Excavator v1.2.5 Alpha

    Nicehash has released a new alpha version of Excavator, and it is much improved.  You can mine ETH at pretty much the same speeds as Claymore, and other algos are optimized as well.  For example it seems to be the fastest miner for LBRY on Nvidia.  It is tricky to get started for new users though, so read the documentation carefully and use the provided .bat file.  You only need to modify the .json file with your pool and information.  Download it here, and read up on the bitcointalk thread here !

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New Claymore ZCash V12.5 miner

    Claymore has updated his ZCash miner, now at V12.5.  Don’t expect any speed upgrades.  Main changes are the new EthMan monitoring version, with added password support, and support for the latest ZCash forks.  Also, a nice feature added to this version is that you can see how many shares each GPU has submitted to the pool.

Latest version v12.5:

- added support for latest ZCash forks.
- improved fans management for latest drivers and Polaris cards.
- added "-mpsw" option.
- added shares-per-GPU statistics when "s" key is pressed.
- Included EthMan v3.0 which supports passwords and email notifications.

6 GPU RX570 rig with Z170A build

    Welcome to the build from hell.  There has been a lot of despair and confusion with the parts contained in this build and I will show you how to make it work.  Lets talk expectations :  This is a low-cost solution that is semi-portable, fits into a 15A dedicated socket and will be dual-mining Pascal and Ethereum.  Let’s get to work !

    The rig itself is a cheap rack from Walmart, all metal and easy to setup.  It costs 26$ (all prices will be in CAD).  I have inserted a piece of wood/shelving that somehow (the crypto gods have smiled upon thee) fit just perfect.  Whatever you do, do not put any exposed components (motherboard…) directly on metal.  I have also purchased a 3000+joules 6 foot cord surge protector from Newegg, for about 20$.  The rest of the parts are straightforward.  8gb RAM DDR4 2133mhz, Pentium G4440 CPU socket 1151, 120GB Hynix SSD, 5 RX570 MSI Armor 4g and 1x RX570 ASUS STRIX 4g, EVGA 1000GQ PSU and of course the infamous MSI Z170A SLI motherboard.  All these parts were chosen because they were on sale and at a good price, and two, because they work well for rigs (except the motherboard mind you).  The reason I have chosen this cursed motherboard is because of non-availability of 6 GPU motherboards.  This particular model was also on sale, plus a Mail in rebate and was too cheap to ignore.  I can suggest doing a 5 GPU rig, it may be much easier to do.

    Now we assemble.  First is the CPU, which is easily placed into the socket (do not assemble on the anti-static bag, because it is only anti-static INSIDE), then the stock CPU cooler, which is also very easily installed.  Next install the RAM by pushing firmly down on it.  I have sourced case screws and used them to prop up the motherboard so it leaves a gap under it to permit airflow, although that is optional.  At this point set up your PSU and install all cables.  Connect the motherboard main cable, and the CPU 8 pin cable.  Then insert your first GPU in the x16 slot.  Connect your SSD to the SATA port.  You are now ready to plug in your screen, mouse and keyboard.

    Start it up !  Press del to enter the bios.  You must enable WIN8/10 mode in the options, and set the PCI to GEN 1 (or gen 2).  Set 4G decoding to disabled.  Save and reboot, and install WIN 10.  Once that is done enter the bios again and disable the WIN8/10 mode.  We won’t be needing that anymore.  Set Power ON after reboot/power outage.  Install your remote monitoring software, Claymore dual miner, GPU-Z, MSI Afterburner, SRBPolaris V2.6, ATIWinFlash, DDU, ATIPixelPatcher, and download AMD drivers.  In this particular case, you need to download an older version – such as 16.9.1 or 16.11.x, and a newer version, such as 17.4.4.  Use DDU to reboot into safe mode.  Select shutdown option.

    Install all your GPU’s and connect them with the USB risers.  No more than 2 on a single cable.  Don’t use the Molex adapter if you can.  Start it up again.  Open device manager, you should see all 6 GPU’s, with little yellow triangles.  All is well so far.  Now, thanks to atanas012 on bitcointalk (if i’m getting the source wrong someone please correct me), this is THE ONLY WAY I HAVE FOUND TO MAKE IT WORK on this mobo.  Read it here.  Open the older driver install file, and extract it.  Once its extracted, close the installation window.  DO NOT INSTALL IT.  Then, do the same for the newer driver.  DO NOT INSTALL IT.  As atanas012 puts it:  “Copy and replace all content from “C:\AMD\Non-WHQL-Win10-64Bit-Radeon-Software-Crimson-16.9.2-Sep21\Packages\Drivers\Display\WT6A_INF\B307117”  to “C:\AMD\WHQL-Win7-64Bit-Radeon-Software-Crimson-ReLive-17.4.3-Apr17\Packages\Drivers\Display\W76A_INF\B313057” (Basically you copy the old driver over the new)“.  Go in your device manager again and right-click on the first GPU with a yellow triangle.  Select update drivers, and manually select the newer driver folder (in this case, the 17.4.4).  It will install and tell you that all is well.  Don’t forget to accept when it tells you its a weird driver.

    Reboot and enter BIOS.  You must now enable 4G decoding.  Save and reboot.

    Now all should work.  Run MSI afterburner and GPU-Z to check your ASIC quality for an indication of how low you can put your voltages.  The thing with this Frankenstein driver approach is that you may not be able to modify your voltages anymore (EDIT:  You can still modify your GPU BIOS to have the voltage you want, 0.88v is a good place to start).  But you can use Afterburner to reduce your clock speed, and that will change the phase and lower the voltage according to the voltage table.  Put memory clock to 1900 or above to start.  Set up a custom fan profile, and select overclock on startup.  Save profiles.  You should get voltage at full load around 0.87 to 0.97mv.  Your claymore .bat file should look like this:

“set GPU_FORCE_64BIT_PTR 0 //optional for 570/580
EthDcrMiner64.exe -epool pool:port -ewal user.rig -epsw x -esm optional -allpools optional -dcoin second coin -dbg 0 (for logs) -mode 0 or1 (dual mining) -mport -3333 -dpool pool.port -dwal user.rig -dpsw x -dcri depends on GPU -di 012345″

    Run the file and check your voltages, and power usage.  Once that is done, close it.  Run ATIPixelPatcher now.  Open ATIWinFlash.  Select your GPUs, and save a copy of the BIOS for each different GPU.  Now in the ATIWinFlash, you can only see 3 GPU’s at a time.  I suggest you use the command line, its better.  Its Atiflash -p GPUnum filename.rom to flash.  Check your GPU’s with atiflash -i.  But first, open up SRBPolaris, and open your saved .rom files.  Go into memory timings, and copy 1500 to above.  If you feel like it, you can try other options, 1625 to above, or even input your own memory timings and test things out.  I will keep it simple.  Save to A DIFFERENT FILE NAME.  Next, use atiflash to flash the bios to all your cards.  Reboot.

    Run Claymore again.  You can now play with the memory clock, 2000mhz is a good starting point for most cards depending on memory type and memory timings.  Everything should work fine.  If your rig crashes, open the log file and see which GPU froze.  Increase the core clock and reduce the memory clock of that GPU, and try again.  Check your power usage with a Watt-meter.  I can get anywhere from 930 watts dual mining Pascal, 170mhs and 1500mhs depending on voltages.  Good luck and happy mining !  I hope this guide helped you, and please consider donating to the people who made this possible on bitcointalk and elsewhere, to the people who made the tools you use to make it all work, and if you feel inclined, to me 🙂

Claymore ZCash miner update v12.4

    Small update for ZCash, Claymore has updated his mining software to V12.4.  The only worthwhile feature is the new GPU order tool that we saw in the latest ETH miner update.  This means you can order your GPU’s to be in the same order as in MSI afterburner, for example.  Not real speed increase, maybe 1%.  Happy mining everyone, it is quite profitable at the moment with all the latest altcoin pumps.  Don’t worry about BTC price and/or hard fork, things have always worked out in the past 🙂

– slightly improved speed for some cards (1-2%).
– added “-gmap” option.
– a few minor changes/improvements.