Setting up a GoShimmer node

This page describes how to setup your own GoShimmer node in the GoShimmer testnet with Docker.

DISCLAIMER: Note that there will be breaking changes frequently (approx. bi-weekly) where the entire network needs to upgrade. If you don't have time to continuously monitor and upgrade your node, then running a GoShimmer node might not be for you. We want to emphasize that running a GoShimmer node requires proper knowledge in Linux and IT related topics such as networking and so on. It is not meant as a node to be run by people with little experience in the mentioned fields. Do not plan to run any production level services on your node/network.

Why you should run a node
Installing GoShimmer with Docker
Running the GoShimmer node
Managing the GoShimmer node lifecycle
Setting up the Grafana dashboard

Why you should run a node

Running a node in the GoShimmer testnet helps us in the following ways:

  • It increases the amount of nodes in the network and thus lets it form a more realistic network.
  • Your node will be configured to send debug log messages to a centralized logger from which we can assess and debug research questions and occurring problems.
  • Your node is configured to send metric data to a centralized analysis server where we store information such as resource consumption, traffic, FPC vote context processing and so on. This data helps us further fostering the development of GoShimmer and assessing network behavior.
  • If you expose your HTTP API port, you provide an entrypoint for other people to interact with the network.

Note that any metric data is anonymous.

Installing GoShimmer with Docker

Hardware Requirements

Note that we do not provide a Docker image or binaries for ARM based systems such as Raspberry Pis.

We recommend running GoShimmer on a x86 VPS with following minimum hardware specs:

  • 2 cores / 4 threads
  • 4 GB of memory
  • 40 GB of disk space

A cheap CX21 Hetzner instance is thereby sufficient.

If you plan on running your GoShimmer node from home, please only do so if you know how to properly configure NAT on your router, as otherwise your node will not correctly participate in the network.

In the following sections we are going to use a CX21 Hetzner instance with Ubuntu 20.04 while being logged in as root

Lets first upgrade the packages on our system:

apt update && apt dist-upgrade -y

Install Docker

Install needed dependencies:

apt-get install \
     apt-transport-https \
     ca-certificates \
     curl \
     gnupg-agent \

Add Docker’s official GPG key:

curl -fsSL | apt-key add -

Verify that the GPG key matches:

apt-key fingerprint 0EBFCD88
pub   rsa4096 2017-02-22 [SCEA]
      9DC8 5822 9FC7 DD38 854A  E2D8 8D81 803C 0EBF CD88
uid           [ unknown] Docker Release (CE deb) <>
sub   rsa4096 2017-02-22 [S]

Add the actual repository:

add-apt-repository \
   "deb [arch=amd64] \
   $(lsb_release -cs) \

Update the package index:

apt-get update

And finally, install docker:

apt-get install docker-ce docker-ce-cli

On windows-subsystem for Linux (WSL2) it may be necessary to start docker seperately:

/etc/init.d/docker start

Note, this may not work on WSL1.

Check whether docker is running by executing docker ps:

docker ps
CONTAINER ID        IMAGE               COMMAND             CREATED             STATUS              PORTS               NAMES

Install Docker Compose

Docker compose gives us the ability to define our services with docker-compose.yml files instead of having to define all container parameters directly on the CLI.

Download docker compose:

curl -L "$(uname -s)-$(uname -m)" -o /usr/local/bin/docker-compose

Make it executable:

chmod +x /usr/local/bin/docker-compose

Check that docker compose works:

docker-compose --version
docker-compose version 1.26.0, build d4451659

Define the docker-compose.yml

First, lets create a user defined bridged network. Unlike the already existing bridge network, the user defined one will have container name DNS resolution for containers within that network. This is useful if later we want to setup additional containers which need to speak with the GoShimmer container.

docker network create --driver=bridge shimmer

Lets create a folder holding our docker-compose.yml:

mkdir /opt/goshimmer

Lets create a folder holding our database:

cd /opt/goshimmer
mkdir db
chmod 0777 db

Finally, lets create our docker-compose.yml:

nano docker-compose.yml

and add following content:

version: '3.3'

      name: shimmer

    image: iotaledger/goshimmer:latest
    container_name: goshimmer
    hostname: goshimmer
    stop_grace_period: 2m
      - "./db:/tmp/mainnetdb:rw"   
      - "/etc/localtime:/etc/localtime:ro"
      # Autopeering 
      - ""
      # Gossip
      - ""
      # FPC
      - ""
      # HTTP API
      - ""
      # Dashboard
      - ""
      # pprof profiling
      - ""
      - AUTOPEERING_PORT=14626
      - GOSSIP_PORT=14666
    command: >
      - outside

If performance is a concern, you can also run your containers with network_mode: "host", however, you must then adjust the hostnames in the configs for the corresponding containers and perhaps also create some iptable rules to block traffic from outside accessing your services directly.

Note how we are setting up NATs for different ports:


It is important that the ports are correctly mapped so that the node for example actively participates in FPC votes or can gain inbound neighbors.

If the UDP NAT mapping is not configured correctly, GoShimmer will terminate with an error message stating to check the NAT configuration

Running the GoShimmer node

Within the /opt/goshimmer folder where the docker-compose.yml resides, simply execute:

docker-compose up -d
Pulling goshimmer (iotaledger/goshimmer:0.2.0)...

to start the GoShimmer node.

You should see your container running now:

CONTAINER ID        IMAGE               COMMAND                  CREATED             STATUS              PORTS                                                                                                                                    NAMES
687f52b78cb5        iotaledger/goshimmer:0.2.0       "/run/goshimmer --sk…"   19 seconds ago      Up 17 seconds>6061/tcp,>8080-8081/tcp,>10895/tcp,>14666/tcp,>14626/udp   goshimmer

You can follow the log output of the node via:

docker logs -f --since=1m goshimmer


When the node starts for the first time, it must synchronize its state with the rest of the network. GoShimmer currently uses the Tangle Time to help nodes determine their synced status.


The dashboard of your GoShimmer node should be accessible via http://<your-ip>:8081. If your node is still synchronizing, you might see a higher inflow of MPS.

After a while, your node's dashboard should also display up to 8 neighbors:


GoShimmer also exposes an HTTP API. To check whether that works correctly, you can access it via http://<your-ip>:8080/info which should return a JSON response in the form of:

  "version": "v0.6.2",
  "networkVersion": 30,
  "tangleTime": {
    "messageID": "6ndfmfogpH9H8C9X9Fbb7Jmuf8RJHQgSjsHNPdKUUhoJ",
    "time": 1621879864032595415,
    "synced": true
  "identityID": "D9SPFofAGhA5V9QRDngc1E8qG9bTrnATmpZMdoyRiBoW",
  "identityIDShort": "XBgY5DsUPng",
  "publicKey": "9DB3j9cWYSuEEtkvanrzqkzCQMdH1FGv3TawJdVbDxkd",
  "solidMessageCount": 74088,
  "totalMessageCount": 74088,
  "enabledPlugins": [
  "disabledPlugins": [
  "mana": {
    "access": 1,
    "accessTimestamp": "2021-05-24T20:11:05.451224937+02:00",
    "consensus": 10439991680906,
    "consensusTimestamp": "2021-05-24T20:11:05.451228137+02:00"
  "manaDelegationAddress": "1HMQic52dz3xLY2aeDXcDhX53LgbsHghdfD8eGXR1qVHy",
  "mana_decay": 0.00003209,
  "scheduler": {
    "running": true,
    "rate": "5ms",
    "nodeQueueSizes": {}
  "rateSetter": {
    "rate": 20000,
    "size": 0

Managing the GoShimmer node lifecycle

Stopping the node
docker-compose stop
Resetting the node
docker-compose down
Upgrading the node

Ensure that the image version in the docker-compose.yml is latest then execute following commands:

docker-compose down
rm db/*
docker-compose pull
docker-compose up -d
Following log output
docker logs -f --since=1m goshimmer
Create a log.txt
docker logs goshimmer > log.txt
Update Grafana Dashboard

If you set up the Grafana dashboard for your node according to the next section "Setting up the Grafana dashboard", the following method will help you to update when a new version is released.

You have to manually copy the new dashboard file into /opt/goshimmer/grafana/dashboards directory. Supposing you are at /opt/goshimmer/:

cp local_dashboard.json grafana/dashboards

Restart the grafana container:

docker restart grafana

Setting up the Grafana dashboard

Add Prometheus and Grafana Containers to docker-compose.yml

Append the following to the previously described docker-compose.yml file (make sure to also copy the space in front of "prometheus"/the entire whitespace):

    image: prom/prometheus:latest
    container_name: prometheus
    restart: unless-stopped
      - "9090:9090/tcp"
      - --config.file=/etc/prometheus/prometheus.yml
      - ./prometheus/prometheus.yml:/etc/prometheus/prometheus.yml:ro
      - ./prometheus/data:/prometheus:rw
      - goshimmer
      - outside

    image: grafana/grafana:latest
    container_name: grafana
    restart: unless-stopped
      # path to provisioning definitions can only be defined as
      # environment variables for grafana within docker
      - GF_PATHS_PROVISIONING=/var/lib/grafana/provisioning
      - "3000:3000/tcp"
    user: "472"
      - ./grafana:/var/lib/grafana:rw
      - outside

Create Prometheus config

  1. Create a prometheus/data directory in /opt/goshimmer:
cd /opt/goshimmer
mkdir -p prometheus/data
  1. Create a prometheus.yml in prometheus directory:
nano prometheus/prometheus.yml

The content of the file should be:

    - job_name: goshimmer_local
      scrape_interval: 5s
      - targets:
        - goshimmer:9311
  1. Add permissions to prometheus config directory:
chmod -R 777 prometheus

Create Grafana configs

  1. Create necessary config dirs in /opt/goshimmer/.
mkdir -p grafana/provisioning/datasources grafana/provisioning/dashboards grafana/provisioning/notifiers
mkdir -p grafana/dashboards
  1. Create a datasource configuration file in grafana/provisioning/datasources:
nano grafana/provisioning/datasources/datasources.yaml

With the following content:

apiVersion: 1

  - name: Prometheus
    type: prometheus
    # <string, required> access mode. proxy or direct (Server or Browser in the UI). Required
    access: proxy
    orgId: 1
    url: http://prometheus:9090
      graphiteVersion: '1.1'
      timeInterval: '1s'
    # <string> json object of data that will be encrypted.
      # <string> database password, if used
      # <string> basic auth password
    version: 1
    # <bool> allow users to edit datasources from the UI.
    editable: true
  1. Create a dashboard configuration file in grafana/provisioning/dashboards:
nano grafana/provisioning/dashboards/dashboards.yaml

With the following content:

apiVersion: 1

  - name: 'Goshimmer Local Metrics'
    orgId: 1
    folder: ''
    type: file
    disableDeletion: false
    editable: true
    updateIntervalSeconds: 10
    allowUiUpdates: true
      path: /var/lib/grafana/dashboards
  1. Add predefined GoShimmer Local Metrics Dashboard.

Head over to the GoShimmer repository and download local_dashboard.json.

cp local_dashboard.json grafana/dashboards
  1. Add permissions to Grafana config folder
chmod -R 777 grafana

Run GoShimmer with Prometheus and Grafana:

docker-compose up -d

The Grafana dashboard should be accessible at http://<your-ip>:3000.

Default login credentials are:

  • username: admin
  • password: admin