Foreword: This article will introduce the following five parts around the blockchain PoS consensus:
🔥 What is a blockchain node validator?
🔥 Who can become a blockchain node validator?
🔥 What are the requirements to become a blockchain node validator?
🔥 How do blockchain node validators work and get rewards?
🔥 And why choose a blockchain node validator like BlockPower?
What is a blockchain node validator?
A blockchain validator is a network node that helps process and validate transaction blocks on the platform so that they can be added to the permanent ledger of the blockchain. When using the term “validator,” some people presume the nodes validating transactions on PoS blockchains. They contrast it with the term “miner,” used on PoW blockchain platforms.
However, block validation is a process equally applicable to both of these blockchain varieties. The more correct synonym for mining, applicable to PoS blockchains, would be staking, the process of block validation used on this type of platform.
As transactions on the blockchain are initiated by users, they are queued on the network for subsequent validation. Validator nodes then batch individual transactions into a block to verify it. Each blockchain has its own rules pertaining to the number of transactions per block. When the block has been completed, validators process it to add it to the blockchain as a permanent record.
On some blockchains, validators may choose which transactions to batch into a block. This selection is not necessarily in chronological order, but is driven by the validator’s preferences, typically based on transaction fees involved.
The fees are added to each blockchain transaction by the sender of crypto assets as an incentive for validators. Senders may choose the fee amount, and could even send a transaction without any fees at all.
However, transactions with very low or no fees are more likely to be ignored by validators and, thus, might remain in an unconfirmed state for long periods of time. If, after a while, the transaction is not added to a block for validation, it is normally dropped from the network.
Who can become a blockchain node validator?
A blockchain that cryptocurrencies use consists of blocks filled with multiple transactions that have taken place within any given network. For a blockchain to remain reliable and secure, each transaction must be verified or validated, and new blocks need to be created. This is where validators (or nodes) come in.
These individuals stand as the backbone of blockchains and cryptocurrency in general. Validators operate via the proof of stake (or PoS) mechanism, which is now one of the most popular consensus mechanisms out there due to its efficiency.
To be a validator, people need to stake a certain amount of crypto for a chance of being randomly selected for the task. The minimum staking amounts differ depending on the coin in question, but this can vary massively.
Validators get paid in crypto for their work, which is why many people want to give it a go. But there are a few requirements people need to meet to have a chance of becoming a validator.
What are the requirements to become a blockchain node validator?
Unlike cryptocurrency mining, people do not need to go out and buy various pieces of new equipment to become a validator. But they need to have a considerable amount of spare storage space on their chosen validating device — around 250GB, to be precise — and an additional 8GB of RAM to get started.
Another important requirement is funds. People can currently stake a wide range of different cryptocurrencies, be it as an independent validator or in a pool, and with varying coins come varying minimum staking requirements. These can range from tens of thousands of dollars to almost nothing.
It should be mentioned that this does not mean that you can directly become a validator with money and hardware. In fact, becoming an active Validator is not as easy as people might think.
People may also struggle as a crypto validator if their technical knowledge is lacking. People need to make sure they are familiar with how crypto and blockchains actually work before jumping in. There is no need to be a tech expert, but understanding what it means to stake, how it is done, and the risks involved is a pretty integral part of the process as a whole.
Take Ethereum as an example.
Hard Drive- To process incoming validator deposits from the Eth1 chain, People’ll need to run an Eth1 client as well as their Eth2 client. People can use a third-party service like Infura. As of now, people need ~400GB for the Eth1 mainnet chain data alone (growing at ~1GB/day).
CPU/RAM- Check with client documentation to ensure the hardware people want to use is sufficient and supported. Resource usage can vary significantly between clients.
Internet- Ideally, people’s internet connection should be reliable and as close to 24/7 as possible without interruption. Ensure the bandwidth can’t be throttled and isn’t capped so the node stays in sync and will be ready to validate when called. People need enough upload bandwidth too. As of now, this is ~700–800 MB/hour and is likely to increase.
Before people can run a validator and start to secure the network, they need to stake 32 ETH. This forms their initial balance. As a validator, people’ll need to have funds at stake so they can be penalized for behaving dishonestly.
How do blockchain node validators work and get rewards?
Node validator’s job is actually to validate blocks on the blockchain.
The PoS block validation method was an answer to the energy-hungry and slow PoW validation. In PoS blockchains, block validators are chosen, typically randomly, based on the amount of cryptocurrency they are willing to “stake” to have the validation rights.
For instance, if a person stake 2% of all the crypto amount being currently staked, he/she has a roughly 2% chance of being selected as a validator for the next block. The chosen validator node reviews the block and confirms, or rejects, it in exchange for some crypto rewards.
Every PoS blockchain has its own specifics of validation, but on most platforms, people also need to satisfy specific requirements to be selected as a validator node. For example, it is a common requirement to commit at least a certain amount of cryptocurrency to become a validator.
On some platforms, there might be specific hardware requirements as well. While PoS is nowhere near as resource-hungry as PoW, validator nodes on some PoS blockchains do need good hardware or software specs as they may be processing a large number of transactions in a period of time.
In general, the PoS validation is very low-energy, fast, and less costly than the PoW validation method. It does have its own disadvantages, such as the possibility of power concentration in the hands of network actors who have hoarded a large percentage of the platform’s cryptocurrency.
The PoS block validation also has an equivalent to the mining pools used in PoW blockchains. These are called staking pools. Network users, primarily those who do not qualify as validator nodes, can lock their cryptocurrency in these pools to earn consistent rewards from the block validation activity.
Some PoS blockchains have a validation system called Delegated PoS (DPoS). In these blockchains, ordinary network nodes can send their cryptocurrency to a pool representing a specific validator node. By staking their funds on that validator node, the network nodes are said to “vote” for their selected node. Whenever their selected validator node successfully processes a block, the nodes who “voted” for this validator also receive their cut of rewards.
Why choose a blockchain node validator like BlockPower?
BlockPower is a service platform focusing on Crypoto Assets and Blockchain Financial Data. At present, the services we provide include Assets Management, Staking Service and Community Governance. User-oriented, and better services.
We aim to provide best assets management services for:
🔥 Venture Capitals & Founding Teams
🔥 Wallets & Exchanges & Investors
🔥 Blockchain Wealth Management Institutions
🔥 Traditional Finance Organizations
Apart from regular services such as high security and uninterrupted operation, BlockPower also has features reflects in the aspects below:
Historical– BlockPower almost grew together with the establishment of the PoS consensus.
Experienced– BlockPower is one of the earliest participating service providers in Cosmos Network and Tezos Network.
Productized– BlockPower is an user-oriented service platform, which will continue publishing different kinds of products to serve both mortgage users and project parties.
Communicated– BlockPower is actively participating in governance, disclosing information frequently.
Ecological- Two fantastic lending protocols: dForce and Liqee, are our close ecological partners. In which case we have unique conditions to build a comprehensive ecological environment.
* dForce advocates for building an integrated and interoperable open finance and monetary protocol matrix, including asset protocols (USDx, GOLDx, dToken). More details can be checked here: https://dforce.network/
* Liqee is the world’s largest lending protocol for liquid staking assets, providing full-chain services. More details can be checked here: https://liqee.io/#/.
As far from now, we have successfully become active node validators of several blockchain networks:
Please feel free to hand over your assets to BlockPower for management !