How to Synchronize Parity with Ethereum’s MainNet in 20 Minutes


Synchronizing with Ethereum’s MainNet can take an extremely long time. Even many days… And it doesn’t matter what software you use to synchronize. The results are the same — very very slow.

Since this was driving me crazy, I decided to study the command line instructions for Parity.

This is what I have found out.

Fast and Loose

There is a command line switch called ‐-fast-and-loose. It’s exactly as it sounds. It’s very fast but when used incorrectly, you will corrupt your blockchain database, therefore lose everything you have downloaded so far. And then you can start all over…

Here is the explanation on Parity’s configuration page on Github:

Remove Your Existing Blockchain Data

To save you some headache and a lot of wasted time, I highly recommend removing all your existing blockchain data before using the ‐-fast-and-loose switch.

The easiest way to remove the complete blockchain data is to launch Command Prompt and use the following command:

Use the ‐-fast-and-loose Switch

Now you can go to your Start Menu, find the Parity Ethereum software’s shortcut and right-click on it. Select More > Open file location from the drop-down menu.

In the new Explorer window, right-click on Parity Ethereum’s shortcut again and select Properties from the drop-down menu.

Add the ‐-fast-and-loose switch as shown in the image below:

Add ‐-fast-and-loose switch to Parity

You will end up with the following command line in the Target box:

Final Thoughts

Using this method, the full synchronization with Ethereum’s MainNet will take about 20 minutes. It’s even faster than that if you are using an SSD drive. When done, make sure to exit Parity correctly, in order not to corrupt your blockchain database.

The way to do so is to right-click on Parity’s icon in the Taskbar and select Exit from the drop-down menu.

Before you start up Parity the next time, I recommend removing the ‐-fast-and-loose switch we have added using the above method. This is to make sure that you are not running the risk of corrupting your blockchain database every time you launch Parity.

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