[Bitcoin-development] Lock protocol version numbers
jordanmack at parhelic.com
Sat Nov 5 17:30:02 UTC 2011
> If clients break the network protocol/do not comply properly with it,
> they should be disconnected and shunned. Hard love. We don't want any
> ambiguity in the protocol.
> However my feeling about the user-agent string is that it is a vanity
> item, but here we'd be enforcing a format that everybody can
> understand and read.
I agree with Amir completely on both these points.
With something as critical as financial transactions, no exceptions can
be made. The reported client and version should be ignored completely.
If a client does not comply with the protocol, they must be rejected
It is not in the best interest, or ability, to attempt to micromanage
how developers choose to use the information given. Recommendations and
guidelines can be made, but how they choose to implement is ultimately
their decision. In my opinion, clear and concise definition of the
protocol, and strict adherence in the mainline client, are the best
The protocol version should be indicated so that it can properly be
handled. Neither the name of the client, or it's version, need to be
reported in this. Protocol validation should ignore this completely.
I do not believe that leaving out the client name and version entirely
is the best option though. As silly as it may seem to some, vanity and
recognition are very strong motivators. We want to encourage more
supporters to the scene, not scare them away. The additional data
provided by this could also be used for calculating various statistics.
It sounds like BitcoinJ and BitDroid have already found ways of adding
it in anyway. I believe it is in the best interest of the developers to
formalize how this information will be included, and use it to their
TL;DR: Adhere strictly to the protocol, and reject clients that do not.
Add a user agent string of some kind, but keep it separate from the
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