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Lightning Network Daemon

The Decred Lightning Network Daemon (dcrlnd) - is a complete implementation of a Lightning Network node and currently deployed on testnet3 - the Decred Test Network.

dcrlnd currently requires a dcrd backing full node to perform the required chain services. The project's codebase uses the existing set of decred libraries, and also exports a large set of isolated re-usable Lightning Network related libraries within it. In the current state dcrlnd is capable of:

  • Creating channels.
  • Closing channels.
  • Completely managing all channel states (including the exceptional ones!).
  • Maintaining a fully authenticated+validated channel graph.
  • Performing path finding within the network, passively forwarding incoming payments.
  • Sending outgoing onion-encrypted payments through the network.
  • Updating advertised fee schedules.
  • Automatic channel management (autopilot).

LND Porting Status

dcrlnd is currently developed as a port of the original lnd lightning network daemon with the changes required to make it work on the Decred network and with Decred software.

Some of the most important (though by no means exhaustive) diffrences between lnd and dcrlnd include:

  • Import Paths
  • Full node integration API
  • Transaction serialization layout
  • Transaction witness format and signature process
  • Wallet integration API

Lightning Network Specification Compliance

dcrlnd aims to conform to the Lightning Network specification (BOLTs). BOLT stands for: Basis of Lightning Technology. The specifications are currently being drafted by several groups of implementers based around the world including the developers of dcrlnd. The set of specification documents as well as our implementation of the specification are still a work-in-progress. With that said, the current status of dcrlnd's BOLT compliance is:

  • BOLT 1: Base Protocol
  • BOLT 2: Peer Protocol for Channel Management
  • BOLT 3: Bitcoin Transaction and Script Formats
  • BOLT 4: Onion Routing Protocol
  • BOLT 5: Recommendations for On-chain Transaction Handling
  • BOLT 7: P2P Node and Channel Discovery
  • BOLT 8: Encrypted and Authenticated Transport
  • BOLT 9: Assigned Feature Flags
  • BOLT 10: DNS Bootstrap and Assisted Node Location
  • BOLT 11: Invoice Protocol for Lightning Payments

Developer Resources

The daemon has been designed to be as developer friendly as possible in order to facilitate application development on top of dcrlnd. Two primary RPC interfaces are exported: an HTTP REST API, and a gRPC service. The exported API's are not yet stable, so be warned: they may change drastically in the near future.

Most of the automatically generated documentation for the LND RPC APIs is applicable to dcrlnd and can be found at The developer resources including talks, articles, and example applications are also relevant to dcrlnd and can be found at:

For questions and discussions, all Decred communities can be found at:


Knowledgeable users may use the quickstart guide.

For more detailed instructions, please see the installation instructions.

The operation modes document lists how dcrlnd may connect to the Decred network to run its operations.

And a sample config file with annotated options is also available here.

Quick Simnet Network

A shell script that uses tmux to setup a 3-node simnet network (along with appropriate dcrd and dcrwallet nodes) is available in contrib/

Note that this requires having dcrlnd and dcrlncli in your $PATH variable, as well as compatible versions of dcrd and dcrwallet.


To run lnd from Docker, please see the main Docker instructions


When operating a mainnet dcrlnd node, please refer to our operational safety guildelines. It is important to note that dcrlnd is still beta software and that ignoring these operational guidelines can lead to loss of funds.


Please see the security policy.

Further reading


Decred Lightning Network Daemon ⚡️



Security policy





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