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Testnet experimentations

Testnet Genesis Files can be found HERE

Validators Chat can be found in HERE

Before you begin complete a Essential Toolkit Installation

Quick Setup

Pull latest changes from develop branch

rm -r -f -v $HOME/.gaiad/config/addrbook.json $HOME/.gaiad/config/genesis.json

gaiad unsafe-reset-all

cd $GOPATH/src/

git checkout master && git fetch --all && git pull

make clean && make install

gaiad init

Advanced Setup

Although above setup is the simplest it might happen, that you want to participate in testnet after new change to master branch of cosmos-sdk repository were already made in such case you will have to checkout by the latest tag otherwise you might experience later ERROR: BlockSize.MaxBytes must be greater than 0. Got 0 or other error/issue after starting your node. Latest tag can be found by going to the Branch dropdown list in the cosmos-sdk repository -> Tags panel -> first one is latest

To be absolutely sure it's recommended to verify on the Validator Riot Chat what is the latest tag version of the branch compatible with the testnet you want to participate in.

In our example latest version is v0.34.0-rc2 but it might differ and you will have to change it in the following command:

rm -f -v $HOME/.gaiad/config/addrbook.json 
rm -f -v $HOME/.gaiad/config/genesis.json

gaiad unsafe-reset-all

cd $GOPATH/src/

git checkout master
git fetch --all
git reset --hard v0.34.0
git pull

make clean 
make tools install

gaiad init

gaiad version --long
gaiacli version --long

Genesis and initial setup

Copy genesis file, define seed nodes and set testnet property to latest testnet genesis file folder name

mkdir -p $HOME/.gaiad/config

curl$testnet/genesis.json > $HOME/.gaiad/config/genesis.json

nano ~/.gaiad/config/config.toml

Set seeds property according ot latest Testnet Get Started Status List for example

seeds = "c24f496b951148697f8a24fd749786075c128f00@"

You can additionally set 'persistent_peers' property (if available) or ask on Validator Riot Chat to acquire one in case where your node does not want to sync new blocks and catch up with the network.

persistent_peers = "6ad4fb9dbb4665d109446a0bd42ca56babce4af5@," 

To save changes: Ctrl+O, [Enter], Ctrl+X

Start a Full Node

mkdir -p $HOME/logs
nohup gaiad start &> $HOME/logs/gaiad.log &

#to preview loggs
tail -n 100 $HOME/logs/gaiad.log

To generate a bip32 seed you can use Mnemonic Code Converter in order to persist a single key between different testnets. After clicking "GENERATE" button you will be presented with random 12 words you can use for the gaiacli keys add command, for example.

bright flee spell nature unfold anchor govern envelope solve exercise flower fine

Additionally you will have to set a minimum of 8 character password, for example: 12345678

gaiacli keys add ValidatorKey --recover

You should expect output to resemble following

NAME:   TYPE:   ADDRESS:                                        PUBKEY:
ValidatorKey    local   cosmos1zmw9kwmldgxt8czg0csuqnr4j8syls5jn0njqm   cosmospub1addwnpepqg6l93rcut0j9fjjd93lr6u3rkppkwc6vtpd6mljxtshxnus8jwhg9uv30z

Use Public Faucet, use it to redeem testnet tokens to your address, in our case:


As testnet explorer Hubble can be used, a single atom is generally enough to join network as validator.

Configure gaiacli

gaiacli config trust-node true

gaiacli config chain-id $(cat $HOME/.gaiad/config/genesis.json | jq -r '.chain_id')

gaiacli config node tcp://localhost:26657

Query balance and block height

gaiacli status | jq -r '.sync_info.latest_block_height'

gaiacli query account cosmos1zmw9kwmldgxt8czg0csuqnr4j8syls5jn0njqm

If you see message similar to

ERROR: {"codespace":"sdk","code":9,"message":"account cosmos1zmw9kwmldgxt8czg0csuqnr4j8syls5jn0njqm does not exist"}

It means you might have not synced to the latest block yet and do not have any muons as per visible blockchain state.

Find out validator public key

cat $HOME/.gaiad/config/priv_validator_key.json | jq -r '.pub_key.value'

In our case output resulted in following response: 2fB28TlrPvwoddrlan7xUwp1635XSSmm/+RzVLLtsTA=

To find out testnet coin denomination:

cat $HOME/.gaiad/config/genesis.json | jq -r '.app_state.accounts[0].original_vesting[0].denom'

Create Validator Node

gaiacli tx staking create-validator \
  --amount=1000000muon \
  --pubkey=$(gaiad tendermint show-validator) \
  --moniker="YourValidatorName" \
  --chain-id=$(cat $HOME/.gaiad/config/genesis.json | jq -r '.chain_id') \
  --commission-rate="0.20" \
  --commission-max-rate="0.20" \
  --commission-max-change-rate="0.01" \
  --min-self-delegation="1" \
  --gas="auto" \
  --from=ValidatorKey \

Query validator info

gaiacli query staking validator $(gaiacli keys show ValidatorKey --bech=val --output=json | jq -r '.address') --output=json

View your node in hubble<chain-id>

Updating validators description

gaiacli tx staking edit-validator --moniker="Asmodat" \
  --website="" \
  --identity=1A1A1A1A1A1A1A1A \
  --details="To create your own testnet validator check my tutorial at" \
  --chain-id=$(cat $HOME/.gaiad/config/genesis.json | jq -r '.chain_id') \
  --gas="auto" \
  --from=ValidatorKey \
  --commission-rate="0.19" \

Updating Validator Node

To perform update stop gaiad and

sudo apt upgrade -y

rm -r -f -v $HOME/logs/gaiad.log
rm -r -f -v $HOME/.gaiad/data/

To check data directory and log size:

du -sh  $HOME/.gaiad/data
du -sh  $HOME/logs/gaiad.log

Now you are ready to perform installation as suggested by the #advanced-setup. Once done start the node and send create-validator transaction as suggested by instructions above. You do not need to create new validator key.

Validator Unjailing

It might happen that your testnet validator halted and got slashed, in such case you have to unjail your validator before it can start operating again.

gaiacli tx slashing unjail \
  --from=ValidatorKey \
  --chain-id=$(cat $HOME/.gaiad/config/genesis.json | jq -r '.chain_id')

In case of slashing event Re-delegation might be required

gaiacli tx staking delegate cosmosvaloper1zmw9kwmldgxt8czg0csuqnr4j8syls5jkm88vg 1000000muon --from ValidatorKey --fees=50000muon

Validator Service

To maintain the node running even after restarts a dedicated service can be created to ensure that the process is alive.

Create new service file

nano /lib/systemd/system/cosmos.service

Append following lines

Description=Cosmos Network Validator Service

ExecStart=/home/ubuntu/go/bin/gaiad start --home /home/ubuntu/.gaiad


Enable service, start and check logs

systemctl enable cosmos
systemctl start cosmos
journalctl --unit=cosmos -n 100 --no-pager
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