Hint: It’s NOT pretty…
Instead of credit cards, people whip out their favourite Bitcoin hardware or mobile wallets in coffee shops and hair salons across the world. Just how many of these non-cash payments would there be in this perfect world?
Now of course, Bitcoin has to make sure its system can accommodate the enormous number of transactions here without bottlenecking. This is equivalent to 9,, transactions every 10 minutes , which coincides with how often blocks are published to the Bitcoin blockchain. Assuming transaction sizes stay around the same size, at bytes , this means that every block would hold about 2.
This transaction volume would generate about gigabytes on the blockchain every day, or terabytes every year. The nodes then also immediately propagate these validated blocks out to other nodes across the Bitcoin network. Today, nodes validate and propagate approximately 1 megabyte blocks to other nodes across the world.
According to this analysis about the effects of block validation on memory usage, the process of validating a single block on a node i. The analysis also claims that block validation times scale quadratically, and an eight megabyte block would take approximately minutes to validate. It would take over a month for a node running current-day consumer-grade hardware to validate any block that it receives. On top of that, memory consumption per block validation runs in the range of 3 terabytes.
But will processing power scale enough? This machine would also need to store the terabytes of data generated every year. With the cost of storage hovering at 1. Right away, this entire thing is starting to look absolutely ridiculous, but bear with me for a little while longer. So our nodes also need the ability to both download these blocks from nodes, and then transmit them to other nodes.
This comes out to over GB of bandwidth everyday, or Since no consumer grade network could feasibly provide that level of bandwidth, I had to resort to a handy CDN aggregator to see what our connectivity options were. If Bitcoin took over the world today, a single Bitcoin node operator in the United States:. Instead, they will be priced out and replaced by monopolized and centralized entities with enough financial power to maintain server racks that can handle hundreds of billions of consumer transactions per year.
Wait a minute, this sounds suspiciously like Visa, MasterCard, and the modern banking system! I wrote this article for myself more than anything, in order to visualize and understand how drastic the impact of a large-block-size blockchain scaled to meet the needs of our society would be. If nothing but massive corporations are left to uphold the few full Bitcoin nodes in our society, Bitcoin consensus rules go out the window , and the security of the network almost solely lies in their hands.
In that case, Bitcoin will no longer be the trustless peer-to-peer network it was meant to be and you might as well go back to paying your monthly credit card statement. There are also some holes in my napkin math. There will also probably be unforeseen progressions in blockchain technology that could offset the impact of the increased block size. Also note that if a node is hit with a malicious invalid block, it will waste an increasingly excessive amount of time trying to validate it.
Non-cash payments are also rapidly increasing every year, so hardware usage will also be undoubtedly higher once we near this level of Bitcoin usage. Past these holes in my proverbial napkin, here is the central message all of this is meant to convey:.
At the end of the day, the beauty of running a Bitcoin node is in the sheer simplicity of it. You or I could run a Bitcoin node on our computers right now, provided we have the hard drive space for it. This simplicity is the reason why there are probably over , nodes in the world, and why Bitcoin continues to function seamlessly as a trustless peer-to-peer network.
All of this is also not to say that Bitcoin is unable to scale. Bitcoin can and will scale to meet the demands of billions. And it can do so without having to bloat the blockchain!
I encourage readers to try setting up a Bitcoin Node today. Go ahead and see how easy it is! This is a valid point and I highlighted as much in my conclusion.
However, Bitcoin is being adopted rapidly and if you are betting on Bitcoin to reach mainstream adoption as fast as possible, you are also betting on the cost of technology to drop even faster.
But at what point in time is it reasonable to expect users or even miners to house machines with numbers even remotely closely to the ones outlined above? Storage prices are stagnating. Even if you believe non-mining nodes are not a necessity, with the given hardware scale required, many miners will be similarly priced out and mining centralization will be probably be promoted.
If you want to learn more about Bitcoin nodes, the Bitcoin wiki is a great place to start. But full nodes are still a necessity to ensure decentralization and consensus. We should be encouraging their use, not moving towards dissuading them. Tweet This. So our node might not be doing much of anything at all. All of this, just to run a single Bitcoin node.
Past these holes in my proverbial napkin, here is the central message all of this is meant to convey: At the end of the day, the beauty of running a Bitcoin node is in the sheer simplicity of it. Continue the discussion. Bitcoin owners, you need to do these two things right now. Subhan Nadeem. Hackernoon Newsletter curates great stories by real tech professionals Get solid gold sent to your inbox. Every week! Alex Wang Mar Poornima Vijayashanker May Raiden Network Sep Benji Lanyado.
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How does Memory pool work? Mempool Explained
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Memory pool size, fees, transactions explained. Bitcoin, Blockchain and decentralized technology is revolutionary. While Bitcoin has numerous advantages over traditional currency it is quite complex to comprehend for a normal user. If you are new then before investing it is advised that you have some basic understanding of how Bitcoin and Blockchains work. It will really make things easier. How often have you gone through this situation where you had to wait a long period of time for the Bitcoin transaction to complete. Not just Bitcoin but this occurrence is also common with all other major crypto currencies. This is because the mempool size is huge or the transaction might get stuck in the mempool due to low transaction fee. Also often when the withdrawal amount from exchange is being delayed and if you ask the support team then their reply would be: mempool has spiked and due to this your transactions will take longer than usual to confirm. So what is Mempool, why it matters and how mempool works?
Bitcoin transaction fees EXPLAINED! Why are they so high?
Blockchain Tutorial – Learn Blockchain to become a Blockchain Developer
If it is the only input of the first transaction of a block, it is called the generation transaction input and its content completely ignored. Enough transactions are pulled from the memory pool to create a full block. Subscribe For the latest analysis and updates. This analysis has been prepared in good faith on the basis of information available at the date of publication without any independent verification. When the memory pool grows too large, transactions are evicted starting from the bottom of the list. Unsubscribe at any time. When redeeming coins that have been sent to a Bitcoin address, the recipient provides both the signature and the public key. P2SH addresses were created with the motivation of moving "the responsibility for supplying the conditions to redeem a transaction from what is bitcoin transaction size sender of the funds to the redeemer. Ehat a desired confirmation window and slze, it will compute an appropriate fee using an algorithm that takes fees paid by pending and confirmed transactions into account. In aggregate, this behavior creates a block space market. Wait a minute, this sounds suspiciously like Visa, MasterCard, and the modern banking system! Fees can also be reduced by ibtcoin transactions at times of low volume. A user interested in next-block confirmation uses a high enough fee density to outcompete all other pending transactions for confirmation and propagation. Base Transaction Fields. A witness field is composed of an item count and list of items. This is useful for seeing the technical details of transactions in action and for verifying payments.