Mine virtual (quark) currency

This post is an an addendum to “The Bitcoin gold rush reminds us that infrastructure matters”

While discussing the impact of virtual currency on cloud infrastructure can be thought provoking, my inner “techie” also wanted to mine some virtual coins. A  previous post, “The Bitcoin gold rush reminds us that infrastructure matters“, raised questions about what the future of cloud infrastructure will look like. Will the trend towards homogeneous commodity hardware continue or will new workload types emerge that demand specialized hardware? This post talks about the experience of mining virtual coins.

I have a home server that is used mostly for media and backup. So I decided to set it up as a virtual coin mining “worker”. Since Bitcoins have been mined to the point where my system would not be powerful enough, I chose to mine the newer Quark coin. I created a KVM virtual server and used it to install a wallet and mining program. Once my mining server was setup, I joined a pool and, voila, I started mining Quark coins! How many? Not many. Maybe not even worth the electricity but worth experiencing the virtual coin rush.

Notes on How to Mine Quark Coins Using Ubuntu 13.04

1. Setup a Quark wallet on Linux. I followed the git hub readme-qt.rst instructions to build the mining tool for Linux. (https://github.com/MaxGuevara/quark/blob/master/doc/readme-qt.rst).

  • Here are the steps that I used to build the wallet. Note that you first need to download the zip file, quark-master.zip, and unzip that to an install directory of your choice.
apt-get install qt4-qmake libqt4-dev build-essential libboost-dev libboost-system-dev libboost-filesystem-dev libboost-program-options-dev libboost-thread-dev libssl-dev libdb++-dev libminiupnpc-dev

qmake

make

2. Setup a mining tool. For mining, I choose the Neisklar CPU Miner. Follow the instructions in the readme at https://github.com/Neisklar/quarkcoin-cpuminer to build the cpuminer.

  • Here are the steps I used to build the cpu miner. Note that you first have to download the zip file, quarkcoin-cpuminer-master.zip, and unzip it to a directory of your choice.
aptitude install make gcc m4 automake libevent-dev zlibc libjansson-dev libcurl4-openssl-dev git

./autogen.sh

./configure CFLAGS="-O3"

make

3. Register for a pool at qrk.coinmine.pl. Note that there are other pools one can join. See www.qrk.cc for more information on pools.

4. Configure the miner tool for the qrk.coinmine.pl pool and start mining. The username and password are arbitrary and setup on qrk.coinmine.pl.

/quarkcoin-cpuminter-master/minderd -a quark -o stratum+tcp://qrk.coinmine.pl:6010 -u username.1 -p password

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