ATLAS@Home is a research project that uses volunteer computing to run simulations of the ATLAS experiment at CERN. You can participate by downloading and running a free program on your computer.

ATLAS is a particle physics experiment taking place at the Large Hadron Collider at CERN, that searches for new particles and processes using head-on collisions of protons of extraordinary high energy. Petabytes of data were recorded, processed and analyzed during the first three years of data taking, leading to up to 300 publications covering all the aspects of the Standard Model of particle physics, including the discovery of the Higgs boson in 2012.

Large scale simulation campaigns are a key ingredient for physicists, who permanently compare their data with both "known" physics and "new" phenomena predicted by alternative models of the universe, particles and interactions. This simulation runs on the WLCG Computing Grid and at any one point there are around 150,000 tasks running. You can help us run even more simulation by using your computer's idle time to run these same tasks.

On this page you can see ATLAS monitoring of the tasks running on ATLAS@Home, as well as how ATLAS@Home ("BOINC") compares to the other sites on the WLCG.

The program you will download runs simulation software inside a virtual machine hosted by your computer. The virtual machine image is ~500MB but is only downloaded once. Each workunit downloads a small set of input data and runs for approx 1 to 2 hours depending on the computer's processor speed.

Please consult or post to the message boards to learn more about the work currently available or in case of problems.

The Physics of ATLAS@Home

No knowledge of particle physics is required, but for those interested in the physics processes simulated in ATLAS@Home as well as the ATLAS experiment itself visit our public page.

ATLAS@Home tasks progress, for each task (number of jobs done/total number of jobs):

  • Task mc15_valid AZNLOCTEQ6L1_Wplusenu.simul (6418399): 0/40000
  • Task mc15_valid AZNLOCTEQ6L1_Wplusenu.simul (6396471): 25415/40000
  • Task mc15_valid AZNLOCTEQ6L1_Wplusenu.simul (6361922): 38197/40000
  • Task mc15_valid AZNLOCTEQ6L1_Wplusenu.simul (6303377): 39001/40000
  • Task mc15_13TeV 70_CVetoBVeto.simul (6169523): 77178/78160

Join ATLAS@Home

  • Read our rules and policies
  • This project uses BOINC. If you're already running BOINC, select Add Project. If not, download BOINC.
  • This project also requires VirtualBox to be installed.
    • Windows: VirtualBox is included in Windows distributions of Boinc and so does not have to be installed separately.
    • Mac and Linux: VirtualBox must be installed separately
  • In case of problems using the latest version of VirtualBox try using version 4.2.16.
  • After choosing Add Project in Boinc Manager, choose ATLAS@home from the list of projects
  • Then either enter details for to set up a new account, or if you have previously registered enter the existing account details.
    • A reasonably powerful modern 64-bit computer with at least 4GB of memory is required to run ATLAS@Home. Enabling 64-bit virtualisation may require some changes in BIOS settings.
    • In Boinc Manger set the % of processors used to be at most 50%, otherwise your computer may run out of memory.
    • The work units may use a lot of network bandwidth, so a slow internet connection may reduce work unit efficiency
    • The work units contact servers at CERN and outside CERN. If you are behind a firewall you will need to open access to these servers. Please contact us for details.
  • If you're running a command-line version of BOINC, create an account first.
  • If you have any problems, get help here.

User of the day


Task progress
Hi All,

Thanks to your great support our tasks are almost done.

We may run out of WUs soon, since it can take some time to get new tasks defined for ATLAS@home.

Hopefully, new WUs will be submitted soon.

Thank you for your support in the ATLAS production effort!

31 Aug 2015, 8:59:51 UTC · Comment

Short BOINC service interruption on Monday
Dear volunteers,

there will be a short BOINC service interruption at 14:00 CERN/Geneva time today for storage backend maintenance. The services will be stopped for a short while, so there might be connectivity glitches during the maintenance period.

Best regards,
24 Aug 2015, 8:12:33 UTC · Comment

New task defined

we ran out of WUs and it took sometime to get new tasks defined for ATLAS@home.

Good news, new WUs should flow now.

Thank you for your support in the ATLAS production effort!

18 Aug 2015, 13:05:14 UTC · Comment

ATLAS@home badges
We recently implemented a new badge system for ATLAS@home, and details for the ATLAS@home badge system can be found here.

Excited about this? Check your profile and see what Particle you are now!

Or curious to see what badges our top users have?
2 Jul 2015, 2:09:27 UTC · Comment

New application version - 1.37
Dear All,

In the next hour a new application version for all platforms will be released.

The updates in this version are:

--New vboxwrapper version.
--Changes in the vbox_job.xml

The image will remain the same as in the old version.

Your inputs are important,
Please let us know if you are having problems.

Thank you all!
24 Jun 2015, 9:49:46 UTC · Comment

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