As you know, new cryptocurrencies appear and disappear very quickly: over the past six months, dozens of projects did not last even 1-2 months after launch. The coin considered in this review – XNDA – is clearly aimed at a long existence. The stated goals of the project are to use the achievements of currently functioning successful cryptocurrencies, taking into account their shortcomings. To some extent, this has already been achieved.
The coin is a fork of PIVX and the development team did a great job reworking a huge amount of code, especially regarding the stability of the blockchain and the work of masternodes. In particular, a decent amount of legacy code was fixed and cut out, and problem areas were significantly optimized, which often led to disconnected nodes and subsequent blockchain splits in Dash/PIVX clones.
When studying XDNA materials, I was immediately pleased with the fact that all the documentation was created from scratch, without the copy-paste method from other projects or meaningless stucco from a huge number of cryptocurrency terms, which is what most of the coins appearing on the market are famous for. All ideas and technical points are described in sufficient detail in the Whitepaper, which is available in a dozen languages here – whitepaper. The project roadmap is very detailed and, as far as I can imagine, the deadlines for completing its points are being met. What is interesting and unusual is that the implementation of Roadmap items is displayed on the website (Roadmap) online. By the way, out of habit, you might think that the Roadmap is somehow short and incomplete – but the point is that the site has its own tab for several areas of development. Also, it is impossible not to note the thoughtful and stylish design of the XDNA wallet. This is not just a beautiful crypto-wallet, it has a certain functionality (more on this will be discussed below).
The XDNA team is trying to find a delicate balance between the interests of miners and investors. Deciphering the name as Dynamic-New-Adaptable is not just beautiful words, the coin has certain regulation mechanisms that allow it to be “alive” and respond to changes in the network.
The first innovation from XDNA is called BitGun:
This unusual solution was developed in order to change the classical ideas about mining, and in particular, the seemingly unshakable rule: the income of each miner is inversely proportional to the total hashrate of the coin network. In XDNA, the size of the block reward changes dynamically and depends on the nethash. The developers have provided 15 levels of BitGun, the difference between which is proportional to the series of Fibonacci numbers. The value of the BitGun level is determined by the average value of the nethash over the last 24 blocks.
The coin team explains the benefits of their idea as follows. With the usual reward distribution system, when the network grows, the miner receives less and less coins, and at very high nethash values, his income can generally become negligible. The BitGun block reward dynamic regulation algorithm allows to smooth out this situation, stabilizing the income of each particular miner even with the multiple growth of the network. During the test mining, which I conducted for a couple of days, nethash fluctuated by 1-2 levels of BitGun (about 1.5-3 times), and the number of coins mined was really about the same.
The table shows the parameters of BitGun version 2.0, and the figure shows a comparison of rewards when using the classic scheme (bottom line) and BitGun:
The second innovation in the XDNA coin is the T.N.T. system, which stands for Triple Node Technology. This is the first multi-level masternode system in which each type of node is allocated an individual coinbase output, which significantly increases the stability of the blockchain in general and the functioning of the masternodes themselves (MNs) in particular. Although it would seem that such a decision is obvious and logical, it is really an innovation that is not found in other masternode coins.
Each level requires a different amount of coins to set up an XDNA Masternode:
- Light Node – 1000 XDNA.
- Medium Node – 3000 XDNA.
- Full Node – 5000 XDNA.
During the entire period of POW mining, masternodes will bring their owners the following income:
- Light Node – 3% of the block
- Medium Node – 9% of the block
- Full Node – 15% of the block
It would seem that there is nothing new here – another multi-level MN system. The highlight of TNT is that if in other coins with multi-level MN each block receives the corresponding reward only ONE node, and no matter what level, in the TNT system, rewards are received by one MN from EACH level. It is obvious that such a decision, firstly, speaks of a well-thought-out and well-developed coin code, and secondly, it provides an opportunity for flexible investment and attracts both ordinary miners and large players.
Below is the principle of distribution of rewards for MH in XDNA and all other masternode coins.
BitGun’s block reward regulation directly affects the profitability of XDNA masternodes, as the absolute size of the MH reward increases with nethash growth. Below are the payback calculations for MH XDNA of various types.
And here is the real data on the income of a full one full XDNA node (provided by the developers):
The nice thing about the XDNA team is that they are open to change. Shortly after the launch of the coin, a miner with super-powerful equipment appeared on the network. What it was – an ASIC farm or FPGA – the disputes in the XDNA community have not subsided until now. The important thing is that this participant captured a significant share (up to 60%) of computing power and posed a direct threat to blockchain decentralization. In this regard, the XDNA team decided to fork. However, instead of choosing any of the available hashing algorithms, they developed their own algorithm – HEX.
According to the developers, the decision was made, in part, out of fear that FPGA adherents could quickly respond with the release of a new firmware or miner and the fork would be wasted. These fears are partly confirmed by an attack on the LUX coin network, carried out around the same time, which has a completely different algorithm than the keccak originally chosen in XDNA. The HEX algorithm was conceived in order to make the development of ASIC and FPGA mining of the coin as difficult as possible, and to provide maximum benefits to GPU miners. At first glance, HEX is little different from x16r, because it uses the same set of basic algorithms (kernels) and a pseudo-random approach to their selection. However, if you look at it, the calculation of the hash according to HEX is completely different. In the case of x16r, the hash value of the previous block determines a sequence of 16 kernels, and in the process of passing through this chain, it does not change by itself. But for HEX, the hash value calculated from the first kernel determines… the next kernel in the chain! Thus, throughout the chain of 16 basic algorithms, each new subsequent link cannot be predicted in advance.
The HEX algorithm has certain advantages over a significant part of existing algorithms:
- Stable GPU loading leads to better performance and longer hardware life;
- The unpredictable change of kernels in the chain complicates the development of ASIC / FPGA devices, which prevents the emergence of monopoly dominant miners on the network.
- This is not a “dummy algorithm”, like some of the currently popular algorithms, in which the GPU is idle for a significant amount of time, waiting for commands and not performing the actual cryptographic calculations;
- For all its saturation, the algorithm is rather “cold” (the temperature of two Nvidia 1080 cards in a closed case did not exceed 60 degrees at maximum intensity, the fan speed was 80%)
Currently, an open source miner and an optimized z-enemy miner for Nvidia are available for the HEX algorithm. Just in case, we would like to inform you that for the greatest stability and performance, the authors of z-enemy on this algorithm recommend launching with PL parameters of 60-70% and the maximum intensity supported by the card. Unfortunately, the XDNA team has not yet been able to present a miner for AMD with acceptable performance, but work is underway. In principle, it is worth noting the commendable fact that the developers are interested in expanding the audience at the expense of the owners of the “red” cards and are making considerable efforts for this, while in most cryptocurrency projects they do not seem to think that their coins can be effectively extract (or extract at all) only on the equipment of one manufacturer. UPD: according to the latest information from the XDNA team, they have made significant progress in the development of the AMD miner.
Cryptocurrency projects without a specific goal related to the real world are usually treated with caution, and rightly so. Few people want to invest in a masternode or spend resources on mining if it is a “coin for the sake of a coin”. In this aspect, XDNA developers are pursuing a very difficult but noble goal – to create a platform for charity, based on their coin. The non-profit XDNA Foundation should enable those in need of assistance to leave applications by verifying their identity and providing scans of documents and photo and video evidence, after which assistance can be provided both through the foundation and community members affected by this or that application.