The Berkeley Open Infrastructure for Network Computing
) is an open source middleware
system for volunteer
and grid computing
. It was originally developed to support the SETI@home
project before it became useful as a platform for other distributed applications
in areas as diverse as mathematics, medicine, molecular biology, climatology, and astrophysics. The intent of BOINC is to make it possible for researchers to tap into the enormous processing power
of personal computers
around the world. Although there are over 50 projects from which to choose what to crunch, one needs to start somewhere and that is the reason for this article.
Obtaining the Software.
BOINC is not just a system it is also a software with which we use to communicate with the Projects that you wish to participate in. You can Download a Free copy of the latest sotware suitable for your System by Clicking Here
and installing it on your computer by following the prompts.
Choose a Project.
The first thing to consider is what project to crunch and How to go about joining that project. In the SETI.USA Home Front Page you will find a Section Widget at the Top Left side of the Page. Click on the Section named: "BOINC Projects". You will find that there are numerous Sub Sections listing all the available projects. Read through them and find a project that suits you. Please note however that it is possible that the project might not issue Work Units at the time of you joining or they might not accept new members for a time being. This means you have to keep trying until you find one that will. Go to your chosen project's Home Page as listed in the Link and read the News and the Message Boards regarding current issues. If everything seems OK, than you are ready to join the project.
Joining the Project.
This part is relatively simple. At the Home Page of your chosen Project there is an Article telling you How to join. Complete the requested information and when the project tell you that "You are now attached to the project" than return to the Home page again, click on: "Your Account" and again complete the missing information in your account page. Please remember that it is very important to use the same User Name and email address for all future projects you wish to join as those two pieces of information is used not only to identify you but is used by statistical sites to keep a score of your achievements.
Joining the Team.
Whilst you are in your Account Page this is a good time to join the Team SETI.USA so that the Team will also benefit from your efforts. You will find a Section typically on the Right hand side of the page called "Join a Team." By clicking on that you will be asked what team you wish to join. Type in SETI.USA and click the Find button. A new page should appear listing SETI.USA. Clicking on that will take you to the SETI.USA site. The final thing to do here is to make sure that you click "Join this Team".
Joining SETI.USA Forum.
Finally, now that you are a participating Team Member of SETI.USA please join us at our Team Forum http://seti.usa.us/
where we discuss lots of issues, make friends and learn a lot from each other. Should you need any help in any subject, I am sure some of our members will be happy to provide the answers you seek.