[bitcoin-dev] [RFC] IBLT block testing implementation

Rusty Russell rusty at rustcorp.com.au
Tue Jun 23 05:53:27 UTC 2015

Hi all,

        I've come up with a model for using IBLT to communicate blocks
between peers.  The gory details can be found on github: it's a
standalone C++ app for testing not integrated with bitcoin.


Assumptions and details:

1. The base idea comes from Gavin's Block Propagation gist:

2. It relies on similarity in mempools, with some selection hints.  This
   is designed to be as flexible as possible to make fewest assumptions
   on tx selection policy.

3. The selection hints are: minimum fee-per-byte (fixed point) and
   bitmaps of included-despite-that and rejected-despite-that.  The
   former covers things like child-pays-for-parent and the priority
   area.  The latter covers other cases like Eligius censoring "spam",
   bitcoin version differences, etc.

4. Cost to represent these exceptional added or excluded transactions is
   (on average) log2(transactions in mempool) bits.

5. At Peiter Wuille's suggestion, it is designed to be reencoded between
   nodes.  It seems fast enough for that, and neighboring nodes should
   have most similar mempools.

6. It performs reasonably well on my 100 block sample in bitcoin-corpus
   (chosen to include a mempool spike):

   Average block range (bytes):                         7988-999829
   Block size mean (bytes):                             401926

   Minimal decodable BLT size range (bytes):            314-386361
   Minimal decodable BLT size mean (bytes):             13265

7. Actual results will have to be worse than these minima, as peers will
   have to oversize the IBLT to have reasonable chance of success.

8. There is more work to do, and more investigation to be done, but I
   don't expect more than a 25% reduction in this "ideal minimum"

Special thanks to Kalle Rosenbaum for helping investigate IBLTs with me
last year.

PS. I work for Blockstream.  And I'm supposed to be working on
    Lightning, not this.

More information about the bitcoin-dev mailing list