you can imagine Folding@home can put a heavy load on your system. However, there are different settings within the control panel that mean you can continue working as normal without interruption. Selecting the only while idle setting or adjusting the power reduces any negative impact on performance so you can continue to scroll Reddit in peace.