General Processing on GPU?

V

Videodrome

Guest
I'm messing around with this big Desktop Tower I mentioned in the other thread and I have plenty of open slots and video cards. I'm very curious about the possibility of doing GPGPU or General Processing on GPU.

However, a lot of my research seems to suggest only specialized cards, especially with Nvidia CUDA, can do this. I just wondered if anyone has any experience with this concept.

For forum readers not sure what I'm talking about, GPGPU is supposed to be a method allowing you to harness all the cores in a GPU for parellel processing power with regular applications. A good example might be to speed up rendering video or 3D Graphics in Blender. I also wondered if this might possibly speed up virus scans with ClamAV.

Currently, I'm reviewing this page hoping to find out whether I can do this.

https://boinc.berkeley.edu/wiki/GPU_computing#Check_whether_your_computer_has_a_capable_GPU
 


R

ryanvade

Guest
My research has focuses on Cluster computers that utilize CUDA. You don't need very expensive GPUs to have CUDA support. My GT 520 (and of course the 630M we use on our LittleFE) have CUDA 3 support.
For a full list of CUDA cards click HERE

If you prefer AMD you can use OpenCL. You can also use OpenCL on Nvidia cards but it is not as well supported.

GPGPU is a great concept but it has limitations. For example, video transcoding is horrible on GPUs while rendering isn't. GPGPU is for tasks with large amounts of threads performing different tasks for the same goal. Memory management and 'task chunking' are big concepts.

more information:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parallel_computing
 
V

Videodrome

Guest
Maybe I should ask more about what kinds of practical application uses there are for GPGPU before I invest a lot of time into this.

While I'm job shadowing / interning at a small PC Shop, I thought it would be cool if I could find ways to contribute. I thought maybe GPGPU(or Clustering?) might be a way to speed on PC Utility Tools like ClamAV or Comodo for virus cleanup.

Removing viruses is a very common task for this shop, so it would be cool if there was a way to speed it up somehow.

Seriously, just today a lady picked up her laptop than 30 minutes later called to say she had typical "ScareWare" saying she had hundreds of infections and needed to pay $29.99 to some fake software company to have it removed.

My alternate side project might be to make old PCs into Hardware Firewalls and try to sell them to these poor Windows users.
 
R

ryanvade

Guest
Maybe I should ask more about what kinds of practical application uses there are for GPGPU before I invest a lot of time into this.

While I'm job shadowing / interning at a small PC Shop, I thought it would be cool if I could find ways to contribute. I thought maybe GPGPU(or Clustering?) might be a way to speed on PC Utility Tools like ClamAV or Comodo for virus cleanup.

Removing viruses is a very common task for this shop, so it would be cool if there was a way to speed it up somehow.

Seriously, just today a lady picked up her laptop than 30 minutes later called to say she had typical "ScareWare" saying she had hundreds of infections and needed to pay $29.99 to some fake software company to have it removed.

My alternate side project might be to make old PCs into Hardware Firewalls and try to sell them to these poor Windows users.
Virus scanning could be a good application for parallel processing but you have to think about the target audience. Regular users will not need faster scanning. And if they do then GPU parallelism may not be the solution. Enterprise users may need this however.

If you want to see some applications with parallelism support check these out:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/General-purpose_computing_on_graphics_processing_units#Applications

http://www.nvidia.com/object/gpu-applications.html
 

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