There's a splendidly succinct explanation on many faucet websites of why testnet & stagenet coins shouldn't acquire value, but I'm asking how.

My first guess is that Monero's twice-yearly scheduled protocol upgrades (“hard forks”) somehow ‘reset’ things, but that just raises awkward questions about how mainnet doesn't get ‘reset’. Obviously I must be wrong, because if there were a ‘reset’ mechanism, the market would be crazy to bestow a $843 334 892 marketcap upon mainnet. Is it something to do with the hard-coded seed-node list (which afficionados of certain other crypto-assets like to think of as Proof-of-Work's dirty secret Unique Node List)?


I'd say they do have some value. For example, it's useful to be able to get hold of some stagenet coins in order to do some testing. Ultimately, someone had to mine some blocks to generate those coins, so I'd be willing to pay a tiny amount to acquire some stagenet coins, in order to save me the time and trouble of mining them myself. Luckily, it's so cheap to mine the coins that people give them away for free out of kindness.

The warnings on the first link in your post are mostly to prevent people from being conned into buying stagenet coins for the same price as mainnet coins. They're obviously not the same thing and don't have the same value.

It's possible that people could collectively decide to "reset" the testnets and stagenets that are available by wiping the blockchain clean and starting with a new genesis block. But that's not the main reason that stagenet/testnet coins do not have significant value.

| improve this answer | |
  • I've just noticed a related question in the sidebar. From that discussion, it seems that testnet coins can vanish into thin air (which I already knew to be the case for testnet-bitcoin). So I guess I'm going to have to find out what's meant by a “massive reorg”if I'm to answer my corollary-question about what stops mainnet coins from vanishing the same way. – user1425 Jan 5 '19 at 17:11

Just to pick up on your hard coded seed node list part of you question -

You are misunderstanding what the hard coded seeds are for, given the links you posted. These are not the same as "validator" nodes as used in other projects. The seed nodes are for bootstrapping the p2p network. When a new participant wants to join the network, they need to have a way to discover other peers. This is called peer discovery and is a common problem in all p2p networks.

It has nothing to do with validation or PoW.

| improve this answer | |
  • Thanks, that's what I thought. My tangential aside wasn't very helpful, but I was wondering (before I saw this question) if new hard coded seeds are ever used to reset testnet & stagenet. – user1425 Jan 5 '19 at 18:04

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy