This guide is designed to illustrate how to manage an entire farm of folding computers from any other console (or an iPhone) without ever needing to be present at the farm itself.
I'm posting this in lieu of a previous simplified guide
by DaMirrorLink, which gave a good starter on how to implement Teamviewer to check on your folding progress from school or work.
This guide will focus mainly on how to monitor, manage, and maintain your farm beyond the simple checkups, i.e. restarting your farm after a power outtage without needing to skip out on school or work or other such complicated matters.
Teamviewer runs on Mac, PC, or Linux and has an iPhone app to allow you to manage your TeamViewer enabled systems from anywhere with 3G.What you'll need:
- At least two computers, one to manage and one to Fold
- A remote support application such as TeamViewer*
- A high speed internet connection >2mbps for each system you want to simultaneously manage
- A USB drive
*you CAN use other remote support applications such as gotomypc, or logmein123, but this guide will be focusing on TeamViewer because of its efficiency in circumventing security issues and its cross-platform compatibilityAnd now onto the setup and prep work!Folding Computer(s)
These steps must be taken prior to shunting your folding farm in a cellar or closet, so that they can be accessed easily at any time.1.
Download TeamViewer Full
and install. During the setup, you will have the option to select advanced options and to set a permanent password for your system. It is essential for you to set a defined password
so that you can access the computer without needing to look at the new password created every time TeamViewer runs. You will also want to set TeamViewer to run with windows startup. It's a teeny application so dont worry about it eating your resources.Once your farm has been installed with TeamViewer you will need to write down the 9 digit TeamViewer ID for each system.Management Computer2.
Install TeamViewer Full as before but you will want to create a login with TeamViewer's website
so you can have access to the "Partner List" panel where you will be able to save the credentials for each of your remotely managed systems.3.
Now that you have TeamViewer installed on your management system and on all of your folding systems, you will want to add each computer to your partners list under a different alias.
When you're done you should have a partner list with all of your computers set up and ready to access. Now we need to set the folding systems to do some things on their own in case of failures.Thanks to savagebunny for this bit:
Also note, if you are doing this on your home network, you can go into settings and set it to LAN use only if on the same network.For those of you working from secured work or school computers:
Ths is where the USB drive comes in handy. TeamViewer has a portable app that is available to paid customers and will run off the thumbdrive, but you can simply run the TeamViewer setup from a thumbdrive without installing it to similar effect. Nice thing about this mode is that it does not require administrator access in most cases.Thanks to Mr. Ball for this bit:
You can also go here and login
and use the web to view your client, like if you are at a PC lab and don't have permission to install software.
OK! All done dealing with the TeamViewer setups and prep workFolding Computer(s)
Now we get to do some finagling to make sure you can use SMP and other cores without worrying about restarting your computer.
Firstly as all SMP users know, you MUST have a password on the account running SMP. The trouble with this is being able to restart the computer, log back into the user profile and reconnect to TeamViewer without being at the console to type in the password.
Nice thing is that there is a simple trick to disable the necessity of logging in with a password, but still allowing you to have one.
Open up a "run" command by typing in "run" in the start menu search for Vista/7 users, or simply hold the "windows" key and hit "r". Then you'll want to type in "control userpasswords2" as shown below.
Next simply uncheck the box labeled "users must enter a password to log in" and you're off!
Now when you restart your system it will log straight back into your user profile and load up TeamViewer for you to regain access to your system.*optional step:
If you need to do frequent restarts or other such maintenance it would be wise to build a batch file that will ensure a clean restart without hanging during shutdown.
Just open a new *.txt document and type in "shutdown -r -f" and save the document as "force restart.bat" somewhere easy to get to. This will force any hanging apps to quit during the restart process. Without the "-f" flag, remotely restarting the computer is hazardous as the remote application will be terminated before any hung apps can be forced to quit.
At this point you may also want to set up some other way of flipping the power to your systems on, either through your BIOS with a "wake on alarm" or "wake on LAN" boot options, or for you modding enthusiasts you could work in some kind of nifty way to trigger a power switch remotely, maybe with an old pager or something. that would be really cool!
But I digress, things that are useful once you have all this stuff set up:
Personally I set my folding system to automatically run my SMP and 2 GPU clients at startup by placing their shortcuts into %systemdrive%\\Users\\%username%\\AppData\\Roaming \\Microsoft\\Windows\\start menu\\startup\\, along with programs with built in autorun such as SpeedFan, HFM.NET, and the [email protected]
For those of you who, like me, get a lot of a3 core crashes, I've had to start using a text-automated batch file to kill the process while I'm away.
Basically what I have done is to install Pidgin as my IM client, and set up an AIM account on the computer I manage, then set up a "buddy pounce" that will run a batch file when someone sends a text to it.
And now when you text yourself through this system you will kill any hung applications! IF you have a hung A3 core it will stop and get a new workload after this.
Here's what my batch file command line is: taskkill.exe /f /fi “status eq not responding”
And that's all there is to it! I Hope some of you will miss out on less folding now you can manage things from your place of work or school!