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Frequently Asked Questions

General

Tao

What is Tao?

Tao is an novel solution to the data sharing, integration, and monetization problems of the music economy by implementing a custom smart contract protocol designed specifically for the music industry, by the music industry. Tao relies on a system of 150 Masternodes with Delegated Proof of Stake (DPOS) consensus that can support low transaction fees and 5-second transaction confirmation times. Security, stability and chain finality are guaranteed via novel techniques such as the Random Generals Gambit and decentralized rewards for users who support the most reliable block producers via smart-contracts.

Tao supports all EVM-compatible smart-contracts, protocols and atomic cross-chain token transfers. New scaling techniques such as sharding, EVM parallelisation, private-chain generation and hardware integration will be continuously researched and incorporated into Tao's masternode architecture (named "Shifu"). It will be an ideal scalable smart-contract public blockchain for decentralized apps, token issuances and token integrations for every stakeholder in the music economy.

What problem is Tao aiming to solve?

The problems that Tao aims to solve can be summarized as follows:

  • The network congestion (low transaction time)
  • High transaction fees
  • Lack of focus on music economy pain points
  • Lack of focus on music economy data requirements
  • Compromises which encouraged the participation of bad actors

Blockchain technology hasn't been widely adopted by the music economy because of a lack of respect for the needs of artists, fans, and other stakeholders. Tao addresses these problems directly and enables many decentralized applications, including but not limited to cryptocurrencies, smart-contracts, voting, supply-chain management, decentralized identity, and verification of authenticity. In order to reach this goal, the current blockchain infrastructure must at least be able to harmonize with existing music industry stakeholders and technologies such as DAWs, rights management and accounting platforms, financial services and payments. Nevertheless, the reality is disappointing: Bitcoin and Ethereum can only process around 7 and 15 transactions per second respectively and the mistrust of the motives of its creators and participants has made the technology unusable for the music economy.

Tao is continuously working and researching several scaling solutions. Regarding on-chain scaling, Sharding and Proof-of-Stake-based consensus are of potential that can significantly improve transaction processing performance while trying to maintain the security requirements of the system, however Tao enjoys a "second mover" market advantage and will continue to investigate and research additional scaling methodologies.

Tao supports low fee and 5-second transaction confirmation times. Tao can currently process 2,000-5,000 transactions per second (TPS).

How does Tao work? What is the architecture and consensus used?

Tao relies on a system of 150 Masternodes with Delegated Proof of Stake (DPOS) consensus that can support low fees (approx. 1/100 of that of Ethereum's) and 5-second transaction confirmation times. Security, stability and chain finality are guaranteed via novel techniques such as Random Generals and staking via smart-contracts.

Can you tell more about Delegated Proof of Stake (DPOS)? What is it?

At the heart of Tao, the Delegated Proof-of-Stake (DPOS) consensus mechanism enables Tao as an EVM-compatible and scalable public blockchain, on which every Ethereum smart contract can be effectively run with almost instant transaction confirmation.

DPOS features its Masternode architecture in which token holders deposit 100,0000 TAO to become a masternode candidate and receive votes from other token holders. The most voted masternode candidates are selected as masternodes for block creation within a period, called an epoch. Each masternode takes its block creation in a round-robin manner every 5 seconds and follows the double validation technique for security reinforcement. A block is finalised if it is signed off by 3/4 of masternodes. At the end of each epoch, the masternodes that have signed finalised blocks are rewarded. Stakers who voted for those masternodes will also be rewarded.

What is the Random Generals Gambit?

The Random Generals Gambit is a novel solution to specfic problems of proof of stake networks. As the name would suggest, the Random Generals Gambit is an additional layer of randomness which provides reliable state verification on a per-block basis. Specifically, when a block is created by a masternode, it must be verified by another randomly selected masternode and only after passing an additional verification by this random masternode is the data added to the blockchain. This solves the Byzantine Generals Problem of proof of stake by selecting a "general" at random from those units in the field. Derived from three years of experience with an operating proof of stake network in the wild, this unique innovation provides for an entirely new level of transaction finality and reliability in proof of stake networks.

What is an 'epoch'?

An epoch is a 360-block period of 5-second block times starting from block #1 (360 blocks x 5s/block = around 1800s or ~30 minutes).

Which scaling solutions will Tao implement? Will you have sharding?

Tao solutions are based on on-chain scaling built into an architecture of no more than 150 voted masternodes with our Delegated Proof-of-stake Voting (DPOS) consensus protocol. We achieve 5-second block-times and almost instant transaction confirmation.

To scale further our infrastructure, we are looking very closely at sharding but will remain open to new advancements as the industry moves forward.

Besides sharding, we are actively researching scalability solutions like EVM parallelization and private-chain generation. Hardware integration will be evaluated before being integrated into Tao's masternode architecture.

What is the current TPS? What is your targeted transaction speed and when do you think you can achieve that speed?

Tao supports low transaction fees (approx. 1/30th of that of Ethereum's) and 5-second transaction confirmation times. The mainnet with DPOS Masternodes delivers 2,000 transactions per second (TPS).

What makes Tao different?

The unique point of Tao comes from technology, the ecosystem, and the community. Tao is the only smart contract platform dedicated to serving the needs of the music economy.

Technology: includes

  • Delegated Proof of Stake consensus
  • On-chain governance via smart contract
  • Random Generals Gambit for additional consensus finality

This enables Tao to achieve:

  • Cheap transactions: approx. 1/100 of that of Ethereum
  • 2000 TPS to handle a robust d-app and token ecosystem; TPS will be dramatically higher once our sharding solution is enabled (20k-30k TPS)
  • 5 second block times for fast transactions
  • EVM-compatibility allows for interoperability with Ethereum ecosystem.

Our product lineup

  • TaoScan: Shows all blocks, transactions, finality, smart contracts, D-Apps and token information
  • Shifu: Allows users to apply for a Masternode Candidate position; to vote for Masternodes and shows Masternode performance statistics
  • TaoWallet: Securely store, send, receive TAO and other tokens issued on Tao; Allows users to vote and track rewards
  • Waihui: A secure and efficient relayer-masternode decentralized exchange protocol

Our own community of builders

  • Tao also is working vigorously on building its ecosystem and has sealed many partnerships from all stakeholders in the music economy: from distribution, to authenticity and identity, to rights management, to payments.

How does Tao compare with other available blockchain projects?

Some of our competitors are EOS.IO, Casper FFG, Cardano, Tendermint, Lisk.

The world is a pretty big place, and it is clear in the second decade of the 21st century that one blockchain will not be sufficient to serve the unique needs of every industry. Blockchain specialization is the trend which we are riding. Startups often kill themselves because they cannot make a desirable product, not because of the competition but due to a lack of traction within their target industry. Tao solves this problem with a dedicated focus on the music economy. At the moment, besides the core Tao platform, we want to focus on a few quality Dapp use cases that can make a difference. Quality before quantity.

Our core blockchain solutions like the sharding proposal is of very high quality, and potentially better than multiple high profile attempts at scaling currently. This solution is also very unique to Tao's Marsternode design, which will remain our competitive product advantage for a long time.

There are also several other product solutions in design stage which also highly integrate with Tao's overall design. These product innovations are some of the core competencies we have that make Tao very unique compared to other big projects. We are doing our best to solve the scalability problem, maximize the TPS and stay strong in our target market.

Even while we focus on the music indsutry, there is still a need for decentralized finance, bonding curve funding, stablecoins, and the entire existing universe of smart-contract enabled applications, but with a music economy focus.

Which blockchain(s) are Tao's main competitors?

On the one hand, all base layer blockchains such as Ethereum, EOS, NEM, NEO etc are competitors because app developers and token issuers will generally choose only one blockchain to work on. On the other hand, it is too early to focus on competition as it is more important to expand the whole blockchain ecosystem rather than to compete.

Tao has a unique position in which it adds value to the Ethereum ecosystem by addressing scalability and governance issues while keeping the same smart-contracts and general architecture and remaining laser focused on serving a specific market vertical with $26B per year in revenues.

Tao is EVM-compatible. What does that mean?

EVM means Ethereum Virtual Machine. Tao supports all EVM-compatible smart-contracts, protocols, and atomic cross-chain token transfers. This means that any smart-contract written in Solidity can be easily ported to Tao. Any d-App written in Solidity or any other EVM-compatible blockchain framework can be seamlessly ported to Tao.

Is Tao a side-chain of Ethereum?

No. Tao has its own blockchain since the Tao 1.0 Mainnet was launched August 29th, 2016.

Is Tao compatible with Ethereum?

Yes, any smart-contract written in Solidity can be easily ported to Tao. This is one strength appealing to some dApp developers and some of our partners.

Can developers make hybrid dApps using both Ethereum and Tao in one single dApp?

Yes, they can make an app, and deploy it to both Ethereum, and Tao. It can be done relatively easily since Tao supports EVM and shares a common architecture with Ethereum.

When is Tao mainnet launch?

Tao 1.0 Mainnet was launched on August 29th, 2016. Tao is one of the oldest, consistently running, fault-free cryptocurrencies ever created.

The Tao 2.0 Mainnet, which these documents address, was launched on March 29th, 2020.

What is the difference between TAO and Tao?

TAO is the native currency of the Tao blockchain platform.

How do you solve 'security problems' when using Tao?

In terms of security of consensus protocol, Tao proposes Random Generals and Randomization to additionally protect the system. The details of these techniques can be referred in our Technical paper.

Tao solves some consensus-related security issues:

  1. Nothing-at-stake problem: This problem is commonly discussed in PoS-based blockchain consensus and just like 51% attacks in PoW. Tao solves it by using Random Generals and Randomization. The details are shown in our technical paper.
  2. Long-range attacks: Attackers can try to recreate all blocks from a very far position to the current block. Attackers can do that because PoS-based consensus does not require extra-ordinary hashing power to re-write the whole blockchain. Tao addresses by providing finality. Once a block is signed by at least 3/4 masternodes, it is consider irreversible, meaning that any attempt to re-write the blockchain history will be rejected.
  3. Censorship-resistance: Please refer to this medium article for more detailed analysis
  4. DDoS and spamming attacks: Tao's transaction fee is not zero (even it is very low), attackers still require a significant amount of TAO in order to flood the network for only a short time.

How does Tao defend against spamming attacks?

Tao has incorporated several measures to defend against spamming attacks.

For instance, increasing the transaction fees for smart contract creation. The minimum is 10 TAO and any amount under that will result in an error that the smart contract creation cost is too low.

Company

Where is Tao registered?

Tao isn't a company. Tao isn't a foundation. Tao is a decentralized, autonomous organization. For legal purposes it is considered an unincorporated association with global membership comprised of those who own the Tao token.

Where can I take a look at Tao code? Is there a GitHub repository?

Yes, Tao is an open source blockchain project and all the code is available on our GitHub. This includes the code for the Tao blockchain client, governance DApp, block explorer, tools, docker images, documentation, etc.

Where can I contact you to get support?

If you need support, please contact us on one of these platforms:

Which are Tao's official channels for communication and information?

You can keep in touch with our latest news here:

  1. Twitter: https://twitter.com/taoblockchain
  2. Telegram: https://t.me/TaoCryptocurrency
  3. Website: https://tao.network
  4. Medium: https://medium.com/taoblockchain
  5. LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/taoblockchain/

Ecosystem

What incentives have partners and dApp developers to build on Tao?

Tao supports all EVM-compatible smart-contracts, protocols, and atomic cross-chain token transfers. This means that any smart-contract written in Ethereum protocol can be easily ported to Tao.

Any d-App written in Solidity can be seamlessly ported to Tao, instantly enjoying all of Tao's advantages: almost zero-transaction fees; 5-second confirmation times; 2,000 TPS and soon 20K-30K TPS once sharding is enabled.

D-app developers also have dedicated technical support from Tao developers.

Besides the technical aspects, our partners will also benefit from Tao community support and fundraising opportunities thanks to Tao’s relationships with well-known investors.

Why should developers build dApps on Tao?

Developers who have projects which intend to serve the music industry can find a home with an entire community dedicated to their success. With solid roots within the music economy building on Tao will let you rise above the noise of other networks and get your project noticed by the people you want to notice it.

TAO - Economics

What is TAO? Can you describe the function and use cases of TAO?

TAO is the native cryptocurrency of Tao and will be the reserve cryptocurrency for all third-party apps running on Tao. Being the protocol token for the Tao infrastructure, TAO will be needed by all parties utilising Tao to build apps or issue and integrate cryptographic tokens into their apps.

The supply of TAO is fixed, long-term and non-inflationary.

In addition to the above, TAO is an integral part of the Tao network for a number of reasons.

  • TAO will be used to fund the development of Tao and its ecosystem (TaoScan, Shifu, TaoWallet, etc.).
  • TAO will be used as a reward to incentivise the building of the Tao engine/ecosystem.
  • TAO will be used as a long-term, decentralized governance instrument of the Tao network.

You can check our technical whitepaper for more details.

Can I mine TAO?

TAO is not mineable but mintable by masternodes. Masternodes are responsible for creating, verifying and finalizing the blocks created within a period, called an epoch. Masternodes and Stakers will receive block rewards in TAO.

What is TAO circulating supply and total supply?

The initial circulating supply at the Tao 1.0 genesis block was 33,000,000. Since launch, the network has generated roughly another 1,000,000 tokens via consensus. Another 21,000,000 tokens were minted with the migration to Tao 2.0 and sold on the open market to raise intial funds, bringing the circulating total to 200,000,000, however the current circulating supply is increasing every epoch.

After 8 years, TAO's total supply is fixed at 100,0000,000 TAO.

How is TAO distributed?

The token allocation is splitted as follows:

  • 55 million TAO in circulation post-migration;
  • 12 million TAO are reserved for the team;
  • 16 million TAO are reserved for strategic partners and an ecosystem building fund;
  • 17 million TAO are reserved as block rewards for the next 8 years

How are block rewards distributed?

17 million TAO are reserved as block rewards for the next 8 years.

  • 1st and 2nd year: 4 million TAO annually
  • 3rd, 4th and 5th year: 2 million TAO annually
  • 6th, 7th and 8th year: 1 million TAO annually

Will Tao have inflation?

The total supply will start at 200 million TAO with 6 million new Tao generated per year for the first 2 years. After that, masternode fees are expected to come from DEX fees, but the Board of Governors will consider the economic situation at the time and may elect to increase the total supply by 0.5-1 million TAO per year (which will be used as block rewards) (~small inflation, 0.5%-1% annually).

How often are block rewards paid out?

Block rewards will be earned every epoch, which consists of 360 five-second-blocks (~30 minutes). Those users which have delegates assigned to masternodes which have produced blocks will also be rewarded..

If Tao has zero fees, how can Masternodes get rewards?

The block rewards will be emitted from a reserved fund with 17 million TAO for the first 8 years. The block rewards are as follows:

  • 1st and 2nd year: 4 million TAO annually
  • 3rd, 4th and 5th year: 2 million TAO annually
  • 6th, 7th and 8th year: 1 million TAO annually

We plan to have a built-in DEX, the revenues from the DEX will go to the Masternodes as well.

After 8 years, the block rewards will come from the exchange fees. Also, the Board of Governors can decide to increase the total supply by 0.5-1 million TAO per year (which will be used as block rewards).

What is the price of the additional tokens?

The price is set by free market value, which at the time of this writting was ~$0.025

When will TAO be listed on new exchanges?

We do not discuss exchange listings due to regulation rules. We will announce exchange news on our official channels.

Tao is currently traded on Alt.Market and QTrade.io

Is TAO an ERC-20 token?

No. TAO is the native coin of the Tao blockchain.

What is a TRC20 token?

A TRC20 token is a token which can be issued on the Tao blockchain. TRC20 is similar to the ERC-20 standard in the Ethereum blockchain.

Where to store TAO? How can I send TAO to my wallet?

You can store TAO in TaoWallet, TrustWallet, MetaMask, and soon Ledger and Trezor.

We recommend to store TAO in TaoWallet.

Please, read more details here: https://docs.tao.network/get-started/wallet/

How to connect Metamask / MyEtherWallet with Tao mainnet?

Use the following settings to connect Metamask to the Tao Mainnet.

  • RPC endpoint: https://rpc.tao.network
  • Chain ID: 88
  • Symbol: TAO
  • Network Name: Tao Mainnet

Tao is now supported by MyEtherWallet. All you need to do is to choose Network TAO in the supported network list in MyEtherWallet.

You can find the info about our Mainnet or Testnet on our Networks page.

Also, you can find out more detailed information about how to use different wallet types to connect to Tao Mainnet on Connect your wallet

Where can I buy TAO? (exchanges)"

You can currently purchase TAO on Alt.Market and QTrade.io.

Masternodes

Does Tao have Masternodes? How do they work?

Yes, Tao has a maximum of 150 Masternodes with Delegated Proof of Stake (DPOS) consensus with low transaction fees, and instant transaction confirmations. Masternodes create, verify and validate new blocks on Tao’s blockchain.

  • Masternode Candidates: Any account can deposit 100,0000 TAO using Shifu to become a masternode candidate. A candidate can resign, but the tokens will be locked for the next 30 days (1,296'000 blocks) after the resignation.
  • Becoming a Masternode: A candidate becomes a masternode when he/she belongs to the top 150 most voted candidates in each epoch. A Masternode can resign, but the tokens will be locked for the next 30 days after the resignation.
  • Rewards: The rewards a masternode receives in each epoch is proportional to the number of signatures it signs. Masternodes will also receive fees from the Tao DEX, which is planned for development in Q1 2021.

Tao masternodes started signing blocks and receiving block rewards with the Mainnet release in April 2020.

What is a masternode in the Tao ecosystem?

A Tao masternode is a server which uses its computing power to contribute to the network. Its job is to create and sign blocks. For this contribution to the network, masternodes receive rewards in the form of TAO.

Masternodes are elected using the DPOS consensus via our governance dApp Shifu

What are the incentives to run a masternode?

Masternodes contribute to the network and for this work they will receive a significant amount of block rewards, which will likely exceed the cost for running the infrastructure. However, masternode owners need to invest in Tao by depositing at least 50'000 TAO, and stake them in the long term.

After the initial deposit, if the account does not become a masternode (has less votes than the top 150 most voted candidates), he/she will not receive rewards. Therefore, candidates are incentivised to do as much as they can to signal their capability to support Tao to get into the top 150 most voted candidates.

How did you decide on 150 masternodes? Why did you decide to increase this from the initial 99?

Two reasons: decentralization and scalability. In terms of decentralization, 150 is better than 99. The more important consideration is the scalability. We also increased the number of masternodes to better suit our upcoming sharding solution.

Also 150 is Dunbar’s Number.

Where will the Masternode rewards come from? Will they be from the DEX?

The block rewards will come from a 17 million TAO reserve that will fund the block rewards for the next 8 years - this was decided at the genesis block.. Our Economics paper lays out the number in detail. In the future we plan to have a built-in DEX, with revenues going to Masternodes as well.

When are Masternode rewards paid out?

Masternode operators and stakers will receive rewards every epoch. An epoch is a 360-block period of 5-second block time (~30 minutes).

How can I check my rewards?

You can check your masternode/staking rewards using TaoWallet. Alternatively you can use Shifu or TaoScan.

How much rewards will Masternodes receive?

Each epoch consists of 360 blocks, which will reward a total of 360 TAO per epoch in the first two years. This amount of 360 TAO will be divided to all of the Masternodes proportionally to the number of signatures they sign during the epoch.

Example: With only 25 Masternodes and equal performances, every masternode would be rewarded with 14.4 TAO. With 150 Masternodes, each one would receive 1.152 TAO per epoch.

Please, refer to our Economics paper for more details about the masternodes reward.

How much of the reward from Masternodes will go to the Masternode infrastructure (node owner) and how much is for voters?

There is a reward sharing ratio among token holders and masternodes who have been elected and supported by the token holders. The reward earned by each Masternode will be divided into three portions:

  • Infrastructure Reward: The first portion of 40% called Infrastructure Reward goes to the Masternode operator.
  • Staking Reward: The second portion of 50% called Staking Reward goes to the pool of all voters for that Masternode which is shared proportionally based on the token stake. The Masternode also gets proportional rewards for his 50K TAO initial deposit.
  • Foundation Reward: The last portion of 10% called Foundation Reward goes to a special account controlled by the Masternode Foundation, which is run by the Tao company initially.

What is the expected ROI for Masternodes and Stakers?

The rewards for each masternode will be dynamic and depend on multiple factors such as: number of masternodes in the network, efficiency signing blocks and the total number of votes on each masternode. The most efficient masternodes signing blocks will receive higher rewards.

Please, refer to our Economics paper for more details about the masternodes reward. We discuss 3 possible scenarios with 50, 100 and 150 Masternodes; and different number of total votes.

One example is outlined below.

Scenario: 150 Masternodes, 12.5 million tokens voting (a total of 20 million token locked).

Reward achieved per epoch (360 blocks):

  • By a Masternode = 0.6667 Tao
  • By a Voter with 1K Tao staked = 0.00625 Tao

Approximate reward achieved per week:

  • By a Masternode = 224 Tao
  • By a Voter with 1K Tao staked = 2.1 Tao

Approximate reward achieved per year:

  • By a Masternode = 11,680 Tao
  • By a Voter with 1K Tao staked = 109.5 Tao (10.95% annually)
  • By a Voter with 50K Tao staked = 5,475 Tao
  • Total reward for a Masternode with a 50K Tao deposit: 11,680 + 5,475 = 17,155 Tao (34.31% annually)

Masternode Candidate

What is a masternode candidate? What is the difference between masternode candidate and masternode?

A Masternode Candidate is any node who deposited 100K TAO and is listed on Shifu.

One Candidate only becomes a Masternode when he is in the top-150 most-voted masternode candidates in an epoch. Only these elected masternodes will be able to sign blocks and receive block rewards.

How can I become a Masternode?

The first step to become a masternode, is becoming a masternode candidate. To become a Masternode Candidate you need:

  • to run Tao software in a machine with certain minimal hardware requirements
  • to deposit 100’000 TAO in a smart-contract via Shifu

The list of Masternode Candidates will be available on the governance DApp, Shifu. The next step is to be elected as one of the top 150 most voted candidates.

Do I need to use my own computer to run a node?

NO, we recommend using an IaaS ("cloud") provider of your choice (like Amazon AWS, Digital Ocean, Google Cloud GCE, Vultr, etc). The machine must be directly facing the internet (public IP, no NAT) and with 100% uptime.

If you have other production grade environment than cloud provider at your disposal, please tell us more about on our Gitter.

What are the hardware requirements to run a node?

Processing transactions is mostly CPU bound. Therefore we recommend running CPU optimized servers.

  • Directly facing internet (public IP, no NAT)
  • 16 cores CPU
  • 32GB of RAM
  • SSD storage

We recommend using popular cloud providers as their reliability and uptime are close to 100%. Those servers would be a good starting point:

  • DigitalOcean: CPU optimized droplet 32GB/16CPU
  • Amazon EC2: C5 instance
  • Google Cloud Engine: n1-highcpu-16

Setting up a masternode candidate on a weaker machine might result in poor performances, significantly impacting owner's rewards and the chain performance.

Note: If you are running a node in Testnet, 2CPU/8GB of RAM is sufficient.

How do Masternode Candidates become Masternodes?

Once you are a Masternode Candidate, you need the support of Tao community in the form of votes. The top 150 most voted candidates every period called an epoch (360 blocks of 5-second block-time) will be promoted to Masternode. This list will change dynamically every epoch. Only the 150 masternodes elected will be able to sign blocks and will receive rewards in the form of TAO.

Is there any guide on 'How to run a masternode from A to Z'?

See this Medium post.

Where can I find the latest masternode guide or the instructions for setting up a masternode?

Find more details about taomn here: https://docs.tao.network/masternode/taomn/

What is the command to start a fullnode with 'taomn'?

taomn start --name node_name --net mainnet --pkey your_private_key

taomn is installed but just not in your path."

See: https://docs.tao.network/masternode/taomn/#taomn-command-not-found

I tried stopping the node using 'taomn stop', but after that I ran 'taomn status' it still says running."

You can run taomn --debug stop and send the log to us. We will help you to investigate the issue.

Do I need two wallets to run a Masternode?

It is recommended for security reasons. You can create your wallet from wherever you want, the only rule being that you need two of them. One for your masternode, and one to make the 50K deposit (this account will receive the rewards).

What is the 'coinbase address'?

'Coinbase address' is the public address used to run your node and register it to the system.

We recommend using two addresses when running your nodes. The public address or 'coinbase address' will only receive transaction fees. The private address is from where you make the initial 50K TAO deposit and where the block rewards will be collected.

How can I create a public 'coinbase address' wallet? Is it only with TaoWallet for iOS and Android? Are there other options?

You need to create a wallet for the masternode public address. This wallet does not need to contain any TAO, think of it as a shell address. You will then stake tao into the masternode address via your main TAO wallet.

You can use the iOS and Android apps. Also you can create wallets with Metamask, MyEtherWallet.

You can also use https://wallet.testnet.tao.network to create an empty wallet, then use it as a coinbase address.

I noticed that we need another wallet for masternode with a different mnemonic. Assume we use a hardware wallet, we would need another hardware wallet with different mnemonic?

It is recommended to use a separate empty account for your masternode as it only receives transactions fees - what we call public or 'coinbase address' in the documentation.

The block rewards are sent to the account connected to Shifu who make the initial deposit - the 'private' address.

Can I use the same address pair (taomn public address + initial deposit address) for all my nodes? Or do I have to transfer tokens to another wallet and start the second node?

No. You must use different public 'coinbase' addresses. But you can use the same initial deposit ('private') address, then all rewards will be transferred to only one address.

I have finished all the steps of setting up my node. Why don't I see my node on Shifu?

You must apply to become a masternode candidate.

Do I need to deposit the 50K TAO before or after running 'taomn' in VPS?

After. Your node must be fully synched before applying.

How do I check the blockchain sync status from the node?

You can watch the logs, but it is easier from the TaoStats website or its eth.blockNumber API call.

If the masternode owner deposits 60K TAO instead of 50K on its own node, can it later on unstake the excess 10K?

Yes, it can.

How can I change my node's name?

You can do it on Shifu. Go to your masternode page on Shifu, if you are logged into Shifu with the owner account, you can click next to the masternode name to edit the info.

My node status is 'Proposed', will it change status with next checkpoint?

Yes, if you are in top-150 most voted.

Why is a node flagged as 'Slashed'?

With Slashing v2.0, a masternode that doesn't create any blocks within an epoch and therefore delays the network by 10 seconds at each of their turns will be penalized (no rewards) for the next five epochs.

Note: a slashed Masternode can still sign transactions if it’s online but receive no rewards for doing so.

After being slashed for 5 epochs, the Masternode is analysed for re-entry. If the slashed Masternode has signed any transaction during the last epoch (meaning that he's up and working again) it will come back to it's Masternode status and receive rewards normally. Otherwise it will be slashed for a new round of 5 epochs. This can happen as long as the node isn't back up or kicked out of the top 150.

Some reasons for being Slashed might be that the masternode does not have the correct Tao software, lack of memory or the masternode crashes due to the lack of e-maintenance and operation by the masternode owner.

How do I update my Masternode to the newest version?

Run this command: pip3 install -U taomn && taomn update && taomn start

How many nodes I am allowed to run?

As many as you can.

How can I resign as Masternode?

If you no longer want to be a masternode, you can resign on Shifu. Your masternode will stop generating rewards and your funds will be locked for 30 days (1,296,000 blocks). After the lockup period you will be able to withdraw your 50,000 TAO deposit.

Can I close the node entirely, then start a new one with a totally separate coinbase address without being penalized?

No. Your old node will be penalized (50K initial deposit 30-day lockup) and your new node has to apply again.

Is it possible to move a masternode later, like backup and start it from another IP address?

Yes.

What if I do not have enough TAO for a masternode? Can I stake my coins?

Yes. Token holders can stake TAO and receive rewards.

To stake TAO you need to vote for masternode candidates by sending TAO to each candidate's specific voting-address using the official governance d-App: Shifu.` The top-150 most voted candidates will become masternodes. Token holders can also un-vote candidates, but the tokens will be locked for the next 96 epochs / 8,640 blocks (approx. 48 hours) after the un-voting.

Masternode token deposits, and all tokens used to vote for masternodes will enter the staking program, and earn block rewards in each epoch, plus any fees. Tokens used to vote for candidates who do not become masternodes will not earn staking rewards.

Voter

What are the voters incentives? Do voters get rewards too?

Token voters should vote for the candidates who demonstrate strong support of the Tao ecosystem. If strong candidates are voted to become masternodes, the network will be more powerful and the voters will earn more rewards.

More information on the voting and reward mechanism in the Economics paper.

Can you stake TAO?

Yes, you can stake TAO and receive more TAO coins as your reward.

How do I Stake? Just holding on my wallet?

To stake in Tao you must participate in the Tao Masternode election, voting for masternode candidate(s) using Shifu to deposit your tokens in a voting smart-contract.

Login to Shifu and click 'Vote' on a node.

How does Tao Masternode Proof-of-Stake-Voting (DPOS) work?

Everyone can can find a list of all masternode candidates on Shifu. All token holders can vote with TAO for any masternode candidates via Shifu. To vote, token holders must deposit TAO in a smart-contract associated with the voted candidate.

The top-150 most-voted candidates will be promoted to masternodes during the next epoch and will be able to sign blocks and collect rewards. All the voters (stakers) who supported the elected masternodes will receive rewards, proportional to the amount of TAO voted and the efficiency of the masternode.

How do I vote (stake)?

Any token holder can vote. Login to Shifu and then click 'Vote' on a node. Then enter the amount of TAO you want to vote (minimum is 100 TAO). You vote by depositing (staking) tokens to a smart-contract associated with a masternode candidate.

There are many ways to vote in Shifu:

  • Voting from TaoWallet.
  • Voting from Ledger wallet
  • Voting from Trezor wallet
  • Voting via MetaMask (can be connected to your hardware wallets).
  • Voting from TrustWallet
  • Voting with your wallet's Private Key or MNEMONIC.

How do I vote/stake from TaoWallet app on my phone?

Please, read the following guide.

Or watch this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tXp4WHl_sxY

How do I vote from my Ledger Nano S?

Plug in your Ledger and open the Ethereum App. Go to Shifu.

Login in the top-right corner and select Ledger from the drop-down menu.

Change the HD path to m/44'/60'/0'

You should see your TAO balance.

To see a list of nodes click on the Shifu homepage button - top left corner. Next to each node should be a 'Vote' button. When voting you will need to confirm the transaction on your Ledger.

Can I stake for multiple masternodes via Ledger?

Yes, you can.

Ledger not working?

Probably your Ledger firmware version is incompatible. Sometimes you should upgrade your Ledger to the newest firmware. Occasionally a new version could be problematic and you should try to use the previous firmware version.

Can I use Trezor to vote for masternodes?

Yes. Shifu supports Trezor now.

What criteria must be considered when voting? Which masternode candidate should I vote for?

The most important criteria to maximize a voter’s profit, the main points you should consider when voting, are the following:

  • Top-150 most voted: Your candidate must be one of the top-150 most-voted. If your candidate gets in the 151th most-voted place, it will not be promoted to masternode and you will earn zero rewards.
  • Hardware, Performance: Powerful CPU, RAM, bandwidth, latency, etc so the node can work hard and receive high rewards
  • Number of signed blocks: The more signed blocks per epoch, the higher rewards
  • Time of last signed block: Verify that the masternode is active
  • Total Capacity: Staking rewards are shared between all the masternode votes. Less voted masternodes are more profitable. 5K staked on a 50K-staked masternode will receive ten times more rewards than 5K staked on a 500K total staked masternode.
  • Social Proof, Reputation: Masternodes managed by trusted companies that are for the long term, maintaining the masternode, updating hardware and software to last versions, fixing problems, etc.

How many Masternode Candidates can I vote for?

You can vote for as many candidates as you wish, splitting your TAO.

Example: If you have 1,000 TAO you can vote 500 TAO for candidate A, 450 TAO for candidate B, and 50 TAO for candidate C.

What is the minimum amount to Stake?

The minimum amount to stake is 100 TAO.

Which hardware-wallet can I use to vote?

You are able to use hardware wallets (Ledger, Trezor) with MyEtherWallet or Metamask. You can also directly connect to the Tao Mainnet with Ledger/Trezor and vote on Shifu.

Is it possible to re-invest the TAO earned and use it to continue voting?

Yes.

Is there a way to stake the earned rewards automatically?

This is not supported currently.

What happens if the Masternode I voted for stops working? Will I get my TAO back?

Yes. You can unvote that masternode and take your tokens back after 96 epochs (approx. 48 hours) lock-up period.

How do I UnVote?

If you do not want to support a masternode you voted for, you can unvote it by clicking the ‘Unvote’ button on the masternode's page and enter the amount of TAO you wish to unvote.

After unvoting, your TAO are still locked in the smart contract for 96 epochs (approx. 48 hours) before you are able to withdraw. When the lockup period is finished you need to click the ‘Withdraw’ button and the coins will appear again on your wallet.

How to withdraw after unvoting?

After unvoting, you need to wait until your TAO is unlocked from the smart contract (96 epochs, approx. 48 hours). Then you can go to Shifu and click the 'Withdraw' button in your account page (the three vertical dots on the top-right) and choose which withdrawal you want to receive back your TAO.

Note that you might see multiple withdrawals on your account page if you made multiple unvotes previously.

Products

TaoScan

What is TaoScan?

TaoScan is our block explorer. It is pretty similar to EtherScan if you are already familiar with it.

TaoScan provides a user friendly, details and perfection-oriented user interface for Tao blockchain. From a user perspective, TaoScan brings Tao’s transparency to users, because all blocks, transactions, finality, smart contracts, dApp and token information are read from Tao and shown to users. Furthermore, TaoScan also offers technical visualisations and shows useful statistics about Tao's performance, token holders and other metrics.

What is a TxHash? How to check a TxHash?

TxHash stands for 'transaction hash', and is also known as a transaction ID.

An example of what a TxHash looks like: 0x838d33119b33e4519cb201e49bfc570ddc0fbdc6d9cf7038d8254a4de97f7112

To check a TxHash, follow the steps below:

On TaoScan, go to the search bar with the magnifying glass icon. Paste your transaction hash (TxHash) in the search bar and click the icon or press ENTER. Your transaction details will show up.

Example: https://scan.testnet.tao.network/txs/0x838d33119b33e4519cb201e49bfc570ddc0fbdc6d9cf7038d8254a4de97f7112

TaoStats

What is TaoStats?

TaoStats shows the various metrics regarding the current mainnet including the current number of masternodes, masternodes performance, current TPS, block-time, confirmation time, finality and other useful metrics.

How much is the average time to see my node appear on TaoStats?

It should be less than a minute after taomn command is executed and finished.

Stats page wasn't working and showed a 70-second block. What happened?

The stats page is javascript code running in your browser. If your computer loses it's internet connection or the page is not active anymore, the time will increase forever. In this case just refresh the page.

Shifu

What is Shifu?

Shifu, the 'Governance dApp', provides a professional UI that allowsusers to see the list of masternodes and candidates, to deposit 50k TAO to become a masternode candidate, to vote for masternodes, and to show masternode performance statistics.

How do I login on Shifu?

Go to Shifu. On the top-right corner click 'Login'. Then select how do you want to login: with TaoWallet, with Ledger, with Trezor, with Metamask, TrustWallet or Private Key/Mnemonic.

What is the 'capacity' of a Candidate/Masternode?

The capacity of a candidate is the 50K TAO initial deposit plus the total amount of TAO voted for that candidate.

Which of these numbers on Shifu will tell us which is a good performing node vs poorly performing?

On Shifu, click on a candidate to open the candidate page. Scroll down to 'Masternode Rewards'. You should look at 'Sign number', 'Slashing history' under Masternode Rewards to determine a good node or not.

Masternodes will sign a maximum of 60 blocks per epoch. A good masternode will create around 60 sign transactions in that epoch. We also calculate the reward based on signed transactions.

What is a 'checkpoint'?

For each iteration of 360 blocks (called an epoch), a checkpoint block is created, which implements only reward works. The masternode, who takes turn in the circular and sequential order to create blocks, has to scan all of the created blocks in the epoch and count the number of signatures.

It is worth noting that token holders who unvote before the checkpoint block will not receive any shared reward in the Staking Reward portion.

I want to stop running my node."

If you don't want to run your masternode anymore, please remember to resign before shutting down the node.

TaoWallet

What is TaoWallet? Where can I download it?

Tao Wallet is the official mobile wallet for Tao, aiming to store the TAO native coin and tokens issued on Tao. Tao Wallet also allows users to vote for masternodes and track rewards.

Users can download TaoWallet at App Store and Play Store.

What tokens/coins does TaoWallet support?

The current TaoWallet supports the native TAO coin on the Tao Mainnet. TaoWallet will support all tokens on the Tao platform in the future.

How can I create a TAO wallet? What are the options to create a TAO wallet?

You can create a TAO wallet with the iOS app, the Android app, MyEtherWallet or Metamask.

Can we vote on Shifu using TaoWallet?

Yes, TaoWallet can be used for voting/staking on Shifu.

How to Restore/Import Recovery Phrase into TaoWallet?

Open TaoWallet, click 'Import Your Wallet', then type your recovery phrase.

How to Restore/Import Private Key into TaoWallet?

Open TaoWallet, click 'Import Your Wallet', then type your private key.

I have Private Key in my PC. How do I import into TaoWallet in a safe way?

Go to TaoWallet, click 'Import Your Wallet', choose 'private key' option, you can import directly or using QR code.

How do I backup my wallet?

Go to TaoWallet, click 'Setting tab' in the top left corner, press 'backup wallet', then write down/ scan QR code of your private key/ backup phrase.

How do I protect my TaoWallet app?

TaoWallet allows you to prevent unauthorized transactions by putting a password on the app itself. With this feature, you must authenticate every time you launch/ make a transaction on the TaoWallet. You can enable password protection in Settings.

TIP: Make sure to upgrade your TaoWallet to the latest version to see this feature.

How do I protect my funds from scammers?

Every wallet consists of two parts - public key and private key. TaoWallet stores your private key directly on your device. There are a couple of formats TaoWallet can display your private key in:

  • Private key - an unencrypted collection of numbers and letters that unlocks access to your address on various blockchains
  • Mnemonic phrase - 12 words used to secure your private key. Much easier to remember.

No service should ever ask you for your private key. Anyone with your private key can access your wallet and have FULL CONTROL of your funds.

I lost my backup, what do I do?

You can always have multiple copies of your backup, if you think you can store it safely. Any valid backup (private key/ mnemonic) will get you to the most current state of your wallet. We at TaoWallet, don’t have access to your wallet or your private key. We are not able to help you recover your backup if you lose your device and your backup. Please make sure you store your backup(s) in a safe place.

Can I access cold storage wallet in 'view-only' mode with TaoWallet?

The TrustWallet watch functionality allows users of cold storage wallets - Trezor, The TaoWallet watch functionality allows users of cold storage wallets: Ledger, KeepKey, or any other device - to access their wallet in a view-only mode. By ONLY importing a PUBLIC KEY, we ensure that no action can be performed inside the wallet, meaning no asset can be transferred out of the wallet or accessed in any way. That allows users to see how their crypto portfolio is performing while having their keys in a safe place.

Here is how you can do it with TaoWallet:

  • Open the TaoWallet
  • Choose 'import a wallet'
  • Select 'import your public key' -> Paste your address -> Import

I sent my TAO to a wrong address. What do I do?

TAO: m/44'/889'/0'/0

Can I switch from my existing wallet app like Metamask, MyEtherWallet, etc.?

You can export private key/recovery phrases from existing wallet app then import to TaoWallet.

Waihui

What is the difference between Waihui and a DeX?

Tao's philosophy on decentralized exchanges is quite different from others. In Tao's design for decentralized exchanges, Waihui is the core decentralized exchange protocol, which handles the order matching and execution. Waihui is integrated into the core layer of the Tao consensus.

A decentralized exchange (DEX) in Tao's design for DEXs is a relayer that interacts with the underlying Waihui protocol. Typically, a relayer will send/receive trade orders to/from Waihui which processes these trade orders.

TaoDEX will be the first relayer in Tao's decentralized exchange ecosystem. We expect TaoDex to be one of the most sophisticated Dexs out there, consequently users who like the Dex experience will use TaoDex. TaoDex will be the first to list any token running on top of Tao together with well-known cryptocurrencies such as BTC and ETH, and have the best liquidity for new Tao's tokens.

With Tao's almost zero-fee, 5-second confirmations and 2,000 transactions per second, all relayers interacting with the Waihui Protocol will be fully decentralized and very efficient.

What is a Relayer? How can I set up one?

A decentralized exchange (DEX) in Tao's design for DEXs is a relayer that interacts with the underlying Waihui protocol. Typically, a relayer will send/receive trade orders to/from Waihui which processes these trade orders.