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Hammersbald is a fast embedded blockchain database
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A fast embedded blockchain database.


Generic databases and key-value stores offer much more functionality than needed to store and process a blockchain. Superfluous functionality (for a blockchain) comes at a high cost in speed.


Hammersbald is a German slang for "Haben wir es bald?" close to in english "Will we have it soon?". A term often used to express impatience. Hammersbald is the blockchain database for the impatient. Hammersbald sounds also like the name of some ancient northern god.


It works.


See Hammersbald on medium


This library implements the bare minimum of operations:

  • insert data with a key
  • find data with a key
  • insert some data that can be referred to by an other data but has no key.
  • find some data with known offset.
  • start batch, that also ends current batch

There is no delete operation. An insert with a key renders a previous insert with same key inaccessible. Keys are not sorted and can not be iterated.

Inserts must be grouped into batches. All inserts of a batch will be stored or none of them, in case the process dies while inserting in a batch.

Data inserted in a batch may be fetched before closing the batch.

Simplest use:

use hammersbald::{

// read cache size in 4k pages
const CACHED_PAGES:usize = 100;
// average re-use of a hash table entry
const BUCKET_FILL_TARGET:usize = 2;

let mut db = persistent("dbname", CACHED_PAGES, BUCKET_FILL_TARGET).unwrap();

db.put_keyed(b"some key", b"some data").unwrap();


if let Some((pos, data)) = db.get_keyed(b"some key").unwrap() {
    assert_eq!(data, b"some data".to_vec());
else {
    panic!("can not find inserted data");


Optional Bitcoin API

A bitcoin adaptor is available if compiled with the bitcoin_support future. Example use:

        // create a transient hammersbald
        let db = transient(1).unwrap();
        // promote to a bitcoin adapter
        let mut bdb = BitcoinAdaptor::new(db);

        // example transaction
        let tx = decode::<Transaction> (hex::decode("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").unwrap()).unwrap();

        // store the transaction without associating a key
        let txref = bdb.put_encodable(&tx).unwrap();
        // retrieve by direct reference
        let (key, tx2) = bdb.get_decodable::<Transaction>(txref).unwrap();
        assert_eq!(tx, tx2);
        assert_eq!(key, tx.bitcoin_hash()[..].to_vec());

        // store the transaction with its hash as key
        let txref2 = bdb.put_hash_keyed(&tx).unwrap();
        // retrieve by hash
        if let Some((pref, tx3)) = bdb.get_hash_keyed::<Transaction>(&tx.bitcoin_hash()).unwrap() {
            assert_eq!(pref, txref2);
            assert_eq!(tx3, tx);
        else {
            panic!("can not find tx");


The persistent storage should be opened by only one process.

The store is a persistent hash map using Linear Hashing.


The data storage size is limited to 2^48 (256TiB) due to the use of 6 byte persistent pointers. A data element can not exceed 2^24 (16MiB) in length. Key length is limited to 255 bytes.

Release Notes

1.6.0 upgrade to rust-bitcoin 0.17

1.5.1 add API may_have_key

1.5 upgrade to bitcoin 0.16

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