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Re: C++ bootstrap of GCC - still useful ?

On 07/10/2011 11:20 PM, Laurent GUERBY wrote:

On Sun, 2011-07-10 at 20:03 +0200, Toon Moene wrote:

Last month I got past year's electricity bill - it turns out that I am
now (16 hours of weather forecasting and 4 hours of GCC bootstrapping
per day) using 3200 KWh a year - to the tune of 1100 Euros.

So the question whether a run is useful is certainly relevant :-)

Since I pay the electricity bill of some compile farm machines
I understand you here :).

New generation of hardware has made significant progress on energy
efficiency: my latest built PC is a Intel core i7 2600 4 cores 8 threads
3.4 GHz 4x4 GB of RAM with 40 GB SSD + 2TB HDD, 80+ gold PSU and it
idles around 30W and uses 110W full CPU load. PC cost is around 800 EUR
in France (19.6% VAT included).

According to your data it should reduce your bill by a factor of three
(365W =>  110W), so it should pay itself in around a year: 720 EUR less
on your yearly electricity bill, assuming you counted only your PC power
consumption in your figures. And bonus nearly no noise in a case with 2
or 3 120mm fans.

I haven't had a chance to test AMD A8 processors but I will do soon.

One of the most frustrating aspects of this is that I cannot just write an Invitation To Tender for a 1000-1200 Euro PC (I have been involved with that process for KNMI's High Performance Computer now for over 15 years).

If I could do that, I would be able to:

1) Choose from several vendors.

2) Evaluate both "speed-of-execution" and "energy-efficiency" in a
   consistent way.

3) Evaluate the use of AMD vs Intel processors independent of the
   vendor of choice.

4) Get the vendor to install the Operating-System-of-choice (Debian
   Testing) and run my benchmarks, so that I'll be able to check
   their assumptions.

Instead, what I am currently doing to plan the replacement of the 2007 vintage machine that runs just two feet away from me, is to:

1) Gather information about upcoming Intel and AMD CPU's.

2) Estimate when they will hit the "Home and Small Business Market".

3) Hope that such a machine will indeed be priced between 1000-1200

4) Hope that the vendor who delivered me the current machine will have
   a competitive offer (note that I want to stay with my current vendor
   - I yet have to see another PC vendor making a machine that's
   obviously geared towards teenagers storing bittorrent-downloaded
   movies, that actually is able to work 16 hours+ per day on
   *real science* at full capacity without breaking down after years of


Toon Moene - e-mail: - phone: +31 346 214290
Saturnushof 14, 3738 XG  Maartensdijk, The Netherlands
At home:; weather:
Progress of GNU Fortran:

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