Rules & Policies
Table of Contents
Is it safe to run Folding@home?
Any time you download a program through the Internet you are taking a chance: the program might have dangerous errors, or the download server might have been hacked. Folding@home has made efforts to minimize these risks. We have tested our applications carefully. Our servers are behind a firewall and are configured for high security. To ensure the integrity of program downloads, all executable files are digitally signed on a secure computer. The applications run by Folding@home may cause some computers to overheat. If this happens, stop running Folding@home or use configure the client to use less CPU time.
How Folding@home will use your computer
When you run Folding@home on your computer, it will use part of the computer’s CPU power, disk space, and network bandwidth. You can control how much of your resources are used by Folding@home, and when it uses them. The work done by your computer contributes to the goals of Folding@home, as described on its web site. The application programs may change from time to time.
What are the specific rules for running Folding@home software?
Folding@home (FAH) is a major scientific endeavor, but is also a kind of contest for some donors to see who can donate the most points. In order to keep a sense of fair competition, we asked donors to help us establish a list of rules. Please see the Best Practices FAQ. We thank everyone for their contributions and hope they will enjoy competing and donating to the project.
Your account on Folding@home is identified by a name that you choose. This name may be shown on the Folding@home web site, along with a summary of the work your computer has done for Folding@home. If you want to be anonymous, choose a name that doesn’t reveal your identity. If you participate in Folding@home, information about your computer (such as its processor type, amount of memory, etc.) will be recorded by Folding@home and used to decide what type of work to assign to your computer. This information will also be shown on Folding@home’s web site. Nothing that reveals your computer’s location (e.g. its domain name or network address) will be shown. If you give an email address for a username, this address will not be shown on the Folding@home web site and will not be shared with anyone else.
Folding@home was developed by Stanford University. Folding@home and Stanford University assume no liability for damage to your computer, loss of data, or any other event or condition that may occur as a result of participating in Folding@home.
Folding@home (FAH) is a major scientific endeavor, but is also a kind of contest for some donors to see who can donate the most points. In order to keep a sense of fair competition, we asked donors to help us establish a list of rules. These rules are stated below to engender the spirit of competition in a way that is impartial for all donors. We thank everyone for their contributions and hope they will enjoy competing and donating to the project.
Regarding The Project and Work Units (WUs)
- Donors should not manipulate the Assignment Server (AS) logic to unfairly obtain a specific Work Unit (WU) project and/or block any specific WUs (for points enhancement). (Sources: PG Member, Super Moderator)
- Donors should not delete/dump a WU for any reason other than mentioned below (source: PG Member). Deleting WUs disrupts the project since it takes longer for WUs to pass their deadline, get reassigned, and finally completed. Deleting a WU solely for PPD advantage is prohibited. The permitted reasons for deleting/dumping WUs are:
- WU Instability -> When this happens, please report it in this Forum
- FAH Client instability -> If this happens, please report it in the appropriate FAH Client Forum
- Inability of the host system to complete the WU before the Deadline -> If it happens, please visit this thread or this guide to reconfigure your FAH Client to better fits your computing needs. (Source: Site Admin)
- Donors should not use flags/switches to mislead the Assignment Server (AS). Please refrain from “experimenting” with flags/switches designed to be used for very specific purposes. (Source: PG Member)
- Donors should not use any means to force the FAH Client to download a WU that is not natively designed for the hardware on which the client runs. (Sources: PG Member, PG Member)
- Running a FAH Client on hardware that will only marginally meet the WU’s Timeout is strongly discouraged. For example, it is not recommended to run bigadv (BA) work units on slower systems or systems with less than 24 cores and it is not recommended to run SMP work units on slower 2-core systems. If you notice your hardware is not going to complete the assigned WU by the Deadline time, stop the client, delete the work unit, and please visit this guide to reconfigure your FAH Client to better fits your needs.
- Donors should not intentionally stop/pause the FAH Client to manipulate the completion time or wuresult upload time of work units.
Regarding The FAH Clients
- Altering the FAH Client software, its associated data files, or de-compiling/reverse engineering the software is in direct violation of the End User License Agreement (EULA). (Sources: PG Member, PG Member, PG Member)
- Re-distributing the FAH files or packaging the FAH files inside another software package in a attempt to install FAH with or without the user’s consent is a violation of the EULA. (Sources: FAQs (see: running on authorized computers only), FAH Blog)
- Using unpublished client switches for any reason is prohibited, as these are intended for internal Pande Group use only.
The PG does not officially support nor oppose overclocking, but be aware that any instability which causes WUs to error-out during processing is detrimental to the project, and overclocking makes it more difficult to identify any issues with particular WUs or FAH clients. Folding@home often stresses hardware further than many popular stability testers, such as Prime95. For this reason, we recommend StressCPU. Since it’s based on Gromacs – the main software used for FAH’s calculations – it’s one of the most accurate stability tester for an overclocked machine aimed at stable folding. There’s no rule about how long you should run it, but the longer, the better. There is an option (-t hh:mm:ss) to run the program for a limited period. If you don’t add this option, it will run until it fails, or you press CTRL+C to manually end it. Please let your computer’s temperatures stabilize when testing; this takes longer with watercooled systems. Please see this Forum thread for more information.