A sidechain is a separate blockchain which runs in parallel to Ethereum Mainnet and operates independently. It has its own consensus algorithm (e.g. proof-of-authority, Delegated proof-of-stake, Byzantine fault tolerance). It is connected to Mainnet by a two-way bridge.
What makes a sidechain particularly exciting is that the chain works the same as the main Ethereum chain because it's based on the EVM. It doesn't use Ethereum, it is Ethereum. This means if you want to use your dapp on a sidechain, it's just a matter of deploying your code to this sidechain. It looks, feels, and acts just like Mainnet – you write contracts in Solidity, and interact with the chain via the Web3 API.
You should have a good understanding of all the foundational topics and a high-level understanding of Ethereum scaling.
|Established technology.||Less decentralized.|
|Supports general computation, EVM compatibility.||Uses a separate consensus mechanism. Not secured by layer 1 (so technically it’s not layer 2).|
|A quorum of sidechain validators can commit fraud.|
Multiple projects provide implementations of sidechains that you can integrate into your dapps:
- EthHub on sidechains
- Scaling Ethereum Dapps through Sidechains Feb 8, 2018 - Georgios Konstantopoulos
Know of a community resource that helped you? Edit this page and add it!
Help us with this page
If you're an expert on the topic and want to contribute, edit this page and sprinkle it with your wisdom.
You'll be credited and you'll be helping the Ethereum community!
Use this flexible documentation template
Questions? Ask us in the #content channel on our Discord serverEdit page