Ankr’s quick start node hosting solution is now available for TomoX DEXs, providing the DEX operators with another option to set up their server in a few minutes. Check out more details here.
Besides, Ankr is now offering a free trial for TomoX DEX node deployment until 12 August, 2020.
We’re glad to host an informative AMA session with Ankr team on 12 June 2020 to discuss how their hosting solution could benefit TomoChain network and node operators.
Kyn Chaturvedi - TomoChain/ CBDO
Marco Robustelli - Ankr/ CMO
Marco joined the blockchain space since 2017. He was an early investor in Ankr and now is responsible for the marketing department.
Flavian Manea - Ankr/ Blockchain Product Manager
Flavian is responsible for designing Node products, with the position of Blockchain Product Manager at Ankr. He came from a software engineering background - focused on full stack development, and also entered the crypto space since 2017.
Kyn: Could you give us some insight into how distributed server systems can work efficiently compared to centralized systems like AWS and Digital Ocean?
Flavian: At this moment, the distributed part of the solution is that we work with multiple data centers around the world, in which you select in what zone of the world your node should be built. It is in the roadmap to give the possibility of a user to share his computing power - giving birth to a truly decentralised solution, but we have not arrived at that step yet.
Kyn: I can only try to imagine the challenges of even getting such a structure to work effectively. What do you see as the core challenge today that would be needed to be overcome in order to reach the holy grail of decentralization for Ankr?
Flavian: From my point of view - there are two great challenges - and mostly for storage - it’s security and persistence. How secure would a node be when running on another person’s device - that has sensitive information into it (like private key), and what mechanism should be in place to prevent exposing this information. The solution should be done with a kind of encrypted blackbox, that should not be able to be decrypted. Also, if one person is sharing his resources - how can we handle if it goes offline? These are the main struggles that I see currently.
Kyn: Ankr supported launching TomoChain Masternodes from last year. And you just launched the ability to do the same for TomoX DEXs too. How complicated is the process of setting up a Masternode or a TomoX DEX on Ankr? Can you walk us through it?
Marco: For TomoChain it is as easy as that, you just need a TomoChain wallet with enough tokens and need to apply with TomoChain. No technical knowledge required whatsoever.
Flavian: The knowledge a user must have to use Tomochain Masternodes or TomoX on Ankr is basic understanding of Private key - Address key, the ability to create a personal tomochain wallet, and to follow a guide on registering an Masternode / dex.
To set up a TomoChain masternode
To set up a TomoX DEX node
Kyn: What is the administrative requirement to simply manage a node using Ankr (Masternode or TomoX DEX)?
Flavian: We have developed a feature on Ankr that gives the possibility to update your node with a simple button click (if an update is available). When it comes to having a Masternode slashed / if there are any feature requests than we can implement custom behaviour - meaning that if a command should be done on the blockchain to solve that particular case we can implement that, in the end it’s just a matter of us adapting to the clients needs
Kyn: What are the main benefits of using Ankr’s hosting solution compared to other providers?
Marco: First of all, it is super easy to deploy your node, like explained before. Also, we provide automated management in the form of automated updates or just a simple click of a button.
Second, we are usually much cheaper than the giant public cloud providers, such as Amazon AWS and DigitalOcean, as we have direct contracts with enterprise-grade data centers, some very large companies and some of which we use their idle resources. This generates an extra source of income for them, and low cost access to top-tier resources providers for our end-users.
Third, we are a crypto native company consisting of blockchain enthusiasts located across 5 continents. So we understand blockchain and its users. And are always available to help directly in different channels, such as a dedicated Telegram chat with experts from Ankr and also from other blockchain teams for which we provide node hosting services, and the chat function in the app. We are there for our users 24/7.
Besides, we really look at the communities’ needs when designing the UX and UI of our products, so when for example a certain chain has Validators, we provide a Validator UI where people can easily apply to be a validator, stake, unstake, delegate and receive rewards, all in one user-friendly interface
Kyn: If I’m going to set up a TomoX DEX node on Ankr, would the minimum configs be enough to run my DEX at optimal speed? Or should I choose better storage, CPU, and memory?
Flavian: The minimum specifications were decided by consulting the Tomochain team, it makes sense to use them directly from the source, giving the fact that the Tomochain team has the most expertise in this. In reality there is no difference between 1Gb ram at Ankr and 1Gb ram at aws - so the specifications that work on another machine should be the same as in Ankr platform
Kyn: What about general cost differences with existing services like AWS/DigitalOcean? And how do operators pay for launching and running a Masternode or TomoX DEX on Ankr?
Flavian: Currently operators have the possibility to pay with Cryptocurrencies Ankr or USDT. And they also have the possibility to pay by credit card. With Crypto payment, the addresses that are generated for a user are mainly Smart Contracts that know to deduct itself on a daily basis. So payment will be done on a daily basis based on the nodes that are currently running. We also notify the user if the balance is falling low - with 3 days in advance so that he can address this problem
Marco: Like explained above, we can be significantly cheaper than those centralized cloud giants, usually we offer our services 30-50% cheaper. For example running the TomoChain Masternode with the recommended specs (16cpu, 32 GB RAM an 200 GB storage) would cost over 300 usd per month on AWS EC2 on demand instance , as on Ankr we provide this service, managed at only 139 USD per month
Kyn: What is the estimated response time if the server is down or needs restarting/servicing?
Flavian: We have a dedicated infrastructure team that oversees the overall uptime of the clusters in which the Nodes are alive. So if a problem appears on the infrastructure, someone will handle it. When it comes to blockchain related problems - problems that are generated from the blockchain protocol - we provide tools for restarting the node when a problem appears. In the future we will look for blockchain monitoring tools - in which we notify a user if blocks stopped producing / or your master node is slashed.
Kyn: How can I migrate my masternode server from my current hosting provider to Ankr?
Flavian: The process is fairly simple, a user only needs to insert the private key of their original registered Masternode (the one that signs the blocks) and that’s it
If you have more questions, please join Ankr Node Support Telegram channel.