In this guide, we will take you through the steps to install and synchronize a Lightchain node.


Lightstreams has released its own Ethereum-compatible blockchain that uses Tendermint consensus in replacement of the the original proof-of-work (PoW) consensus currently used by Ethereum mainnet.
Using lightchain you can connect to the Lightstreams blockchain and use the same functionality that exists on Ethereum mainnet but with fast transaction throughput and instant settlement.
You can install Lightchain on your computer by downloading pre-compiled binaries or compiling yourself from source.

Pre-compiled binaries

Lightstreams provides precompiled binaries for the most popular Unix distributions: and macOS.
== macOS ==
wget "" -O /usr/local/bin/lightchain
== Linux (amd64) ==
wget "" -O /usr/local/bin/lightchain
After downloading the binary, you will need to set the right executable permissions to it, as follow:
chmod a+x /usr/local/bin/lightchain

From Source code

In case you prefer to compile your own version of lightchain you just need to follow the instructions at this repository.

Run Lightchain

Now Lightchain is installed on your computer we will initialize a local copy of the blockchain and then synchronize this chain with the blockchain network.
Lightchain can be configured for operating in three possible blockchain modes.
  • mainnet: Connected to the main Lightstreams network.
  • sirius: Connected to then Test network.
  • standalone: An isolated local test network.
By default when Lightchain runs it will to connect and synchonize with mainnet. For testing and development proposes we recommend to use sirius or standalone.

Node initialization

To initialise a new blockchain you run the following comment and choose a local path where blockchain files are going to be stored.
lightchain init --datadir="${HOME}/.lightchain" [--mainnet|--sirius|--standalone]

Running a Node

To run a Lightchain node you only need to execute the following command:
lightchain run --datadir="${HOME}/.lightchain"
The Lighchain node will now begin synchronizing with the mainnet.
Once the node is synchronized we should leave node running in order to interact with the blockchain.
Lightstreams also provides two block explorers, one for the mainnet and another for sirius, in order that you can explore the current state of each blockchain. The block explorer code is open-source, so in case you decide to run in standalone mode you could also run the a local instance of the explorer for your development purposes.


To see more available options for launching a lightchain node, see the Lighchain commands section.
lightchain run -h

Synchronizing to Mainnet

To synchronize to mainnet run the following commands:
lightchain init --datadir="${HOME}/.lightchain" --mainnet
lightchain run --datadir="${HOME}/.lightchain"
This will take approximately 5 hours to download and verify the entire chain on your computer.