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Node synchronization is essential for the stability of the Bitcoin network. Critics have raised doubts about the ability of a new node to quickly and efficiently synchronize with the Bitcoin network and alleviate the storage pressure from existing full nodes to stockpile new data. Basic pruning and other techniques have been explored to address these concerns but have been insufficient to reduce node synchronization delay and effectively suppress the growth of synchronized data. In this study, we propose SnapshotPrune, a novel pruning and synchronization protocol that achieves fast node bootstrapping in the Bitcoin blockchain. Real Bitcoin historical data are leveraged to measure the synchronization time and monitor the network traffic during node bootstrapping. The protocol requires data downloads that are 99.70% less than Bitcoin Core, 81% less than CoinPrune, and 60% less than SnapshotSave, thereby saving 97.23% of download time. Findings show that the proposed design enhances the storage efficiency and reduces the node synchronization delay compared with existing techniques. We hypothesize that the efficiency of this protocol increases with the block height.


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SnapshotPrune: A Novel Bitcoin-Based Protocol Toward Efficient Pruning and Fast Node Bootstrapping

Show Author's information Pengfei Huang1Xiaojun Ren1( )Teng Huang1Arthur Sandor Voundi Koe2Duncan S Wong1Hai Jiang1
Institute of Artificial Intelligence and Blockchain, Guangzhou University, Guangzhou 510006, China
Institute of Artificial Intelligence and Blockchain, Guangzhou University, Guangzhou 510006, China, and also with Pazhou Lab, Guangzhou 510330, China

Abstract

Node synchronization is essential for the stability of the Bitcoin network. Critics have raised doubts about the ability of a new node to quickly and efficiently synchronize with the Bitcoin network and alleviate the storage pressure from existing full nodes to stockpile new data. Basic pruning and other techniques have been explored to address these concerns but have been insufficient to reduce node synchronization delay and effectively suppress the growth of synchronized data. In this study, we propose SnapshotPrune, a novel pruning and synchronization protocol that achieves fast node bootstrapping in the Bitcoin blockchain. Real Bitcoin historical data are leveraged to measure the synchronization time and monitor the network traffic during node bootstrapping. The protocol requires data downloads that are 99.70% less than Bitcoin Core, 81% less than CoinPrune, and 60% less than SnapshotSave, thereby saving 97.23% of download time. Findings show that the proposed design enhances the storage efficiency and reduces the node synchronization delay compared with existing techniques. We hypothesize that the efficiency of this protocol increases with the block height.

Keywords: synchronization, blockchain, Unspent Transaction Output (UTXO) pruning, snapshot, fast bootstrapping

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Publication history

Received: 09 January 2023
Revised: 05 March 2023
Accepted: 12 March 2023
Published: 09 February 2024
Issue date: August 2024

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© The Author(s) 2024.

Acknowledgements

Acknowledgment

This work was supported by the National Key Project of China (No. 2020YFB1005700), the Natural Science Foundation of Shandong Province (No. ZR2021MF086), the National Key Research and Development Program of China (No. 2021YFA1000600), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Nos. 62132018 and 62172117), the National Key Research and Development Program, the Young Scientist Scheme (No. 2022YFB3102400), and the National Key Research and Development Program of Guangdong Province (No. 2020B0101090002).

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