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Nodes on Polkadot Network

The Polkadot relay chain network consists of nodes and roles. Nodes are the network-level enti- ties physically executing the Polkadot software, and roles are protocol-level entities performing a particular purpose. Nodes may perform multiple roles. On the network level, the relay chain is open. Any node may run the software and participate as any of these types of nodes:

  • Light client: retrieves certain user-relevant data from the network. The availability of light clients is irrelevant. They don't perform a service for others.
  • Full node: retrieves all types of data, stores it long-term, and propagates it to others. Must be highly available.

RPCs and Light Nodes