The benefit of PIVX master nodes, it allows PIV owners to participate in PIVX governance by voting on the use of treasury funds while earning rewards.
Creating a Masternode requires owning 10,000 PIV. Running a specially configured online wallet with high uptime. Locking the 10,000 PIV using an offline wallet (that can leverage a hardware wallet like Ledger). This is a straightforward and elegant process that has been described in PIVX-community documentation. This page explains how to run a Masternode using a single-core VPS from Digital Ocean.
That online wallet with high uptime can be costly, though, depending on the configuration and provider, and this article covers how to run PIVX Masternodes inexpensively.
Following this guide, at the time of its writing, you can run four Masternodes on a single VPS instance that costs USD 6.99 per month, giving a Masternode monthly cost of under USD 2.
Acquiring a Multi-Core VPS
There are many multi-core VPS providers. A good one, used by the PIVX community, is Contabo. Contabo’s multi-core VPS offerings are both compatible with running PIVX Masternodes and cost-effective. Contabo will be selected for this illustration, where a four-core VPS will be used. These instructions would likely extend with minor differences to other providers and alternative multi-core configurations from Contabo.
Around 100 GB of disk space is required to run four simultaneous PIVX wallets. The option of 200 GB SSD, which at the time of this writing is the default for a Contabo four-core VPS, gives a comfortable margin.
The complete VPS specs used in creating this document are the following:
- 4 vCPU cores
- 200 GB SSD
- 8 GB RAM
- 32 TB Traffic
On the Contabo website, start by selecting the VPS with 4 vCPU cores. Then pick a term length you like and pick a geographical location. Any location will work with the PIVX network. Select the 200 GB SSD option and Ubuntu Linux 20.04 as the operating system. A single IPv4 address is adequate. These options should not add any extra fees.
Communicating with Your VPS
You will need to communicate with your new Contabo VPS using Secure Shell (SSH). There are several goods and free SSH programs. PuTTY is very popular, and OSX has a built-in Terminal application supporting SSH. For creating this document, though, MobaXterm on Windows was used, as it provides a more data-rich interface. It can be downloaded here.
After downloading and installing your SSH software, configure the terminal settings using the IPv4 address given to you by Contabo when you acquired the VPS. You will by default log in using the username root and the password for your Contabo account. When you log in, you will have the Ubuntu Linux command-line interface to use for the steps below.
Installing and Configuring Software for the First Masternode
— Start by installing security patches. This can be done with the following command at the Linux prompt: Sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get -y upgrade
— This command serves to update the VPS to recent versions of software and will give different results over time as Contabo changes its default configuration.
— Enable IPv6 on the VPS. A new IPv6 address will be used for each additional Masternode after the first. To enable IPv6, issue the following command (which will exit silently): enable_ipv6
— Get the latest PIVX wallet software (5.4.0 at the time of this writing) using the following command: cd ~ && wget https://github.com/PIVX-Project/PIVX/releases/download/v5.4.0/pivx-5.4.0-x86_64-linux-gnu.tar.gz
— If the latest release is something other than 5.4.0, replace “5.4.0” with the latest version. Number in the two places it is mentioned in the above line and in similar places in the following steps – if past naming trends hold, this will work.
— Untar and unzip the file you just downloaded to install the wallet software: tar -zxvf pivx-5.4.0-x86_64-Linux-gnu.tar.gz
— Using your personal computer, generate a Masternode private key using the Secure PIVX Masternode Tool (SPMT) software. First, download the SPMT software from https://github.com/PIVX-Project/PIVX-SPMT, install, and run it. Then in the main window, click the “New Masternode” button to begin configuring a new Masternode. It will bring up the following GUI:
In this GUI window, click the “Generate” button next to the “MN Priv Key” box. This will create a long string in the box that resembles the following:
That string is a new, valid Masternode private key. Though the “private key” name suggests a need for extreme care, this string is not especially sensitive. It keeps others from using your Masternode software to earn Masternode rewards on their own 10,000 PIV, but your 10,000 PIV are not at risk from others learning it. The SPMT software will be used to generate Masternode private keys for the other Masternodes. You can either leave the software open or close it after capturing the Masternode string for use in the step below.
— Configure the wallet software to run as a Masternode. Do this by first creating and editing with vi, nano, or another text editor of your choice — vi, in this example — the configuration file with the following command: mkdir ~/.pivx && cd ~/.pivx && vi pivx.conf
— Then enter the following using vi (or an alternative of your choice) into the configuration file:
rpcuser=<username> rpcpassword=<password> rpcallowip=127.0.0.1 rpcallow=127.0.0.1 bind=<vpsip>:5147 rpcport=12345 server=1 daemon=1 logtimestamps=1 maxconnections=256 masternode=1 externalip=<vpsip> masternodeaddr=<vpsip>:51472 masternodeprivkey=<privkey>
— Note the change from before to rpcallowip, which is now configured for IPv6. Also, the value for the report has been incremented. The values for <username> and <password> can be the same as before. <vpsip> should be a new IPv6 address in IPv6 notation, usually ending in ::1, such as the following example: [1234:abcd:1234:abcd::1], including the square braces. This address will have been provided by Contabo when setting up the VPS (or can be found by executing the IP address at the Linux prompt).
— In the pivx.conf template above, <privkey> should be a new private key generated using the SPMT software in a repeat of the process used for the first Masternode (or by just pressing the “Generate” button again and accepting the popup to delete the old one if the software is still open).
— Now a new instance of pivxd can be run using this configuration through the following command: cd ~/pivx-5.4.0/bin && ./pivxd -datadir=/root/.pivx2
— It is possible that the location of .pvx2, as indicated in the above command, will be different for you. You can check the location using the pwd command.
— As with the first Masternode, you can watch the ongoing new activity through the log file: tail -f ~/.pivx2/debug.log
— Updating the PIVX blockchain for this Masternode will be fast because the bulk of the needed data was copied from the first Masternode.
— Note that for the second Masternode, commands will need to explicitly include the Masternode’s data directory. For example, to stop this second Masternode, the command would be the following: cd ~/pivx-5.4.0/bin && ./pivx-cli -datadir=/root/.pivx2 stop
Visit PIVX website and social media channels for more details.
PIVX is an open-source decentralized cryptocurrency. Focuses on privacy, security, anonymity, and instant transactions.