Gridcoin is a cryptocurrency that rewards users for running the Berkeley Open Infrastructure for Network Computing (BOINC). With BOINC you are not burning electricity in order to find a fitting nonce for a hash, you are actually contributing to scientific research.
To get started I recommend using this guide by @dutch.
In my first Guide I described all the little steps involved in setting up BOINC on an Odroid XU4. It's finally running stable, so in Part 2 we can now look at performance and profitability.
Switching to Arch
In part 1 I was using Ubuntu 16.04 minimal. Unfortunately I ran into some problems with it when it comes to stability. From time to time the whole device stopped working and every command I threw at it responded with an “input/output error” indicating a corrupted SD-Card. I formatted the SD-Card and installed everything from scratch, but the problem reaccured. I bought a new SD-Card and when it was running stable for a few days I published my first guide. A few days later I was back to the “input/output errors”. I knew that it was running smoothly for other users, but that was the point in time where I just wanted to set it on fire or to start something different from scratch.
I heard that some other users had stable configurations on Arch Linux, so I wanted to give it a try as well. If you have heard about Arch you probably know, that it can be a pain to set everything up. Luckyly Tholo pointed me to an installation script that helped a lot!
A few words about the installation script
The github page has some nice documentation about how to prepare everything. A little something I would like to add:
- You need a Linux environment in order to prepare everything. If you are not running Windows like me, you can use VirtualBox. After creating a Linux VM you will have to install an Operating System (I used Ubuntu). Just download the image and add it to an optical drive in the VM and go through the installation process.
- Your VM will need access to your SD-Card-Writer. To do this go to the USB settings of your VM and add the device there (for me it was a mass-storage-device in USB 2.0 Controllers).
The benefits of using Arch:
- It's stable. It has been running smoothly for over 3 weeks now.
- It's very slim.
- Identidy is no longer a problem. In my first guide we did a lot of things to make the Odroid unique for the pool and the project websites. With this setup you are not using an image and will always receive an unique MAC address.
Performance & Profitability
A lot of people were interested in the actual Magnitude this thing could achieve. Now that we are stable, I can give you some numbers. Remember that MAG and RAC will vary in the future and if you are running other projects. There numbers are from running Universe@Home only.
With the current Mag_Unit of 0.2 this gives us 1.946 GRC/Day.
Let's take a look at the current prize levels.
GRC price: 0.00000902 BTC
BTC price: 3745$ / 3131€
Earnings $: 1.946 * 0.00000902 * 3745 = 0.0657$
Earnings €: 1.946 * 0.00000902 * 3131 = 0.0549€
Power consumption full load: 13.5W (0.0135kWh)
Price kWh: 24.61 Cent/kWh (Germany)
Cost €: 0.0135 * 24 * 0.2461 = 0.0797€
Profit €: 0.0549€ – 0.0797€ = -0.0248€
As you can see the Odroid is currently not able to fully cover its costs in Germany. But all of these values are constantly changing. Competition, project selection, Mag-Boost, Mag_Unit, Electricity-Price, GRC-Price and BTC-Price are all having an effect on this calculation. Let's see at what electricity-price the whole thing would be profitabe: 0.0549 / (0.0135*24) = 0.1694€ or 0.2027$
Which means if your price per kWh is below 0.1694€ or 0.2027$ you would currently be making profit (ROI not calculated in).
You can look at it from a lot of different perspectives. You could say that it's just not profitable and drop it. You could also crunch like a mad man and hope for huge profits when GRC price climbs back to previous levels. Or you could just see all of it as a great technological adventure with the outcome of actually contributing to science for just 2.48 Cents a day. :)