Customize accounts and transactions


Note that these features are still a work in progress. At the time of writing, Namada does not allow for custom validity predicates (as there is a whitelist). Custom transactions are possible in certain cases (e.g., governance proposals).

On this page, we'll cover how to tailor your account(s) to your use-case with custom-made validity predicates and transactions.

We currently only support Rust for custom validity predicates and transactions via WASM, but expect many more options to be available in the future!

👩🏽‍🏫 Namada accounts primer

Instead of the common smart contract design, in Namada, all the accounts follow the same basic principles. Each account has exactly one validity predicate. Any transaction that attempts to make some storage modifications will trigger validity predicates of each account whose storage has been modified by it. Validity predicates are stateless functions that decide if an account accepts the transaction.

Every account also has its dedicated key-value storage. The ledger is encoding agnostic, it allows you to use the encoding of your preference for the storage values. Internally and for the pre-built validity predicates and transactions, we use Borsh (opens in a new tab), which allows you to simply derive the encoding from your data types. The storage keys are / separated path segments, where the first segment is always the address of the account to which the storage key belongs. In storage keys, addresses use a reserved prefix #.

To illustrate with an example storage key used for fungible tokens (with addresses shortened for clarity), let's say:

  • NAM token's address is atest1v4ehgw36x3prs...

  • A user Bertha has address atest1v4ehgw36xvcyyv...

  • Then, the balance of Bertha's NAM tokens is stored in the NAM account, with the storage key comprised of #{token}/balance/#{owner}, e.g.,


Any transaction can attempt to make changes to the storage of any account(s). Only if all the involved accounts accept, the transaction will be committed. Otherwise, the transaction is rejected and its modifications discarded.

This approach allows multiparty transactions to be applied atomically, without any prior coordination. It also gives accounts complete and fine-grained control over how they can be used in transactions in relation to themselves and other accounts.

In fact, most of the functionality in the Namada ledger is being built leveraging the simplicity and flexibility of this account system, from a simple fungible token to more complex accounts that integrate the Inter-blockchain Communication protocol and the Proof of Stake system.

☑ Validity predicates

A custom validity predicates can be built from scratch using vp_template (from root directory wasm/vp_template (opens in a new tab)), which is Rust code compiled to WASM. Consult its to find out more.

You can also check out the pre-built validity predicates' source code in the wasm/wasm_source (opens in a new tab), where each sub-module that begins with vp_ implements a validity predicate. For example the vp_user (opens in a new tab) is the default validity predicate used for established accounts (created with init-account command).

A validity predicate's must contain the following function:

use namada_vm_env::vp_prelude::*;
fn validate_tx(
    // The data attached to the transaction
    tx_data: Vec<u8>,
    // The address of the account where this validity predicate is used
    addr: Address,
    // The storage keys that were modified by the transaction
    keys_changed: BTreeSet<storage::Key>,
    // The addresses of all the accounts that are verifying the current 
    // transaction
    verifiers: BTreeSet<Address>,
) -> bool {
  // Returning `true` allows any key change

You can think of it as its main function. When this VP is deployed to an account, this function will be called for every transaction that:

Inside the validity predicate function, you can read any storage value with the functions provided in the vp_prelude from the storage prior to the transaction (functions with name suffix _pre) and from the storage state after the transaction is applied (suffixed with _post).

To find out about the host interface available in a validity predicate, please check out Rust docs for vp_prelude (opens in a new tab).

To compile the validity predicate's code from the template:

make -C wasm/vp_template

This will output a WASM file that can be found in wasm/vp_template/target/wasm32-unknown-unknown/release/vp_template.wasm.

You can, for example, copy it into your wasm directory (the default directory used by the ledger's node and the client, which can be changed with --wasm-dir global argument or NAMADA_WASM_DIR):

cp \
  wasm/vp_template/target/wasm32-unknown-unknown/release/vp_template.wasm \

To submit a transaction that updates an account's validity predicate:

namada client update --address my-new-acc --code-path my_vp.wasm

📩 Custom transactions

A transaction must contain a WASM code that can perform arbitrary storage changes. It can also contain arbitrary data, which will be passed onto the transaction and validity predicates when the transaction is being applied.

A custom transaction can be built from scratch using tx_template (from root directory wasm/tx_template (opens in a new tab)), which is Rust code compiled to WASM. Consult its to find out more.

For some inspiration, check out the pre-built transactions source code in the wasm/wasm_source (opens in a new tab), where each sub-module that begins with tx_ implements a transaction.

A transaction code must contain the following function, which will be called when the transaction is being applied:

use namada_vm_env::tx_prelude::*;
fn apply_tx(tx_data: Vec<u8>) {
  // Do anything here

Inside the validity predicate function, you can read, write or delete any storage value with the functions provided in the tx_prelude from the storage of any account.

To find out about the interface available in a transaction, please check out Rust docs for tx_prelude (opens in a new tab).

Compile the transaction's code from the template:

make -C wasm/tx_template

This will output a WASM file that can be found in wasm/tx_template/target/wasm32-unknown-unknown/release/tx_template.wasm.

Submit the transaction to the ledger:

namada client tx --code-path tx_template/tx.wasm

Optionally, you can also attach some data to the transaction from a file with the --data-path argument.