OptChain: Optimal Transactions Placement for Scalable Blockchain Sharding

07/16/2020
by   Lan N. Nguyen, et al.
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A major challenge in blockchain sharding protocols is that more than 95 transactions are cross-shard. Not only those cross-shard transactions degrade the system throughput but also double the confirmation time, and exhaust an already scarce network bandwidth. Are cross-shard transactions imminent for sharding schemes? In this paper, we propose a new sharding paradigm, called OptChain, in which cross-shard transactions are minimized, resulting in almost twice faster confirmation time and throughput. By treating transactions as a stream of nodes in an online graph, OptChain utilizes a lightweight and on-the-fly transaction placement method to group both related and soon-related transactions into the same shards. At the same time, OptChain maintains a temporal balance among shards to guarantee the high parallelism. Our comprehensive and large-scale simulation using Oversim P2P library confirms a significant boost in performance with up to 10 folds reduction in cross-shard transactions, more than twice reduction in confirmation time, and 50 in throughput. When combined with Omniledger sharding protocol, OptChain delivers a 6000 transactions per second throughput with 10.5s confirmation time.

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