You may have seen posts on social media about something new we’ve been working on at Bitseed. Since December, we have been quietly accepting and shipping orders for a new product. Today we are excited to officially announce Bitseed 3, the third-generation model of our popular plug-and-play bitcoin full node. This new Bitseed model features more computing power, more RAM, and a larger standard hard drive than previous models, all to prepare for a bigger and better bitcoin.
Bitcoin is growing
When we started the Bitseed project, the blockchain was less than 40 GB in size, and the block size limit was only 1 MB. Today, the blockchain is over 160 GB in size, and with Segregated Witness (segwit) support activated on the bitcoin mainnet, the block weight limit is now 4 MB. This means that the blockchain could grow at a much faster rate than before, increasing storage and compute requirements. Miners are already building blocks larger than 1 MB in size, and we do not expect this trend to reverse as more wallets add support for segwit transactions.
Bitcoin is maturing
In addition to the advancements being made at the core protocol level, the systems built on top of bitcoin have been getting better as well. These systems include protocols such as Blockstack (a decentralized domain name system), Counterparty (a smart contract platform), and the Lightning Network (an off-chain payments protocol). All of these systems leverage the security of the blockchain to add new functionality to bitcoin, and require additional software to run alongside bitcoind.
By increasing the available resources in Bitseed full nodes, we hope to make it easier and more convenient for Bitseed owners to use these additional protocols and get more value from their full node. In the future we envision, full nodes will serve as not only the backbone of the bitcoin network, but also as the foundational infrastructure for a new decentralized internet secured by the blockchain. We look forward to working with the open source community to help make this vision a reality and help everyone participate in the new decentralized internet.
A bigger and better bitcoin needs bigger and better full nodes
After all of these continuing improvements to bitcoin, it was clear to us that our previous hardware platform was limiting the potential of our nodes. While the pcduino board worked well enough for running bitcoind by itself, it struggled to run multiple programs at the same time. And we realized that as blocks get bigger, more processing power will be needed to keep up with the chain tip. So we went back to the drawing board and started looking for a new hardware platform.
Without further ado, we’d like to introduce you to Bitseed 3!
Based on a Q190 mini PC, Bitseed 3 features a completely new hardware platform chosen for increased performance and reliability. The new hardware specs include:
- 4 GB RAM, four times as much as previous Bitseed models
- 1 TB HDD, over twice as much as was standard with previous Bitseed models
- Quad-core 2 GHz J1900 processor, twice as powerful as previous Bitseed models
And of course, all Bitseed 3 models will come with the latest version of Bitcoin Core and our Bitseed Web UI pre-installed for ease of use, along with our custom scripts that make every Bitseed full node plug-and-play. All your favorite Bitseed functionality, including Tor support, easy updates, and bandwidth control still works too.
Join the bitcoin network as a fully validating node
Bitseed 3 is now available and shipping within four weeks. We’re excited to get this new model in the hands of our customers and look forward to hearing your feedback!
What’s next for Bitseed
We have received a lot of requests from customers to add support for the Lightning Network to Bitseed. We are excited about the recent mainnet launch of LND and have already begun testing with our own nodes internally. If you are a software developer or designer and would like to help us add Lightning to Bitseed, or if you are an enthusiastic node operator and want to help us test, read on to learn how you can get involved.
Want to help make Bitseed even better?
Join the #bitseed channel on Matrix to meet the Bitseed team members and other Bitseed enthusiasts and discuss ways we can make Bitseed even better for everyone. All of our code is open-source on GitHub – pull requests are welcome and appreciated!