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bitcoin-p2p

node-bitcoin-p2p

This is a client library for the Bitcoin P2P network, written for Node.js, using MongoDB as its back end.

Differences to official client

The official client contains the node, wallet, GUI and miner. This library only contains the node, i.e. the P2P part of Bitcoin. Its intended use is as a server component to give lighter clients access to the data in the block chain (in real-time.)

Installation

Prerequisites

Node.js and NPM should be compiled manually based on the latest stable release. MongoDB can be installed using any method. The remaining dependencies can be installed as follows (on Debian/Ubuntu):

sudo apt-get install libssl-dev libgmp3-dev pkg-config

Installation

Once you have all prerequisites, this one-liner will install the latest version straight from NPM:

# Install node-bitcoin-p2p globally 
sudo npm install bitcoin-p2p -g

Please refer to the wiki for detailed installation instructions.

If you run into problems, please take a look at the "Troubleshooting" section below or go to Issues to open a new ticket.

Usage

For your first experience with the BitcoinJS daemon, try running it right from the terminal.

bitcoinjs run --testnet --bchdbg

You can find out more about the various functions of the command line utility via the help feature:

bitcoinjs help

Uninstall

# Remove the database 
bitcoinjs db-drop
 
# Uninstall the software 
sudo npm uninstall bitcoin-p2p -g

Logging

node-bitcoin-p2p logs using the winston library. Currently, it defaults to logging anything on the debug log level and higher. Here are the available log levels:

  • netdbg - Networking events (sending/receiving messages)
  • bchdbg - Block chain events (adding blocks)
  • rpcdbg - JSON-RPC API events (requests/responses)
  • scrdbg - Script interpreter events (custom scripts, errors)
  • debug - Other verbose logging
  • info - General information and status messages
  • warn - Something rare happened (e.g. strange pubKeyScript)
  • error - Something bad happened

The XXXdbg levels can be enabled individually by editing lib/logger.js or via the command line, e.g. bitcoinjs run --bchdbg.

Advanced usage

node-bitcoin-p2p is not only a daemon, but also a Node.js module/library. In most cases it's best to use the daemon via RPC. But sometimes you need the extra control that comes with directly linking to the code.

For details on developing with node-bitcoin-p2p as a library, take a look at the Developer Guide on the wiki.

Upgrading

When upgrading node-bitcoin-p2p it is a good idea to reset its database:

bitcoinjs db-drop

This won't be necessary once node-bitcoin-p2p is more stable, but for now new versions often break database compatibility and since it only takes about ten minutes to regenerate it makes sense to just reset it.

Tests

To run the test suite, please install Vows and run the following command:

vows test/* --spec

Status

The library is currently alpha quality. Here are some things it currently lacks:

  • Verify difficulty transitions
  • Verify transactions in blocks
  • Respond to getblocks requests

On top of that, it could use a lot more documentation, test cases and general bug fixing across the board.

You can find more information on the Issues tab on Github.

Troubleshooting

Native module missing

If you see this error:

Error: Cannot find module '../build-cc/default/native'

This happens when the native components of node-bitcoin-p2p are not compiled yet.

Make sure you have libgmp3-dev installed, then go to the node-bitcoin-p2p folder and run:

node-waf configure build

Credits

node-bitcoin-p2p - Node.js Bitcoin client
Copyright (c) 2011 Stefan Thomas justmoon@members.fsf.org.

Native extensions are
Copyright (c) 2011 Andrew Schaaf andrew@andrewschaaf.com

Parts of this software are based on BitcoinJ
Copyright (c) 2011 Google Inc.