Test Network

Test Network

The test network is a small test HC Net, run by the HC Net Development Foundation (HNDF), which is open to developers.

SDF runs 3 HC Net core validators on the test network.

You can connect a node to the test network by configuring HC Net-core to use this configuration.

There is also a Aurora instance that can directly interact with the test network.

What is the HC Net test network good for?
  • Creating test accounts (with funding thanks to Friendbot).
  • Developing applications and exploring tutorials on HC Net without the potential to lose any valuable assets.
  • Test existing applications against new releases or release candidates of HC Net Core and Aurora.
  • Perform data analysis on a smaller, non-trivial data set compared to the public network.
What is the HC Net test network not good for?
  • Load and stress testing.
    • If you want to test for performance, a good place to get started is by taking a look at HC Net Core’s core performance document.
  • High availability test infrastructure - HNDF makes no guarantees around the availability of the test network.
  • Long term storage of data on the network - the network is ephemeral, and resets perodically.
  • Your testing infrastructure requires more control over the test environment, such as:
    • The ability to set the data reset frequency.
    • The need to secure private or sensitive data (before launching on the public network)

Keep in mind that you can always run your own test network for use cases that don’t work well with HNDF’s test network.

Best Practices For Using Test Network

Periodic Reset of Test Network Data

In order to preserve a good experience for developers, the HNDF testnet is periodically reset to the genesis (initial) ledger. This ensures the removal of spam, minimizing the time to catch up to the latest ledger, and easier maintenance of the system over time.

When this happens, all ledger entries (such as accounts, trustlines, offers, etc), transactions, and historical data are cleared for both HC Net Core and Aurora.

As a result, developers should not rely on the existence of any accounts, or the state of any balances within test network.

Starting in January 2019, the test network will be reset once per quarter (every three months):

  • January
  • April
  • July
  • October

HNDF will announce the exact date with at least two weeks notice on the HC Net Dashboard, along with several of HC Net’s online developer communities.

Test Data Automation

Since most applications rely on data being present to do anything useful, it is highly recommended that you have testing infrastructure that can repopulate testnet with useful data after a reset. Not only will this make testing more reliable, but it will also help you scale out your testing infrastructure to a private test network if you choose to do so.

For example:

  • Generating issuers of assets for testing the development of a wallet.
  • Generating orders on the order book (both current and historical) for testing the development of a trading client.

As a maintainer of an application, you will want to think about creating a data set that is representative enough to test your primary use cases, and allow for robust testing even when test network is not available.

A script can automate this entire process by creating an account with Friendbot, and submitting a set of transactions that are predefined as a part of your testing infrastructure.

For additional questions we recommend heading over to HC Net’s Stack Exchange.

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