- To make the installation and startup user-friendly for the novice.
- To integrate the user interface into a single Monitor/Control program that manages the functionality previously contained in separate clients.
- To create a forward-looking design that can be readily expanded to incorporate new Folding Cores without the need to issue new client releases.
- To greatly improve previously problematic aspects including support for SMP, GPU, and the 3D viewer.
Please consider reading one of the guides listed in the documentation section, but if you want to dive right in you can start by downloading and installing the new client.
Install and user guides can be found here:
The new client has too many features to list but here are some of the highlights:
- Improved Windows installer with support for Windows XP, Vista, 2008 and Windows 7.
- 64-bit OS-X install package. (32-bit in the works).
- Debian/Ubuntu and RedHat/Fedora/CentOS 32-bit and 64-bit Linux packages.
- Low priority background operation has very little impact on your computers usability. You should hardly notice Folding@home is running when using other applications.
- A more compatible and stable 3D protein viewer with several view modes, rotation, zoom, online help and interpolated protein animations.
- Separate but integrated console client (FAHClient), user interface (FAHControl) and 3D protein viewer (FAHViewer).
- Novice, Advanced & Expert user interface modes. (See drop down list in FAHControl.)
- Support for more than one Folding Slot (UNI, SMP or GPU).
- Ability to monitor, configure and control many remote folding clients from a single computer.
- Very low CPU overhead for FAHClient, FAHControl and FAHViewer. 3D viewer overhead can be minimized by disabling rotating and protein animation.
- Single client for normal (Uniprocessor), SMP (Multiple CPUs) and GPU (Graphics Processors) folding.
The V7 client has undergone months of testing but due to the complex nature of distributed computing, the many features provided by the Folding@home client and the difficulties of simultaneously supporting software on Windows, OS-X and Linux there are still some open bugs, feature requests and likely other as of yet undiscovered issues. The beta testing process will help us test new features and fix any remaining bugs before we make a full public release. That said the open-beta V7 client is very usable and has many advantages over the previous client releases.
In an effort to increase the transparency of our development process we have decided to open read-only access to our bug tracking system. We are currently using Trac, a Web based system which, among other things, manages a database of tickets. Each ticket represents either a bug or feature request of some component of the Folding@home client software. You can view the list of open tickets here:
Aside from the documentation the best place to get help is in a v7 client forum (http://foldingforum.org/viewforum.php?f=67). If you do have a problem post a message. There are many knowledgeable people ready and willing to help you but keep in mind we greatly appreciate thorough reports delivered by patient people who can keep a cool head even when things go wrong.
So dive right in and let us know about your experience.