Validation Node — FAQ
As explained in our recent article, the release of the Prime Validation Nodes will be a major point in opening the Verity network to the community and stepping into full Beta mode. As we feel there’s a lot to know about how these nodes will work, what the requirements are, and what the benefits are, we are releasing this in-depth FAQ that we will build up once new questions from our community arrive.
*VN = Validation Node
*DP = Data Provider
How does the staking work and how is this related to my 30,000 VTY that are locked?
Everyone that joined the Prime Validation Node program
locked 30,000 VTY tokens until 15th December 2018. On that date, you
will have 72h to deposit those tokens to a VN contract and become a
Prime Validation Node. You can transfer tokens out of the VN contract at
any time and thus stop being a node.
The deposit is checked automatically multiple times during the event cycle by different participants (developer’s node, random DPs and other VNs). If at any time the deposit is not present anymore, every participant in the system simply ignores the said VN.
This VN will of course not receive any reward for this event, but it can deposit the tokens back to the contract before the next event starts and be eligible for VN selection again. Some “connected” events may require VNs to hold the deposits between multiple events.
What are the minimum and recommended system requirements to run a VN?
Minimum*: 500MB RAM, 1 CPU, 500GB bandwidth, IPv4 or IPv6 compatible
Recommended**: 2GB RAM, 2–4 CPU, 500GB bandwidth, IPv4 or IPv6 compatible
* able to run up to 3 simultaneous events (depends on the number of VNs, DPs and size of the reported data)
** able to run up to 10 simultaneous events (depends on the number of VNs, DPs and size of the reported data)
Should I use a cloud-hosted server, VPS or a home computer?
You can use any of these. The easiest and most reliable way is to use a cloud-hosted service from Vultr, Digital Ocean, AWS and the like. If you use a home computer, keep in mind your node needs to run 24/7.
What does it mean to have 23h uptime?
This means that all VNs should always be online machines (i.e. servers) and have a stable internet connection. 23h uptime is not enforced, but recommended so the network can sustain strong consensus (e.g. 90%) with a soft enforcement — other nodes will ping each other at random intervals and can flag you if you are offline for longer periods (i.e. on average less than 23/24h in multiple events) and might not send you messages when new events start.
Of course no one prevents you from transferring tokens to a new account and running a new node at that account, but it will be a time-consuming process and a hassle — for prime validation nodes this is not possible, because only the accounts that applied before 31st August will be able to run VNs, so if your node will be flagged for being offline multiple times you will become “invisible” to other nodes and will not receive any rewards. Because prime validation nodes will be running Beta software and will be in a testing phase, the uptime requirement will be reduced to 12h/day.
Will one VN handle only 1 event at a time?
No. Each node will be able to handle multiple events at the same time (and thus earn multiple rewards). With the recommended hardware setup we expect each node to simultaneously handle around 10 events with 50 DPs and 9 other VNs at each event.
Is there only 1 node selected for each event? How will a VN selection work?
For Verity protocol to be really effective each event will use a minimum of 3 VNs (on average around 5–20), which means there will always be multiple VNs selected for each event. Given that each VN can handle multiple events, the chances of being selected for an event are quite high.
Developers will be encouraged to select an approximate number of nodes for the current state of the network and their event/consensus variables by our recommendation engine (e.g. 10 nodes). With a decentralization factor of 10x, the selection pool will have a size of 100 nodes.
To choose 10 random nodes from the selection pool (using a commit & reveal random selection process), you will pay a maximum of X VTY (on average much less than that). If you want to increase the decentralization factor (risk of selecting bad nodes that are trying to attack you and/or economic safety factor where nodes collude and forfeit their VN deposits to mess with the event data) you can increase the number of nodes required for your event.
Is there a possibility that an attacker will run the majority of VNs selected for an event and change the outcome or pay his own fake DP?
Yes, but with the right settings, the odds are astronomically small and it’s therefore not feasible to run such an attack. The majority of VN always have a final decision and no disputes are possible on that level — this is possible because of a BFT layer 1 system (Ethereum network in our case) on top of which some Verity functions are built, known parties in the system (all DPs and VNs are written in the smart contract before the event begins and are publicly known to everybody, a form of a permission-based system), public-key cryptography, fair distribution method of tokens and staking of said tokens in order to run the VNs which are the middle party of the 3-party truth system, no need to know the complete history (as is the case with the Bitcoin transactions) and mostly unpredictable events with unknown economic value.
How many events will be run on the Verity network?
We expect to run 5 events per day (a combination of ours and 3rd party events) by the time prime validation nodes are released on December 15th and to run hundreds if not thousands of events per day by the end of 2019. This will be possible by a combined effort of B2B relations with traditional companies we are building (e.g. AI companies needing to categorize millions of images, social platforms verifying hundreds of posts per day, …) and adoption by other blockchain projects for their “oracle problem”. Multi-type events where one event (e.g. a soccer match) requires up to a hundred votes per user in a short time span are being tested and will hopefully be implemented soon increasing the average reward per DP and VN even further.
When will new events start?
New events will start by the middle of September (regular events and special events for Master Data Providers).
How much will a VN/DP earn?
Because of a free economy which governs validation node fees and DP payouts, this is impossible to answer. Verity network will function in a similar way to an Ethereum network, where the size and number of the transactions as well as the mining rewards (and as a result, the transaction costs) are subjected to a supply-demand force.
That said, VN fee will be set at the beginning to a certain number (e.g. 10%) and the market will then move this number up/down to an equilibrium. Both VNs and DPs will earn more the higher the reward is and lower the competition they have (less DP and VN at the event).
DPs can, of course, earn more if the reward distribution is not linear and they are faster than the average DP, but VN is getting rewards passively without actually waiting, joining and completing events. VNs will also have governance rights and will get extra rewards for processing governance votes, dispute resolutions and more. Governance functionality will be implemented in Q2 2019 and all prime validation nodes will have a right to vote on new features, test events and even marketing decisions. This will be a crucial step to bring Verity into a fully decentralized network.
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it we will gladly add that bit to this article. Please send your
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