Running a Nano Node

Running a Nano Node


Free instant transactions that Nano cryptocurrency offers have attracted hundreds of developers to build on this network. As the community and the number of Nano use cases grow, new wallets, P2E games, and many other apps emerge. You can become a part of this ecosystem by starting to build on Nano right now – and to this, you’ll need to access a Nano node. 

A Nano node is a network’s full-fledged participant that stores the copy of the blockchain and has the right to validate blocks. Once you connect to it, you get the opportunity to test and deploy the functionality of the service you’re building on Nano. Running such a node on your own is a hassle – but NOWNodes helps you access a ready-to-use node without putting in any effort. Let’s see what a Nano node is and how you can start using one for free right away.

What is Nano?

Nano was launched in 2015 under the name of RaiBlocks – a protocol where users could participate in CAPTCHA tasks and get rewarded. Three years later, the platform received its current name, Nano (XNO) – a cryptocurrency that powered free instant peer-to-peer payments. The Nano Foundation, the team behind this digital coin, has called Nano “the digital money for the modern world”.

What is Nano?

4 perks of Nano

  1. Instant transactions and high scalability. All Nano payments are settled in less than a second irrespective of how the network is congested. We will see how the protocol achieves this down below.  
  2. Feeless payments. All Nano users don’t pay a penny for any transaction made in the network. This is possible thanks to a unique consensus protocol where no mining or staking fees are paid out to validators. 
  3. Micropayments enabled. When you pay a small amount in BTC or USDT, a fee can eat out the most part of the sum, making such a payment worthless. Since there are no fees in Nano, even very small amounts can be sent.
  4. Sustainability. The Nano protocol doesn’t require huge amounts of energy, so it bears a negligible environmental impact. The network remains fast and cheap while being energy-efficient and sustainable. 

How does Nano achieve high speed and zero fees? 

Block Lattice design. In Nano, there is no single universal blockchain – rather, there are individual chains in accounts of each Nano holder. Whenever a user wants to make a payment, they initiate a “send” transaction, and then the “receive” transaction occurs in the addressee’s wallet. These two transactions are confirmed by independent validators. Since the bottleneck of a single congested blockchain is removed, Nano achieves high speed. 

Open Representative Voting (ORV) consensus algorithm. Every Nano holder can vote for a representative who will confirm their transactions. Unlike in Proof of Stake algorithms, validators aren’t rewarded – rather, they are incentivized by the opportunity to interact directly with the network, by transaction fee savings for businesses, and other features.

What is a Nano node?


As mentioned before, the Nano network is secured by representatives – validators to whom regular users assign the right to confirm blocks. Such representatives run on nodes – the Nano network participants who store the full copy of the Nano distributed ledger. They have to stay online all the time to vote on the validity of transactions. 

Each node has a voting weight that is calculated based on the balances of accounts who delegated to it. The nodes with high voting weight are called Principal Representatives. Once a transaction is sent, validators vote on it, and if a node sees that the quorum has been reached, the block is considered confirmed. Since blocks are very lightweight and the votes spread fast across the network, Nano confirms transactions in less than a second.

Types of Nano nodes

  • Non-voting nodes. This is a type of node that is the easiest to set up and is recommended for beginners. It does not participate in validating blocks and maintaining the network security, but it allows you to learn how to integrate Nano and use it for payments.
  • Representative nodes. This type of node is for those who are ready to contribute their resources to help secure the Nano network. A representative node can vote, has less than 0.1% of the voting weight, and shares its votes with some of its peers. 

Principal Representative nodes. A Representative node Nano has 0.1% or more of the total voting weight and can widely broadcast its votes across the network thus having the most power in the overall decision on a block validity.

Types of Nano nodes
The Nano Node monitor allows you to track a node activity. 

Why run a Nano node?

Running a Nano node means you can contribute to the network security, but since it grants you access to the Nano network, you can also use it to build your software on Nano. So, here are the reasons to run a Nano node: 

  • Join a thriving community with an evolved ecosystem. There are plenty of Nano apps and use cases: the Natrium and Nalli wallets allow users to enjoy owning XNO and help get a sense of how cool it is to send feeless payments. WeNano is a social network dedicated to Nano that shows you places where you can pay with XNO and the participants using the coin nearby. Polyrun is an activity tracker that allows you to stay on track and earn rewards in Nano. With PlayNANO, you can watch videos, play games for XNO rewards, and then spend them on digital prizes and game keys.  
  • A node allows you to build an app that the Nano users will love. It can be a wallet, an AR or digital game, or something else. The node is an intermediary between your frontend and the Nano network – so you need it to develop all features properly. 
  • The node offers you the tools to test and deploy your app on Nano. It allows you to request an account balance and see how many blocks an account has, explore any account’s history, find who the account’s representatives are and what their voting weight is, search for block info, and much more. 

A rich library of requests that you can make to a Nano node with detailed instructions will facilitate your Nano app creation with NOWNodes. We keep the Nano node running 24/7 (uptime rate 99.95%) and let you connect to it via an API. The API always responds in less than a second, so rest assured that you will receive the most up-to-date information on the state of the Nano blockchain, and your code will execute smoothly with the Nano network. What’s more, NOWNodes allows you to access 50+ other nodes within the same plan if you feel like building on other networks as well. You can start with 5,000 requests per day for free, and if you need more, three different plans are available starting with 20€ per 1 000 000 requests. 

Why run a Nano node?

How to set up a Nano node


Anyone can set up a Nano node and start voting on transaction validity or building on Nano. However, that’s quite a hard thing to do – a certain amount of tech skills and hardware are required. Maintaining a Nano node means you have to keep it running 24/7, which means you’ll need to spend your time checking if everything is working properly. NOWNodes is here to help – we’ve already done all this job for you, and you can start enjoying all Nano node services right now! You only need to get a free API key – submit your email on our main page or contact us at [email protected], and we’ll reach out to you. See our Nano docs to find the request samples, paste your API key, and you’re good to go!


How many nodes does Nano have?

At the time of writing, the Nano network has 110 Representative nodes and 85 Principal Representative nodes that are online. The former hold less than 0.1% of the total voting weight and share their votes with a small number of peers, while the latter boast at least 0.1% of the weight and broadcast their votes widely across Nano nodes.

What is a Nano representative?

A Nano representative is a Nano account that Nano users entrust their transaction confirmation with. A representative runs a dedicated Nano node to execute their main function – to vote on the validity of transactions and keep the network secure.

Is Nano crypto Proof of Stake?

No. Nano has a different consensus algorithm that is called Open Representative Voting. No one is staking any XNO to validate transactions – rather, there are representatives that do this job while being incentivized not by direct rewards but by other features.  

Which one is better, Nano or Bitcoin?

Bitcoin is a renowned safe-haven asset and a store of value, but it doesn’t work well as a means of daily payments – one transaction confirmation is received in a whopping 10 minutes, while the fees can reach $10-30 and more. Nano can’t boast the same history and market capitalization, but the coin is many times more convenient for sending payments online.

Is Nano a good investment?

It’s hard to predict where the price of any cryptocurrency goes, so this question is a tough nut to crack. Given the history of the XNO price dynamic and its features, many price forecast platforms are bullish on Nano. But don’t consider this financial advice – we encourage you to do your research to make informed investment decisions.

Can you mine Nano?

No. Mineable coins like Bitcoin or Litecoin run on the Proof of Work consensus algorithm, while Nano leverages the Open Representative Voting consensus – users choose representatives who then vote on their transactions’ validity.