Benefits and Risks of Bootstraping the Database
When Sia is synchronizing, it's downloading the entire history of all the transactions and blocks on the Sia network piece by piece since the beginning, and verifying each piece along the way. This process is resource intensive, especially on traditional hard drives, and can take hours or even days to complete.
Downloading a consensus database file (also known as bootstrapping) makes your Sia client synchronize significantly faster. Because our database is updated daily, your client will only have to synchronize what's new over the last few hours. This can cut hours or days off your synchronization time. Because the database is also zipped and compressed, the file is smaller than normal to download, so you'll download it a little faster.
However, the risk to downloading a consensus database from any source is that you're accepting the transaction history of the Sia network as provided by that source. By downloading SiaSetup's consensus, you're trusting that we haven't made changes to the transaction history in the database file in order to take advantage of your Sia client somehow. This risk is fairly negligible - we would have to know which Sia node was yours, and then somehow interact with you by trying to get you to accept something like a transaction which we didn't have funds to cover or a bogus renting/hosting contract. On top of that, other clients would reject your node because it's consensus wouldn't agree with the rest of the network.
We can't give you much more than our word and the word of the general Sia community as to our reputation and the fact that our consensus database hasn't been tampered with (it hasn't). However, if for any reason you're concerned that our consensus database isn't trustworthy, simply don't download it, and synchronize your Sia client from scratch the way it's designed to be used. Synchronizing from the beginning is the most secure way to use Sia, and to know that you have an accurate history of network transactions that hasn't been tampered with - it's just a very slow process.
Bootstrapping versus Adding Nodes
You can download the consensus database below and use it in either a new Sia installation, or an installation that has been previously synchronized. A new installation will still take several hours on average to process the new database, but some time will be saved on downloading. If you've been previously synchronized within the last few months, this option is typically fairly fast.
If you want to synchronize Sia from the beginning but it's taking a while to get started, or you don't think data is downloading at the speed your internet connection is capable of due to lack of other nodes, you can add known nodes to your gateway module. Adding more nodes will give Sia more options to download the consensus from. However, synchronization can still take a while even with connections to additional nodes.
You can utilize one or both of these options to get your Sia client synchronized. See below for more information.
Option 1: Download Consensus File
You can download and install a recent consensus database file to speed up synchronization. The details on the consensus database currently available are visible below. This option is best if you need to repair a Sia installation which was previously synchronized, though it will work with a clean installation as well.
This consensus download is compatible with Sia v1.4.0+. It will not work with Sia v1.3.5 or lower ("SiaClassic"), SiaPrime, or Hyperspace, and may not work with Sia v1.3.7.
Uh oh! Our consensus download appears to be missing some files. Please try again later, and let us know if this error persists for more than 24 hours.
- Download and install Sia if you haven't yet. You can find Sia downloads here.
- Open the Sia-UI or
siadand let it start synchronizing if you haven't yet.
- Click on About (the information icon in the upper right) > Open Data Folder, or see this FAQ topic and navigate to the location of Sia's internal data files. Keep this folder open.
- Close Sia completely - you may need to right-click the Sia icon by the system tray and select Quit Sia.
- Download the consensus zip file above.
consensus.dbfrom the consensus zip file you downloaded above and place it in
\sia\consensus\- the consensus folder is found in the one that you opened earlier. Replace the existing
consensus.dbfile with the one from the zip.
- Open Sia again and let it process the new consensus. This may take some time.
When opening Sia after installing the downloaded consensus database, you may see this message:
This message may display for an hour or more, especially if you've just downloaded and opened Sia for the first time. While the consensus database provided here is nearly up to date, Sia still has to go through and build other things from the database (such as current renter/host status), which can take some time. You may also see resource use on your computer peak, particularly memory utilization. As long as the update message is displayed and no other error message is seen, Sia is working as intended and you simply need to wait and let it finish what it's doing. On a modern system with a solid state drive, this process was measured to take about an hour.
Option 2: Manually Add Nodes
If your Sia client is having trouble starting to synchronize or staying synchronized, you can manually add nodes to your gateway database. This will allow Sia to connect to the known nodes more quickly, instead of having to wait to find nodes. You can check your gateway list by typing
gateway list into the Terminal of the Sia-UI or using
siac. Consider adding more if you don't have more than one or two listed.
Currently Visible Nodes
Complete the ReCAPTCHA challenge above to view our current list of nodes.
Pick a node above, ideally one that matches your Sia version. Use the Terminal tab in Sia-UI or
siac and run the command
gateway connect 000.000.000.000:9981, replacing the underlined section with one of the node addresses from our list above. You can repeat this for each node you want to add.