Beware: invest minimally
Spacemesh introduces a new frontier in cryptocurrency mining, or as it's referred to within the community, "smeshing." As a nascent project, Spacemesh's price remains unknown, making the financial investment in specialized smeshing hardware a risk for early adopters. Prospective smeshers must weigh the potential rewards against the uncertainties of this emerging market.
However, what sets Spacemesh apart is its commitment to a race-free mining environment. This design seeks to create a more equitable and efficient mining process, reducing the cutthroat competition often found in traditional mining protocols.
While the landscape is still evolving, those interested in smeshing can look forward to forthcoming information on how to efficiently employ hardware in the Spacemesh network. The community's focus on inclusivity and fairness may usher in a new era of decentralized technology, where everyone has an equal opportunity to contribute and benefit.
GTX 4090 GPU's have recently dropped in price though:
Mining Phases & Their Requirements
First Phase: Plotting the Storage
Plotting the storage is the initial step in the Spacemesh mining process, and it requires a good GPU for optimal performance. With the fastest GPU, such as a GTX 4090, it takes about 2 days to plot 1TB. Note that by default, multi-GPU plotting in parallel is not supported. However, community-created scripts have made this possible.
Second Phase: Finding Proof within Existing Storage
Once every 14 days, a smesher has the chance to find proof within the existing storage. This process is time-consuming as the disk needs to be read, and the CPU must find proof in the storage to be eligible to participate and receive rewards during the next period. CPU assignment and disk read speeds are crucial.
With a recent Ryzen core, this process can be handled in one hour for a minimum proof of 256GB. The full window only allows 12 x 256GB per CPU core. It is also essential to ensure that your system can read at least appropriate write speeds.
With an 8-core Ryzen system, expect to be able to submit 24TB in 12 hours.
Some nifty CPU's:
Maximizing storage capacity is crucial for home miners looking to participate in smeshing. There are three primary options to consider for expanding your storage:
- PCIe SATA Expansion Cards: These expansion cards fit into your system's PCIe slots and provide additional SATA connections. This allows for increased hard drive connections and capacity, making it an ideal solution for home miners aiming for higher smeshing capabilities.
- USB Expansion Cards: USB expansion cards offer additional USB ports for external storage connections. While generally not as fast as internal connections, they provide flexibility and ease of adding more storage as needed.
- SATA Ports in NVMe Drive Slots: Some motherboards offer the option to plug SATA ports into NVMe drive slots. This unlocks more space for traditional SATA drives, expanding storage without compromising the high-speed benefits of NVMe drives.
It is worth noting that network storage use is limited in the context of Spacemesh mining. Even with a 10 Gbit connection, you will be restricted to about 36TB. Considering this limitation, the three mentioned expansion options may prove more efficient and effective for home miners.
Limitations and Solutions in Extending Plots
At present, extending the plots within the Spacemesh system is not feasible. Instead, miners will need to strategically move around plots and run multiple smeshers. This can be accomplished in several ways:
- Multiple Systems: Distributing smeshers across various physical systems allows for increased mining capacity.
- Virtual Machines: Running smeshers within virtual machines offers flexibility and control, though this may come with its own technical challenges.
- Multi-instance Installation: Installing multiple instances of Spacemesh on a single system can allow for more parallel smeshing but demands careful management and coordination.
When starting a new plot, it is essential to completely remove the Spacemesh installation so that the plot gets registered to a new miner. This step ensures proper registration and prevents potential conflicts or errors within the system.
The community has created many guides to navigate these complexities and optimize your mining setup. However, be cautious of potential limitations, such as running out of RAM when proving your space, as this could impact performance and reliability.