The topic of Bitcoin nodes has been kicked around for quite some time now in the digital currency community. While anyone in the world can become an active node at little to no cost, there are some other factors to take into consideration. For those users with slower Internet connections, or even monthly data caps, running a Bitcoin Node might not be the best course of action, as there is a lot of bandwidth involved in the process.
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Running a Bitcoin Node With Internet Data Caps
A recent post on Reddit shows how one user’s Bitcoin Node has contributed over 850GB of bandwidth to the network. While this amount is significant in its own matter, it is important to keep in mind this was just during one month of running the Bitcoin Node itself. Multiply this number times twelve, and users will be providing close to ten terabytes of bandwidth over the course of a full year.
Unlike what most people assumed, running a Bitcoin Node is rather intensive on the bandwidth provided. Granted, not every individual node will be getting close to those numbers, as it will all depend on how the software is set up. Some nodes will only allow for eight connections whereas other users will raise that limit to 20 or more. More connections mean more transactions and using more bandwidth.
Even though it does not take expensive hardware to run a Bitcoin Node these days, the bandwidth concerns are quite real for people dealing with monthly bandwidth caps. Especially in China, the US, and a few countries in Europe, ISP’s still maintain a monthly volume cap for their users. To most consumers, these limits might be trivial, though, as most ISP’s will not complain until they reach a monthly volume of 500GB or more.
Then again, for those running such an active Bitcoin Node as that one Reddit user, 860 GB in bandwidth is quite a lot of traffic. It is important to keep in mind this traffic does not include regular Internet traffic from browsing websites or downloading either. But at the same time, it goes to show the growing demand for Bitcoin transactions to be processed by the network.
There is no denying the Bitcoin ecosystem is in constant need of more nodes. Especially now with the upcoming block size change, more transactions will need to be confirmed than ever before. It would not be unlikely to see more Bitcoin Nodes pop up all over the world in the near future. After all, without sufficient nodes, it will take much longer to confirm transactions altogether.
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