Internet Distributed Computing Projects
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Active Distributed Computing Projects

Does your computer spend most of the day running screensavers or otherwise wasting its computing cycles? Why not use those spare cycles to help solve some huge problems? Try one of the following projects:

Project Logo Project Information Project % Complete Major Supported Platforms
Search for extra-terrestrial radio signals at SETI@home. Version 3.03 of the client is available as of December 13, 2000.

Check the status of the SETI@home data server and tapes.

View derived statistics for SETI@home.

Read a short research paper, written in 1998, about the origins of SETI and SETI@home.

See my SETI@home stats.
See my team's SETI@home stats.

ongoing (268,430,652 total work units processed) Windows 32
  Help the Analytical Spectroscopy Research Group (ASRG) in their SETI project. Their system has the same basic goal as SETI@Home, but it uses a more manual process: you download work units from a web page, process them with one of three tools, and email results back to the project coordinator. More information can be found on the volunteer page. ongoing Windows 32
entropia Participate in various volunteer science- and medical-oriented research projects at Entropia. Sign up to receive information about how to download the client.

The member site contains stats about all of the current projects, and other information.

multiple projects ongoing Windows 32 Help design safer storage vessels for nuclear waste or participate in other upcoming distributed projects at ProcessTree Volunteers (formerly known as

ProcessTree Volunteers has restarted its weekly $100 giveaway for participants as of October 9, 2000.

See my ProcessTree Volunteers overall stats.
See my ProcessTree Volunteers gamma flux project stats.
See my team's ProcessTree Volunteers gamma flux project stats.

Gamma Flux: unknown (57,935,848 total work units processed) Windows 32
The GOLEM@Home Project Design and evolve robotic lifeforms via a screensaver application in The GOLEM@Home Project. The screensaver randomly creates a population of virtual robots on your system and then evolves them (the current rule for evolution is survival of the robots who can move the greatest distance over an infinite plain). Every week or so a few of your robots will move to someone else's Golem screensaver and a few of someone else's robots will move to your screensaver (you can disable this feature if you're worried about security). These virtual robots contain design information that can be used to build actual working robots.

Version 2.44 is available as of October 11, 2000. New features:

  • diversity control switch
  • can now run at low CPU priority
  • migration frequency control

Join a mailing list about GOLEM@Home.

ongoing Windows 32
United Devices Participate in health, science, and Internet-related research projects at United Devices. Participants are entered in sweepstakes drawings for prizes.

United Devices' first project is a bioinformatics research project for the University of Washington in St. Louis, Missouri. The project, called HMMER, uses the Hidden Markov Modeling technique to compare known DNA sequences (amino acids) against the data from the Human Genome Project to find similar sequences.

United Devices' second project will search for cancer-fighting drugs in partnership with the National Foundation for Cancer Research (NFCR) Centre for Drug Discovery in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Oxford, England. This project will begin early in 2001.

A note on the statistics pages: your total contribution to the project is shown in the CPU time you have contributed. The statistic for Current Entries does not reflect the number of results that your computer has found, but instead the total number of sweepstakes entries you have been given for the current drawing, with a maximum of 1500 per member. This number can adjust up or down according to a number of factors and according to your contribution compared to the contributions of other members. The FAQ will soon contain more information about this.

ongoing Windows 32
XPulsar@Home Join XPulsar@Home, a Monte-Carlo Java applet simulation run by the Astrophysics department at the University of Tuebingen in Germany to model the spreading of X-ray photons in X-ray pulsars.

The site is in German, but you can use a free machine translator to see reasonable translations of the site's pages.

The client is a Java applet or application. It finishes a work unit (photon packet) in 2 to 3 minutes, so it's best suited for users with full-time Internet connections, but modem users can also contribute useful work. Users behind firewalls are supported because the applet works through your web browser.

If you would like to try the applet, click on the registrieren button to register a user ID. On the next page, enter the user name you would like in the Benutzername: field, and your email address in the Email: field. The next section is for joining a group. Use and interpret at your own risk :-) Click the Abschicken button at the bottom of the page to complete the registration. On the next page you will see links for normales Java-Applet and abgespeckets Java-Applet. The first one is the graphics version of the applet and the second one is the text-only version. Click on the link you want and the applet will download and run itself. You don't need to do anything else. To start the applet again at another time, just click on the Applet link on the left of any page, and you will see the links for the applets again. Click on one of those links to download and start the applet. Translations (according to of the words on the text-only applet:
Photonenpaket = Photon package
Photonenzahl: = Photon number:
Eigene = Own
Gruppe = Group
Gesamt = Entirely

You can see real-time stats and rankings under the Statistik menu on the left side of every page. Benutzer mean user and Gruppen means groups: you can probably figure out what each stats link means from those words. Translations of some of the table column headers on the stats pages:
Photonen = photons
Rechenzeit in sec = computing time in seconds
Photonen pro sec = photons per second
aktive Rechner = active computers

(195,689,328,594 total photons computed)
Windows 32
Popular Power Help find a more effective influenza vaccine at Popular Power. This site will eventually have for-pay projects too, and the client will have the added bonus of not requiring the user to reinstall it every time a new project comes out. It uses Java for task implementation, so it can provide a secure "sandbox" area within which customers can run their own code without being able to acces the rest of your system (the way a browser provides a secure area for a Java applet). It will be the first commercial project that can run code modules written independently by customers.

Note: the Worker client is still in development (the current version is 0.3.2). It does not support modem users well, but it will eventually: it does support users behind proxy servers. The new client has web-based user account management, uses JDK 1.3, has support for Red Hat Linux 7.0, and some major bug fixes. The client allows you to view your statistics in a web page, and it provides multi-processor support for Linux users.

Background of the influenza vaccine modeling project.

Join a mailing list about Popular Power and the Worker client.

See the The unofficial Stats Page created by John Blue. (You can add your node ID to the stats page here.)

See my Popular Power stats.

ongoing Windows 32
Parabon Computation Parabon Computation has research projects (and will have commercial projects) and has a secure Java client like Popular Power's. A version 1.3.8 upgrade to its Win9X/NT client is available as of December 20, 2000. You can register for an account or sign up to receive email notification when the Linux, Mac and Unix clients are available.

The client currently participates in one or more of the following projects: an exhaustive regression analysis to identify the specific factors that ease the suffering of chemotherapy recipients, and a gene expression analysis and a study of the molecular dynamics of protein folding to create greater understanding of the behavior of cancer cells and how they interact with potential new treatments.

Parabon has a sweepstakes for active participants. You can qualify to win $100 every day your Pioneer client connects to the Parabon servers, and one participant a month wins $1000.

ongoing Windows 32
Folderol   Folderol is a volunteer project that uses a screensaver to simulate protein folding of the data from the Human Genome Project.

Version 0.57 is available as of October 7, 2000.

ongoing; 7000 simulations of Target 114 completed. Windows 32
Folding@home Folding@home is another volunteer project that uses a screensaver or client application based on the Mithral CS-SDK to simulate protein folding in an effort to better understand how proteins self-assemble or fold.

Version 1.2 of the graphical screensaver and the text-only client application are available as of November 1, 2000. Currently only the client application has support for users behind firewalls. Version 1.2 for Linux is in Beta testing as of November 27, 2000 and will be in general release very soon. A Solaris client will also be available soon.

ongoing Windows 32
fightAIDS@home Help design new drugs to fight AIDS at fightAIDS@home using the entropia client. ongoing: 180,799 tasks done Windows 32
Cryptography organizes projects like cracking data encryption schemes (legally) and searching for Optimal Golomb Rulers (measuring systems used in radio astronomy and X-ray crystallography).

Version 2.8012.465 of the client is available for most major platforms as of January 9, 2001.

See my RC5-64 stats, my OGR-24 stats, and my OGR-25 stats.
See my team's RC5-64 stats, OGR-24 stats, and OGR-25 stats. If you are running the Solaris client, join us!

RC5-64: 38.6% in 1,176 days
OGR-24: unknown (133,889,121 Gnodes checked in 182 days)
OGR-25: unknown (2,007,450,461 Gnodes checked in 162 days)
1 Gnode = 1 billion nodes
Windows 32
Porivo Technologies Evaluate the performance of large websites to find bottlenecks with Porivo Technologies' distributed client, Porivo PEER and its first project, peerReview. (And collect sweepstakes entries and possibly win US$4000 in gift certificates at

Note: peerReview does its work when a network connection is present. Modem users will notice that the client is not active while they are offline. A work unit can be completed in 15-20 minutes, so it is possible for modem users to contribute useful work. Also, the client currently doesn't support users behind firewalls.

Porivo is developing future projects to research science, engineering, and Internet research-related problems. Some future projects will be more CPU-intensive, allowing modem users to work offline.

As of November 6, 2000, version 1.2 of the PEER client is now available for Windows, Solaris and Linux. The client has a new interactive interface and features that improve PEER's performance. Current Windows PEER users' clients will update automatically. Solaris and Linux users can download the software by going to the user login page and selecting "Download the Porivo PEER."

(1,458,390 total credits)
Windows 32
DataSynapse, Inc. Help build a better P2P web searcher by joining research with the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) and Lehigh University to develop an approach called Hierarchical Distributed Dynamic Indexing (HDDI TM), at DataSynapse. You will get paid in Flooz bucks for every hour your computer is online, processing data.

Note: DataSynapse is designed only for users with broadband Internet connections and is only available for the Windows platform currently.

  Windows 32
ProcessTree Network TM
For-pay Internet distributed processing.

Get paid to put your spare CPU cycles to use in the ProcessTree Network.

ProcessTree's first paid project begins this week (the week of January 8, 2001). Selected users in certain locations with a Win32 platform and a 128 Kbit/sec or faster, permanent Internet connection can join the project. The payout will be $12.50 per month and location (that amount will be divided among the systems active in each location during the month).

  Windows 32
The current largest known Mersenne prime number is 26972593 - 1 (found on June 1, 1999, and containing 2,098,960 digits). Help find the next one at the PrimeNet server.

Unix users can participate in GIMPS using precompiled clients or source code at Ernst Mayer's site and the manual testing forms at the PrimeNet server.

ongoing Windows 32
  Search for different kinds of prime numbers at Yves Gallot's Proth Search Page.

Submit new primes to the Top 5000 Primes list.

See the list of prime numbers that I've found.

ongoing Windows 32
  Help find factors of really big numbers at NFSnet.   ongoing Windows 32
  Help find new factors of Cunningham numbers at ECMNET. ongoing Windows 32
  Search for the next prime of the form n!+1 using primeform. ongoing Windows 32
  Find minimal equal sums of like powers using Euler2000, available on the download page. The client automatically downloads ranges of numbers to work on. ongoing Windows 32
Search for K-optimal lattice rules in GRISK.

The client will work behind a firewall if your firewall lets through traffic on port 5060/tcp, or if you have a SOCKS firewall. To run it behind a SOCKS firewall, run it with options like the following:

java -DsocksProxyHost=<host> -DsocksProxyPort=<port:default=1080> jistributed.JistributedClient

A Windows client is available as of November 6, 2000. A Macintosh client should be available soon. The client is available for many other Unix

The Delta=7 project was completed on November 15, 2000, and the Delta=8 project has now begun. variants, too.

d=8: 14.3% Windows 32
  Search for factors of 2^(2^61-1)-1, a double Mersenne number, in the MM61 project. Download and test the client, then email the project coordinator to reserve a range of numbers to test. ongoing: 1,524 ranges done, 496 to do Windows 32
  Find 3x+1 class records in the 3x+1 Problem project. This project attempts to find ever higher 3x+1 class records. The client, which will work on any PC/Windows platform, and the instructions for joining the project are here. Note: the client takes about 6 weeks to finish one block on a 400-MHz CPU.

See the project's progress.

ongoing Windows 32
  The pi(x) project calculates pi(x), for very large values of x. It most recently calculated pi(x) for x=2*1021. You can contribute to the calculations for pi(x) for x=2*1022.

Version 1.3 of the client is available as of December 10, 2000.

ongoing: 71% Windows 32
electric sheep logo
The electric sheep project uses an xscreensaver module to display an animated fractal flame while rendering frames for the next animation. It is designed for users with Unix and Linux systems who can compile source code and with high-bandwidth, always-on Internet connections. It doesn't seem to work through firewalls.

See example images of fractal flames.

ongoing Linux
Distributed Human Projects
Participate in Mindpixel, a project in which you can help teach an artificially intelligent computer program to think more like a human by asking it questions. ongoing: 312,681 mindpixels N/A
Distributed Proofreaders Help proofread electronic texts for Project Gutenberg at the Distributed Proofreaders Site for Project Gutenberg.

Texts available for second-round proofreading:
  In the Heart of Africa by Sir Samuel White Butler
  T. Tembarom by Francess Hodgson Burnett

ongoing N/A
Help NASA mark craters on images of Mars.

Note: this web-based project requires you to have Netscape 6, Mozilla, or Internet Explorer version 5 or greater.

65,991 craters marked and 17,233 craters classified