Keeping the Rust testnet up and running

Hi all here are 2 short videos from Charles about the possibility of keeping the current Rust testnet up for at least another month so the community can figure out if it should be kept up permanently to be a rapid prototyping and test bed for Cardano mainnet features. Personally I’m in favor but feel free to give your thoughts here or on Reddit.


Thanks and I am all for keeping it up.

Anyone can think of any con’s?

I think CH talks about how the testnet chain cannot be Cardano II .
So the question remains how to incentivize people to maintain the chain.

I’d like to think that it will survive just fine purely on the perceived advantage folks will get from direct exposure to the ideas they’ll experiment with on it (though we won’t get the advantage real chain dynamics in that scenario).

I second @MrBrinker’s arguments.
I think the ITN should continue only with minimal overhead for the team and the community.

Since extending it was not planned for, and it consists of a full “sandbox chain”, then it’s hard for to see how that can happen successfully. Shut it down, circle back later if we choose to. Pool ops will still be there, ready to pounce.

Edit 2:
@Donnybaseball has made some really good points.
I come out at - Freeze the testnet, bring it back sometimes around or after Q4 2020 (and allow the community a couple of weeks for feedback on the proposal). We have to figure out how incentivizing the testnet won’t hurt the mainnet while keeping it realistic enough. Not a trivial cookie.
(Realism is my only concern here. I don’t mind the pool ops not getting compensated to run it. )

But we should really try to keep it, because it will contribute to diversity, and increase our risk tolerance’ and our appetite for innovation in the future. It can be super duper valuable imo.

Hope this is the last time I change my mind :slight_smile: I’m losing credibility!


I’m only really a delegator (+ wallet tester) but if it can continue to contribute to ongoing ADA development/functionality then why wouldn’t you. The only issue I can envisage is the confusion of having ITN, HTN + Mainnet all running & requiring the ongoing support of the pool operators/community to prioritize focus where needed most which right now is Shelley on Mainnet.

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Just had a discussion about it on the Cardano effect. One of the takeaways was that whatever happens it will not take away from the launch of Shelley or the other parts of the roadmap. A major question that did come up was if we should have a new snapshot for the Rust testnet balance.

Everyone should check out the video. I think it’s great that we are alredy getting the comunity involved in the decision making process. Very exciting times my friends!


Just before the snapshot last nov29 I bought a decent amount of Ada that I imediatly sold right after the snapshot, my goal was to earn some “free” Ada by staking on ITN. So now you can easely understand I only want those rewards to be release on Mainnet and for sure no new snapshot :frowning: I’ve got so much less Ada in my wallet now then before

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As I understand it the rewards you have earned so far would absolutely go to the mainnet no question. I believe the second snapshot would be to reset people’s balances on the testnet for its second life and would give new people an opportunity to participate. Welcome BTW.

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Yes I’m confident of getting those rewards on mainnet, no problem with that… but not sure that maintaining the ITN alive is a good thing for Ada, even less with a new snapshot whish is a loss for me… I’m not for keeping the ITN running or maybe purely for testing with no incentive… Thanks for your welcome, glad to be here :slight_smile:

A couple thoughts are maybe buy some more Ada and sell it again after the second snapshot? Also although you may not directly benefit by having as many coins on the new chain I believe the rejuvenated testnet would add value to everyone’s Ada on the primary chain by allowing ideas and features to be rapidly prototyped so we all win. I also think as a group we have more to gain by letting new people in to participate.

In my opinion we should as community focus on Haskell Shelley launch and get it out on time and in the best way possible. Rust code will not go anywhere and if we feel right we can come back to it later.

ITN is up since last year so if IOHK had intentions to keep it running they should have approached CF explained their intentions and then the CF would be the one driving all this conversation, not Charles posting videos on Youtube out of the blue asking operators to keep it running so they can have time make this “great” plan to keep ITN running.

I am participating on the ITN and earning rewards everyday, however strongly believe it is a mistake to keep it running while we should have everyone rowing the boat in the same direction, even tho i know the Rust team is a different team it brings confusion and unnecessary noise into the community.

These are my 2 Lovelaces.


Hi everyone, I want to raise my voice on the topic of the ITN carrying on.

I thought about opening a new topic but since this one covers the lateste info, especially the Cardano Effect episode, it seems perfect.

I support the continuation of the ITN, with my vote, and I will try to make clear why, as an operator. I support it for now. I am of course very curious to see what IOG has to propose, it has to be something useful for the project.

First. I decided not to run a block producing node on mainnet, mainly for security reasons. I also don’t want to have the burden of having to be competitive, either through marketing and/or sharing operations with other operators or owners. I know where I stand as a Linux admin, and I’d rather let the pros run their node and me delegating to them. I am too afraid of making a mistake and losing the money me and my wife have put in the project.
(I will probably run a public relay or two though)

Second. The only way I ever participated to this project was by running this stakepool. I am one of those vampires that just sucked all the infos that were offered by other advanced operators, not sharing much myself, if not nothing, but participating to the decentralization of this network is something I am really proud off.
To decide not to run on mainnet broke my heart, really, because this experience has been so rewarding (not talking financialy). I feel like the ITN continuing it’s journey is a chance for me to keep participating, even if I’m not the most useful member of the community, to the good of the project. Kyle pointed out on Telegram that many will join mainnet, and many ITN operators will also not. Being part of the second group I’m just thrilled I can carry on having a node that can be useful for testing code, new features, “things and stuff”. Again we will see what will be proposed.
It’s cool to have make a few bucks, and the server I bought for this purpose only has been paid by the rewards. I am grateful for that, I can give back by letting it run, and give it some of my time. In the end, if the proposition is bad, or if they decide to stop it, so be it.

I also think this should have been announced earlier, and I understand the CF is a bit annoyed to have to suddenly handle this news, knowing they are the one taking care of the community aspects.
But then the community always kinda auto ignites when there’s a hot topic, then cools off, then people take a step back and discussions leads to solutions. I don’t see it as something that will divide. Don’t forget that if we don’t like what is being proposed, or if it hurts the project in any way, many will just pull the plug.

And to @MrBrinker, all these old and new operators focusing on mainnet will keep doing so, and those who had thrown the towel might be back in, let’s be all useful in our own way and together, that move can only lead to more people participating overall to the project. At least that’s my belief.

Sorry, long post.
YUMMY supports the continuation of the ITN, and little me is super happy about it :slight_smile:
You guys take care, you rock!


Anthony (@TonyTony) welcome back, I just love hearing people’s points of view and standings from all angles as a whole and deliberatingfrom facts too.

Just wanted to say, not only to your good self, but to all with a voice never apologise for the length of anything to put across ideas, concepts, opinions, standings and alike, I wouldn’t care if it where the size of the encyclopedia of everything if that’s how long it takes then so be it. :vulcan_salute:


I think it should be kept up. I wouldn’t even qualify for the new snapshot or anything, I just think it could be used to deploy other things easier into the Cardano ecosystem and faster.

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Welcome @Apple1!
Do you know if you are pro or against incentives?
What/how much do we invest in the “realism” of this unplanned sandbox chain?

If we do keep it, we have to make sure it makes the main chain stronger, not weaker, I think we have a consensus on that. (All welcome to contradict me and break it :smiley: !)

I think it should be incentivized. It won’t affect me because there will be 7 years of the same rewards before it gets cut in half (I think that’s correct). If people don’t want other’s to get rewarded for their work on keeping it alive it’s just selfishness I think.

Selfishness is not the problem here I think.
Drawing value away from Cardano is the issue.

If the testnet has substantial cash equivalent incentives, even if they are not ADA, what would stop it from being a Cardano 2?

Exchanges would list it, traders will trade, and the value of the main chain may very well decline. For what purpose? Easier testing and deployment?

To avoid that I’d imagine the rewards on the chain need to be as experimental as the chain itself. And I would consider “experiencing the future” a reward in itself, though that in itself may be insufficient to keep it “lively” enough.

And that “7 year halving” could become a part of the experiment, and may be changed to affect you too @Apple1.

I can’t answer any of those questions because I’m to new to this. I’m only a fairly new ADA holder who would like to see the project go well for all of us. I don’t know anything about an ADA 2 or anything like that and I’m quite confused now.

Is there something I’m not grasping here? The people running the ITN could do what they want I guess, but why would they try and screw up something that they’re invested in too?

I’ll be happy to clarify @Apple1 .

The testnet is a public “copy” of Cardano. Nothing makes it different from the mainnet (unless we decide). It’s sent, received, traded, and staked just the same. So you can look at it as a coin in itself if it keeps on living.

I would also like the project to go well for us, and I think what @MrBrinker and myself realize is that one of the greatest powers of our brand, and our true uniqueness in the cryptosphere, is that we do what we said we were going to do. This goes down to the deepest levels of Cardano’s philosophy imo.

That is why we’re saying to shut it down, like we said we would, and when we decide to revive it, we should do it in a properly planned, peer reviewed, well designed way. The way we do everything else :wink: . (IOHK’s initiative kind of sidewinded CF in this case)

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I’m all for planning but life has a tendency to be unpredictable so I think flexibility of thought and action are nescesary parts of success. That is the mindset I bring to bear when approaching this issue. Regarding the benefits of doing what you say you will do it is clearly important as it builds trust and consistency. However I do strongly believe in the concept of adhering to core values but being flexible on details.
Here is an article on that I think is interesting:

Although the Rust and Haskell codebase stem from the same formal specification I think they are different certainly from a development standpoint. Rust is known to be much faster to develop on and the process of its creation seemed to be much more about speed. This makes it ideal as a platform to test new ideas. I also do not see a scenario where listing this coin on an exchange at some point will devalue Ada as a unit of exchange or a brand. I see it as adding value to the community and Ada holders for the following reasons in no particular order:

  1. Creates a laboratory for experimentation with associated benefits while safeguarding Ada holders and developers. As we progress in time and real use cases and value get created on Cardano the less willing people are going to be to take risks. Having a secondary place that has enough value and economic incentives to care about and but not enough to hold back innovation would be beneficial to all as ultimately it would carry over to Cardano.
  2. Increases value to Ada holders by giving them a new asset. From a value standpoint I don’t see this as sharing a pie between Ada and TAda so that TAda somehow devalues existing Ada but baking a completely new pie so now we have an Ada pie and a TAda pie. 2X pie. Who doesn’t like 2X more pie?
  3. At this point we have a very cohesive ecosystem and perhaps more importantly stake pool operators and developers have economic incentives to make sure the primary Ada network retains value.
  4. Adds diversity to the project. I think having multiple paths forward is not a bad idea for the longevity of the project. There is a reason life multiplies it increases the chance for continuation of the gene pool. I think we all need to open our minds to the concept of many chains interoperating with each other. Instead of owning all of one perhaps we can all own a little piece of all.
  5. More chains more fun! It keeps things interesting and I honestly think that makes it attractive to smart people. It draws them in and makes them feel they can create new things on our chain.
  6. For better or worse the decision to maintain the testnet is in the hands of the pool ops and theirs alone. It’s true that if the testnet continues without participation from IOHK, Emurgo, or the foundation it may languish in obscurity but maybe not. No one can make it go away.
  7. A lot of value was created by a lot of hard work from pool ops. It is not easy to spin up a test pool of that size and complexity. The fact we currently have one gives us a real time advantage going forward. Other projects in this space are not going to sit back and let Cardano waltz in and take all the marbles. I think we have real advantages but let’s not kid ourselves we have not won yet. Its going to be a dogfight and we need every advantage we can get to continue to be relevant.

The only reason I have thought of that could be a negative is it may confuse people and give an opportunity to FUDsters. “Cardano is already splitting up” or whatever. To overcome that we craft a positive message and stick to it. We could respond by saying it’s an Air drop of new coins to reward Ada holders (everyone loves Airdrops). If done properly it enhances the brand.

Anyway just some thoughts off the top of my head. Here are short clips from Charles on the topic from the last AMA: