Network
Launch Date
Consensus
Note
Sepolia
Oct 2021
PoW
Like-for-like representation of Ethereum
Görli
Jan 2019
PoA
Proof-of-Authority
Kiln
Mar 2022
PoS
Post-Merge (for ETH2), shadow fork of the mainnet
Kintsugi
Dec 2021
PoS
DEPRECATED, use Kiln; post-Merge (for ETH2)
Ropsten
Nov 2016
PoW
DEPRECATED, use Sepolia; the Merge to happen on Jun 8, 2022
Rinkeby
Apr 2017
PoA
DEPRECATED, use Görli and Görli Faucet
Kovan
Mar 2017
PoA
DEPRECATED, use Sepolia or Görli
List of active and deprecated Ethereum testnets, including Kintsugi.
Features
Optimistic rollup 
ZK-rollup 
Proof
Uses fraud proofs to prove transaction validity. 
Uses validity (zero-knowledge) proofs to prove transaction validity. 
Capital efficiency
Requires waiting through a 1-week delay (dispute period) before withdrawing funds. 
Users can withdraw funds immediately because validity proofs provide incontrovertible evidence of the authenticity of off-chain transactions. 
Data compression
Publishes full transaction data as calldata to Ethereum Mainnet, which increases rollup costs. 
Doesn't need to publish transaction data on Ethereum because ZK-SNARKs and ZK-STARKs already guarantee the accuracy of the rollup state. 
EVM compatibility
Uses a simulation of the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM), which allows it to run arbitrary logic and support smart contracts. 
Doesn't widely support EVM computation, although a few EVM-compatible ZK-rollups have appeared. 
Rollup costs
Reduces costs since it publishes minimal data on Ethereum and doesn't have to post proofs for transactions, except in special circumstances. 
Faces higher overhead from costs involved in generating and verifying proofs for every transaction block. ZK proofs require specialized, expensive hardware to create and have high on-chain verification costs. 
Trust assumptions
Doesn't require a trusted setup. 
Requires a trusted setup to work. 
Liveness requirements
Verifiers are needed to keep tabs on the actual rollup state and the one referenced in the state root to detect fraud. 
Users don't need someone to watch the L2 chain to detect fraud. 
Security properties 
Relies on cryptoeconomic incentives to assure users of rollup security. 
Relies on cryptographic guarantees for security. 
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curl 
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--create-dirs
Infra
ETHEREUM NAAS OVERVIEW

What is an Ethereum Node-as-a-Service?

Ethereum Node-as-a-Service Benefits, Tradeoffs, and How to Get Started
Last Updated:
September 27, 2022
Table of Contents
Table of Contents
Table of Contents

{{building-on-ethereum}}

RPC nodes are an essential piece of blockchain infrastructure because they allow anyone in the world to send and request information and transactions to the blockchain. Because running your own node is an expensive financial investment, in terms of hardware and maintenance costs, web3 startups look for more cost-effective solutions including Ethereum Node-as-a-Service companies, or companies that maintain nodes for developers to access for a monthly or annual fee.

This article will explore what Ethereum NaaS providers do, and how to decide if using a NaaS provider is the best node infrastructure choice.

What is an Ethereum node?

An Ethereum node connects a computer to the Ethereum blockchain by running software (“the client”) which can exist either on the consensus layer (for validation) or the execution layer (for processing transactions). Every batch of proposed (i.e. pooled or pending) transactions is propagated to each node in the network, and these nodes either accept or reject the new block through a validation process.

A node is the only way to access information from the blockchain, as there is no central portal to access data from. A larger number of nodes also makes a blockchain more robust and secure, decreasing the ease of launching a 51% attack. 

There are three different types of nodes: 

1. Full Nodes

Full nodes contain all the information in a given blockchain, with some exceptions for periodic pruning. Full nodes can verify any transaction, and can interact with and deploy smart contracts. Setting up a full node can take weeks to configure and sync due to the amount of data they store.

2. Archive Nodes

An archive node stores the entire, unpruned transaction history on a blockchain. While archive nodes can use terabytes of data, they can be especially useful for developers looking to debug and inspect transaction history at a granular level. Archive nodes are essential for services like block explorers, wallets, and blockchain analytics companies.

3. Light Nodes

Light nodes contain only the block header information, representing only a summary of the data. Light nodes can access the blockchain, however, they do not serve as part of consensus verification. Light nodes can run on mobile devices and are more accessible to the larger public because of their lower hardware and software requirements.  

What does Ethereum Node-as-a-Service (NaaS) mean?

Ethereum Node-as-a-Service (NaaS) providers serve as an alternative to managing Ethereum nodes in-house, where users can send requests through a service providers APIs using a dedicated API endpoint. Another name for companies that offer Ethereum NaaS service is "node provider."

Web3 NaaS providers are analogous to platforms like Amazon Web Services (AWS), which allow web2 applications like Netflix, Expedia, and Linkedin to run their cloud applications on another company's infrastructure.

Node providers can guarantee more reliable infrastructure to build on, complimentary developer tools, analytics, and advanced APIs designed for specific web3 use cases such as NFT API endpoint, transaction API endpoints, and debugging API endpoints.

Types of Ethereum Node-as-a-Service Providers

There are two types of Ethereum NaaS providers: platforms which provide individual nodes to customers, and platforms which provide scalable access and throughput to a network of nodes.

The main difference between providers that give access on a per-node basis, versus companies like Alchemy that provide Ethereum Node services on an on-demand basis is scalability. If you pay for a single node, you are limited by a single node's scale, whereas if you subscribe to Alchemy, you can scale infinitely, on-demand, through and entire fleet of nodes.

There are a variety of companies that serve as node providers including Alchemy which offer the most reliable and affordable nodes on the market. Ethereum NaaS providers like Alchemy are used both my emerging startups and large enterprises like Opensea and x2y2 for data accuracy, scale, and reliability.

What are the benefits of using an Ethereum NaaS provider vs. running your own full node?

The benefits of using a Ethereum NaaS solution instead of running your own node is reliable uptime, no overhead costs, infinite scalability, 1-line integration, a variety of APIs and tools, and technical support.‍

For example, Alchemy’s Supernode boasts 99.99% reliability, dynamic scalability, the best data correctness, testnet support, and a variety of enhanced APIs like Webhooks, all within the same platform.  

Because NaaS systems are easy to integrate, it only takes a few lines of code and an API key to get started, unlike running a node in-house, which could take weeks to configure and synchronize with Ethereum's state.

What are the tradeoffs of using an Ethereum NaaS provider vs. managing your own nodes?

Even though using an Ethereum NaaS provider comes with a host of benefits, there are two common trade-offs compared to running your own node: centralization and customization.

Because dApps can change to an alternate RPC endpoint at any time, the tradeoff of Ethereum NaaS providers being a "centralizing" force is not a critical concern. The centralizing factor is instead of managing your own node, you are trusting a centralized provider to ensure their node infrastructure is live.

Additionally, using your own node allows for maximum node client software customization, allowing you to run your own RPC endpoints (for personal or public use), with your choice of execution and consensus layer software.

How to Use an Ethereum Node Provider

Working with a node provider is fairly simple. To start using Alchemy's Ethereum nodes, simply sign up, create an app, and copy/paste your RPC endpoint URL into your application.

1. Sign Up for a Free Alchemy Account

Making an Alchemy account is quick and easy, visit alchemy.com and get started for free. Once you sign in, you'll be placed on the Alchemy dashboard, where you can create a new Ethereum app.

2. Create a New Ethereum App

To create a new app, you should: 

  1. Navigate to the Apps section from your Dashboard
  2. Click the “Create App" button 
  3. Name your app and include a description
  4. Choose "Ethereum" as the chain
  5. Choose either "Mainnet" or "Goerli" (an Ethereum testnet)
  6. Click "Create App"
Ethereum node hosting on Alchemy via an app.
Dashboard view of what it looks like to create a new Ethereum RPC node endpoint.

3. Paste Your API Key Into Your App

In your list of Apps, click the "View Key" button to see your API keys. Next, click "Copy" next to the HTTPS link. Now, replace your current Ethereum RPC endpoint in your application with this new link to start sending Ethereum transactions and requests through Alchemy.

Ethereum NaaS endpoints from Alchemy's dashboard
Ethereum NaaS endpoints from Alchemy's dashboard

With an Ethereum node endpoint, you can use all of Alchemy’s integrated developer tools!

Start Building on Alchemy's Ethereum Node Infrastructure

Building and maintaining your own nodes is time-consuming, expensive, and difficult. Ship your minimum viable product, acquire real users, and find product-market fit faster by building on Alchemy's infinitely scalable and highly reliable node infrastructure.

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Infra
ETHEREUM NAAS OVERVIEW

What is an Ethereum Node-as-a-Service?

Ethereum Node-as-a-Service Benefits, Tradeoffs, and How to Get Started
Last Updated:
September 27, 2022
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents

{{building-on-ethereum}}

RPC nodes are an essential piece of blockchain infrastructure because they allow anyone in the world to send and request information and transactions to the blockchain. Because running your own node is an expensive financial investment, in terms of hardware and maintenance costs, web3 startups look for more cost-effective solutions including Ethereum Node-as-a-Service companies, or companies that maintain nodes for developers to access for a monthly or annual fee.

This article will explore what Ethereum NaaS providers do, and how to decide if using a NaaS provider is the best node infrastructure choice.

What is an Ethereum node?

An Ethereum node connects a computer to the Ethereum blockchain by running software (“the client”) which can exist either on the consensus layer (for validation) or the execution layer (for processing transactions). Every batch of proposed (i.e. pooled or pending) transactions is propagated to each node in the network, and these nodes either accept or reject the new block through a validation process.

A node is the only way to access information from the blockchain, as there is no central portal to access data from. A larger number of nodes also makes a blockchain more robust and secure, decreasing the ease of launching a 51% attack. 

There are three different types of nodes: 

1. Full Nodes

Full nodes contain all the information in a given blockchain, with some exceptions for periodic pruning. Full nodes can verify any transaction, and can interact with and deploy smart contracts. Setting up a full node can take weeks to configure and sync due to the amount of data they store.

2. Archive Nodes

An archive node stores the entire, unpruned transaction history on a blockchain. While archive nodes can use terabytes of data, they can be especially useful for developers looking to debug and inspect transaction history at a granular level. Archive nodes are essential for services like block explorers, wallets, and blockchain analytics companies.

3. Light Nodes

Light nodes contain only the block header information, representing only a summary of the data. Light nodes can access the blockchain, however, they do not serve as part of consensus verification. Light nodes can run on mobile devices and are more accessible to the larger public because of their lower hardware and software requirements.  

What does Ethereum Node-as-a-Service (NaaS) mean?

Ethereum Node-as-a-Service (NaaS) providers serve as an alternative to managing Ethereum nodes in-house, where users can send requests through a service providers APIs using a dedicated API endpoint. Another name for companies that offer Ethereum NaaS service is "node provider."

Web3 NaaS providers are analogous to platforms like Amazon Web Services (AWS), which allow web2 applications like Netflix, Expedia, and Linkedin to run their cloud applications on another company's infrastructure.

Node providers can guarantee more reliable infrastructure to build on, complimentary developer tools, analytics, and advanced APIs designed for specific web3 use cases such as NFT API endpoint, transaction API endpoints, and debugging API endpoints.

Types of Ethereum Node-as-a-Service Providers

There are two types of Ethereum NaaS providers: platforms which provide individual nodes to customers, and platforms which provide scalable access and throughput to a network of nodes.

The main difference between providers that give access on a per-node basis, versus companies like Alchemy that provide Ethereum Node services on an on-demand basis is scalability. If you pay for a single node, you are limited by a single node's scale, whereas if you subscribe to Alchemy, you can scale infinitely, on-demand, through and entire fleet of nodes.

There are a variety of companies that serve as node providers including Alchemy which offer the most reliable and affordable nodes on the market. Ethereum NaaS providers like Alchemy are used both my emerging startups and large enterprises like Opensea and x2y2 for data accuracy, scale, and reliability.

What are the benefits of using an Ethereum NaaS provider vs. running your own full node?

The benefits of using a Ethereum NaaS solution instead of running your own node is reliable uptime, no overhead costs, infinite scalability, 1-line integration, a variety of APIs and tools, and technical support.‍

For example, Alchemy’s Supernode boasts 99.99% reliability, dynamic scalability, the best data correctness, testnet support, and a variety of enhanced APIs like Webhooks, all within the same platform.  

Because NaaS systems are easy to integrate, it only takes a few lines of code and an API key to get started, unlike running a node in-house, which could take weeks to configure and synchronize with Ethereum's state.

What are the tradeoffs of using an Ethereum NaaS provider vs. managing your own nodes?

Even though using an Ethereum NaaS provider comes with a host of benefits, there are two common trade-offs compared to running your own node: centralization and customization.

Because dApps can change to an alternate RPC endpoint at any time, the tradeoff of Ethereum NaaS providers being a "centralizing" force is not a critical concern. The centralizing factor is instead of managing your own node, you are trusting a centralized provider to ensure their node infrastructure is live.

Additionally, using your own node allows for maximum node client software customization, allowing you to run your own RPC endpoints (for personal or public use), with your choice of execution and consensus layer software.

How to Use an Ethereum Node Provider

Working with a node provider is fairly simple. To start using Alchemy's Ethereum nodes, simply sign up, create an app, and copy/paste your RPC endpoint URL into your application.

1. Sign Up for a Free Alchemy Account

Making an Alchemy account is quick and easy, visit alchemy.com and get started for free. Once you sign in, you'll be placed on the Alchemy dashboard, where you can create a new Ethereum app.

2. Create a New Ethereum App

To create a new app, you should: 

  1. Navigate to the Apps section from your Dashboard
  2. Click the “Create App" button 
  3. Name your app and include a description
  4. Choose "Ethereum" as the chain
  5. Choose either "Mainnet" or "Goerli" (an Ethereum testnet)
  6. Click "Create App"
Ethereum node hosting on Alchemy via an app.
Dashboard view of what it looks like to create a new Ethereum RPC node endpoint.

3. Paste Your API Key Into Your App

In your list of Apps, click the "View Key" button to see your API keys. Next, click "Copy" next to the HTTPS link. Now, replace your current Ethereum RPC endpoint in your application with this new link to start sending Ethereum transactions and requests through Alchemy.

Ethereum NaaS endpoints from Alchemy's dashboard
Ethereum NaaS endpoints from Alchemy's dashboard

With an Ethereum node endpoint, you can use all of Alchemy’s integrated developer tools!

Start Building on Alchemy's Ethereum Node Infrastructure

Building and maintaining your own nodes is time-consuming, expensive, and difficult. Ship your minimum viable product, acquire real users, and find product-market fit faster by building on Alchemy's infinitely scalable and highly reliable node infrastructure.

RPC nodes are an essential piece of blockchain infrastructure because they allow anyone in the world to send and request information and transactions to the blockchain. Because running your own node is an expensive financial investment, in terms of hardware and maintenance costs, web3 startups look for more cost-effective solutions including Ethereum Node-as-a-Service companies, or companies that maintain nodes for developers to access for a monthly or annual fee.

This article will explore what Ethereum NaaS providers do, and how to decide if using a NaaS provider is the best node infrastructure choice.

What is an Ethereum node?

An Ethereum node connects a computer to the Ethereum blockchain by running software (“the client”) which can exist either on the consensus layer (for validation) or the execution layer (for processing transactions). Every batch of proposed (i.e. pooled or pending) transactions is propagated to each node in the network, and these nodes either accept or reject the new block through a validation process.

A node is the only way to access information from the blockchain, as there is no central portal to access data from. A larger number of nodes also makes a blockchain more robust and secure, decreasing the ease of launching a 51% attack. 

There are three different types of nodes: 

1. Full Nodes

Full nodes contain all the information in a given blockchain, with some exceptions for periodic pruning. Full nodes can verify any transaction, and can interact with and deploy smart contracts. Setting up a full node can take weeks to configure and sync due to the amount of data they store.

2. Archive Nodes

An archive node stores the entire, unpruned transaction history on a blockchain. While archive nodes can use terabytes of data, they can be especially useful for developers looking to debug and inspect transaction history at a granular level. Archive nodes are essential for services like block explorers, wallets, and blockchain analytics companies.

3. Light Nodes

Light nodes contain only the block header information, representing only a summary of the data. Light nodes can access the blockchain, however, they do not serve as part of consensus verification. Light nodes can run on mobile devices and are more accessible to the larger public because of their lower hardware and software requirements.  

What does Ethereum Node-as-a-Service (NaaS) mean?

Ethereum Node-as-a-Service (NaaS) providers serve as an alternative to managing Ethereum nodes in-house, where users can send requests through a service providers APIs using a dedicated API endpoint. Another name for companies that offer Ethereum NaaS service is "node provider."

Web3 NaaS providers are analogous to platforms like Amazon Web Services (AWS), which allow web2 applications like Netflix, Expedia, and Linkedin to run their cloud applications on another company's infrastructure.

Node providers can guarantee more reliable infrastructure to build on, complimentary developer tools, analytics, and advanced APIs designed for specific web3 use cases such as NFT API endpoint, transaction API endpoints, and debugging API endpoints.

Types of Ethereum Node-as-a-Service Providers

There are two types of Ethereum NaaS providers: platforms which provide individual nodes to customers, and platforms which provide scalable access and throughput to a network of nodes.

The main difference between providers that give access on a per-node basis, versus companies like Alchemy that provide Ethereum Node services on an on-demand basis is scalability. If you pay for a single node, you are limited by a single node's scale, whereas if you subscribe to Alchemy, you can scale infinitely, on-demand, through and entire fleet of nodes.

There are a variety of companies that serve as node providers including Alchemy which offer the most reliable and affordable nodes on the market. Ethereum NaaS providers like Alchemy are used both my emerging startups and large enterprises like Opensea and x2y2 for data accuracy, scale, and reliability.

What are the benefits of using an Ethereum NaaS provider vs. running your own full node?

The benefits of using a Ethereum NaaS solution instead of running your own node is reliable uptime, no overhead costs, infinite scalability, 1-line integration, a variety of APIs and tools, and technical support.‍

For example, Alchemy’s Supernode boasts 99.99% reliability, dynamic scalability, the best data correctness, testnet support, and a variety of enhanced APIs like Webhooks, all within the same platform.  

Because NaaS systems are easy to integrate, it only takes a few lines of code and an API key to get started, unlike running a node in-house, which could take weeks to configure and synchronize with Ethereum's state.

What are the tradeoffs of using an Ethereum NaaS provider vs. managing your own nodes?

Even though using an Ethereum NaaS provider comes with a host of benefits, there are two common trade-offs compared to running your own node: centralization and customization.

Because dApps can change to an alternate RPC endpoint at any time, the tradeoff of Ethereum NaaS providers being a "centralizing" force is not a critical concern. The centralizing factor is instead of managing your own node, you are trusting a centralized provider to ensure their node infrastructure is live.

Additionally, using your own node allows for maximum node client software customization, allowing you to run your own RPC endpoints (for personal or public use), with your choice of execution and consensus layer software.

How to Use an Ethereum Node Provider

Working with a node provider is fairly simple. To start using Alchemy's Ethereum nodes, simply sign up, create an app, and copy/paste your RPC endpoint URL into your application.

1. Sign Up for a Free Alchemy Account

Making an Alchemy account is quick and easy, visit alchemy.com and get started for free. Once you sign in, you'll be placed on the Alchemy dashboard, where you can create a new Ethereum app.

2. Create a New Ethereum App

To create a new app, you should: 

  1. Navigate to the Apps section from your Dashboard
  2. Click the “Create App" button 
  3. Name your app and include a description
  4. Choose "Ethereum" as the chain
  5. Choose either "Mainnet" or "Goerli" (an Ethereum testnet)
  6. Click "Create App"
Ethereum node hosting on Alchemy via an app.
Dashboard view of what it looks like to create a new Ethereum RPC node endpoint.

3. Paste Your API Key Into Your App

In your list of Apps, click the "View Key" button to see your API keys. Next, click "Copy" next to the HTTPS link. Now, replace your current Ethereum RPC endpoint in your application with this new link to start sending Ethereum transactions and requests through Alchemy.

Ethereum NaaS endpoints from Alchemy's dashboard
Ethereum NaaS endpoints from Alchemy's dashboard

With an Ethereum node endpoint, you can use all of Alchemy’s integrated developer tools!

Start Building on Alchemy's Ethereum Node Infrastructure

Building and maintaining your own nodes is time-consuming, expensive, and difficult. Ship your minimum viable product, acquire real users, and find product-market fit faster by building on Alchemy's infinitely scalable and highly reliable node infrastructure.

Build web3 with Alchemy

Alchemy combines the most powerful web3 developer products and tools with resources, community and legendary support.

Get started for free