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Martin Johnson
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Message 24996 - Posted 6 Nov 2006 5:43:50 UTC

    Since about 24 hours ago, when I change the Default General Preferences on this web-site and then press the update button in my Boinc Manager, the messages tab reports that my Scheduler Request has Succeeded, but then does not add the lines saying my preferences have been updated, and, indeed, they have not.
    But it does work the other way. If I use another project to change the preferences it does report correctly, and when I press Update Climate, those prefs get transferred to Climate.
    I have re-booted twice since the problem was first found, and that has not corrected it.

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    Message 24997 - Posted 6 Nov 2006 6:31:42 UTC

      Changes to Preferences in any Project propagate to all Projects, as you experienced.

      I\'m not aware of any Preferences update problems on the CPDN side. Did you remember to click Update Prefs after you made the change and before going to the Manager\'s Update?

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      Message 25003 - Posted 6 Nov 2006 18:18:14 UTC

        Yes. I usually press return, but as a test I pressed the actual button. The screen always refreshes with the red notice that preferences have been updated, but they then do not transfer to my machine.
        Someone else with more than one project needs to test this. Make a small change to prefs in CPDN, update Boinc, then update another project in Boinc, and see if the change has propagated to that other project\'s preference pages.

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        Message 25005 - Posted 6 Nov 2006 18:25:21 UTC

          Very strange.

          (I can\'t help with the test because this is my only project, now that I\'ve bailed-out of CPDN Seasonal Attribution.)

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          Message 25007 - Posted 6 Nov 2006 19:57:15 UTC

            You could still help, if you want. After making the small change in CPDN general prefs, updating that and then Boinc Manager, that change should then appear in your global_prefs.xml file.

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            Message 25009 - Posted 7 Nov 2006 1:28:13 UTC

              Hmmmm...

              They were having a similar problem at Seti. I think it was related to a server software upgrade.
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              Message 25010 - Posted 7 Nov 2006 1:28:32 UTC

                Done. It is as you said and worse, the \"Suspend network activity fails to work after that. (Tried on two boxes.)

                I\'ll send an email to Carl, though it might be a boinc issue.
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                Message 25012 - Posted 7 Nov 2006 3:37:22 UTC

                  Kathryn - yes, I saw something about this some time ago, but it seems to be ok now (with Seti).
                  Astro - thanks for the confirmation. You have raised an anomaly. If nothing transfers back to one\'s machine(s), how can the Suspend Network Activity go inactive? There is no option for that in Prefs!

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                  Message 25013 - Posted 7 Nov 2006 4:36:12 UTC

                    Martin, FYI: Seems I bucked before I was spurred. Waited a minute or two for \"Suspend network activity\" to take effect on each of the two boxes (long beyond reason in my opinion) before making my last post.

                    Wasn\'t long enough. Minutes ago, when I went back to check the Runs, thinking to re-boot to set things right, the Messages logs showed that both machines\' network activity suspended seconds short of five minutes after I entered the command. (That suggests some sort of time-out to me.)

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                    Message 25018 - Posted 7 Nov 2006 11:50:45 UTC - in response to Message 25013.

                      I tried it out on my work PC (I run SETI@home as well as CPDN right now), and although the red \"update preferences\" doesn\'t show up in messages, the global_prefs.xml file has been updated.

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                      Message 25020 - Posted 7 Nov 2006 18:43:15 UTC

                        Thanks, Carl.

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                        Message 25030 - Posted 8 Nov 2006 5:09:39 UTC

                          The red message appears on the preference page after an update, not in Boinc Messages. The black message should appear in B M that the preferences have been updated, which does not happen. And my machine does not get updated. Note, this only seems to happen in updating DEFAULT General Prefernces.

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                          Message 25032 - Posted 8 Nov 2006 13:31:23 UTC

                            Last modified: 8 Nov 2006 13:42:57 UTC

                            I\'ve been having a similar preferences problem. I have \'leave applications in memory\' set to yes and in spite of all my attempts, it just won\'t do it, every time it switches to Einstein it says \'removed from memory\'.

                            It\'s not just cpdn though, it does the same thing with Einstein.
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                            Message 25037 - Posted 8 Nov 2006 23:11:47 UTC

                              There was a server version that was only passing prefs if a new venue was added or a new task was downloaded. It is fixed in the current head version.
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                              Message 25041 - Posted 9 Nov 2006 5:07:57 UTC

                                Well, it\'s still not working now. And another funny thing - when I try the new combined display, there is no column designated \"Default\", but one called \"General\", and NONE of my set preferences appear in there.

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                                Message 25043 - Posted 9 Nov 2006 8:21:52 UTC

                                  \'combined display\' ?
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                                  Message 25045 - Posted 9 Nov 2006 9:40:34 UTC

                                    Yes, that\'s what I thought too.
                                    There seems to be something new here that we don\'t know about yet.

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                                    Message 25049 - Posted 9 Nov 2006 17:19:34 UTC

                                      Go to the User Home page which has the heading
                                      Welcome to the climateprediction.net BOINC user pages! at
                                      http://climateapps2.oucs.ox.ac.uk/cpdnboinc/index.php

                                      Under the heading Returning participants click on
                                      Your account - stats, preferences
                                      then under the heading Preferences click on
                                      General preferences specify when and how BOINC uses your computer View or edit.
                                      The last line in the headings says
                                      Primary (default) preferences (Switch View).
                                      Click on Switch View.

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                                      Message 25050 - Posted 9 Nov 2006 18:49:19 UTC - in response to Message 25013.

                                        Last modified: 9 Nov 2006 18:51:19 UTC

                                        AstroWX said:

                                        Martin, FYI: Seems I bucked before I was spurred. Waited a minute or two for \"Suspend network activity\" to take effect on each of the two boxes (long beyond reason in my opinion) before making my last post.

                                        Wasn\'t long enough. Minutes ago, when I went back to check the Runs, thinking to re-boot to set things right, the Messages logs showed that both machines\' network activity suspended seconds short of five minutes after I entered the command. (That suggests some sort of time-out to me.)

                                        I have also this problem after I update manually a project with Boinc 5.4.9
                                        I have already reported this problem on the bug site but never had an answer, and I don\'t know if the problem had been corrected in the following versions (don\'t think so as I can\'t suspend network activity on my 5.4.9 linux machine with the 5.7.2 Manager)

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                                        Message 25054 - Posted 9 Nov 2006 21:30:05 UTC - in response to Message 25050.


                                          You can set some of your preferences locally (on your computer) if the servers don\'t seem to be doing the job properly. Create a preferences override file in your BOINC directory as described at http://boinc.berkeley.edu/prefs_override.php. Just cut and paste the example file into a text file and name it global_prefs_override.xml.

                                          Use 1 to specify \"yes\" or \"true\", use 0 to specify \"no\" or \"false\". For example, to leave apps in memory you would use <leave_apps_in_memory>1</leave_apps_in_memory>.
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                                          Message 25055 - Posted 9 Nov 2006 23:22:42 UTC

                                            thanks! That worked a treat. :)
                                            also changed <run_if_user_active>0</run_if_user_active> to 1 which I assume sets it to do work while computer in use. If I\'ve got that wrong can someone tell me...please! Have left the others alone as they seemed to be the default values.
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                                            Message 25061 - Posted 10 Nov 2006 5:53:40 UTC

                                              Did you have to re-boot or re-start Boinc for this to take effect?

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                                              Message 25063 - Posted 10 Nov 2006 9:47:33 UTC

                                                I\'d closed Boinc anyway as I decided to back up the model before I started messing. I did it when it was shut down and then when I restarted it had changed. -swapped between projects to try it out - not got much patience! :-)
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                                                Message 25064 - Posted 10 Nov 2006 11:33:57 UTC - in response to Message 25061.

                                                  Last modified: 10 Nov 2006 11:49:09 UTC

                                                  Did you have to re-boot or re-start Boinc for this to take effect?


                                                  Boinc reads the global_prefs_override.xml file whenever Boinc starts so re-starting Boinc is one way to make it take effect. It isn\'t necessary to reboot.

                                                  You can make it take effect while Boinc is running if you issue the \"read global prefs override\" command. You can issue that command by putting the command in a batch file (the easy way) or by typing the command at a command prompt (the hard way). The command looks like this:

                                                  boinccmd.exe --host localhost --passwd password --read_global_prefs_override

                                                  Substitute the gui password for password. The gui password is found in the gui_rpc_auth.cfg file in your Boinc directory and you can open, read and edit the gui_rpc_auth.cfg with Notepad. If you have never changed the password in gui_rpf_auth.cfg then it will a very long password assigned by Boinc. You can change the password to something more convenient if you wish. Use Notepad not Word.

                                                  Here is the batch file I use to force Boinc to read the global_prefs_override.xml without re-starting Boinc. Just cut and paste the text into a text file and rename it to something like \"read-prefs.bat\", the name can be anything you want but it must have the .bat extension. Then you can just click on that icon to run the batch file.

                                                  @echo off
                                                  cd \"c:\\program files\\BOINC\"
                                                  boinccmd.exe --host localhost --passwd drowssap --read_global_prefs_override

                                                  The first line merely prevents the 2nd and 3rd line from being echoed to the screen. The second line changes the current directory to the Boinc directory. If you installed Boinc in a directory other than c:\\program files\\BOINC then you must edit the second line appropriately. The third line is the actual command to read the preferences override file, change \"drowssap\" to whatever your password is.

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                                                  Message 25066 - Posted 10 Nov 2006 12:12:34 UTC - in response to Message 25055.

                                                    thanks! That worked a treat. :)
                                                    also changed <run_if_user_active>0</run_if_user_active> to 1 which I assume sets it to do work while computer in use. If I\'ve got that wrong can someone tell me...please! Have left the others alone as they seemed to be the default values.


                                                    You have it right. You can verify by starting Task Manager and witnessing the CPU usage of the science app drop to zero when you are active.

                                                    The following line specifies how long you must be inactive before the science app resumes. The example below specifes 3 minutes.

                                                    <idle_time_to_run>3</idle_time_to_run>

                                                    The next line is a throttle. If set to 100, the science app will use 100% of any CPU time available to it. If set to 60, for example, the science app will use only 60% of any CPU time available to it. Note that since Boinc runs the science app at lowest priority, the phrase \"any CPU time available to it\" means \"whatever is left over after other normal priority or higher apps have had their requirements fulfilled\". The throttle is useful if your computer overheats and you cannot add more cooling capacity.

                                                    <cpu_usage_limit>100</cpu_usage_limit>

                                                    I believe the throttle is available only on Boinc version 5.4.11 and higher? Or is it 5.6 and higher?



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                                                    Message 25068 - Posted 10 Nov 2006 13:47:36 UTC

                                                      5.6 apparently http://climateapps2.oucs.ox.ac.uk/cpdnboinc/forum_thread.php?id=5006
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                                                      Message 25072 - Posted 11 Nov 2006 1:22:31 UTC - in response to Message 25066.

                                                        I just loaded a new core duo machine yesterday and it began running two units immediately -- while in \"run based on prefs\" but it would respond to \"suspend\" and stop running. I checked in comments and it did load the project prefs \"work\". I switched the machine to a different \"known good\" prefs profile running on the machine next to it (in the project for years) and the new machine still just takes off immediately at 100% CPU. I have CPU set at 90% in all profiles. Odd thing is all other project machines are running according to their prefs.
                                                        ===== =====


                                                        thanks! That worked a treat. :)
                                                        also changed <run_if_user_active>0</run_if_user_active> to 1 which I assume sets it to do work while computer in use. If I\'ve got that wrong can someone tell me...please! Have left the others alone as they seemed to be the default values.


                                                        You have it right. You can verify by starting Task Manager and witnessing the CPU usage of the science app drop to zero when you are active.

                                                        The following line specifies how long you must be inactive before the science app resumes. The example below specifes 3 minutes.

                                                        <idle_time_to_run>3</idle_time_to_run>

                                                        The next line is a throttle. If set to 100, the science app will use 100% of any CPU time available to it. If set to 60, for example, the science app will use only 60% of any CPU time available to it. Note that since Boinc runs the science app at lowest priority, the phrase \"any CPU time available to it\" means \"whatever is left over after other normal priority or higher apps have had their requirements fulfilled\". The throttle is useful if your computer overheats and you cannot add more cooling capacity.

                                                        <cpu_usage_limit>100</cpu_usage_limit>

                                                        I believe the throttle is available only on Boinc version 5.4.11 and higher? Or is it 5.6 and higher?




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                                                        Message 25073 - Posted 11 Nov 2006 2:33:59 UTC

                                                          Last modified: 11 Nov 2006 2:46:11 UTC

                                                          Your computers are hidden, so I can\'t see them. Which boinc version are you running? 5.6 (now withdrawn) or 5.7 (in test) are required to control CPU throttling.


                                                          Edit: @ Mike Mars: I don\'t know how boinc controls CPU time for this option. It could somehow keep client CPU activity minimized to Preference value. Or, it could allow 100% for nine seconds of every ten, for example, to achieve 90%. Have you looked at the code, or watched task Manager with it active?

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                                                          Message 25076 - Posted 11 Nov 2006 11:13:57 UTC

                                                            Last modified: 11 Nov 2006 13:30:08 UTC

                                                            It works on a 100 second cycle. So, for example you\'ve set 50% CPU. It runs at 100% usage for 50 seconds, then suspends itself for 50 second, then repeat...

                                                            I would guess the reason they\'ve done it with such a long interval is because there\'s too much overhead in the process (i.e., if it takes a second to get into suspend mode, then making the cycle quicker would increase the overhead). I\'d have preferred to see something measured in milliseconds...

                                                            --- Edit

                                                            I\'m not sure now, the above was based on the description I\'d read, but someone has now posted a conflicting description.
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                                                            Message 25078 - Posted 11 Nov 2006 17:53:26 UTC

                                                              Thanks, Mike. That could explain what KC0KRI sees.

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                                                              Message 25079 - Posted 11 Nov 2006 18:20:28 UTC - in response to Message 25076.

                                                                It works on a 100 second cycle. So, for example you\'ve set 50% CPU. It runs at 100% usage for 50 seconds, then suspends itself for 50 second, then repeat...

                                                                I would guess the reason they\'ve done it with such a long interval is because there\'s too much overhead in the process (i.e., if it takes a second to get into suspend mode, then making the cycle quicker would increase the overhead). I\'d have preferred to see something measured in milliseconds...

                                                                --- Edit

                                                                I\'m not sure now, the above was based on the description I\'d read, but someone has now posted a conflicting description.


                                                                I\'ve tested 5.7.2 this afternoon and when setting the CPU at 50%, the CPU is suspended every second, so I don\'t think this version works on a 100 second cycle (perhaps the next ones...)
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                                                                Message 25131 - Posted 16 Nov 2006 5:22:03 UTC

                                                                  Last modified: 16 Nov 2006 5:41:45 UTC

                                                                  Dagorath,
                                                                  Thanks for all your help on setting up this bat file. It did not work till I put it in the Boinc file (it did not recognise Boinccmd.exe as a valid command). Then I had to allow BC access to the net, which it had never wanted before. Now I can deal with these small matters \"in house\" without having to bother one of the projects, and then perhaps waiting for the preference to take effect. Instant. Wonderful. Thanks again.
                                                                  One further question. Rather than delete an individual line to allow a project\'s prefs to take effect for that item, how do I turn that line into a comment?

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                                                                  Message 25138 - Posted 16 Nov 2006 12:27:39 UTC - in response to Message 25131.

                                                                    Last modified: 16 Nov 2006 12:36:32 UTC

                                                                    Dagorath,
                                                                    Thanks for all your help on setting up this bat file. It did not work till I put it in the Boinc file (it did not recognise Boinccmd.exe as a valid command).


                                                                    Just to avoid confusing others (not to be pedantic) I think you meant to say \"till I put it in the Boinc folder\". Anyway, thanks for pointing that out because I should have mentioned it in my original post.

                                                                    Then I had to allow BC access to the net, which it had never wanted before. Now I can deal with these small matters \"in house\" without having to bother one of the projects, and then perhaps waiting for the preference to take effect. Instant. Wonderful. Thanks again.


                                                                    Hmmm. I don\'t recall having to allow access to the net and I can\'t think of a reason why that should be so. But if it worked for you then perhaps it will help someone else too, thanks for sharing that tip.

                                                                    One further question. Rather than delete an individual line to allow a project\'s prefs to take effect for that item, how do I turn that line into a comment?


                                                                    I\'m not sure. I haven\'t needed to do that, yet, so have procrastinated finding the answer :<) Comments in XML 1.0 start with <!- and end with ->, for example,

                                                                    <!- This is a comment ->

                                                                    is a valid comment according to the XML reference I\'m looking at as I write. So it seems we should be able to take a line from global_prefs_override.xml and turn it into a comment, for example, the line

                                                                    <max_cpus>2</max_cpus>

                                                                    could be made into a comment this way

                                                                    <!- <max_cpus>2</max_cpus> ->

                                                                    I think, except that my reference suggests the < character cannot be used literally between the < > pair. That is not to say Boinc\'s XML parser won\'t allow it, it might, I have heard the parser is not entirely kosher.

                                                                    Another idea (and I\'m not sure this works) is to mangle the line in a very obvious way, for example,

                                                                    <xxxx_max_cpus>2</xxxx_max_cpus>

                                                                    the idea being the line is legitimate XML but Boinc\'s parser will simply ignore it because the opening tag is not in Boinc\'s lexicon. On the other hand, it could halt the reading of the remainder of the file, for all I know. I have a hunch you\'re clever enough to devise a simple test to verify whether it works or not. Boinc Manager\'s comments may even tell all. I doubt it would cause serious damage if it failed.

                                                                    Sorry I can\'t offer something I know to be tested and true.
                                                                    .


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                                                                    Message 25590 - Posted 13 Dec 2006 23:05:28 UTC

                                                                      Last modified: 13 Dec 2006 23:07:19 UTC

                                                                      Hello!

                                                                      After reading about global_prefs_override.xml, I\'ve fooled around and have seen a similar file in the BOINC dir that\'s called global_prefs.xml. This file looks the same as the frist one, and I assume this is the one that stores the preferences configured in the web.

                                                                      Since there are some difficulties syncing this prefs, I\'ve tried to
                                                                      1) configure the prefs in the web as normal,
                                                                      2) update the project (I\'ve done it via the manager\'s update button) and
                                                                      3) edit global_prefs.xml to manually make it reflect the web\'s prefs.

                                                                      This gave me the expected results, so I\'ve deleted global_prefs_override.xml and have my machine working exactly as I want.

                                                                      Hope this helps!

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