Using Systemd

Install Requirements

In addition to using the Docker image, there are ways to run nodes with the Linux system daemon as a Systemd service. The service will work on most Linux operating systems. However, Debian/Ubuntu is the only environment in which all tests have been completed, and the manual has been written based on this environment.

First, create a service account to run the node service.

adduser BIFROST_SERVICE --system --no-create-home

Next, create a local directory to store the chain data of the Bifrost Network. This directory will contain the node binary and all block information collected from the genesis block to the present and additional session keys of the corresponding validator node.

# Add sudo at the beginning if it doesn't work
mkdir -p /var/lib/bifrost-data

After you download the latest node execution binary and move it to the directory you created earlier, you must set permissions of the binary and ownership of the directory. You can check the latest releases by going to our GitHub repository under the releases page.

# step 1. Download the latest bifrost-node binary & bifrost-testnet.json
wget ""
wget ""

# step 2. Grant execute permission & move to chain data directory
chmod +x bifrost-node
mv bifrost-node bifrost-testnet.json /var/lib/bifrost-data

# step 3. Set ownership
chown -R BIFROST_SERVICE /var/lib/bifrost-data

Run the Node Service

Next, you need to create a Systemd configuration file. In the example below, change YOUR_NODE_NAME to the desired name of your node service, and save the file in the following directory.

sudo vi /etc/systemd/system/bifrost-node.service
Description="Bifrost-node systemd service"

ExecStart=/var/lib/bifrost-data/bifrost-node \
    --base-path /var/lib/bifrost-data \
    --chain /var/lib/bifrost-data/bifrost-testnet.json \
    --port 30333 \
    --validator \
    --state-pruning archive \
    --trie-cache-size 0 \
    --runtime-cache-size 64 \
    --name "YOUR_NODE_NAME"


Now, with the two lines of the command below, the node service will run in the background.

systemctl enable bifrost-node.service
systemctl start bifrost-node.service

Check Logs

To check your running bifrost-node service logs, execute the command below.

journalctl -f -u bifrost-node

If the node service has successfully been executed, the chain information will be shown as the following.

2023-07-19 17:02:53 BIFROST Network
2023-07-19 17:02:53 ✌️  version 1.2.3-0d1811a5e80
2023-07-19 17:02:53 ❤️  by bifrost-platform, 2022-2023
2023-07-19 17:02:53 📋 Chain specification: BIFROST Development
2023-07-19 17:02:53 🏷  Node name: jolly-grandfather-7771
2023-07-19 17:02:53 👤 Role: AUTHORITY
2023-07-19 17:02:53 💾 Database: RocksDb at /var/folders/vg/xzyl_nmd77x5kcvbryssc5gm0000gn/T/substrateutNaBp/chains/dev/db/full
2023-07-19 17:02:53   Native runtime: thebifrost-dev-301 (bifrost-dev-1.tx1.au1)
2023-07-19 17:02:53 🔨 Initializing Genesis block/state (state: 0x7c59…74e5, header-hash: 0x469c…993b)
2023-07-19 17:02:53 🔨 Running Frontier DB migration from version 1 to version 2. Please wait.
2023-07-19 17:02:53 ✔️ Successful Frontier DB migration from version 1 to version 2 (0 entries).
2023-07-19 17:02:53 👴 Loading GRANDPA authority set from genesis on what appears to be first startup.
2023-07-19 17:02:54 Using default protocol ID "sup" because none is configured in the chain specs
2023-07-19 17:02:54 🏷  Local node identity is: 12D3KooWLvfoahrVYuwGjvNKyyWgkWSvBT9TofHvNGdiexgS3hRL
2023-07-19 17:02:54 💻 Operating system: macos
2023-07-19 17:02:54 💻 CPU architecture: aarch64
2023-07-19 17:02:54 📦 Highest known block at #0
2023-07-19 17:02:54 〽️ Prometheus exporter started at
2023-07-19 17:02:54 Running JSON-RPC HTTP server: addr=, allowed origins=["*"]
2023-07-19 17:02:54 Running JSON-RPC WS server: addr=, allowed origins=["*"]

Since chain data needs to be synced starting from the genesis block, the information that it is currently syncing will be shown as the following output. You can proceed to the next steps only when the sync is complete, and it may take up to several days at most.

To quickly synchronize your chain data, follow this link.

2023-07-19 17:06:20 ⚙️  Syncing, target=#8037656 (2 peers), best: #4371 (0xd39a…4f76), finalized #4200 (0x79ee…2eec), ⬇ 485.5kiB/s ⬆ 38.0kiB/s
2023-07-19 17:06:25 ⚙️  Syncing 745.8 bps, target=#8037658 (3 peers), best: #8100 (0xac9e…cba6), finalized #7800 (0xb93d…839f), ⬇ 334.1kiB/s ⬆ 24.0kiB/s
2023-07-19 17:06:30 ⚙️  Syncing 676.0 bps, target=#8037660 (3 peers), best: #11480 (0xbdbf…85f2), finalized #11400 (0x612b…7853), ⬇ 409.8kiB/s ⬆ 23.4kiB/s
2023-07-19 17:06:35 ⚙️  Syncing 596.8 bps, target=#8037661 (3 peers), best: #14465 (0xcce8…aadb), finalized #14400 (0x8f77…7e6b), ⬇ 356.1kiB/s ⬆ 24.5kiB/s
2023-07-19 17:06:40 ⚙️  Syncing 646.8 bps, target=#8037663 (3 peers), best: #17700 (0xf0a1…36d6), finalized #17408 (0x467b…63bf), ⬇ 372.7kiB/s ⬆ 9.2kiB/s
2023-07-19 17:06:45 ⚙️  Syncing 596.4 bps, target=#8037665 (3 peers), best: #20682 (0xcc4c…2ca9), finalized #20480 (0x1d99…7288), ⬇ 340.3kiB/s ⬆ 12.3kiB/s
2023-07-19 17:06:50 ⚙️  Syncing 560.2 bps, target=#8037666 (3 peers), best: #23485 (0x83ba…6fae), finalized #23400 (0xa031…a7e0), ⬇ 399.4kiB/s ⬆ 9.9kiB/s
2023-07-19 17:06:55 ⚙️  Syncing 575.0 bps, target=#8037668 (3 peers), best: #26362 (0xb11c…7fc4), finalized #26112 (0xbaa5…6c61), ⬇ 328.7kiB/s ⬆ 12.8kiB/s
2023-07-19 17:07:00 ⚙️  Syncing 579.4 bps, target=#8037670 (3 peers), best: #29259 (0xa287…cf05), finalized #29184 (0x7ac8…55cb), ⬇ 353.6kiB/s ⬆ 7.8kiB/s
2023-07-19 17:07:05 ⚙️  Syncing 595.4 bps, target=#8037671 (3 peers), best: #32237 (0xfc62…6b12), finalized #32100 (0x95cd…0c27), ⬇ 338.3kiB/s ⬆ 14.9kiB/s
2023-07-19 17:07:10 ⚙️  Syncing 590.2 bps, target=#8037673 (3 peers), best: #35191 (0x3b06…9e27), finalized #35100 (0xd461…5ab7), ⬇ 330.9kiB/s ⬆ 8.7kiB/s

When the chain data is completely synchronized, newly generated blocks will start to synchronize one by one at every block time as follows.

2023-07-19 08:08:09  Imported #5384451 (0xd7a8…011f)    
2023-07-19 08:08:10 💤 Idle (25 peers), best: #5384451 (0xd7a8…011f), finalized #5384449 (0x1ae1…fdf3), ⬇ 47.7kiB/s ⬆ 49.5kiB/s    
2023-07-19 08:08:12  Imported #5384452 (0x9bf4…9710)    
2023-07-19 08:08:15  Imported #5384453 (0x90af…653a)    
2023-07-19 08:08:15 💤 Idle (25 peers), best: #5384453 (0x90af…653a), finalized #5384450 (0x8026…f68a), ⬇ 37.3kiB/s ⬆ 36.9kiB/s    
2023-07-19 08:08:18  Imported #5384454 (0x5c80…9b84)    
2023-07-19 08:08:20 💤 Idle (25 peers), best: #5384454 (0x5c80…9b84), finalized #5384452 (0x9bf4…9710), ⬇ 38.0kiB/s ⬆ 46.4kiB/s    
2023-07-19 08:08:21  Imported #5384455 (0x91d0…de42)    
2023-07-19 08:08:24  Imported #5384456 (0xb7e0…832e)    
2023-07-19 08:08:25 💤 Idle (25 peers), best: #5384456 (0xb7e0…832e), finalized #5384454 (0x5c80…9b84), ⬇ 46.2kiB/s ⬆ 44.2kiB/s    
2023-07-19 08:08:27  Imported #5384457 (0xcc84…0e00)    
2023-07-19 08:08:30  Imported #5384458 (0xc499…2475)    
2023-07-19 08:08:30 💤 Idle (25 peers), best: #5384458 (0xc499…2475), finalized #5384455 (0x91d0…de42), ⬇ 28.5kiB/s ⬆ 44.0kiB/s    

Key Setup and Bonding

The scripts that we provide to proceed with the remaining detailed setup processes are written in Node.js. Install the required packages and execute the following commands to receive the script.

# step 1. install node.js and npm
# skip this step if node.js & npm are already installed on your environment
sudo apt update
sudo apt install -y nodejs npm

# step 2. clone the bifrost node git repository
git clone

# step 3. install the required packages
cd bifrost-node/tools
npm install

We now proceed with the key setting required to allow the validator node to perform the process of block generation and finalization. From this step onwards, the chain data synchronization of the running node must be completed.

First, validator nodes essentially require two Ethereum-style accounts, the controller and stash accounts, and in the case of the full nodes, an additional relayer account is required. The stash account must have enough BFC to deposit as much as the initial self-bond, and the controller account only needs enough balance to pay for some transactions. If you need to create a new account, you can run the following commands. Make sure that you are in the tools directory.

# Generate validator accounts

# Case 1. generate accounts for basic nodes
npm run create_accounts

# Case 2. generate accounts for full nodes
npm run create_accounts -- --full

After executing the command, the available new validator accounts will be printed as follows. You must send enough BFC to each account that meets the requirements to proceed to the next process.

Next, the validator node must issue and register session keys to be used in the consensus algorithm. The process can be performed by executing the following command.

npm run set_session_keys -- \
  --controllerPrivate "YOUR_CONTROLLER_PRIVATE_KEY"
npm run set_session_keys -- \
  --controllerPrivate 0x5fb92d6e98884f76de468fa3f6278f8807c48bebc13595d45af5bdc4da702133

This command will generate three session keys for your node. Each key has their own purpose. Aura is for block creation, grandpa is for block finalization, and ImOnline is for node liveness. The generated keys will be stored in your chain data directory. The directory path will look like this: /var/lib/bifrost-data/chains/{testnet|mainnet}/keystore.

Finally, it is necessary to deposit the self-bonds of the validator node to form the initial voting power. The process can be performed by executing the following command.

# case 1. join as a basic node
npm run join_validator_candidates -- \
  --controllerPrivate "YOUR_CONTROLLER_PRIVATE_KEY" \
  --stashPrivate "YOUR_STASH_PRIVATE_KEY" \

# case 2. join as a full node
npm run join_validator_candidates -- \
  --controllerPrivate "YOUR_CONTROLLER_PRIVATE_KEY" \
  --stashPrivate "YOUR_STASH_PRIVATE_KEY" \
  --relayerPrivate "YOUR_RELAYER_PRIVATE_KEY" \
npm run join_validator_candidates -- \
  --controllerPrivate 0x5fb92d6e98884f76de468fa3f6278f8807c48bebc13595d45af5bdc4da702133 \
  --stashPrivate 0x234871e7f7520af0cfc9f8547057b283c628be93a90b393aa19be1279ee52b4a \
  --relayerPrivate 0xcc01ee486e8717dc3911ede9293b767e29ce66f5c987da45887cb61822700117 \
  --bond 1000

If all of the above processes have been successfully completed, the amount of BFC deposited from the stash account will be deducted from the wallet, and your controller account will participate in the active validator update process at the next round. You can check whether or not you successfully joined the validator pool on the following page.

If the tier of the validator node to be operated is a full node, it must be operated with the relayer. The manual for relayer setup can be found in the "Setting up a Relayer" section below.

Update Node Client

As Bifrost Network development continues, it will sometimes be necessary to upgrade your node client. Node operators will be notified on our Discord channel or by personal contacts when upgrades are available and whether they are necessary (some client upgrades are optional).

Before upgrading your node client, please keep a backup file of your chain data to prevent any further data, keys, or credential losses.

# Stop and delete bifrost-node binary
systemctl stop bifrost-node.service
rm /var/lib/bifrost-data/bifrost-node

# Download the latest bifrost-node binary
wget ""

# Grant execute permission & move to chain data directory
chmod +x bifrost-node
chown BIFROST_SERVICE bifrost-node
mv bifrost-node /var/lib/bifrost-data

systemctl restart bifrost-node.service

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