Computing Recommendations

While we don’t recommend a specific manufacturer or model, the following items should be considered when selecting a computer to run FRED:

  • FRED only runs on Windows and is compatible with Windows 10.
  • FRED performs multi-threaded calculations on up to 4 threads while FRED Optimum supports up to 63 threads.  Any number of threads beyond the limit for your version of FRED are not used.
  • Many components of FRED, such as BASIC scripting calculations and model updating, are not multi-threaded. Therefore, high-speed processors are advantageous.  In many scenarios, performance is better for a smaller number of fast CPUs compared to a larger number of slow CPUs (e.g., 16 cores at 3.2 GHz vs. 24 cores at 2.4 GHz).
  • We recommend between 16 and 48 GB of RAM to avoid buffer overflows that may occur when working with large raytraces.
  • Sometimes, buffering cannot be avoided (e.g., when you need to trace more rays than can be processed with the available RAM).  For this reason, it is beneficial to have a system with a high disk I/O. This stands for input/output, which is the speed of data transfer between the hard disk and the RAM. A solid state drive (SSD) is also recommended.

FRED and FRED Optimum do not leverage GPUs for calculation purposes, but a quality graphics board will allow for smooth operation of the 3D view.  Any board suitable for running a CAD package will be appropriate.

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