Bitcoin Mining on Mac OS X – Twinfury ASICs

The flood gates on Bitcoins ASIC miners is definitely open with more Bitfury-based devices hitting the streets. My last post on Bitfury based USB sticks covered the Bi•Fury ASIC miner. Bi•Fury packs dual 55nm Bitfury ASIC chips, a striking red design, and hashes at around 5 Gh/s.

The Twinfury USB miner, currently available from Minecoin.net, is another new USB ASIC based based on a dual 55nm Bitfury design.

Twinfury

Right away you will notice these devices have much larger heat-sinks than the Bi•Fury ASICs requiring 3x the clearance. However, this comes with noticeable benefits as the Twinfury hashes at half the temperature Bi•Fury: about 16C versus 38C in my tests. In addition the Twinfury USB stick includes a button for resetting the device without having to unplug it, a handy addition inherited from the Blue & Red Fury ASIC predecessors.

Now that we have a rundown on the features, let’s see what what we can do to get it hashing under OS X!

Miner Installation

As with the HashBuster Micro before it, the Twinfury is currently only supported by bfgminer. So, the first step is to install bfgminer on OS X. There is a thread here on the Bitcoin Talk forums which discusses various ways to install bfgminer on Mac OS X. The most full-proof method is to use Homebrew:

  1. Launch Terminal.app from Spotlight or your Applications folder
  2. Install Homebrew by entering the following in the command prompt:
    ruby -e "$(curl -fsSL https://raw.github.com/mxcl/homebrew/go/install)"
  3. Run the following command and then fix any reported issues:
    brew doctor
  4. Tap the following Homebrew repository so that you can install packages from it:
    brew tap nwoolls/xgminer
  5. Finally, install bfgminer:
    brew install bfgminer --HEAD

Note: It is important that you use the --HEAD argument (two dashes prefix) until bfgminer 3.9.1 is released. This will install the miner using the latest source from Github which includes some fixes for Twinfury on OS X.

Driver Installation

Like the HashBuster Micro (and in contrast to the Bi•Fury) the Twinfury USB ASIC requires no installed kernel extension or driver.

Detection

After bfgminer is installed you can use the -d? argument to list available devices with bfgminer:

bfgminer -S twinfury:all -d?
[2013-12-28 00:58:45] Started bfgminer 3.9.0
[2013-12-28 00:58:48] Devices detected:
[2013-12-28 00:58:48] Device (driver=twinfury; procs=2; path=/dev/cu.usbmodem3a21)
1 devices listed

Mining

Once the Twinfury stick is detected you can start bfgminer using the -o, -u and -p arguments to begin mining:

bfgminer -S twinfury:all -o hostname -u username -p password

Twinfury bfgminer

The red-and-green color scheme above is thanks to a small Christmas-themed update released by the bfgminer author just prior to the holidays. I’ve done similar things in my own software in the past and think it’s a nice touch.

If you have any questions feel free to post them in the comments below or on this thread at the Bitcoin Talk forums. Happy mining!

4 thoughts on “Bitcoin Mining on Mac OS X – Twinfury ASICs

  1. Pingback: Bitcoin Mining on Mac OS X – NanoFury ASICs | blog.nwoolls.com

  2. Bruno

    Hello Nate,
    Thanks a lot for your precious blog: I’ve just started mining with my Mac Pro and the Twinfury.
    I’m very new to mining, and fortunately in the past I had the opportunity to use a little Terminal (even if now I’m very very rusty): that’s why I’m here.
    Soon should arrive also 4 Antminer, and I would like to know if I can use them together with Twinfury.
    Thanks a lot for your attention.
    Best regards,
    Bruno

    Reply

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