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Port forwarding process for your DigiByte node

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If you decided to set up a DigiByte node, you’ve probably heard that you need “Port Forwarding” to contribute to the DigiByte blockchain in the optimal way.

This technical expression usually worries the beginners. Actually they’re not considered unfair because each router model has different configuration menu about that. This means it’s really difficult to find a simple guide for the port forwarding process.

I don’t want to start with “Find this menu then click that button” style instructions that you can easily find on the internet. I prefer to start by explaining to you the background of the process and why we need it. I think understanding the basics about port forwarding is going to assist you to find the necessary settings easily.

When you run a DigiByte node, it starts scanning the network to find the other DigiByte nodes to sync its block data. It connects to predefined seed servers to get some ip addresses which belongs to recent live nodes and it also scans the port 12024 to find other public DigiByte nodes.

If you run your DigiByte node without port forwarding, you connect to nodes which provided by seed servers to perform basic wallet functions like transacting on the network, but you will be unreachable for the rest of the DigiByte nodes, so you can’t relay the blockchain data to others.

That’s why we are opening the port 12024 on the router then forwarding it to local ip address of the computer that our DigiByte node is running on. By doing this we are telling the router “Whenever someone tries to reach the port 12024, they are here for the DigiByte, so send them through to my node”.

Now that you understand the basics, you can start to configure your router.

First step is finding the local ip address of your computer.

For Windows:

1) Open start menu and click in the search box in the lower right and type cmd then click the Command Prompt match.

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2) Type ipconfig at the command prompt and hit enter.

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3) IPv4 Address is your local ip. Please note it.

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For macOS:

1) Click on the Apple icon in the top-left corner of your desktop and open System Preferences.

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2) Then click on Network.

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3) Select your connection type (WiFi or Ethernet) and click on it. (It should have a green dot if it’s active.) Note your local IP address.

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For Linux:

1) If you are using a desktop UI, look for the network connection icon which is located top right of the title bar. Click that icon and select Connection Information from cascading menu. A new Connection Information window will appear. Note IPv4 IP Address from that window.

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2) If you are using the command line, type;

/sbin/ifconfig

and press enter.

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3) A lot of information will be displayed on the terminal screen. Find your active network adapter then note “inet addr”.

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Now you know the local ip address of your computer. Next step is entering the user interface of your router.

We can reach the user interface of a router by using any web browser but we need to know the local ip address of the router as well. There’s not too much possibility about that. Actually you may already saw this information while trying to find out the local ip address of your computer. It usually shown as;

“Default Gateway, Default Route or Router address…”

according to your operation system. If you couldn’t notice that, I suggest you to visit whatsmyrouterip.com. This website is capable of detecting the local ip addresses of most routers without any action.

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If your router ip can not be detected, you can manually find it by following the instructions on that web site. You will also see the default username and password information of the almost all router models here.

Once you find your router’s ip address, type it in the address bar of your web browser and log in to your router interface. Please remember, each router model has a unique user interface and configuration so there is no easy way to clarify the following process. I will explain through a generic model and you can find the similar settings for your router by referring PcWinTech’s Port Forwarding Guide.

First of all, we need to find the “Port Forwarding” section. Please browse the navigation menu of your router to find it. It may have its own section or it can be found under a related submenu.

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When you enter the “Port Forwarding” menu, you should see something similar to “Add new rule”. Please click it and fill the fields according to information below. Please remember, all fields here may not be available in your router menu or they may have different names.

Rule Name: It can be anything explaining your purpose.

Lan IP: This is the local ip address of your computer which we found at the beginning of the process. Please type it here or select it from drop down menu if possible.

Protocol Type: Select “TCP”.

LAN & WAN Ports: Type “12024” into the all port related fields.

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If your router has multiple internet source inputs like DSL and Cable etc… you may also need to select your active internet source. Cable internet usually plugs through WAN port (RJ45) and DSL has a telephone socket (RJ11).

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Save your port forwarding rule configuration and restart your router then run your DigiByte core wallet when it is ready. Go to “Help > Debug window > Information” tab on your core wallet. Look at the “Number of connections” line. You must see the number of incoming connections here. If the “In” section still shows zero, please wait a few minutes. It may take some time for the nodes to find you.

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If you’ve waited enough and still don’t have an incoming connection, please check your firewall settings first. You may need to allow your DigiByte wallet to accept incoming connections.

If you already set your firewall as required, you can check your port forwarding rule by using canyouseeme.org to be sure if everything is fine. The tool will detect your public IP without any action, you only need to type“12024” into “Port to check” field and click “Check Port”.

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If you see the “Success” message this means everything is fine. Just wait until the other nodes to find you. But if you see an “Error” message this means your port forwarding rule is not working as expected. There may be a lot of reasons which cause this issue. Please check the steps below to troubleshooting.

1) Please double check your port forwarding rule on your router and be sure everything is configured as needed. All modern routers fixes your local ip when a port forwarding rule is defined. But some old routers may need to fix your local ip manually first, otherwise it changes every time you restart the router and this situation causes your port forwarding rule to be invalid. Please find your local ip as explained at the beginning of the article and check if it matches your port forwarding rule. If it is different, find out something similar to “Lan > Clients” section in your router settings and reserve your computer’s local ip then reconfigure your port forwarding rule accordingly.

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2) Check your firewall settings on your operating system or security software. You may need to allow DigiByte core to accept incoming connections.

3) Ask your internet service provider if they have restrictions about port forwarding. If they have a blocking policy, ask them to unblock first. If it is not possible then you can try using a VPN service to bypass their blocking. But remember, free VPN services are not fast enough and they have some data transfer limitations.

Now it is time to enjoy being one of thousands of nodes contributing to DigiByte Blockchain! You can see your public node on the nodes.digibyte.host map in a couple of hours.

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Please remember, this map shows only the public nodes which has port forwarding. If you want to see all the DigiByte nodes which are about 12.000, you can use the DigiByte node crawler app for iOS and Android.

Written by Murat, DGBAT & DigiByte Core member

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