Bitcoin Consensus Algorithm

This algorithm is simplified in that is assumes the ability to select a random node in a manner that is not vulnerable to Sybil attacks.

  • New transactions are broadcast to all nodes.
  • Each node collects new transactions into a block.
  • In each round, a random node gets to broadcast its block.
  • Other nodes accept the block only if all transactions in it are valid (un-spent, valid signatures).
  • Nodes express their acceptance of the block by including its hash in the next block they create.


Narayanan, Arvind, et al. (2016). Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency Technologies. United States: Princeton Press

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