Warp sync and BEEFY

BEEFY is a new gadget to facilitate bridging.

Warp sync is a feature of Polkadot to allow a validator to download all relevant state in a few minutes and be up and running from scratch without relying on snapshot services.

Warp sync is awesome! Unfortunately, it is incompatible with BEEFY at the moment.

BEEFY will be active in Kusama soon. At this point, any validator losing their storage will not be able to restore their BEEFY state from warp sync. According to the matrix 1kv accouncement channel, validators are expected to again use a snapshot service instead of warp sync.

Links to two snapshot websites (polkashots and stakeworld) were provided in the announcement. However, they have been inactive since april 2023 and july 2023 respectively.

Gov2 is no longer willing to fund snapshot providers, specifically because warp sync exists.

It is always possible that a storage bug exists, forcing validators to restore from a snapshot at the same time. It has happened at least once before.

In other words, the incompatibility of warp sync and beefy is a risk to the network’s liveness.

I am therefore urging the interested parties to fix the incompatibility between warp-sync and BEEFY prior to deployment of BEEFY on polkadot.


Who exactly do we need action from to fix this? Sounds like quite a dire issue - let me know if I can help.

A couple ideas to address Nicolas concern:

  • Begin funding snapshot providers again
  • Wait to go live with BEEFY until the BEEFY+WarpSync issue is resolved

I think it’s unrealistic and dangerous to presume validator operators will setup their own personal snapshot services. As a reference point, many validator-op’s do not even follow the established basic maintenance process, and they upgrade their node while it’s live. They then tend to have their node blow up when a new versions institutes a change, such as changing the path’s to things. Not being negative or slinging mud, just trying to convey what’s realistic and likely so reality is contemplated.

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The incompatibility between BEEFY and warp sync was addressed as part of this issue: Make Beefy work with GRANDPA warp sync · Issue #2627 · paritytech/polkadot-sdk · GitHub . They should work together now.

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