BOINC issue with MacPro Late 2013 GPU AMD FirePro D700 (2)

Message boards : Questions and problems : BOINC issue with MacPro Late 2013 GPU AMD FirePro D700 (2)
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Message 101470 - Posted: 3 Nov 2020, 12:25:19 UTC

My version of BOINC is. 7.6.11 on macOS 10.15.7 (aka Catalina). Running on a MacPro Late 2013 (64 GB) with 2 x AMD FirePro D700 (VRAM 6 GB) GPUs.
Project involved is Milkyway@home.
When I run BOINC with milkyway@home as project, I get a kernel panic indicating:

panic(cpu 2 caller 0xffffff7f8da80ad5): userspace watchdog timeout: no successful checkins from in 120 seconds
service:, total successful checkins since load (25470 seconds ago): 2548, last successful checkin: 0 seconds ago
service:, total successful checkins since load (25440 seconds ago): 2532, last successful checkin: 120 seconds ago

This problem also happened on 10.15.5 and 10.15.6.

This kernel panic doesn't happen when BOINC is NOT running.

I tried a clean install of Catalina and problem still happens.
Apple has told me I should go to the author of the software so here I am reporting the problem.
I understand (I may be wrong on this) the 2nd D700 is used as a GPU doing Metal calls. Both my displays show up in System Report as being handled by the 1st D700.

I would like to run BOINC with Milkyway@home project but I can't have my system freezing frequently and randomly.

Any ideas?
Craig Dudley
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Profile Dave
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Message 101472 - Posted: 3 Nov 2020, 12:46:52 UTC

Never used a Mac or ran Milky way. My first diagnostic check would be to see if it happens when running any other projects. Pretty certain it is the science executables from Milky way causing the problem not BOINC. My best guess would be a hardware problem causes it when the system is stressed but I am more than ready to be shot down in flames by those with experience of running Mac's.
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Les Bayliss
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Message 101483 - Posted: 3 Nov 2020, 14:11:36 UTC - in response to Message 101470.  

What happens if you leave boinc running, and suspend the workunit? (In the Tasks tab.)
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Message 101497 - Posted: 4 Nov 2020, 15:24:00 UTC - in response to Message 101470.  

Assumed Preferences had only GPU setting available. I then looked around further. Found Suspend GPU usage via Activity menu item.
After I suspended GPU usage, I started BOINC again and have not had a kernel panic since (24+ hours and counting).

So it looks like a problem with BOINC usage of 2nd GPU on Late 2013 MacPro running 10.15.7.

Would be nice to get this fixed.
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Profile Jord
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Message 101498 - Posted: 4 Nov 2020, 17:29:30 UTC - in response to Message 101497.  

BOINC usage of 2nd GPU

BOINC doesn't use the GPU, BOINC is the managing program for a lot of project's scientific programs. These programs use the GPU. If anyone has to fix anything, it's the projects.

As Dave said, easily tested if it's the science program or your hardware: try another project that supports your GPU on MacOS:
If you don't want to report this behaviour at the project itself, then your only option there is to disable the use of the ATI/AMD GPU and run work solely on the CPU.
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Profile David Riese

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Message 101578 - Posted: 15 Nov 2020, 3:25:17 UTC

I agree with Jord that trying another project may help you distinguish between hardware and software problems. Collatz @ Home also supports AMD GPU tasks on Macs. There is at least one user on Collatz @ Home that is crunching GPU tasks using a MacPro 6,1 with dual D500s. You can learn about that system here:

There is a very small community of Mac users at Collatz and they try to help folks with hardware and software issues. Check out the Macintosh message board there. Good luck!
David J. Riese II, PhD
Auburn University Harrison School of Pharmacy

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Craig Dudley

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Message 102091 - Posted: 11 Dec 2020, 0:56:12 UTC - in response to Message 101578.  

Well, after getting frustrated with the frequent crashes (windowserver timeout) I gave up and didn't run BOINC either manually or at login. And I still crashed with same problem. So whatever is causing it is somewhere else other than BOINC or any of it's projects.
Will continue tracking it down.
Thanks for all your help.
Craig Dudley
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Message boards : Questions and problems : BOINC issue with MacPro Late 2013 GPU AMD FirePro D700 (2)

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