42. What are RPC nodes, and how do they work?
Decentralized applications (dApps) require data from the blockchain to positively complete a specific user request. This can be sending transactions, retrieving block data or even evaluating the state of a particular blockchain. This is possible through Remote Procedure Call Data (RPC)nodes that connect dApps to the blockchain. Such RPC nodes allow Web3 applications to interact with a particular blockchain and easily access user data.
Today we will take a closer look at RPC nodes and discuss how they work. By the end of the lesson, you will already know exactly what such nodes are.
RPC procedures – what are they?
RPC procedures are a communication protocol that allows clients to communicate with a remote programme, in this case a server located on another network. And all this without having to know the server’s network.
We can use RPC from a computer to request resources from a remote server system. As a client, we make such a request and force the server to execute such a procedure, which is called a subroutine.
In the blockchain, decentralized dApp applications need such data from the blockchain to function properly. In this case, dApps is the client and the server is the RPC node.
RPC nodes – what are they?
An RPC node is a computer that has a client software blockchain. For example, it is a server that supports both the execution layer (EL) and the consensus layer (CL) of the Ethereum blockchain infrastructure.
In the Ethereum network, there are different types of nodes: lightweight, full and archived. The opposite is Solana, where developers can run both validator and RPC nodes. Validator nodes in Solana run Solana’s consensus protocol and receive rewards for block validation. Solana’s RPCs only act as a gateway for the Solana dApp and receive information about the blockchain.
How do remote procedure call (RPC) nodes work?
RPC is largely based on a client-server structure. Nodes are initiated by a client application that sends a specific request to the blockchain. Such a request is the name/information of a function or procedure to be executed. It also contains all the necessary parameters.
The Blockchain receives the request and executes it. If further parameters or additional function information are required, the blockchain retrieves them from the client request. The result is then returned to the client dApps.
Remote procedure call nodes require niche specialists experienced in blockchain development. dApps have different RPC models, so this knowledge requires continuous development and certification.
RPC nodes consist of several components:
- Server. This is where the client’s request comes in and the requested functions are executed.
- Client. The client component initiates the RPC and sends the request to the server.
- Communication protocols. TCP/IP. They enable communication between client and server components.
- Network configuration. RPC nodes require a network connection between client and server components. This can be done in many ways, including local area networks (LANs), wide area networks (WANs) and the Internet.
- Security. It is also of paramount importance when configuring an RPC node. Firewalls, secure protocols and access controls must be implemented to ensure the security of such a node.
- Management of the RPC node. For a node to function properly, it must be managed and maintained on an ongoing basis. This involves monitoring the network connection and the server component, as well as ensuring that the software is up to date. This increases the need for qualified engineers with experience in blockchain technology.
Using RPC nodes
Nodes can be found in the following areas, among others:
- Distributed applications. Nodes are useful for creating applications where all application logic is distributed across multiple systems.
- dApps. Nodes help create a seamless interface between the application and the chain of blocks.
- System integration. RPC helps in integrating legacy systems with new applications. Thus, they enable communication between systems that use different protocols and technologies for their operation.
- Creating an interactive interface. Nodes help wallets with multi-domain settings to create an interactive interface. This allows multiple nodes to interact with different chains and share information across different networks.
- Building applications with open microservices. Yes, RPC nodes are useful for this as well.
- Processing large blocks of data. With RPC nodes, we can make multiple calls and queries. This can even include searching for a specific block to encrypt the wallet present in dApps.
Why are RPCs so important for the blockchain?
For one simple reason. Using RPC nodes helps both developers and users themselves to use and create dApps.
Instead, the client gets the default option to interact with web servers and blockchain. This gives it access to the information it needs to perform an action or transaction across different wallets.
For example, if you connect your cryptocurrency wallet to a blockchain-based application, the required information is only passed to the blockchain via RPC nodes.
RPC nodes are software components that enable communication between applications, systems, and services. They are used to call various procedures or functions in applications on remote systems.
In addition, RPCs simplify the process of creating and integrating applications and make it easier to add new features and functions. However, to understand an RPC node well, one must first understand its architecture and components.
The use of RPC nodes continues to grow. This indicates increased user interest in applications. This is a good time to benefit from this boom and acquire knowledge about RPC.