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Find an area you can help with and do it. Open source is about collaboration and open participation. Try to make your code look like what already exists and submit a pull request.

The list of issues is a good place to start, especially the ones tagged as "help wanted" (but don't let that stop you from looking at others). If you're looking for additional ideas, the code includes TODO comments for minor to major improvements. Use Search in files in your code editor, or grep "TODO" -r --exclude-dir=target --exclude-dir=.git ..

Additional tests are rewarded with an immense amount of positive karma.

More documentation or updates/fixes to existing documentation are also very welcome.

PR Guidelines

We generally prefer you to PR your work earlier rather than later. This ensures everyone else has a better idea of what's being worked on, and can help reduce wasted effort. If work on your PR has just begun, please feel free to create the PR with [WIP] (work in progress) in the PR title, and let us know when it's ready for review in the comments.

Since mainnet has been released, the bar for having PRs accepted has been raised. Before submitting your PR for approval, please be ensure it:

  • Includes a proper description of what problems the PR addresses, as well as a detailed explanation as to what it changes
  • Explains whether/how the change is consensus breaking or breaks existing client functionality
  • Contains unit tests exercising new/changed functionality
  • Fully considers the potential impact of the change on other parts of the system
  • Describes how you've tested the change (e.g. against Floonet, etc)
  • Updates any documentation that's affected by the PR

If submitting a PR consisting of documentation changes only, please try to ensure that the change is significantly more substantial than one or two lines. For example, working through an install document and making changes and updates throughout as you find issues is worth a PR. For typos and other small changes, either contact one of the developers, or if you think it's a significant enough error to cause problems for other users, please feel free to open an issue.

The development team will be happy to help and guide you with any of these points and work with you getting your PR submitted for approval. Create a PR with [WIP] in the title and ask for specific assistance within the issue, or contact the dev team on any of the channels below.

Find Us

If any help is needed during your effort to contribute on this project, please don't hesitate to contact us:


Run all tests with cargo test --all and please remember to test locally before creating a PR on github.

Check Travis output

After creating a PR on github, the code will be tested automatically by Travis CI, and from the results you'll get a red or green light. The test can take a while, and you'll have a "yellow traffic light" on your PR until Travis CI is done testing.

Building quality

The most important thing you can do alongside - or even before - changing code, is adding tests for how bitgrin should and should not work. See the various tests folders and derive test that are already there in bitgrin.

After that, if you want to raise code quality another level, you can use cargo check, cargo cov test and cargo tarpaulin. Install them with cargo install cargo-check cargo-cov; RUSTFLAGS="--cfg procmacro2_semver_exempt" cargo install cargo-tarpaulin. Run with cargo cov test and cargo tarpaulin. The quality check tools are often integrated with rustc and as a side-effect only activated when some code is compiled. Because of this, if you want a complete check you'll need to cargo clean first.

Pull-Request Title Prefix

Note: [draft part! to be reviewed and discussed]

Please consider putting one of the following prefixes in the title of your pull-request:

  • feat: A new feature
  • fix: A bug fix
  • docs: Documentation only changes
  • style: Formatting, missing semi-colons, white-space, etc
  • refactor: A code change that neither fixes a bug nor adds a feature
  • perf: A code change that improves performance
  • test: Adding missing tests
  • chore: Maintain. Changes to the build process or auxiliary tools/libraries/documentation

For example: fix: a panick on xxx when bitgrin exiting. Please don't worry if you can't find a suitable prefix, this's just optional, not mandatory.

BitGrin Style Guide

This project uses rustfmt to maintain consistent formatting. We've made sure that rustfmt runs automatically, but you must install rustfmt manually first.

Install rustfmt

Note: To work with grin you must use rustup. Linux package managers typically carry a too old rust version. See build docs for more info.

First ensure you have a new enough rustfmt:

rustup update
rustup component add rustfmt
rustfmt --version

and verify you did get version rustfmt 1.0.0-stable (43206f4 2018-11-30) or newer.

Then run cargo build to activate a git pre-commit hook that automates the rustfmt usage so you don't have to worry much about it. Read on for how to make this work in your advantage.

Creating git commits

When you make a commit, rustfmt will be run and we also automatically reformat the .rs files that your commit is touching.

Please separate the rustfmt changes into one (or several) separate commits. This is best practice.

Easiest is to make your commit as normal and if rustfmt stops you, just redo the commit again, since it should always be allowed on the second try. Then add all rustfmt:ed files (git add -u) and commit them (git commit -m "rustfmt").

You do have to remember to do this manually.

Note: The pre-commit hook will not prevent commits if style issues are present, instead it will indicate any files that need formatting, and it will automatically run rustfmt on your changed files, each time when you try to do git commit.

Manually configuring git hooks

If you are developing new or changed git hooks, or are curious, you can config hooks manually like this git config core.hooksPath ./.hooks and to verify the effect do git config --list | grep hook and expect the output to be core.hookspath=./.hooks

Running rustfmt manually

Not recommended, but you can run rustfmt on a file like this: rustfmt


  1. Please keep rustfmt corrections in a separate commit. This is best practice and makes reviewing and merging your contribution work better.

  2. If unsure about code formatting, it's just fine if you ignore and discard any rustfmt changes. It's only a nice-to-have. Your contribution and code changes is the priority here. Hope you're happy to contribute on this open source project!

  3. Please don't cargo +nightly fmt because all grin developers are using stable rustfmt. Also please don't rustfmt files that your code changes does not touch to avoid causing merge conflicts.

Thanks for any contribution

Even one word correction are welcome! Our objective is to encourage you to get interested in BitGrin and contribute in any way possible. Thanks for any help!

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