Wow things in the Zcash world are indeed beginning to move very fast. While there are many competing open source and private Zcash miners currently being developed an early entrant for GPU mining is now available to download. https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=1660023.0
You will need something like 7zip to extract the file, but within the extracted directory is a windows version of the miner. Once fully extracted, you will need to edit the config.txt file. Right now it is configured to point to coinsforall.io pool, and that is fine for testing. You can also keep the default address if you want, as anything you mine up until launch will be test coins that have no value.
You will of course need your own wallet address once Zcash has officially launched and do note that this miner is currently using a proprietary protocol and currently only works with the coinsforall pool.
Since a lot of other people are testing using this same address, you may want to change the custom name field to something you can spot on the pool to confirm everything is working properly.
I have copied an example configuration below you can reference if you wish to test the miner out.
server = "coinsforall.io";
port = "6668";
# Your ZCASH payout address
address = “zthTb2ToG5kuAc11Ni6NxoYjoxQdEr2XvST7XEdLvmHG9k7kotEcwYCaAn1SH4zRdPoXn9kNeFm8CQok9SNtNgn8d9WcdTK”;
# You can give this machine a custom name
# Computer name is used as default
name = “CryptoYeti-test”;
# “amd”: AMD GCN cards
# “nvidia”: NVidia Maxwell cards
platform = “amd”;
# GPU crash handling (properly untested feature):
# 0 – do nothing
# 1 – close miner application
# 2 – reboot system (need superuser rights)
onCrash = “1”;
# – The following settings have one entry per GPU
# – If you have more than 4 just add more entries or leave it as is to use defaults
# – All entries must be separated by commas and set between double quotes
# 0 = don’t use device
# 1 = use device
# devices = [“1”, “1”, “1”, “1”, “1”];
devices = [“1”];
# work sizes
# worksizes = [“256”, “256”, “256”, “256”, “256”];
worksizes = [“256”];
# threads = [“8192”, “8192”, “8192”, “8192”, “8192”];
threads = [“8192”];
# -1 means don’t change
corefreq = [“1150”];
memfreq = [“1850”];
powertune = [“-1”];
fanspeed = [“-1”];
My initial results using a MSI RX470 shows about 17-18 sols using 1250/1850 core/memory clocks and the 1500 strap BIOS mod. Preliminary testing also seems to indicate that this miner will use slightly less power than ETH mining, as I used almost 100 less watts on a 2 RX470 rig mining Zcash than when mining Ethereum.
- GPU: MSI RX470 4 GB
- Driver: Crimson 16.10.2
- OS: Windows 10 64 bit
- Core/Memory Clocks: 1250/1850
- Power Draw: ~120 watts including system
Quick Note on Hash/sec versus Sols/s
Miners are familiar with the term hashes per second often abbreviated in forms such as hash/s, hps, or Mhash/sec, Mh/s, and so on. With Zcash you will encounter a new term sols or sol/sec which is short for solutions and is usually expressed in a sol/second, sol/s, or sols for short, format. This will often cause confusion as it is different from the hash/sec terminology we are all used to.
In short the main difference comes from the way that the algorithms check for PoW (Proof of Work) in that Bitcoin and its variants use a
SHA256d(block_header) -> difficulty check while Zcash uses a Equihash
(most_of_block_header) -> SHA256d(block_header) -> difficulty for a PoW check. So while with Bitcoin measuring Hash/s is basically equivalent to saying how many SHA256d runs/s were performed, using Equihash with every iteration you end up with a variable amount of solutions that on average work out to around 1.88 sol/s (often seen rounded up to 2 sol/s).
So while not entirely accurate, the best way to transition is to think of sol/s as you would hash/s when it comes to measuring relative performance, but you are still better off to keep to the proper sols or sol/s notation when talking about it to avoid confusion. As at the end of the day it is sols not hashes that put Zcash in your wallet. 😉
Important Note: All information is being taken from public sources and is being offered as informational only! Since Zcash is still in beta the author cannot attest to the the veracity or reputation of any links or software. As with all things, due diligence on the part of the user is required. Please scan all sites and downloads with tools such as VirusTotal before attempting to access and/or download content. Use best practice techniques such as installing software in a sand-boxed environment and not on your main machine, or especially any machine with crytocurrency wallets or other sensitive data.