Cryptology ePrint Archive: Report 2018/269

Vault: Fast Bootstrapping for the Algorand Cryptocurrency

Derek Leung and Adam Suhl and Yossi Gilad and Nickolai Zeldovich

Abstract: Decentralized cryptocurrencies rely on participants to keep track of the state of the system in order to verify new transactions. As the number of users and transactions grows, this requirement becomes a significant burden, requiring users to download, verify, and store a large amount of data to participate.

Vault is a new cryptocurrency design based on Algorand that minimizes these storage and bootstrapping costs for participants. Vaultís design is based on Algorandís proof-of-stake consensus protocol and uses several techniques to achieve its goals. First, Vault decouples the storage of recent transactions from the storage of account balances, which enables Vault to delete old account state. Second, Vault allows sharding state across participants in a way that preserves strong security guarantees. Finally, Vault introduces the notion of stamping certificates, which allow a new client to catch up securely and efficiently in a proof-of-stake system without having to verify every single block.

Experiments with a prototype implementation of Vaultís data structures show that Vaultís design reduces the bandwidth cost of joining the network as a full client by 99.7% compared to Bitcoin and 90.5% compared to Ethereum when downloading a ledger containing 500 million transactions.

Category / Keywords: cryptocurrencies

Original Publication (with minor differences): Network and Distributed Systems Security (NDSS) Symposium 2019

Date: received 13 Mar 2018, last revised 19 Dec 2018

Contact author: dtl at mit edu

Available format(s): PDF | BibTeX Citation

Version: 20181219:230951 (All versions of this report)

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