Genesis validator setup

A genesis validator is one which is a validator right from the first block of the chain - i.e. at genesis. The details of genesis validators are hardcoded into the genesis file that is distributed to all users who want to interact with a chain.


  • a machine that meets the requirements for running a validator node
  • an associated public IPv4 address with ports 26656 reachable from anywhere for P2P connections


To setup all the required keys for a genesis validator for an upcoming network, you can execute the following command with an alias of your choice. Note that this alias is public (the address of your validator account will be visible in every wallet) and must be unique within the network.

You must also provide a static {IP:port} to the --net-address argument of your future node's P2P address.

export ALIAS="1337-validator"
namada client utils init-genesis-validator \
    --alias $ALIAS \

After generating your keys, the command will print something like this:

Pre-genesis TOML written to .anoma/pre-genesis/1337-validator/validator.toml

This file is the public configuration of your validator. You can safely share this file with the network's organizer, who is responsible for setting up and publishing the finalized genesis file and Namada configuration for the chain.

Note that the wallet containing your private keys will also be written into this directory.

After network config release

Once the network is finalized, a new chain ID will be created and released on anoma-network-config/releases (a custom configs URL can be used instead with ANOMA_NETWORK_CONFIGS_SERVER env var). You can use it to setup your genesis validator node for the --chain-id argument in the command below.

namada client utils join-network \
    --chain-id $CHAIN_ID \
    --genesis-validator $ALIAS

This command will use your pre-genesis wallet for the given chain and take care of setting up Namada with Tendermint.

If you run this command in the same directory that you ran namada client utils init-genesis-validator, it should find the pre-genesis wallet for you, otherwise you can pass the path to the pre-genesis directory using --pre-genesis-path. e.g.

namada client utils join-network \
    --chain-id $CHAIN_ID \
    --pre-genesis-path workspace/.anoma/pre-genesis/$ALIAS

Once setup, you can start the ledger as usual with e.g.:

namada ledger

Required keys

  • Account key: Can be used to sign transactions that require authorization in the default validator validity predicate, such as a balance transfer.
  • Staking rewards key: Can be used to sign transactions on the PoS staking rewards account.
  • Protocol key: This key is used by the validator's ledger itself to sign protocol transaction on behalf of the validator.
  • DKG key: Special key needed for participation in the DKG protocol
  • Consensus key: Used in Tendermint consensus layer. Currently, this key is written to a file which is read by Tendermint.
  • Tendermint node key: This key is used to derive Tendermint node ID for P2P connection authentication. This key is also written to a file which is read by Tendermint.