If you keep up with Ethereum news, you’ve probably seen that the official Eth2 deposit contract is now accepting deposits, which continue to roll in. At the time of writing (November 24th 2020), 688,128 ETH is staked out of the 524,288 ETH necessary to launch the beacon chain, which introduces proof-of-stake to the network. 

In addition to improving the speed of transactions on Ethereum, one of the goals of the Eth2 upgrade has always been to increase the ways in which people can contribute to the security of the network, and share in its upside. There are already half a dozen clients being built for Ethereum 2.0, meant to be lightweight enough that validators can participate with a consumer laptop. Many staking-as-a-service providers are also coming to market, making Ethereum security more accessible to individuals who can’t run validators on their own, or don’t have 32 ETH. 

Our protocol and product teams have been busy over the last two years building infrastructure, contributing research, interviewing users who plan on staking, and building applications to support the immense effort to upgrade Ethereum. No matter if you are a hobbyist wanting to run your own infrastructure or an institution wanting to provide staking services to clients, we’ve likely got a solution for you.

Teku: Client diversity is essential to keeping Eth2 resilient

At the heart of Consensys’ Ethereum 2.0 efforts is Teku, a full-strength Ethereum 2.0 client built to meet institutional needs and security requirements. 

What is Teku

Ethereum clients connect to each other in a peer-to-peer system, verifying blocks and transaction data. Having clients written in different languages is, as Matt Leising describes in his new book, Out of the Ether, “a kind of insurance policy: it avoids the possibility of a single point of failure and makes it much harder for developers to centralized around C++ for example.” If one client gets attacked, has a bug, or goes offline due to a consensus issue, the rest of the clients will still maintain the latest transaction and block data. Client diversity is proof of the importance of decentralization in Ethereum. 

Like Ethereum currently, there are several implementations of the specification written in different computing languages. Consensys’ Teku client is written in Java, which is one of the most popular computing languages used by developers building enterprise applications, and maintained by the same engineering team behind Hyperledger Besu. Lighthouse, Prysm, and Nimbus are popular Eth2 clients written Rust, Go, and Nim respectively. Each client has its own features, and Teku is empowering businesses and institutions to stake on Eth2, with features like external key management and slashing protection

Codefi Activate: The more validators, the stronger the network. Codefi Activate worked with the Ethereum Foundation to build the

Eth2 Launch Pad application, which provides technical onboarding to the requirements, responsibilities, and risks in becoming an Eth2 validator. The step-by-step guide is meant for technically capable Ethereum developers to send ETH to the deposit contract, and start running their own validator clients. Each validator requires exactly 32 ETH, and individuals can deposit as many multiples of 32 ETH as they’d like.

The first page of the Launch Pad provides an overview of key responsibilities and concepts  — such as slashing, key management, signing keys, risks, and the time commitment required. After you acknowledge the risks and requirements, the guide helps you select a client, generate keys, upload a validator, and connect your wallet. 

While you need to be familiar with using a command line interface, the Launch Pad is the ideal place to start your staking journey.