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Validators Overview

Introduction

The Gitopia blockchain is based on Tendermint, which relies on a set of validators that are responsible for committing new blocks in the blockchain. These validators participate in the consensus protocol by broadcasting votes which contain cryptographic signatures signed by each validator's private key.

Validator candidates can bond their own LORE and have LORE "delegated", or staked, to them by token holders. The Gitopia Blockchain will have 100 validators at mainnet, but over time this will increase to 300 validators. The validators are determined by who has the most stake delegated to them — the top 100 validator candidates with the most stake will become Gitopia validators. Validators and their delegators will earn LORE as block provisions and tokens as transaction fees through execution of the Tendermint consensus protocol.

If validators double sign, are frequently offline or do not participate in governance, their staked LORE token(including LORE Tokens of users that delegated to them) can be slashed. The penalty depends on the severity of the violation.

Hardware

There currently exists no appropriate cloud solution for validator key management. For this reason, validators must set up a physical operation secured with restricted access. A good starting place, for example, would be co-locating in secure data centers.

Validators should expect to equip their datacenter location with redundant power, connectivity, and storage backups. Expect to have several redundant networking boxes for fiber, firewall, and switching and then small servers with redundant hard drive and failover. Hardware can be on the low end of datacenter gear to start out with.

We anticipate that network requirements will be low initially. The current testnet requires minimal resources. Then bandwidth, CPU, and memory requirements will rise as the network grows. Large hard drives are recommended for storing years of blockchain history.

Responsibilities of a Validator

A Blockchain Validator is someone who is responsible for verifying transactions within a blockchain. For Gitopia, any participant can be qualified to became a Gitopia main chain validator by running a full-node to earn Rewards and Transaction fee. To ensure Good Participation by Validators, they lock up some of their LORE Tokens as a stake in the ecosystem.

The main responsibilities of a validator are:

  • Run a full node and participate in consensus by broadcasting votes which contain cryptographic signatures signed by their private key.

  • Validators must be able to run the correct version of the software constantly. They need to ensure that their servers are always online and their private keys are not compromised.

  • Actively participate in governance. Validators play a special role in the governance system. Being the pillars of the system, they are required to vote on every proposal. It is especially important since each time a validator does not vote on a proposal, it will get slashed by a minimal amount.

  • Validators are expected to be active members of the community. They should always be up-to-date with the current state of the ecosystem so that they can easily adapt to any change.

  • A validator has the option to exit the system at any time. This can be done by executing an unstake transaction on the contracts. Do note that a 21-day withdrawal period is in place to ensure sufficient time for any penalties/slashing to be levied within this duration if any fraudulent behavior was detected from the validator.

Validator Support

Have any questions related to setting up your validator? Write to us on our Discord in #be-a-validator channel.

If you want to be a Validator and participate in the early stages of Gitopia and the Janus Testnet, talk to us by filling out this form: https://airtable.com/shrMQFJxcsMD0XV2M