[Bitcoin-development] Proposed additional options for pruned nodes

gabe appleton gappleto97 at gmail.com
Tue May 12 22:09:44 UTC 2015

This is exactly the sort of solution I was hoping for. It seems this is the
minimal modification to make it work, and, if someone was willing to work
with me, I would love to help implement this.

My only concern would be if the - - max-size flag is not included than this
delivers significantly less benefit to the end user. Still a good chunk,
but possibly not enough.
On May 12, 2015 6:03 PM, "Tier Nolan" <tier.nolan at gmail.com> wrote:

> On Tue, May 12, 2015 at 8:03 PM, Gregory Maxwell <gmaxwell at gmail.com>
> wrote:
>> (0) Block coverage should have locality; historical blocks are
>> (almost) always needed in contiguous ranges.   Having random peers
>> with totally random blocks would be horrific for performance; as you'd
>> have to hunt down a working peer and make a connection for each block
>> with high probability.
>> (1) Block storage on nodes with a fraction of the history should not
>> depend on believing random peers; because listening to peers can
>> easily create attacks (e.g. someone could break the network; by
>> convincing nodes to become unbalanced) and not useful-- it's not like
>> the blockchain is substantially different for anyone; if you're to the
>> point of needing to know coverage to fill then something is wrong.
>> Gaps would be handled by archive nodes, so there is no reason to
>> increase vulnerability by doing anything but behaving uniformly.
>> (2) The decision to contact a node should need O(1) communications,
>> not just because of the delay of chasing around just to find who has
>> someone; but because that chasing process usually makes the process
>> _highly_ sybil vulnerable.
>> (3) The expression of what blocks a node has should be compact (e.g.
>> not a dense list of blocks) so it can be rumored efficiently.
>> (4) Figuring out what block (ranges) a peer has given should be
>> computationally efficient.
>> (5) The communication about what blocks a node has should be compact.
>> (6) The coverage created by the network should be uniform, and should
>> remain uniform as the blockchain grows; ideally it you shouldn't need
>> to update your state to know what blocks a peer will store in the
>> future, assuming that it doesn't change the amount of data its
>> planning to use. (What Tier Nolan proposes sounds like it fails this
>> point)
>> (7) Growth of the blockchain shouldn't cause much (or any) need to
>> refetch old blocks.
> M = 1,000,000
> N = number of "starts"
> S(0) = hash(seed) mod M
> ...
> S(n) = hash(S(n-1)) mod M
> This generates a sequence of start points.  If the start point is less
> than the block height, then it counts as a hit.
> The node stores the 50MB of data starting at the block at height S(n).
> As the blockchain increases in size, new starts will be less than the
> block height.  This means some other runs would be deleted.
> A weakness is that it is random with regards to block heights.  Tiny
> blocks have the same priority as larger blocks.
> 0) Blocks are local, in 50MB runs
> 1) Agreed, nodes should download headers-first (or some other compact way
> of finding the highest POW chain)
> 2) M could be fixed, N and the seed are all that is required.  The seed
> doesn't have to be that large.  If 1% of the blockchain is stored, then 16
> bits should be sufficient so that every block is covered by seeds.
> 3) N is likely to be less than 2 bytes and the seed can be 2 bytes
> 4) A 1% cover of 50GB of blockchain would have 10 starts @ 50MB per run.
> That is 10 hashes.  They don't even necessarily need to be crypt hashes
> 5) Isn't this the same as 3?
> 6) Every block has the same odds of being included.  There inherently
> needs to be an update when a node deletes some info due to exceeding its
> cap.  N can be dropped one run at a time.
> 7) When new starts drop below the tip height, N can be decremented and
> that one run is deleted.
> There would need to be a special rule to ensure the low height blocks are
> covered.  Nodes should keep the first 50MB of blocks with some probability
> (10%?)
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