How long does it usually take to get credit for SETI?


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Mark Vang
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Message 1082680 - Posted: 1 Mar 2011, 13:25:44 UTC
Last modified: 1 Mar 2011, 13:35:32 UTC

I've been running several projects since 26feb2011 and other projects have returned credits to the BOINC manager and also showing up on my BOINCstats page. Even though I've completed projects for SETI, I show no credit even when I log directly into my account on the SETI site. I've seen a mention of a "wingmate" on some posts and have no idea what that means.

I read the message about server maintenance on Tue so I'm not expecting credit today, but shouldn't something have shown up by now?

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Message 1082693 - Posted: 1 Mar 2011, 14:02:52 UTC - in response to Message 1082680.

it appears you only have 1 WU returned and its waiting on your wingman to finish it. ONce your wingman returns his work the WU will be checked for validation and then if it passes the validation process you'll get credit.

Some projects don't use a wingman and thats probably why you see much faster returns on your work from them
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Mark Vang
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Message 1082698 - Posted: 1 Mar 2011, 14:13:44 UTC - in response to Message 1082693.

Thanks for the reply. I'm guessing that the "wingman" is someone at SETI that manages the database. I thought I had returned more than one project, but I really wasn't keeping track since I didn't anticipate any issues.

On the server status page I noticed that there were 5,307,880 Results returned and awaiting validation. Also saw stats for a "result turnaround time" of 102.38hrs. Is that the figure I'm looking for? (RE: title of post)

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Message 1082712 - Posted: 1 Mar 2011, 15:04:35 UTC - in response to Message 1082698.
Last modified: 1 Mar 2011, 15:05:21 UTC

Mark,
When SETI sends out a work unit it sends copies out to two different people. The other person is your wingman. You both have to complete the work and report it. Once it's back to the SETI servers they compare the two work units and if they match then you both get credit. If they don't match quite close enough the work unit will be sent out to another person as a tie breaker. Then you have to wait for the third person to report and be checked against the first two results. If it matches one of the first two then those two get the credit, if it is close to both of the first two then all three get credit. If none of them match close enough or something happens to cause one of the work units to error out then it could go on to a fourth and so on until we get a match.

What you are seeing on the status page is the number of results that have been returned and are waiting for the second (or third) person to return them so they can be checked and validated. The result turnaround time is the time it takes all of us to turn in our work. Most of us are way faster than that but you get some that take a month or more to send in a completed work unit.

Hope that helps you some and welcome to SETI!!
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Message 1082719 - Posted: 1 Mar 2011, 15:47:55 UTC - in response to Message 1082712.

Excellent reply, thanks for the info. My team is pretty small right now (me) and my computers aren't the fastest so I hope I'm not holding someone else up.

It would be interesting if I could set it up so my own computers are "wingmen" so I could compare results between them. I'm guessing that differences in CPU's might account for different results or levels of accuracy.

Anyway, musings aside, thanks for the welcome and I'll set this question to answered.

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Message 1082732 - Posted: 1 Mar 2011, 16:51:52 UTC - in response to Message 1082719.

heh not to worry about holding someone up it appears someone is holding you up. Keep crunching
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Message 1082819 - Posted: 2 Mar 2011, 2:42:53 UTC - in response to Message 1082719.

It would be interesting if I could set it up so my own computers are "wingmen" so I could compare results between them.

No can do: that would create a vulnerability to ‘cooked’ results. AFAIK there’s nothing to prevent a coincidental download of two tasks from the same WU to two of your hosts, but the odds against such an occurrence are pretty long.

BTW a more formal term for the colloquial “wingman” is “quorum partner”.

I'm guessing that differences in CPU's might account for different results or levels of accuracy.

Very little in this project, actually: the calculations done here seem to be quite robust in that regard. Some other projects, whose apps are more sensitive to CPUs’ arithmetical quirks, use a BOINC server feature called “homogeneous redundancy” that sends the duplicate tasks from each WU to hosts of the same type, but there’s never been call to employ HR for S@h, even with its fairly widespread use of third-party apps customized for a specific kind of processor or OS.
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Message 1082942 - Posted: 2 Mar 2011, 14:19:23 UTC - in response to Message 1082819.

Quorum partner, hmmm. I think that's illegal in my state. I have NAS Oceania, and Langley AFB in the area so I think I'll stick with Wingman. Thanks for the info. I checked my stats again today and saw that I now have pending credit so everything seems to be working ok and I'm a happy camper.

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Message 1083113 - Posted: 3 Mar 2011, 2:18:45 UTC - in response to Message 1082819.

It would be interesting if I could set it up so my own computers are "wingmen" so I could compare results between them.

No can do: that would create a vulnerability to ‘cooked’ results. AFAIK there’s nothing to prevent a coincidental download of two tasks from the same WU to two of your hosts, but the odds against such an occurrence are pretty long.

BTW a more formal term for the colloquial “wingman” is “quorum partner”.

I'm guessing that differences in CPU's might account for different results or levels of accuracy.

Very little in this project, actually: the calculations done here seem to be quite robust in that regard. Some other projects, whose apps are more sensitive to CPUs’ arithmetical quirks, use a BOINC server feature called “homogeneous redundancy” that sends the duplicate tasks from each WU to hosts of the same type, but there’s never been call to employ HR for S@h, even with its fairly widespread use of third-party apps customized for a specific kind of processor or OS.

Actually, the server code has a switch that can be set so that computers belonging to the same person cannot get tasks from the same work unit. Most production projects have this turned on, including, I believe, SETI.
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