Litecoin Mining for Funtoo

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Litecoin mining is a fun and easy way that you can help support the Funtoo Linux project. Litecoin is a virtual cryptographic currency that is generated using CPUs and video card GPU computational power, and can be converted into a traditional currency like US dollars.


How does Litecoin Relate to Funtoo?

Part of Funtoo is having fun, and part of having fun is being creative, and exploring new ideas and concepts, and not being limited by the expectations of others. These concepts include technology, but also include new community concepts and approaches for supporting a community. Distributed support via CPU and GPU power is certainly a novel way of supporting an open source project, and because of this it is a perfect fit for Funtoo. In many ways, the resource challenges faced by open source projects are more complex than the technical challenges, and deserve to be taken seriously. By exploring the use of Litecoin, we are exploring an innovative way to fund the project.

What are Funtoo Litecoin Funds Used For?

These funds will be used to pay the Development Lead of Funtoo, who assists me (Daniel Robbins) in ensuring that day-to-day often unglamorous work is completed in a responsive way for our users. The goal of this effort is for litecoin funds to pay the Development Lead so he can work on Funtoo Linux full-time.

Why is this important? Sometimes, I get busy at work and cannot be involved in Funtoo, and the Development Lead ensures that the Funtoo community stays afloat during these periods. The Dev Lead also assists with running the project when I'm available, so I can focus on development activities more deeply. This also helps to keep the project fun for me, so it is not an unreasonable burden.

Any surplus funds beyond this will be used to pay for our 10Gbit/sec hosting infrastructure and servers, which I currently pay for myself.

Litecoin Pools

Typically, Litecoins are mined by pools of computers, and funtoo is part of the following pooled litecoin mining efforts:

pool host port user password stats review
Coinotron stratum+tcp:// 3334 funtoo.public p We've found this pool to be very efficient.
Burnside's Litecoin Mining Pool 9332 funtoo.public p stats very good PPNLS pool
OzCoin 9332 funtoo.public p ozcoin overview very good PPS pool

There are lots of different ways to mine Litecoins. You can use any of our pools above. You can also use your CPU or your graphics card. To see what different types of hardware can do, see the Litecoin Mining Hardware Comparison page. Note that many of these systems are overclocked so make note of the CPU and memory frequencies listed here.

"Got Litecoins Already" Method

If you already have Litecoins that you want to donate to Funtoo Linux, you can send them to LgtcMbY5JYTQAGzdfJ9U83CPhspNkbJzym. Thanks!

Here's how to do it with litecoind:

# litecoind sendtoaddress LgtcMbY5JYTQAGzdfJ9U83CPhspNkbJzym 50 

Be sure to let Daniel know that you sent some coin so that you can receive proper respect :)

CPU Mining

Here's how to get started and convert your idle CPU power into a contribution to the Funtoo Linux project.

The "miner" is the program that performs the computation to generate litecoins. It receives blocks from a server, which it performs computations on. Miners are designed to run continually in the background, where they use up idle CPU only, and will not impact the speed of your system. A significant contribution to Funtoo Linux is only realized when miners are run continually for days and weeks -- so running a miner for an hour or so is typically not effective.

Installation using Portage

This method will use CFLAGS from /etc/portage/make.conf. Note that -O2 seems to work much better than -O3.

# emerge pooler-cpuminer

Set up

Create the following script to start the miner:

threads=$(grep -c "^processor" /proc/cpuinfo)
while true;
  minerd --algo scrypt -s 45 --retry-pause 5 --threads $threads --url --userpass funtoo.public:p

Make it executable:

# chmod +x


Run to start the miner.

# ./

The cpuminer will only use idle CPU and will not slow down your system. Modern systems will generate somewhere from 15 to 60 KHash/sec total, which will result in $10 to Funtoo Linux per month for a Core i7 system at current exchange rates, when run continually.

Keep those miners running and thanks for supporting Funtoo Linux!

GPU Mining

Note, as psychopath noted in #funtoo (Freenode), cgminer stopped supporting GPU/Scrypt mining in 3.8 series.

Some of the more hardcore individuals in the Funtoo community may want to use their graphics processor to mine litecoins. Modern graphics cards, particularly AMD (ATI) cards, can offer hashrates well above 100Khash/sec, even above 400Khash/sec for some cards. Daniel Robbins has a few Radeon HD 6950's that can generate in excess of 400Khash/sec each.

AMD (ATI) cards tend to work much better than NVIDIA for litecoin mining. Here's how to do GPU mining:


First, X will need to be installed, and you will need to ensure all your video cards are defined in /etc/X11/xorg.conf. For AMD cards, ati-drivers 13.1 appears to work well. Ensure that full hardware acceleration is working and that ati OpenGL and amd OpenCL are selected via eselect. (This is probably how things are set up if you simply emerged ati-drivers.)

Install cgminer

First, enable the scrypt USE variable (important!). Now, emerge cgminer:

# USE="scrypt" emerge cgminer

Create cgminer script

Create a script that looks like this:

export DISPLAY=:0
cgminer \
-o -u funtoo.public -p p \
-o -u funtoo.public -p p \
--intensity 17 \
--scrypt \
--shaders 1536 --thread-concurrency 8000 -g 1 --worksize 256 \
--auto-fan --temp-target 80 

This script will start cgminer to connect to, but will automatically fall back to the kattare pool if is down. Intensity ranges from 1-20, with higher settings generally offering better hashrates. But if you get too close to 20, you will notice a slow down in interactive performance when using the X server. ssh performance will be unaffected.

Be sure to properly set the number of shaders on your card -- 1536 is for an unlocked Radeon HD 6950. Consult SCRYPT-README (look for the --shaders description) to view the correct shaders to use for your card.

Start Mining

Now make it executable, make sure X is running, and start mining:

# chmod +x
# ./

There are other cool things you can do with cgminer, such as overclocking your video card and ramping up the intensity to at or near 20 to dramatically increase hashrates. Happy mining, and if you are mining for Funtoo, thanks :)