Crypto Academy



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Discover what are nodes in terms of crypto-currency mining!

What are nodes

What are nodes?

The development and launching of cryptocurrency have increased the opportunities to make money for people.  You might have known about such ways to receive coins as mining or trading. But did you know what a node is in the crypto world? In the article, we explain the notion of the node, why and how it is used.

What is Node?

Let’s first determine the meaning of the node. Node is any computer or device connected to the blockchain network. In other words, any of the network participants can be a node and support the correct network functioning. The nodes of the decentralized network use peer-to-peer protocols in order to exchange recorded information about blocks and transactions without any centralized mediator. The amount of stored data depends on the type of node. Moreover, the network users distributed around the world provide secure and private transactions, being the main technology for transmitting the money and conducting transactions on the chain. Thus, if one node notices a violation of the rules of transactions within the system, then the whole transaction is rejected. It relates to the cases when all the communication nodes have validated their legitimacy.

Types of Nodes

Important to note, that in order to prevent monopoly in blockchain, a hard fork is necessary in the case of a 51% attack. In this way, the blockchain participants (nodes) have to follow new rules of consensus to maintain the network and handle the threat. There are several kinds of nodes according to the distribution of rights. We can define full nodes, light nodes, and miner nodes. Each of them has its functions and distinct features. 

    • Full nodes are communication nodes that work separately from other ones. Also, they store any data that was added to the blockchain network. The main feature of full nodes is that they operate separately and completely autonomously from each other. Besides, full nodes verify and validate all transactions by themselves.

    • Then, everyone can check or track the correctness of the information. Full nodes support the functioning of all cryptocurrencies, based on proof-of-work algorithms. Also, a bitcoin node is a full node that keeps the information about confirmed transactions. A full bitcoin node can be installed using the software. Bitcoin Core is the most commonly used. However, a network node is a key factor that creates, receives, and transmits messages. Node follows consensus in the network, collects and records transaction data, and stores confirmed transactions. Also, if a node tries to spread the wrong information, other nodes quickly recognize and disconnect them from the network. There are full, light, and miner nodes but they require a piece of special equipment to connect to the other nodes and synchronize with them.

    • Miner nodes use such hardware components as video cards, processors, or ASIC to solve a cryptographic problem. The first miner node to solve the problem transmits the results to the network for verification by the full nodes. Once the consensus is reached, the miner node can add a block to the blockchain. Miners are paid with some amount of coins for their work and network commissions. The user can also work in a pool of miners in order to increase the chance to get a reward by coins.

    • Light nodes are less independent and rely on the full nodes. They support only headers of the block transactions without the full information. Light nodes use the blockchain network, but do not function as full nodes. Moreover, light nodes do not provide the security of the network because they don’t have a copy of the blockchain and do not verify or confirm transactions. The users just can check the changes in the block of transactions but do not download the full information blockchain.