Running a Solana validation-client required relatively modest upfront hardware capital investment. Table 2 provides an example hardware configuration to support ~1M tx/s with estimated ‘off-the-shelf’ costs:
|GPU||2x 2080 Ti||$2500|
|or||4x 1080 Ti||$2800|
|OS/Ledger Storage||Samsung 860 Evo 2TB||$370|
|Accounts storage||2x Samsung 970 Pro M.2 512GB||$340|
|CPU||AMD Threadripper 2920x||$650|
|Power supply||EVGA 1600W||$300|
|Network||> 500 mbps|
|Network (1)||Google webpass business bay area 1gbps unlimited||$5500/mo|
|Network (2)||Hurricane Electric bay area colo 1gbps||$500/mo|
|Table 2 example high-end hardware setup for running a Solana client.|
Despite the low-barrier to entry as a validation-client, from a capital investment perspective, as in any developing economy, there will be much opportunity and need for trusted validation services as evidenced by node reliability, UX/UI, APIs and other software accessibility tools. Additionally, although Solana’s validator node startup costs are nominal when compared to similar networks, they may still be somewhat restrictive for some potential participants. In the spirit of developing a true decentralized, permissionless network, these interested parties still have two options to become involved in the Solana network/economy:
Delegation of previously acquired tokens with a reliable validation node to earn a portion of interest generated
Provide local storage space as a replication-client and receive rewards by submitting Proof-of-Replication (see Replication-client Economics).
a. This participant has the additional option to directly delegate their earned storage rewards (Replication-client Reward Auto-delegation)
Delegation of tokens to validation-clients, via option 1, provides a way for passive Solana token holders to become part of the active Solana economy and earn interest rates proportional to the interest rate generated by the delegated validation-client. Additionally, this feature creates a healthy validation-client market, with potential validation-client nodes competing to build reliable, transparent and profitable delegation services.