RFC-0120/Consensus

Base Layer Consensus

status: stable

Maintainer(s): Cayle Sharrock, Stanley Bondi and SW van heerden

Licence

The 3-Clause BSD Licence.

Copyright 2019 The Tari Development Community

Redistribution and use in source and binary forms, with or without modification, are permitted provided that the following conditions are met:

  1. Redistributions of this document must retain the above copyright notice, this list of conditions and the following disclaimer.
  2. Redistributions in binary form must reproduce the above copyright notice, this list of conditions and the following disclaimer in the documentation and/or other materials provided with the distribution.
  3. Neither the name of the copyright holder nor the names of its contributors may be used to endorse or promote products derived from this software without specific prior written permission.

THIS DOCUMENT IS PROVIDED BY THE COPYRIGHT HOLDERS AND CONTRIBUTORS "AS IS", AND ANY EXPRESS OR IMPLIED WARRANTIES, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, THE IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY AND FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE ARE DISCLAIMED. IN NO EVENT SHALL THE COPYRIGHT HOLDER OR CONTRIBUTORS BE LIABLE FOR ANY DIRECT, INDIRECT, INCIDENTAL, SPECIAL, EXEMPLARY OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES (INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, PROCUREMENT OF SUBSTITUTE GOODS OR SERVICES; LOSS OF USE, DATA OR PROFITS; OR BUSINESS INTERRUPTION) HOWEVER CAUSED AND ON ANY THEORY OF LIABILITY, WHETHER IN CONTRACT, STRICT LIABILITY OR TORT (INCLUDING NEGLIGENCE OR OTHERWISE) ARISING IN ANY WAY OUT OF THE USE OF THIS SOFTWARE, EVEN IF ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGE.

Language

The keywords "MUST", "MUST NOT", "REQUIRED", "SHALL", "SHALL NOT", "SHOULD", "SHOULD NOT", "RECOMMENDED", "NOT RECOMMENDED", "MAY" and "OPTIONAL" in this document are to be interpreted as described in BCP 14 (covering RFC2119 and RFC8174) when, and only when, they appear in all capitals, as shown here.

Disclaimer

This document and its content are intended for information purposes only and may be subject to change or update without notice.

This document may include preliminary concepts that may or may not be in the process of being developed by the Tari community. The release of this document is intended solely for review and discussion by the community of the technological merits of the potential system outlined herein.

Goals

The aim of this Request for Comment (RFC) is to describe the fields that a block should contain as well as all consensus rules that will determine the validity of a block.

Description

Blockchain consensus is a set of rules that a majority of nodes agree on that determines the state of the blockchain.

This RFC details the consensus rules for the Tari network.

Blocks

Every block MUST:

  • have exactly one valid block header, as per the Block Headers section

  • have exactly one coinbase transaction

  • have a total transaction weight less than the consensus maximum

  • be able to calculate matching Merkle roots (kernel_mr, output_mr, witness_mr, and input_mr)

  • each transaction input MUST:

  • each transaction output MUST:

    • be of an allowed transaction output version
    • have a unique domain separated hash (version || features || commitment || script || covenant || encrypted_values) with the domain (transaction_output)
    • have a unique commitment in the current UTXO set
    • be in a canonical order (see Transaction ordering)
    • have a valid range proof
    • have a valid metadata signature
    • contain only allowed opcodes in the script
  • each transaction kernel MUST

    • have a valid kernel excess signature
    • have a unique excess
  • have a valid total script offset, \( \gamma \), see script-offset.

  • the number of BURNED outputs MUST equal the number of BURNED_KERNEL kernels exactly,

  • the commitment values of each burnt output MUST match the commitment value of each corresponding BURNED_KERNEL exactly.

  • the transaction commitments and kernels MUST balance, as follows:

    $$ \begin{align} &\sum_i\mathrm{Cout_{i}} - \sum_j\mathrm{Cin_{j}} + \text{fees} \cdot H \stackrel{?}{=} \sum_k\mathrm{K_k} + \text{offset} \\ & \text{for each output}, i, \\ & \text{for each input}, j, \\ & \text{for each kernel excess}, k \\ & \text{and }\textit{offset }\text{is the total kernel offset} \\ \end{align} \tag{1} $$

If a block does not conform to the above, the block SHOULD be discarded and MAY ban the peer that sent it.

Coinbase

A coinbase transaction contained in a block MUST:

  • be the only transaction in the block with the coinbase flag
  • consist of exactly one output and one kernel (no input)
  • have a valid kernel signature
  • have a value exactly equal to the emission at the block height it was minted (see emission schedule) plus the total transaction fees within the block
  • have a lock-height as per consensus

Block Headers

Every block header MUST contain the following fields:

  • version;
  • height;
  • prev_hash;
  • timestamp;
  • output_mr;
  • output_mmr_size;
  • input_mr;
  • witness_mr;
  • kernel_mr;
  • kernel_mmr_size;
  • total_kernel_offset;
  • script_kernel_offset;
  • nonce;
  • pow.

The block header MUST conform to the following:

The Merkle roots are validated as part of the full block validation, detailed in Blocks.

If the block header does not conform to any of the above, the block SHOULD be rejected and MAY ban the peer that sent it.

Version

This is the version currently running on the chain.

The version MUST conform to the following:

  • It is represented as an unsigned 16-bit integer.
  • Version numbers MUST be incremented whenever there is a change in the blockchain schema starting from 0.

Height

A counter indicating how many blocks have passed since the genesis block (inclusive).

The height MUST conform to the following:

  • Represented as an unsigned 64-bit integer.
  • The height MUST be exactly one more than the block referenced in the prev_hash block header field.
  • The genesis block MUST have a height of 0.

Prev_hash

This is the hash of the previous block's header.

The prev_hash MUST conform to the following:

  • represented as an array of unsigned 8-bit integers (bytes) in little-endian format.
  • MUST be a hash of the entire contents of the previous block's header using the domain (block_header).

Timestamp

This is the timestamp at which the block was mined.

The timestamp MUST conform to the following:

  • Must be transmitted as UNIX timestamp.
  • MUST be less than FTL.
  • MUST be higher than the MTP.

Output_mr

The output_mr MUST be calculated as follows: Hash (TXO MMR root || Hash(spent TXO bitmap)).

The TXO MMR root is the MMR root that commits to every transaction output that has ever existed since the genesis block.

The spent TXO bitmap is a compact serialized roaring bitmap containing all the output MMR leaf indexes of all the outputs that have ever been spent.

The output_mr MUST conform to the following:

  • Represented as an array of unsigned 8-bit integers (bytes) in little-endian format.
  • The hashing function used MUST be blake2b with a 256-bit digest.

Output_mmr_size

This is the total size of the leaves in the output Merkle mountain range.

The Output_mmr_size MUST conform to the following:

  • Represented as a single unsigned 64-bit integer.

Input_mr

This is the Merkle root of all the inputs in the block, which consists of the hashed inputs. It is used to prove that all inputs are correct and not changed after mining. This MUST be constructed by adding, in order, the hash of every input contained in the block.

The input_mr MUST conform to the following:

  • Represented as an array of unsigned 8-bit integers (bytes) in little-endian format.
  • The hashing function must be blake2b with a 256-bit digest.

Witness_mr

This is the Merkle root of the output witness data, specifically all created outputs’ range proofs and metadata signatures. This MUST be constructed by Hash ( RangeProof || metadata commitment signature), in order, for every output contained in the block.

The witness_mr MUST conform to the following:

  • Represented as an array of unsigned 8-bit integers (bytes) in little-endian format.
  • The hashing function used must be blake2b with a 256-bit digest.

Kernel_mr

This is the Merkle root of the kernels.

The kernel_mr MUST conform to the following:

  • Must be transmitted as an array of unsigned 8-bit integers (bytes) in little-endian format.
  • The hashing function used must be blake2b with a 256-bit digest.

Kernel_mmr_size

This is the total size of the leaves in the kernel Merkle mountain range.

The Kernel_mmr_size MUST conform to the following:

  • Represented as a single unsigned 64-bit integer.

Total_kernel_offset

This is the total summed offset of all the transactions in this block.

The total_kernel_offset MUST conform to the following:

  • Must be transmitted as an array of unsigned 8-bit integers (bytes) in little-endian format

Total_script_offset

This is the total summed script offset of all the transactions in this block.

The total_script_offset MUST conform to the following:

  • Must be transmitted as an array of unsigned 8-bit integers (bytes) in little-endian format

Nonce

This is the nonce used in solving the Proof of Work.

The nonce MUST conform to the following:

  • Must be transmitted as an unsigned 64-bit integer;

PoW

This is the Proof of Work algorithm used to solve the Proof of Work. This is used in conjunction with the Nonce.

The [PoW] MUST contain the following:

  • accumulated_monero_difficulty as an unsigned 64-bit integer.
  • accumulated_blake_difficulty as an unsigned 64-bit integer.
  • pow_algo as an enum (0 for Monero, 1 for Sha3).
  • pow_data as an array of unsigned 8-bit integers (bytes) in little-endian format.

Difficulty Calculation

The target difficulty represents how difficult it is to mine a given block. This difficulty is not fixed and needs to constantly adjust to changing network hash rates.

The difficulty adjustment MUST be calculated using a linear-weighted moving average (LWMA) algorithm (2) $$ \newcommand{\solvetime}{ \mathrm{ST_i} } \newcommand{\solvetimemax}{ \mathrm{ST_{max}} } $$

SymbolValueDescription
N90Target difficulty block window
TSHA3: 300 Monero: 200Target block time in seconds. The value used depends on the PoW algorithm being used.
\( \solvetimemax \)SHA3: 1800 Monero: 1200Maximum solve time. This is six times the target time of the current PoW algorithm.
\( \solvetime \)variableThe timestamp difference in seconds between block i and i - 1 where \( 1 \le \solvetime \le \solvetimemax \)
\( \mathrm{D_{avg}} \)variableThe average difficulty of the last N blocks

$$ \begin{align} & \textit{weighted_solve_time} = \sum\limits_{i=1}^N(\solvetime*i) \\ & \textit{weighted_target_time} = (\sum\limits_{i=1}^Ni) * \mathrm{T} \\ & \textit{difficulty} = \mathrm{D_{avg}} * \frac{\textit{weighted_target_time}}{\textit{weighted_solve_time}}\\ \end{align} \tag{2} $$

It is important to note that the two proof of work algorithms are calculated independently. i.e., if the current block uses SHA3 proof of work, the block window and solve times only include SHA3 blocks and vice versa.

FTL

The Future Time Limit. This is how far into the future a time is accepted as a valid time. Any time that is more than the FTL is rejected until such a time that it is not more than the FTL. The FTL is calculated as (T*N)/20 with T and N defined as: T: Target time - This is the ideal time that should pass between blocks that have been mined. N: Block window - This is the number of blocks used when calculating difficulty adjustments.

MTP

The Median Time Passed (MTP) is the lower bound calculated by taking the median average timestamp of the last N blocks. Any block with a timestamp that is less than MTP will be rejected.

Total accumulated proof of work

This is defined as the total accumulated proof of work done on the blockchain. Tari uses two independent proof of work algorithms rated at different difficulties. To compare them, we simply multiply them together into one number: $$ \begin{align} \textit{accumulated_monero_difficulty} * \textit{accumulated_sha_difficulty} \end{align} \tag{3} $$ This value is used to compare chain tips to determine the strongest chain.

Transaction Ordering

The order in which transaction inputs, outputs, and kernels are added to the Merkle mountain range completely changes the final Merkle root. Input, output, and kernel ordering within a block is, therefore, part of the consensus.

The block MUST be transmitted in canonical ordering. The advantage of this approach is that sorting does not need to be done by the whole network, and verification of sorting is exceptionally cheap.

  • Transaction outputs are sorted lexicographically by the byte representation of their Pedersen commitment i.e. ( \(k \cdot G + v \cdot H\) ).
  • Transaction kernels are sorted lexicographically by the excess signature byte representation.
  • Transaction inputs are sorted lexicographically by the hash of the output that is spent by the input.

Change Log

DateChangeAuthor
11 Oct 2022First stableSWvHeerden