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Old 2021-08-13, 10:48   #1
mognuts
 
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Default Colab Pro Plus

Has anybody tried Colab Pro+ yet? It seems quite expensive at $50 (£38.25) per month and doesn't seem to offer many more advantages over Colab and Colab Pro.

According to the sign up blurb:
  • Background execution
  • Notebooks keep working even after you close your browser.
  • Faster GPUs
  • Priority access to faster GPUs and TPUs means that you spend less time waiting while your code is running.
  • Even more memory
  • Significantly more memory than ever before.
  • Even longer runtimes
  • Gives you the longest running notebooks in Colab so you are able to get your work done.

It's all a bit vague.

Last fiddled with by mognuts on 2021-08-13 at 11:04 Reason: Added dollar price as well as UK pounds price
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Old 2021-08-13, 11:56   #2
axn
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mognuts View Post
It's all a bit vague.
Looks like an attempt at market segmentation aka cash grab.
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Old 2021-08-13, 12:46   #3
Chuck
 
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I'm a glutton for punishment. I just subscribed to Pro+. I opened two notebooks (each receiving a P100) and it would not allow opening a third "...you have too many open sessions"
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Old 2021-08-13, 12:59   #4
mognuts
 
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Personally, I would be happy to pay extra for a more powerful GPU and CPU, longer runtimes and more sessions but Colab don't seem to want to offer this. Colab Pro Plus looks like what Colab Pro used to be a few months ago and Colab Pro now looks like what the free Colab used to be when it first launched

Last fiddled with by mognuts on 2021-08-13 at 13:10 Reason: Confused Pro with Plus, changed instances for sessions
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Old 2021-09-05, 09:29   #5
LaurV
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I split this discussion about Pro+ into a separate thread, from the factoring tools thread, as it was cluttering there, and the subject deserves a discussion on its own.

We (as in royal we, but also as in nominative first person plural pronoun, see further referring to the fact that we run more accounts) used (and still use, but not for long) Pro. We mean normal pro, not plus, $10 bucks per month per account, more than one account (as many real people as we could grab into this, and who could give us access to their gugu-drive, otherwise unused - people need to be real because Gugu is checking - they know everything! - albeit we pay with the same credit card for all accounts, I guess it is not their business who pays for who).

We posted here and here our opinion about "Pro+", and same as axn said above, we think this is just a tentative from Gugu to get more money for the same resources. Thinking objectively, they are still the cheapest around, when you compare with Amazon's EC2 or Alibaba's stuff, where you have to spend few hundred bucks per month for the same resources.

Nevertheless, Gugu's move just hit us ("us" like in the number-hunting-community) under the belt with the move. Now for the same resources, you need to pay 5 times more money.

There is a nice article here which talks about the differences between the subscription types, except that the article was a bit premature, just days after the Pro+ went public, and the writer didn't do his full homework (i.e. most probably he didn't use any subscription at the time, or before, but just hurried to wrote from what he heard around, afraid that somebody else will write it before him; he should have waited few days and test the subscriptions). For example, at the time the article was written, we were getting V100 cards on all Pro accounts, as the PrimeNet reports proves it (the JSON result lines from gpuOwl contain the card type, and that can't be cheated unless we re-compute the checksums), but the table in the article mentions nothing about V100, which is about 1.8 times faster than a P100 for P-1/PRP, about 4 times faster at TF compared with the same P100, about 2.6 times faster than a T4 at TF, and about 12 times (twelve, no typo) faster than a T4 at P-1/PRP.

Anyhow, the article is, say, reasonable accurate with the description, except that the table has to be modified a bit.

For example, the GPU: Before introducing Pro+, a free tier would get the "half K80" (nothing mentioned anywhere in Gugu about the "half" part, but K80 is a dual card, and according with the (low) performance we witness, you don't get the full K80, but only a half of it!), the P4 (not mentioned anywhere in the article, this is better than the half-K80 at TF, but worse at PRP/P-1), and the T4, which is very good at TF (1600 to 1900 GHzDays/Day, depending on range and bitlevel, and also the CPU is paired with on colab). The difference would be that T4 tends to only last 4 hours or less, maximum 8, while the other 2 you can have reasonably for 12 hours, like in the table. This didn't change much after Pro+ was introduced. You still can get occasional T4 with free accounts, it seems they have lots of T4 there. The big difference is for Pro users, who were getting Voltas before, and P100 only after you use too much of a Volta. Now, those goodies moved to Pro+, while the Pro users only get mostly T4 and sometimes P100. Since August 17th, I have seen 6 times K80 and 4 times P4, which I got rid of, with repeated trials of "factory reset", but no V100 anymore. In the last week, I could count P100 on my fingers, and in the last few days I got none, on three Pro accounts. They were all T4, and if I insisted with "factory reset" they would start giving me K80s, so I would have to reset again to get the T4 back, and then do TF.

Related to the memory and running time, the table is also a bit off. Free users are interrupted MUCH often than the 12 hours, and there is no "high memory instance" for them, while for the Pro users the instances will last indeed 24 hours almost always, but as said, you don't get P100, and the memory is only 16G. To get the 32G mentioned in the table, you MUST choose the "high memory instance" (from the menu, "Runtime/Change Runtime Type/Runtime Shape/select the High RAM option) but those instances tend to only stay alive half of the time, and they don't worth the effort, as the RAM only affects the CPU, which is anyhow not doing much, comparing with the GPU - but well, you may need it if you want to run P-1 Stage 2 or ECM in the CPU during crunching twoks with the GPU, or whatever sails your boat.

For the Pro+ instances, you get now the Voltas that were before under "normal" Pro, but you pay 5 times more for them, and they tend to stay alive 36 or even 48 hours (not 24, the author was even unlucky, or he didn't test, as I said above, or he knew something we don't know, i.e. Gugu may want to reduce the times in the future after it catches the gullible guys like us, hehe). Also, the 52G of RAM you only get if you choose "High RAM" instances, which tend to be interrupted after 24 hours (maybe he was referring to that, in the table). Otherwise you only get 16G or 32G, which seems random (up to your luck).

So, you can judge for yourself if it worth.

Note that I am running many (I mean MANY) Pro accounts, but I have no Pro+ account. The info I know is from friends. One such friend says he got an A100 with Pro+, but I have no confirmation on that, and I suspect he was teasing me (he would!).

Last fiddled with by LaurV on 2021-09-05 at 13:43
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Old 2021-09-05, 15:46   #6
petrw1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LaurV View Post
I split this discussion about Pro+ into a separate thread, blah ... blah ... blah ... blah).
So it not just me that sends world record forum messages.




PS ... back on topic.
I'm running 3 colab (cheapskate/free) sessions.
With the demise of P100 I am now getting K80 (or a half) virtually every time I ask for a GPU.
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Old 2021-09-05, 18:23   #7
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I'm running several free accounts. For a while now they only get K80's (one day two of my accounts got T4's, and the rest got K80s). So that seems to be all you'll get with free accounts now - at least all that I can get, but it may be affected by how often I'm running them. The CPU only instances still seem to about the same mix of processors except that the AMD seems to come up more frequently now.

Last fiddled with by slandrum on 2021-09-05 at 18:25
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Old 2021-09-07, 15:27   #8
LaurV
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If you have a Colab Pro account and, in the light of the last evolution of the things, got the idea to unsubscribe (i.e. stop the payments for the next months) DON'T do that, until the last day of your (monthly) subscription.

We unsubscribed from 3 Pro accounts yesterday, i.e. stopped the payments for the following months, but for this month the money are already paid, and all of the accounts are still "Pro" till the current subscription period ends (on October). However, immediately after that, we lost the T4 cards on all the accounts in the following hours, and couldn't get ANY GPU, for more than 30 hours, it says that there are none available, in spite of the fact that the account is still Pro, and we connected with two (different) free accounts that both got k80s (kicked out after 3-4 hours, but yet, WTF?!...)

This evening, one of the Pro got a T4 kicked out after 19 minutes (did TF with Chris), and another one got a K80 which is still running P-1 for about half hour (still going). The third one has yet to be successful in getting a GPU, after a lot of trials.

So, if you were thinking about stopping your subscription, do that in the last day of the period. Gugu is a bitch...

Last fiddled with by LaurV on 2021-09-07 at 15:30
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Old 2021-09-07, 15:58   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LaurV View Post
If you have a Colab Pro account and, in the light of the last evolution of the things, got the idea to unsubscribe (i.e. stop the payments for the next months) DON'T do that, until the last day of your (monthly) subscription.
Or the day before or so, to avoid getting billed for a month more than intended, due to time zone differences, processing delays or seller perversity. (Got stuck that way on an online account once. Even once got a letter warning of possible foreclosure. The lender had received the payment, and it was sitting in their employee's work area unprocessed, during their long vacation.)
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Old 2021-09-07, 17:01   #10
LaurV
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Yes, right.
The day before, is better, albeit you can see exactly the billing cycle in your account page, and (un)subscribing takes a minute only, sh!t may happen if you do it in the last minute, and they may charge you one more month "by accident" before cutting you off.
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Old 2021-09-08, 03:47   #11
Chuck
 
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Default Cancelling near end of first month

I had hoped that for $50/month I might get better hardware with Pro+ than with the previous Pro, but tonight it looks like time to leave. I had consistently been getting two 24-hour sessions each day with no worse than two P100 cards, and occasionally two V100s. Sometimes T4s were in the mix. Tonight when I started the next day's sessions I got K80s. That's unacceptable for this premium price, so I killed the two sessions and I have to say goodbye to Colab again. It was a good three week run.
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