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Blockchain and Networking

Application Specific Integrated Circuit. It's even in the name!

You can't just run normal software on ASICs. It's not a computer. 
They're literally hard-wired to do one thing - and do it well.
Switch ASICs, for example, are good for switching network packets 
around. Though (I would assume) they
can't do any kind of hashing, much less Bitcoin-specific stuff.

Trying to mine Bitcoin on switch ASICs would be like trying to transfer
water through a 2.4GHz WiFi connection - both are absolutely 
preposterous ideas.


Filip Hruska
Linux System Administrator

Dne 1/9/18 v 17:02 Michael Crapse napsal(a):
> The definition of an ASIC is that it has only one use. Just because half of
> a 100gb switch is not in use doesn't mean that you can mine bitcoin, or run
> a blockchain with the asics not in use..
> On 9 January 2018 at 08:49, Jean | ddostest.me via NANOG <nanog at nanog.org>
> wrote:
>> BTC miners use asics. Big switches/routers use 100Gb asics. Some
>> switches have multiple 100 Gb asics and sometimes only half is use or
>> even less.
>> I guess it could be nice for some smaller telcos to generate some profit
>> during off peak period. I don't know how feasible and I fully understand
>> that the vendor warranty should be instantly void.
>> Also, sometimes telcos have off the shelves spare that gather dust for
>> years... It could be interesting to also generate few coins.
>> Jean
>> On 18-01-09 10:31 AM, Naslund, Steve wrote:
>>> Sure but there are lots of blockchains other than bitcoin.  A lot of
>> real smart people do not even suspect that bitcoin is a long term survivor
>> due to its long transaction times.  Which blockchains do you want to
>> support?  150GB may not seem like a lot (although a lot of my gear does not
>> have the memory to cache that) but 10 of those is beyond the memory on the
>> vast majority of network gear I am aware of.  That sure looks like a
>> slippery slope to me.   Now that a lot of network switching and routers can
>> support applications, you could just host all of your apps on them just
>> like you could do all of your routing in your servers.   The question for
>> you is what responsibilities do you want to take on.   That probably
>> depends on what business you are in.
>>>> There is absolutely no reason that the networking equipment itself
>> can't both operate the blockchain and keep a full copy.  It's a pretty good
>> bet that your own routers will probably be online;  if not, you have bigger
>> problems.
>>>> The storage requirements aren't particularly onerous.  The entire
>> Bitcoin blockchain is around 150GB, with several orders of magnitude more
>> transactions (read: config changes) than you're likely to see even on a
>> very large network.  SSDs are small >enough and reliable enough now that
>> the physical space requirements are quite small.
>>> Steven Naslund
>>> Chicago IL