Nodes and miners are present among the other terms that exist in the digital currency markets.
In this article, we will examine the difference between a node and a miner, and how these two concepts are related to each other.
It should be noted that in the original Bitcoin white paper published by Satoshi Nakamoto, there is no difference between these two terms. To better understand the difference between a node and a miner, read this article to the end.
What is the concept of blockchain?
Before we delve into the difference between nodes and miners, let’s first examine the concept of blockchain. Imagine a document containing important information that you can protect against any changes. The most suitable way to preserve this information is to replicate it among other people. Through this method, it can be said that your information is spread among more people.
Using this method, it can be said that your information is distributed in a network of people, and no one can easily change this information. Because if this information changes, the guilty person will be removed from the network. This definition can be a simple definition of blockchain.
Of course, it is clear that the more information is distributed among people, the more secure the network is. In these types of networks, there is no central database, and no one can decide to change all the information. That is why these networks are called decentralized. Now that you are familiar with the concept of blockchain, we want to examine the difference between nodes and miners. Stay with us for a better understanding of this concept.
What is a node and what is its use?
As previously mentioned, Bitcoin nodes are a type of storage device that have internet access and store all transaction-related data in the form of a chain of information called the blockchain.
However, it should be noted that storing information is not the only task of nodes, and by running Bitcoin software, nodes strengthen the rules and protocols of Bitcoin in the network. Therefore, the blockchain cannot be manipulated and any changes to the transaction data’s specific hash will be altered, and fraudulent nodes will be easily identified.
On the other hand, no transaction is deleted, and all transactions are connected to previous transactions, and any disruption to it is easily detectable. The function of the node is such that it delivers transaction information from a user to the miner and is used to store the blockchain. Nodes are synchronized with each other, and if a node is offline for a specific period, it will receive the latest information from other nodes upon restarting.
Nodes verify all transactions and hashes generated by miners to ensure that the transaction information matches the hashes generated by the miners. However, nodes are also responsible for reconciling all information with Bitcoin protocols. If a transaction has an issue, it will not be confirmed.
Once Bitcoin is extracted and added to the blockchain network, it cannot easily be changed. Since there are currently thousands of active nodes, it is very difficult and impossible to deactivate the Bitcoin network. Therefore, if nodes change, they will be identified by other nodes and separated from the blockchain network.
Therefore, anyone with a device and sufficient storage connected to the internet can become a Bitcoin node. So far, we have understood the general difference between nodes and miners. However, it should be noted that nodes and miners work together to ensure that the Bitcoin network performs well.
What is the difference between a node and a miner?
A miner needs to run a full node in order to select a valid transaction. Without a full node, a miner can never know whether proposed transactions are valid based on the current transaction history of the blockchain. So, it can be said that a miner is always a full node. However, a node is not necessarily a miner at the same time. A device can run a full node by receiving, storing, and broadcasting all transaction information without generating any new transaction blocks.
In this case, a full node acts more like a pass-through point with a defined activity path. While a miner does the same, it also simultaneously looks for new transaction blocks.
To explain the difference between a node and a miner, it can be said that a node is responsible for validating transactions and then passes the information to the next node. But a miner is a full node that, in addition to validating transactions and blocks, creates new blocks of transactions. Both miners and nodes perform validation, which is why both can have a role in the blockchain consensus process.
Who can launch a node?
To explain the difference between a node and a miner, it can be said that in some blockchain networks there are thousands of nodes that operate simultaneously and online. Anyone can set up a node by downloading the transaction history of the blockchain network and having the necessary equipment.
Currently, many individuals voluntarily set up nodes due to their interest in digital currencies and blockchain. They do not receive any income from this and the only attractive point for them is that they are part of a large project.
The more miners there are, the more secure the network becomes, and as a result, the possibility of change and fraud in it decreases to a minimum. However, some blockchain networks have very high transactional data and setting up a full node requires more free space. Therefore, many people who intend to use the blockchain simply use a simple wallet and do not need to download the complete blockchain history on their system.
Can all nodes be miners?
Any system that can connect to the internet, has the ability to install Bitcoin software, and has a 140 GB memory to store data can be a node. Therefore, all miners have the ability to be a node, but nodes do not necessarily have this ability. This is because miners require high processing power, but a node does not necessarily require high processing power on its own.
What is a masternode?
Some nodes are called masternodes, which are responsible for monitoring events such as voting and proper protocol execution. They are responsible for storing the rules and budgeting for digital currencies and conducting instant transactions. Miners do not need to be master nodes and only need to have information about themselves.
Since masternodes have heavy duties, they must have some money as a guarantee of full protocol execution and non-violation of the rules in their wallets. One of these rules is being offline, which is a major violation. They must be online 24/7 and pay a penalty if they are turned off.
As discussed in this article on the topic of the difference between nodes and miners, creating multiple data centers, validating transactions, and monitoring the enforcement of rules are the main tasks of nodes. If these tasks are performed, network security will be guaranteed. Nodes perform these tasks by emphasizing pre-defined protocols. Although these tasks are very small, maintaining the security of information on the blockchain is very important, and networks have been able to perform this task well so far.