My understanding was that the Charity Engine program ran in the background when my PC wasn't in use, but I noticed a few slowdowns recently and checking the Task Manager for which process might be causing it I found that it was 7 instances of ce5.exe. Mousing over the BOINC tray icon it says "Computing is enabled, GPU computing is suspended - computer is in use."
Is this expected behaviour? Is there a way of "unenabling" the "Computing" aspect when the PC is in use so I don't get these slowdowns?
That's normal - although it shouldn't slow anything down.
BOINC sets itself to be the absolute last priority thing on your PC, so any other task uses the CPU first and BOINC gets the leftovers - if there are any.
There is also a fixed 'ceiling' of CPU usage which it can't go above, so if your PC is already working any harder then CE will be totally suspended. CE also sets BOINC to leave one core always free as well.
Quick test then: see if dropping the CPU ceiling makes any difference? (Click 'Tools' then 'Computing Preferences', look for 'Use no more than xx% of the processor'.)
Many thanks for the quick response. I checked and saw that my preferences indicated that BOINC could use 100% of the cores available so I have tweaked the settings and will see if it solves the problem.
It rounds down for cores, so even "99% of cores" means one is always left unused.
Also; that setting is applied before the 'use x% of the processor', so if processor was 100% it would only apply to the three remaining cores (assuming a quad-core CPU), for a total of 75% effective CPU usage. We advise users to take advantage of the most energy-efficient way to use CPUs, because it's not linear, eg. a CPU running at 60% total usage (all cores) is only using 7% more energy than when idle. If it's at 100%-100% usage though, it's twice the energy.Anything around 60%-75% is in the sweet spot. Beyond that, it's far more efficient to activate more PCs than turn the existing CPUs up.
(Obviously, these are only our recommendations. All these settings can be changed to whatever you prefer. Your PC, your rules!)Cheers,
The CPU slowdown that you experienced is usually only when a sudden burst of Computing is needed. This is experienced a lot in gaming. When the sudden burst is sent to the CPU it can't be processed until the previous stuff gets through, so even though it is prioritized there is a slight lag as it starts. The best solution is to either put a check in the program to snooze if a highly variable program is in use, or for the user to manually snooze the program before using whatever was in use when the slowdown happened.
This has been my experiance, but lowering the ceiling could fix your problem as well.