Free Gridcoin with Cloud Computing
Ladies and Gents! THIS IS NOT A MINING GUIDE!
Due to large amounts of comments from people that didn't even read the guide and made assumptions based on the title alone, I need to make this clarification.
It's against terms and conditions of majority of Cloud Computiong providers to run Cryptocurrency mining software on their services. The software we'll run has nothing to do with mining and never had, and it's over 7 years old. If you post a comment saying what I present is not legal, you only spam, add nothing new to conversation, show your lack of technical knowledge and end up looking like a fool.
Wether you want to earn some coins, help develop our sciences and solve important social problems or spark interest to learn about cryptocurrencies and get your hands on some good coins for free this is the place.
There's a number of reasons (some above) to get interested with Gridcoin (GRC) - a cryptocurrency with innovative PoR (Proof of Research) system that allows users from all over the internet to contribute their computers' computing power to major research projects and institutions around the world and in exchange get rewarded with Gridcoin!
It happens with use of software called BOINC developed by Berkeley University.
BOINC splits extremely large processes into smaller tasks, then distributes them to be computed on all willing machines, then sends back the results. It allows each separate machine, to become a part of an online super-computer.
BOINC is completely independent of Gridcoin and on it's own is older than most (if not all) cryptocurrencies.
There are huge numbers of volunteers contributing to the projects, most direct contributors are highly specialized organizations with very large computing power. Some of the volunteers join their forces and form "groups" to work together on larger projects in a more organized fashion with additional benefits.
One of the groups in BOINC is Team Gridcoin, this is what ties the coin to the research. TeamGridcoin offers their members a list of white-listed projects taken from a much larger general pools. By being part of the group TeamGridcoin their administration is able to inspect which projects each member is working on and how much computing work they have contributed - and distribute GRC accordingly.
BOINC is actively being developed, has great user-base, support and infrastructure so attaching to it is an obvious head-start for Gridcoin (GRC) (compared to ideas like Golem) .
At the time of writing this post GRC is worth quite roughly 0.031 USD,
but considering the foundation for this project, increasing user-base and general increase in popularity of cryptocurrencies - this token is very likely to be worth a lot more in the future.
You can get it NOW FOR FREE - and I'll tell and show you how.
The set-up takes around 15-20min and the amount of gained coins can varry depending on chosen projects and settings, it will be running on a virtual machine hosted by google servers, so we skip the need for buying parts as well as electricity charge for computing :).
It's also a great way to learn about cryptocurrencies, GRC rewards and investing in general.
This guide is divided in 3 (pretty detailed) sections:
- GRCPool account and registration - set-up of accounts needed to participate in GRC rewards system
- Google Cloud Registration - registration for cloud platform, creation and set-up of the Virtual Machine (VM)
- Software configuration - download and configuration of BOINC software, establishing connection to the pool, starting research
We will be using google cloud free trial and free 300usd credits to set up the virtual machine that is going to run our projects.
- gmail account
- credit card details for verification (NO chargers)
If you're new to Gridcoin, first you will have to register a pool account. If already have some Pool or Solo experience, you can go straight to point 2 - Google Cloud Registration.
1. GRCPool account registration and initial set-up
For those with personal-use-grade equipment the competition on general pool is too intense to efficiently work, therefore Gridcoin organized a dedicated pool that distributes its' white-listed projects and then sends the results from all the computers in the GRCPool to the General Pool as if it was coming from a single super-computer. Here GRC is awarded very similarly to General Pool, except users don't need to join any groups, as the whole pool is on Gridcoin's side.
Open the link above and in the top right corner click on "Sign Up",
Fill the form with correct details, remember that your researcher's name is going to be your login and click register.
Make sure you use alpha-numeric password without special characters, as this could could later problems with boinccmd commands ~ Thanks @toofasteddie
Now log in using your details.
You will be taken to your dashboard with general information.
As you see there are few small notifications in different areas of the dashboard. Don't worry about that.
At this point your hosts should show all values at 0, since we didn't connect any machines yet.
Scroll down to "Earnings" box.
Here you can review your withdrawal details such as wallet address (you need it before you want to withdraw, at this point we can proceed without, to set up your Gridcoin wallet read this guide GridCoin Research Wallet)
Click on "Minimum Payout Amout" value. You will be taken to Payout Settings page.
Set Minimum Payout Amount to 500 and click "set minimum amount" under.
Make sure to set up your wallet and withdrawal address before you reach 500 (should take few weeks to get first 500, later the longer you participate the more reward you get).
Then scrool down to Donation Amount and set it to 0.01 (donations are for upkeep of the network, so it's good idea to donate something), confirm with clicking "set donation amount".
Now click on your researcher's name in the top right corner (you might need to scrool up to the top to see it) and confirm that Earnings Settings were changed correctly.
Look up at the "Account" box, make sure your e-mail is spelled correctly, click on it and in the next screen request a confirmation. Click on your researchers name in the top right corner to return to the dashboard.
2. Google Cloud Registration
We're going to be running our BOINC on a virtual computer in google's cloud, we are offered a generous free 12 month trial that comes with 300 USD free credit to use for your projects - this way we won't have to spend anything at all.
Go to Google Cloud Platform and click on "Try it Free" button.
In the first step you'll have to choose your google account to connect with cloud services.
Next you need to provide country and agree to terms and conditions and continue.
And in the last step you need to fill the form (some) details and provide credit card details
THERE WILL BE NO CHARGE AT THIS TIME AND NO AUTOMATIC CHARGES AFTER TRIAL EXPIRES!!!
So go on and provide your details (feel free to use a CC with 0 balance, like I did).
Once all the details are correct click "Start My Free Trial"
Wait for few minutes until your Trial finishes setting up.
Now you should see your Google Cloud Platform Dashboard
On the left side menu choose "Cloud Launcher" (if you don't see the menu, it can be switched between shown/hidden by clicking on the three horizontal lines in the top right corner).
Choose the second filter - "Google Cloud Platform" in the "Filter By" menu on the right hand side.
Choose "Compute Engine" under "Compute" category (for me it's the first item on the list).
And confirm "Go to Compute Engine".
This might take a few minutes to set up.
Once it's ready you will be taken to another page with list of your Virtual Machine instances, we don't have any machines yet and the "space is still being prepared" but after a short while an information box will appear with blue "Create" button.
Click it now.
We'll have to fill the form.
*Name - this will be the name of your computer in your hosts-list in GRCPool, choose something easy.
*Zone - depending on location of the servers, there are different monthly charges (deducted from your free 300 usd credit) I recommend using us-east1-c, as it comes out quite cheap.
*Machine type - that's the most important part.
Click on the customize button on the right side.
Set cores to 8, memory to 16 and CPU platform to Intel Skylake or later.
*Boot Disk - It is set to Debian GNU/Linux 9 (strech) by default.
I tested BOINC on Debian and on Ubuntu and it works flawlessly on both, but for the sake of this guide we'll set up an Ubuntu based system.
Click on the "Change" button next to the Boot Image details.
A list of available images will slide out from the right, scroll down to Ubuntu 17.04 and mark it.
Below change the "size (GB)" to 25 and click "select" on the bottom left.
Leave rest of the settings unchanged, scroll to the very bottom and click "Create".
The process can take up to few minutes and once it's ready you will see your instance on the list.
If everything went correct, there should be a green ticked orb next to the instance's name.
Now click on the "SSH" button in Connect column. This will initiate a new window, which will allow you for remote access to the console on the virtual machine.
##3. Software Configuration
We're in the console window, system has automatically set up and it's time to install BOINC software.
First make sure your system is up to date by typing:
sudo apt-get update
and confrim with enter
now let's download BOINC, type :
sudo apt-get install boinc
confirm with enter. When prompted type in "Y" (without quotemarks) and confirm again with enter.
Once the installation has finished we need to make sure that BOINC will run always and that it will have access to internet to download and upload tasks and results.
Type in the console:
boinccmd --set_network_mode always
boinccmd --set_run_mode always
and confirm with Enter.
Connecting BOINC & GRCPOOL
Now we need to connect boinc to the GRCPool, which distributes project tasks to different computers in the pool.
boinccmd --join_acct_mgr http://grcpool.com USERNAME PASSWORD
(USERNAME - enter your GRCPool researchers name, PASSWORD - enter your GRCPool password)
Console should print out few times "Pool status: operation in progress".
This should have our machine registered with GRCPool. Keep this window opened.
In another tab go back to GRCPool.com and log in to your account, click on your researcher's name in the top right corner to view your dashboard. In the hosts tab "Number of Machines" should now show 1 (if it's a new account, or simply one more than there was before if it isn't ;).
Click on the Hosts information.
On the lists of your hosts click the Host name that you set for the VM.
Scroll to the "Projects for Pool #3", click on the "--- choose project ---" scroll down list and select a project that supports only CPUs (if you need help with that click "project advice" next to the list).
At this point I would recommend NFS@Home if you plan running it for a little while, you're sure to have enough tasks and can earn the coins almost without attending the account.
Once you chose the project click on "Add" button.
Make sure resource Share is set 100. Leave No CPU unmarked, but mark "No Nvidia GPU, No ATI Gpu, No Intel GPU" and click "Save Project Settings".
You'll see a notification under a project. In order to fix it, we need to synchronize our BOINC with GRCPool 2-3 times.
So go back to the console window and type again
boinccmd --join_acct_mgr http://grcpool.com/ USERNAME PASSWORD
confirm with enter, wait untill the process is finished.
Press 'arrow up' on your keyboard to recall last used command
boinccmd --join_acct_mgr http://grcpool.com/ USERNAME PASSWORD
and again confirm with enter, wait for the process to finish and one last time - arrow up then enter.
Now let's see if BOINC has gotten the information, type in
A url address of your project should be printed.
If this is all fine, go back to your host details tab (where we added project before)
and refresh the page. The notification under the project name should've dissapeared.
If it persists you'll need to synchronize BOINC few more times (but usually it shouldn't necessary).
Check if the tasks are already being executed on your machine, type
If it prints a list of tasks - we're nearly done.
To store account manager details and enable text-UI we'll download boinctui.
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install boinctui
and confirm when necessary.
Once the installation is done, you can type
To see the textUI, press "Esc" to cancel the intial configuration when you open it first time.
It should show lists of available and running tasks.
Now you can close all the windows and sit back.
Check your GRCPool statistics after 24h to see first results.
(EDIT: below are my results after a little less than 24h - thanks @theissen for the request)
PROBLEM: Localhost not found - Probably boinc is not running as a daemon, type
PROBLEM: Authorization error: -155 - There's very little information on this on the internet even less in regards to this particular setup. If you sucesfully managed to synchronize with GRCPool using
then you have nothing to worry about, however if while trying to do so you get this error, you might need to delete your instance and repeat creation of the instance.
Google Cloud Dashboard > "Go to the Computer Engine dashboard" on the bottom of Computer Engine box and chart >Click on 3 dots in last column of your instance row and choose "Delete".
In the meantime go back to GRCPool, go to your dashboard, click on hosts box. If you don't have any hosts here that's fine you can close the window for now. If you see your old VM-instance host on the list, click red button below that enables host deletion, then click the arrow by the end of the row with the host name and click >Delete Host and confirm with "Ok"
Go back to your VM instances list, and click that small blue icon with + inside to create a new instance.
From this point you can return to the guide and continue from the instance setup.
Thanks to @toofasteddie for pointing it out
HOW MUCH I CAN MAKE Daily GRC payout depends on how long you're mining, it roughly doubles everyday (so if you'll get 0.1grc for first day, you'll most likely reach 0.2 by second, 0.4 by third, 0.8 by fourth and 1.6 by fith - you get the idea - give it at least a week to get to speed.
THIS GUIDE WORKS IN THE SAME WAY WITH ANY CLOUD COMPUTING PLATFORM
you can set up multiple accounts with google, or use any of the providers that allows Debian or Ubuntu VMs, once you launch your VM instance, repeat stepps 3 and 4 for each host. As of this moment I recommend 3 trials to sign up and set up, some of them are more complex in setting up, but all of them are free and with extra credit.
GOOGLE CLOUD PLATFORM
AMAZON WEB SERVICES CLOUD
MICROSOFT AZURE CLOUD
IBM SoftLayer Cloud (long registration and tricky to SSH). EDIT: Free credit not available for VMs anymore 27/09,
I've managed to set this up two weeks ago, now it's not available anymore, but my IBM VM is still running.
'I'm honored to be part of this beautiful social network project. 'Tis my first entry so I shall say "Hello community and thanks for having me!" If there's anything you'd like to learn about or read about, let me know and I'll share what I know.