Introduction to HyperLedger Fabric in Blockchain Network
This article was published as a part of the Data Science Blogathon.
HyperLedger Fabric is a permissioned blockchain infrastructure initially developed by IBM and Digital Asset. It is used for providing a modular architecture with a delineation of roles between the nodes in the infrastructure.
It is also used in the execution of various Smart Contracts (Also called chaincode) and configurable consensus and membership services.
1. The Linux Foundation founded Hyperledger in 2015
2. Hyperledger Fabric is a platform for distributed ledger solutions at the industrial level.
3. A modular architecture – Delivers high degrees of confidentiality, resiliency, flexibility, and scalability.
4. It is designed to support pluggable implementations of different components and accommodate the complexity and intricacies across the economic ecosystem.
5. While Fabric’s permissioned nature might be viewed as a restriction, the platform’s modularity allows components, including the consensus mechanism, to be plug-and-play, allowing different organizations to select the most appropriate components for their application. It is one of the critical aspects of Fabric that has led to its adoption in many industries, including finance, healthcare, supply chain, and more.
Advantages of Hyperledger Fabric
There are many advantages of Hyperledger Fabric in Blockchain. The first advantage is that Fabric is very flexible and can be used for various applications. For example, We can use Fabric for supply chain management, identity management, and other business applications.
Another advantage of Fabric is that it is very scalable. Fabric can support thousands of transactions per second. It is essential for businesses that need to process many transactions.
Finally, Fabric is very secure. The Fabric uses cryptographic techniques to ensure that data is not tampered with. It makes Fabric an ideal platform for applications that require a high degree of security.
Frameworks and Tools of HyperLedger in Blockchain
Many different frameworks and tools make up the Hyperledger project. Here is a brief overview of some of the most important ones:
1. Hyperledger Fabric: This is the core framework that other tools and applications are built on top of. It is a permissioned blockchain platform that supports pluggable components for consensus, identity, and smart contract execution.
2. Hyperledger Iroha: It is a simple yet powerful, permissioned blockchain platform designed for mobile and IoT applications.
3. Hyperledger Sawtooth: This modular blockchain platform supports dynamic consensus algorithms and allows for fine-grained permissions of users and applications.
4. Hyperledger Composer: This is a tool for quickly developing blockchain applications on top of Hyperledger Fabric. It provides a high-level programming model and an extensive library of reusable components.
5. Hyperledger Caliper: Hyperledger Caliper is an open-source performance benchmarking tool for blockchain technologies developed by the Hyperledger project. It allows users to measure the performance of a specific blockchain implementation with a set of predefined use cases.
The tool is designed to be extensible and to support multiple plug-ins so that it can be easily adapted to different blockchain implementations.
Components of Hyperledger Fabric
The Hyperledger Fabric platform has five major components:
1. The Certificate Authority
2. The peer nodes that make up the network
3. The ordering service that maintains the global ordering of transactions
4. The private channel
5. The membership service that manages the identities of the participants (Chaincode)
Fabric CA (Certificate Authority)
A Certificate Authority (CA) is a trusted third party that issues digital certificates. A digital certificate is an electronic document used to verify the identity of a person or entity. It contains the public key of the person or entity, information about the issuer, the CA’s digital signature, and the certificate’s expiration date.
The CA is responsible for verifying the identity of the person or entity before issuing a certificate. They also manage the revocation process, which is used to invalidate a certificate if it is compromised or no longer needed.
The CA is a critical component of a Hyperledger Fabric network. They are responsible for issuing digital certificates to the various components of the network, such as the orderer nodes, peer nodes, and user identities. These certificates are used to authenticate the components and establish trust between them.
With a CA, it is easier to establish trust between the components of a Hyperledger Fabric network.
1. It must cryptographically sign every operation executed inside HyperLedger Fabric with this certificate.
2. You can add attributes, roles
3. Certificates are X.509 standards.
4. You can remove the necessity of certificates if you don’t need them.
5. Chaincodes read this data and make business decisions.
Source – Google
Role of Peer Nodes in Hyperledger Fabric
Peer nodes are the heart of any distributed ledger or blockchain network. They are responsible for validating and relaying transactions and maintaining the ledger state. In the Hyperledger Fabric blockchain platform, peer nodes also execute smart contracts, called chaincode, on behalf of clients.
The role of peer nodes is thus critical to properly functioning a blockchain network. Without peer nodes, there would be no distributed ledger and no blockchain.
There are two types of peer nodes in Hyperledger Fabric: endorsing peers and committing peers. Endorsing peers are responsible for validating transactions and executing chaincode. Committing peers are responsible for writing transactions to the ledger and maintaining the ledger state.
Both peer nodes are essential for properly functioning the Hyperledger Fabric platform. Endorsing peers ensures that transactions are valid before committing to the ledger. Committing peers to ensure that the ledger state is accurate and up-to-date.
Role of Ordering Service in Hyperledger Fabric
In a Hyperledger Fabric network, the ordering service is responsible for creating and maintaining a sequence of blocks, which are then delivered to the appropriate peers in the network. A single entity can run the ordering service or be distributed among multiple entities.
The ordering service is a critical component of a Hyperledger Fabric network, ensuring that all transactions are processed consistently. Ensuring the ledger’s accuracy and maintaining the transactions’ confidentiality is essential.
The ordering service is also responsible for creating new blocks on the ledger. It is done by selecting the transactions that should be included in the next block and packaging them into a block. The ordering service then signs the block and broadcasts it to the other peers in the network.
The ordering service is a crucial part of the Hyperledger Fabric network and plays a vital role in ensuring the accuracy and confidentiality of transactions.
Role of Channel in Hyperledger Fabric
The channel in Hyperledger Fabric is a private “subnet” of communication between two or more specific network members to conduct private and confidential transactions.
The channel allows members to exchange transactions without interacting with the rest of the network. It allows for a high degree of privacy and confidentiality and improved performance.
The channel is also the mechanism that allows for the creation of “smart contracts”, or chaincode, which can be used to facilitate transactions between members.
To create a channel, members must first join the network. Once they have entered, they can then create a channel and invite other members to join it.
Once a channel has been created, members can exchange transactions among themselves. These transactions will not be visible to the rest of the network.
To ensure privacy and confidentiality, members of a channel must use digital signatures when exchanging transactions.
Chaincode in Hyperledger Fabric
In Hyperledger Fabric, chaincode is a program written in Go, Java, or Node.js and deployed on a network of Hyperledger Fabric peers. Chaincode is used to manage the ledger state, which includes the assets and transactions on the ledger.
Invocations from applications trigger Chaincode. When an application invokes a chaincode function, the chaincode will read and write ledger state variables. The chaincode can also gather other chaincodes. For example, chaincode A might invoke chaincode B to read a value set by chaincode B.
Chaincode has access to a set of built-in functions that allow it to query and update the ledger state. For example, chaincode can use the GetState() function to read a value from the ledger state and the PutState() function to write a deal to the ledger state.
What is Hyperledger Composer?
Hyperledger Composer is a tool for rapidly building blockchain business networks.
It is an open-source development toolset that makes it easy to deploy and manage blockchain applications on the Hyperledger Fabric platform.
Composer provides a modeling language for describing the structure of a business network and a set of comprehensive tools for developing, deploying, and administering the business network.
The toolset includes a modeling language, a development environment, a user interface, and a set of command-line tools.
Composer is designed to make it easy to develop blockchain applications that can be deployed on the Hyperledger Fabric platform.
The toolset includes a modeling language that makes it easy to describe the structure of a business network.
The modeling language is based on the Unified Modeling Language (UML) and uses a graphical notation to represent the business network.
It ends our discussion on HyperLedger Fabric. We have learned all about HyperLedger Fabric and its workflow. Other than this, there are many more blockchain protocols. Some very famous protocols you have heard about are the Bitcoin and Ethereum Protocols.
There are many critical differences between the Bitcoin Protocol and the HyperLedger Fabric, some of which we will discuss here.
Bitcoin is a public blockchain, while Hyperledger Fabric is a private blockchain. Anyone can join the Bitcoin network and view or add to the ledger. In contrast, access to the Hyperledger Fabric network is restricted to those with permission from the network administrators.
Another difference is that Bitcoin uses a Proof-of-Work consensus algorithm, while Hyperledger Fabric uses a Practical Byzantine Fault Tolerance consensus algorithm. To add a new block to the Bitcoin blockchain, miners must solve a complex computational puzzle. On the other hand, to add a new block to the Hyperledger Fabric blockchain, consensus must be reached by a majority of the network participants.
Finally, Bitcoin transactions are anonymous, while Hyperledger Fabric transactions are not. This is because Hyperledger Fabric uses permissioned networks, meaning that each participant must be identified and verified before being able to access the network.
Key takeaways of this article:
1. Firstly, we discussed the HyperLedger Fabric and its advantages.
2. Then, we have seen various frameworks that use HyperLedger Technology.
3. After that, we discussed all the components of a HyperLedger Fabric, which includes Certificate Authority, Peer Nodes, Ordering Service, Channel, etc.
4. Finally, we have concluded the article by discussing the key differences between the Bitcoin and HyperLedger Fabric.
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