Rapid increase of validators

I get the feeling that we’re seeing a quite rapid increase in the number of validators in the network. Which unfortunately increases the epochs time for us, node operators. I know about the upcoming changes, but what I am wondering (in the spirit of decentralization), is if there is any data on how many nodes that the Incognito team operates at this point? What I am referring to is the new easy-staking-we-host-your-node program that rolled out.

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Do you know approximately how many validators there were before the easy staking service was introduced? I feel like it was ~1800.

It’d be great to know the ROI on average depending on the number of validators. The devs referenced 40% p.a. before running costs when validators were ~2500.

If I remember correct during the slashing we dropped down to between 1700-1800 yes. Today there are 2119 validators. That’s an increase of over 20% in just a few months, in reality that means a 20% loss of node operator income.

I’m curious regarding this increase. Is it because we have attracted more people running nodes (which is good for decentralization), or is it because of easy-staking (which in theory could be seen as more incognito team-operated nodes).

Regarding ROI. According to my statistics, at the moment a node does 2.41 PRV/day (roughly $72/month). But it is decreasing every month. At the same time, we’ve seen a halving of PRV value, which makes calculating true ROI quite dark. :smile:

I’d hoped for releasing fixed committee nodes, as it would’ve increased community earnings. Instead, we’re getting more committee slots which means (correct me if I’m wrong) lesser individual reward per epoch, but shorter pending queues? In other words, more CPU usage for the same reward?

The price falls in PRV definitely have made it difficult for validators when you convert it all back into fiat returns. I’d point out though that prior to slashing there were around 2500 nodes (equates to ~1.91 prv per day per node) with ~800 of them being completely faulty and earning PRV effectively for free. If AVG earnings now are 2.41 it’s way better than it was prior to slashing and now opens up the possibility of more community slots.Ironically the slashing probably annoyed a lot of noobs who thought they should get PRV rewards without fulfilling their role.

I think you’re correct that this will lead to reduce block rewards but earning more frequently. 16 new slots versus 7 reduced from the fixed allocation seems like a better option if you’re a validator on the face of it though I suspect, if the additional slots came from the fixed allocation, block rewards wouldn’t reduce? Is that the case?

Hopefully with the renewed marketing push and the advent of pdex v3, you start to see PRVs price increase again. I’m encouraged by the last couple of months and aside from the yield aspect, I enjoy supporting the project in this capacity rather than simply purchasing the coin.

Also depends for validators what their cost base is. I figure there’s some people got in at a really good entry point when validation first started.

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Yeah from the $/PRV standpoint, I went all in at the totally wrong time. I’m quite deep down the hole at the moment. But that’s on me, I don’t regret it, because I’ve had fun with my node experiments, scripts and monitoring. I will keep supporting the network both with full and validator nodes. Tomorrow it’s time for another validator, exactly according to my spread sheet schedule. Eventually I might even make a profit. :stuck_out_tongue:

Yeah, I’ve had to do some math gymnastics trying to figure this out. I’m not sure if I just ended up confusing myself. :relaxed:

If the total block reward stays the same, increasing slots just result in being in committee more often without earning more. This means higher CPU/PRV for a node operator but no gain.

At the same time, if the fixed allocation is not increasing, it also means that the Incognito team gets a smaller % of the total reward. To make that equation work, the community nodes still get some gain from this change, although not as much as if the fixed slots would have been reduced or given to node operators.

Circling back to the original question. If we’re seeing a huge increase in Incognito operated nodes through the new staking function, that’s a step towards centralization again, because I am guessing you’re basically putting all those nodes in the same AWS center or something? :smirk:

I would eventually like to see no fixed nodes at all, because IMO they break the fairness and decentralization aspect of the network, as they are never slashed they keep getting a fixed reward even if they are turned off. But I understand that 2000 nodes, with the current PRV valuation, is nowhere near enough to secure the network.

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Yeah I agree with all those thoughts. @alias did mention though in a recent post that it’s unlikely the fixed nodes would fully disappear.

I’m not so phased by this personally, especially since it ends up funding other stuff (i.e the pdex token / prv pool) but their level of dominance should be much lower going forward to keep in the spirit of decentralization.

Nonetheless hope @Jared can find out the answer to your original question.

Reinvest all the way to recovery, I’m doing the same :smile:


I have pretty detailed records of ROI and earnings over the past year or more on Node Earnings Statistics - Updated 12/25/21


Thank you @Mike_Despo

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Looks like your numbers and my numbers corresponds at the moment, that is good. :grinning:

For November I had 16.9 PRV/week and December is 16.2 PRV/week. I have not recorded in details like you have, I would have to build that data retroactively. If I can figure out how to extract validator earnings from the blockchain.


January numbers show a decrease in nodes from 2119 to 2083. Performance still averages at 16.2 PRV/week per node for me.

The increase at the end of last year might just have been reinvestment into the staking service for previous node owners. @Jared, any chance the team wants to share some hard data on this? How many normal validator nodes are hosted by the Incognito team today?

i think we addressed these, and other similar comments in a recent post. I’ll just leave the reference here in case anyone’s looking. let us know if anything is still unclear.

I’d like to reiterate again for anyone reading: we are trying our best to slowly release these fixed nodes (increasing committee size to reduce fixed nodes dominance and then releasing those fixed slots). This is a point that keeps coming up – please understand that it is a process, and the dev team works continually on this.

None of this is easy.

We do not and would not. I understand you want the best for the project, and acknowledge that questions may be raised in part due to our deficiencies in communication. for that we apologise and strive to do better. but in my own personal opinion and speaking as the human behind the screen, the combative tone of these speculations assume the worst, dishearten the team, and can hurt productive conversation.

From our end, the Incognito team currently runs ~400 nodes on behalf of users opting to use Provide (including the staking service). These nodes are hosted across multiple geographically distinct data centers.

We cannot account for every change in node ownership. Anyone can run a node, or even their own formal or informal staking service. How they do so is entirely up to them.


I know. There’s a delicate balance of security and what you’re doing is extra hard because it’s so important when you’re holding value from other network chains.

At this very moment, Incognito is not a decentralized or trustless network. That is why I think transparency is so important because it’s the only way to build trust. Your team holds the responsibility of every single asset. Well, technically you could say it’s a shared responsibility because if the user drops the private keys, you cannot magically help her. :relaxed:

Thank you! This was the number I was looking for. It’s an important number.

  1. This is roughly the number of nodes that were slashed. It could mean that the majority of slashed node owners kept their money on the table, but some changed how they invested in the project. :+1:
  2. It’s almost 20% of the community-owned nodes. But this also means that these nodes, unfortunately, count as centralized. Which makes me sad, because we do not get community-driven consensus in February as Incognito-operated nodes will have 56% dominance. :disappointed_relieved:
    (We will most likely in May tho!)

However, what is important is to see how this number changes over time. Will it cannibalize on community operation or not? I would love it if the team could include this number in a monthly or bi-monthly project update, or even show it in real-time on the explorer.

I’ve spoken out before that I was personally against the Incognito-hosted staking service because I felt it was a step in the wrong direction. I understand the motivation, there were 700k PRV going out of staking, and giving investors an easy way of keeping it staked in the network was a good thing.

There are some unclear details of the future of this service tho. Are the nodes already split off in a completely separate organization? Do you have any plans on outsourcing the operation of these nodes to make them decentralized? Could this be a side-step to replacing fixed nodes (if you operate >34% of the community ones in the future)?

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If you’re a glass half-way empty kinda person, you might also draw the conclusion that the increase from 1700 nodes to 2100 nodes was all due to the staking service. In total, no community-operated nodes have been added since the day of the slashing. I hope we see a change to this in February.
Edit: as @SPAddict25 pointed out, this was an incorrect assumption.

PRV down 38% since this, let’s buy another node!

That’s not what @duc said. You are speculating and coming to incorrect conclusions.

He said 400 nodes inclusive of the staking service and Provide. Provide has been around much longer than the staking service. It means the increase from 1700 to 2100 nodes can’t be from the staking service.

Plus it’s easy falsified anyway. I’ve added to the vnodes that you’re including in that number and I know two other people that also did the same. I’m sure we weren’t the only people with PRV going much lower in price to increase nodes.

IMO this myopic focus on the staking service is one of the last things to be worried about. Incognito are trying to offer new and easy ways to stake especially for people that have zero capability to run their own nodes. Pnodes were originally meant to do this but production ceased etc.

It’s a really vanilla service that can be replicated by anyone. Shout out to @J053 for providing this to anyone that is interested but also thanks to the devs for offering such an easy and convenient way too.

Well crypto markets shitting themselves. Guess it’s time to buy MOARRRRRR vnodes since they go BRRRRRRRRRRR.


Ah right, my bad! Of course nodes were already hosted to cover previous provide rewards.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not against staking services, but I’m curious about the future of the Incognito hosted one.

I genuinely think we may see better numbers after February. I keep adding, two nodes more this month! I might even consider some extra now that we’re “on a discount”. :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes: