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Æternity node API

This document: * Provides an overview of the API exposed by the Aeternity node; * Defines the Channels WebSocket API of the Aeternity node; * Describes the intended usage of the user API of the Aeternity node.

Overview

The Aeternity node exposes the following APIs: * Peer-to-peer network API. It consists of one TCP endpoint: * It is encrypted and authenticated using the Noise protocol; * The schema of its payload is defined; * It is meant to be exposed on the Internet; * Its TCP port is configurable. * Its static Noise key pair is configurable. * User API. It consists of the following TCP endpoints: * External HTTP endpoint; * It is defined via Swagger schema; * It is meant to be exposed on the Internet; * Its TCP port is configurable. * Internal HTTP endpoint; * It is defined via Swagger schema; * It is not meant to be exposed on the Internet; * Its TCP port is configurable. * Internal Channels WebSocket endpoint. * It is defined in the rest of this document; * It is not meant to be exposed on the Internet; * Its TCP port is configurable. * Range of external Channels noise endpoints. It consists of as many TCP endpoints as needed. * They are used for connecting as a responder role in channel communication; * It is up to the node operator to define the range to be used; Their configuration is not part of the Aeternity node; * They are encrypted and authenticated using the Noise protocol using dynamic keys; * The schema of its payload is defined; * They are meant to be exposed on the Internet;

Channels WebSocket API definition

NOTE: A description of the newer JSON-RPC-based protocol can be found here

Description

Channels provide means for off-chain transactions with functionality of on-chain dispute resolution. Channels require persisted connections to Aeternity nodes. Each participant in a channel uses one's own trusted node. For persistence of this connection, WebSockets are used. Channels have on-chain state that persists who the participants are and the total amout of tokens put into the channel. Each channel also has an off-chain state representing the latest distribution of the balance of the channel. It can be updated - each new state is co-signed by both parties and only then it becomes the latest valid state of the channel. At any point in time channel can be closed either unilaterally or through mutual agreement.

Connection

The Aeternity node supports an endpoint with a configurable port where the WebSocket's clients connect. It is located on /channel.

The node could serve multiple channel WebSocket clients. Their number is configured in the epoch.yaml. When all WebSocket connections are consumed - any new incoming connections will be queued. The queue has a maximum size and when it is reached, any new incoming connections will be rejected with an error code 400. This is to prevent the node of being overloaded with WebSocket connections.

General message types

All messages have the format:

Name Type Description Required
action string what is the action Yes
tag string additional info for the action No
payload object data for action Yes

User API - intended usage