An Introduction to Radix Nodes

28th July 2021Radix Node 1.0.0 released

Use the RadixNode CLI to update your node or install a new node from scratch – or refer to the update instructions for Docker or systemd install methods.

What is a Radix Node

The Radix Node is the building block of Radix Network infrastructure. Nodes connect together to conduct consensus on transactions, maintain the ledger, and provide other useful functions.

An individual node has its own account on the Radix network. It can be configured in three different ways depending on its purpose:

A Full Node simply connects to the network, synchronizes ledger state, and observes the status of the network. It can be thought of as a kind of “wallet” that is connected directly to the network, with the Node’s own account available for programmatic control.

A Validator Node starts life as a Full Node, but has also “registered” itself to the network as a Validator by submitting a special transaction from its account. Registration means that it may now accept XRD token “stake” and potentially be included in the validator set of 100 nodes that conduct network consensus.

For more technical information on the incentive tokens available to validator node runners, see Validators and Incentives, or for general information see Staking & Validating on Radix on our Knowledgebase.

An Archive Node not only synchronizes ledger state (as with a Full Node) but also heavily indexes that state to support useful public JSON-RPC API endpoints not offered by other tyeps of nodes. These endpoints enable client applications like wallets or dashboards that wish to query ledger state or create transactions.

For more, see The Radix Node API.

Prerequisites

To run a reliable, performant node, we suggest that the node’s hardware profile should match or exceed the following specification:

CPUs Memory (GB) Storage(GB) Network Bandwidth (Gbps) Operating System

4

16

100 GB of SSD space (initially)

Up to 10

Ubuntu 20.04.2.0 LTS (Focal Fossa)

These is a rough guideline only and each node runner should monitor their node operation to ensure good performance for the intended task.

Running a Radix node on operating systems other than Ubuntu Linux is possible, but for now our documented example installations and operation processes assume a Ubuntu install, as does the RadixNode CLI tool.

Getting started with Radix Node installation

We describe three different methods of installing Radix nodes:

  • The CLI Method uses a Python CLI tool for a straightforward, guided installation of Radix nodes as a Docker instances. We recommend this method for most people.

  • The Docker Method describes the manual installation of Radix nodes as a Docker instances, for those already very comfortable with Docker.

  • The systemd method describes the manual installation of Radix nodes without Docker, using systemd. This method is suitable for those who want the most hands-on approach, and may be a useful reference for those figuring out installation on different operating systems.