Before I install it I want to know if it is x86 program or not.
That's a slightly vague question, all things considered.
But since it says it's for Windows 7 which is pretty much only or x86 architectures, I'm going to assume you're asking if it is a 32bit program, not 64bit?
If so, Foldit is 32bit and only 32bit. It does not use any of the enhancements that x64 capable CPUs or OSes offer, and can function on 32bit-Only processors.
However, as all CPUs sold within the last decade are all 64bit... if your CPU is so old that it ISN'T x64 capable, then I assure you that you do NOT want to try to run it, because it is not well optimized at all! lol It only uses one CPU Core, and therefore you'd want a processor running at a very high frequency (MHz). It can run on laptops, but it's quite slow, especially if it wasn't high-end to begin with. :P
Hopefully that answers your question <_>
Foldit used to run on mainly one "core" or more properly one "logical processor". After an update about a year and a half ago, Foldit now uses about 1.25 to 1.5 logical processors while running a recipe with its window minimized.
I think the update to a newer version of Rosetta also introduced this increase in processor usage, but not 100% sure on that.
If you look at what's happening during a recipe in Process Explorer or a similar tool, you'll still see one Foldit program thread using near 100% of a logical processor more or less continuously. There's also a second thread that's fairly busy, but more variable, that accounts for most of the rest of the activity.
In early versions, there was just one busy thread while running a recipe, and activity on the other threads was minimal.
Foldit still runs on older hardware. I'm able to run it on an old laptop with only two logical processors that was originally Windows XP. That system is OK for hand folding, but not so great for running recipes.
Separately, on the Mac front, I think that Foldit is now 64-bit, since recent macOS versions no longer support 32-bit programs. (Apple likes to plan obsolescence.)
Yea I suppose it is a little better at it now. While I'm not running a recipe currently, with the window in view and doing the automated Mutate, it's indeed consuming almost 2 logical threads completely (~15%, whereas "fully" would be 16% on my 16-threaded Ryzen CPU). Minimized, still doing Mutate, that plummets to a single threaded equaling 8% heh
Also depends on how utilization is being calculated. Task Manager is the above reference, but Process Hacker shows that same 8% as 6.35%
Same with my laptop where ~43% Task Manager is claimed to be 5% lower in Process Hacker.
My gut wants to say Task Manager is going to be more accurate given it's M$'s own program lol Yet, Process Hacker has been around for a lllllong time, so it's hard to imagine there'd be such a long standing bug.
Either way, at the end of the day, Foldit sadly is a program that was developed in an age where it wasn't able to take full advantage of even the most common processors - dual core. It's a shame we're forced to run multiple instances to get the most out of our CPU... which means trying to juggle more open windows :P
Hopefully we've managed to answer the OP's question though! lol
Yep, it's frustrating. When the coronavirus hit I decided to build a computer just dedicated to folding for science. Ryzen 5 2600 cpu, Geforce GTX 1650 Super gpu, 32GB memory, 500GB nvme. Now hearing the app is intentionally kept crippled bugs the heck out of me.
It's just a massive task for what boils down to being pretty much a single coder. It's mostly a resources (see: money) issue, but also partially to deal with the Rosetta Commons code that Foldit is based around.
Would definitely be nice University of Washington could take on community help by simply having anyone helping with code sign an NDA... But I imagine there has to be more to it otherwise such a simple thing would've been done long ago :(
Push come to shove, you can still play Foldit and utilize more of your system through multiple instances open and running automated recipes. The Wiki has guides for setting that up.
There's also the option to simultaneously run Rosetta@HOME and/or Folding@HOME alongside Foldit. :)