VMware Claims Greater Scalability With Open-Source Blockchain Project

Cloud computing and virtualization firm VMware said Tuesday that it has developed an open-source blockchain infrastructure designed to be both scalable and energy efficient.

Dubbed Project Concord, VMware’s blockchain aims to provide a base for blockchain implementations which can solve certain scaling issues by modifying the Byzantine Fault Tolerance consensus algorithm commonly found in blockchain networks.

Senior researcher Guy Golan Gueta wrote in a company blog post that the project’s algorithm uses a different communication procedure than existing consensus protocols that “exploits optimism to provide a common case fast-path execution” and utilizes new cryptographic algorithms.

These upgrades from current protocols allow for a higher network throughput, he said.

VMware, a Dell subsidiary, has been working on Project Concord for roughly two years, and while some of its research has been published over the last few months, this week’s release marks the first time the company has publicly acknowledged how much work has gone into developing a blockchain infrastructure.

“Project Concord’s foundations stem from years of academic and industrial research on Byzantine Fault Tolerant replication, cryptography and distributed computing,” Gueta said, adding:

“The cryptocurrency revolution and, in particular, bitcoin and ethereum have also tremendously influenced our understanding of this emerging field of trust decentralization. The Project Concord library is designed to be used as a core building block for replicated distributed data stores and is thus especially suited to serve as the basis for highly scalable, permissioned enterprise blockchain systems.”

The team’s source code has already been posted to Github, with Gueta noting that the company intends to add a number of other features going forward.

Among these, he wrote, is an execution engine for ethereum virtual machine-based smart contracts. Other additions include support for Windows, Apple’s OSX and some Linux distributions, as listed by Project Concord’s Github.

The Github page adds that the team “welcomes contributions from the community,” though contributors will be required to sign a license agreement.

VMWare image via Shutterstock

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