Guides to Cryptocurrencies
Chinese Name: 达世币
Founder: Evan Duffield
Dash cryptocurrency was launched by founder, Evan Duffield as “Xcoin” in January 2014, it was a fork of the Bitcoin blockchain and was regularly exposed to pump and dump speculations. It was later rebranded as “Darkcoin” and was reported to be used in dark net markets. Darkcoin was then rebranded again to the name of “Dash” in March 2015. Dash is reportedly no longer used in any notable major dark net markets as of August 2016.
Dash, similar to most cryptocurrencies, uses decentralized blockchain ledger for transactions and Proof of Work (PoW) system as consensus mechanism. Its method of adding new blocks is similar to Bitcoin by solving complex mathematical puzzles and rewarding successful miners with new Dash coins. The difference is that Dash has a 2 tier network with the miners powering the first tier with the Proof of Work (PoW) mechanism, and the second tier powered by Masternode system using the widely known “Proof of Service (PoSe)”.
A Masternode is basically a server that stores a full copy of the Dash blockchain. Masternodes are crucial in validating the entire network, identifying malicious miner that tried to operate an older version of the blockchain or steal the entire block reward, and reject / orphan the incorrect block to exclude it permanently from its network. This security mechanism is an add-on to the existing Proof of Work security mechanism already operated by the miners.
New Block Rewards
Everytime a new block is discovered by miners on the Dash blockchain, 45% of the block reward will go to the successful miner and 45% of block reward will go to all Masternodes. Masternodes has the power to vote on governance as well, receiving 1 vote each, capable of voting Yes, No or Abstain on each submitted proposal. The remaining 10% block reward will be reserved for budget system, with a superblock created in approx. every 30.29 days and the entire 10% payout awarded to the budget proposal winners.
Running a Masternode
Anyone can operate a Masternode but they cannot use mining computers to run it since Masternode does not do mining. To avoid network being overloaded with unnecessary nodes and bad node operators, the owner of a Masternode will need to stake 1000 Dash (collateral) as proof of ownership. If he/she spends or moves those coins, the Masternode will stop working and receiving reward including the ability to vote. The coins need not be stored on a Masternode but have to be kept in a way that is transparent to the Dash public community. The owner will then need to install and run the Dash Masternode software on a server.
Payment in each block will be allocated to Masternodes from a deterministic list, with the recipient moved to the back of the list after receiving payment. Hence, duration to receive payments will increase as more new Masternodes are created. If the collateral of a Masternode is spent, it will be removed from the list until the collateral is replaced. This incentivizes Masternodes to provide reliable and efficient services, thus more Masternodes will assist the Dash network to scale more efficiently, safely and quickly.
It was reported that there are over 5000 Masternodes operating in the Dash blockchain in over 45 countries as of November 2018, and each Masternode receives 6 Dash per month on average from block rewards. Masternode on average uses bandwidth of around 300-500 GB monthly and the numbers will change as the network expands or when there are more or less Masternodes.
Steps to Install a Masternode
1. Setup Server and Operating System (OS)
2. Install software of Dash
3. Blockchain Synchronization
4. Generate a BLS key pair
5. Enter private key on Masternode
6. Prepare and Sign ProRegTx transaction
7. Submit signed ProRegTx transaction
Direct access to the Masternode is required for steps 2 to 5. Step 6 requires access to the wallet with the collateral and last step requires Dash balance for transaction fee payments.