Getting Started - Setting Up Your BIOS
In this tutorial, we will show you how to set up a Mining Rig, and give you tips on how to make your system optimized and more efficient. We have a guide on ‘How To Build a Mining Rig‘ if you do need help building your rig first.
- Boot into BIOS.
- Hit 'F7' to enter advanced mode.
- Head to the advanced section.
- Change all link speeds and PCI-E speed to Auto (3 Locations)
- Make sure 4G Decoding is on, and Mining Mode is On.
- Change primary display settings to CPU Graphics
- Under APG, AC Power loss to 'Power On'
- Optional: Turn off your audio drivers.
- Save & Exit to reboot
- Plug your HDMI into the motherboard instead of the GPU.
Here is a video guide for your BIOS Settings.
Now your motherboard should be ready for mining, and you should be able to see the display through your built-in integrated graphics.
Downloading Windows 10 OS & Drivers
In this tutorial of ‘How To Setup a Mining Rig’ we will be using Windows 10, yes you can go ahead and use Linux or Windows 7.
Now let’s download Windows 10, and the drivers needed based on our GPU, but if you already have this part done feel free to jump to the next section!
To get started you will need…
- Flash Drive (5GB & Up)
- Internet connection
- Laptop or a PC
- Windows 10 Media Creation Tool
Windows 10 OS Download
Once you prepare all the required items, open Media Creation Tool and then select the USB letter that shows up, and then run it. Make sure you select the correct one to avoid deleting your personal data.
So now your Bootable USB is ready, plug it in the Rig and boot up, it should take you to the Windows installation page, follow through with all the steps, don’t worry about buying a license so just hit Skip or Later when it prompts you for the key, once you get to the customer experience settings make sure to uncheck all the options and anything else that pops up (Activity history, personalized experience, Microsoft login).
All those are extra unnecessary services for your mining rig, and yes don’t log in with your Microsoft account, set it up as an offline machine WITHOUT A PASSWORD (just hit enter when they ask for a password), as it will save you lots of time later on when you want to remote control it. The installer should be preparing your Windows now.
Updates & Drivers
After the setup is done, go to Settings then download all the Windows updates, afterward install your GPU Drivers, for Nvidia Click Here, for AMD Click Here. Make sure you get the right model for your cards when you install the drivers, and always install the latest official download (not beta).
Finish installing all the updates, then install these applications…
Now reboot your Rig & head to the next section after ALL updates are installed.
Optimizing And Setting Up Windows 10
What you should have now…
- BIOS Settings changed, and your Display is connected to the motherboard.
- Windows installed and up to date
- An offline account means you can just boot on and be able to see the desktop without any password requirements.
- The 3 Applications were installed. (Teamviewer, MSI Afterburner, GPU-Z)
Now we will focus on making the OS as efficient as possible when it comes to Mining, we will reduce all the resources that are being used, and make sure it stays consistent and require the less maintenance possible.
Let's start with the Control Panel. Navigate to Control Panel > System and Security > System and change these two settings: (refer to pic 1)
Navigate to the Advanced tab, click on Performance, and change to Performance Mode.
Go to Advanced in the same box that popped up after the first step and then go to Memory Latency – Change it to 2000MB Per GPU you have for Initial, and for the Max 3000MB Per GPU. Example: You have 3 RX 580s, that would be 6000MB for Initial, 9000MB Max. (refer to pic 3)
Now we move on to the power settings.
- Power Settings > Advanced Power Settings
- Select High-Performance settings
- Change plan settings
- Navigate to Advanced Power Settings
- Set PCI Express Link power management to Off (refer to the picture below)
The last step in the setup is to download the file that will be linked below. The file optimizes your registry, you will type ‘y’ for usually all of it, but if you do not want a certain thing disabled feel free to type ‘n’. The purpose is to stop a lot of the background services that would impact your mining stability & removes all the extra apps that are not needed. It does turn off windows updates but whenever you want to turn it back on to update all you have to do is head to the registry (mscv) and resume the ‘Windows Update’ service. All the credits go to the creator of the script, his tag is mentioned in it. Download
Connecting The Rest Of The GPUs
Now that you have everything set up and downloaded your corresponding drivers for the GPUs, your running finish off by booting off the Rig and unplugging it from the power completely. Shut down the PSU switch, and go ahead and plug in the rest of your GPUs, make sure you start from top to bottom, (the first slot is always the first x16 slot, then you can connect the mini ones above it).
Connect everything with care, and make sure you are plugging it the right way, if you don’t then there is an excellent chance that you will burn the PCI-E slot or plug. The USB plug will face the opposite of the CPU, and the hedge will go off the left side of the PCI-E Slots. (refer to pic below)
Now you are ready to start mining!