Mainnet vs Testnet: Can you tell me the differences?

If you’re in the cryptocurrency world, you might have come across technical terms like mainnets and testnets frequently. Every blockchain project needs to run on a blockchain network to carry out the project’s functionality as well as the transfer of its own digital currency. Mainnets and testnets are such blockchain networks that consist of nodes interacting with each other. They are used to denote blockchain networks that possess vital functions. Let's explore how mainnets are different from testnets.


Understanding Mainnet and Testnet:

Before launching a successful project, developers usually will set up an Initial Coin Offering (ICO) or Initial Exchange Offering (IEO) that will help the project raise funds and grow its community. Then, the funds are used to develop a prototype of the blockchain network, which is the testnet phase. After performing bug fixes and improving the performance of the testnet, the team will launch the fully functional mainnet. This is the overall idea of mainnet and testnet. They are two fundamentally different networks that each represent a vital purpose for any project.


Mainnet vs Testnet: What is the difference?


Testnet (test network):

Testnets are networks that are designed as an experimental sandbox or lab environment where developers can test their code on an alternative main network-like setup before they deploy it on the mainnet. The goal is to monitor the blockchain network performance before the launch of the Mainnet. As the name suggests, the main purpose of a testnet is to experiment and test-run the functionality of a blockchain project. In other words, it is a working prototype for a blockchain project.

Mainnet (main network) :

The mainnet is the main blockchain network for a cryptocurrency. It is a live, independent blockchain running its own network with its own technology and protocol. The Mainnet launch is the next major milestone for the development of a blockchain. Mainnet is where actual transactions take place on a distributed ledger. The mainnet is used to send and receive transactions, with blocks being mined in order to add new transactions. It is the final product in blockchain projects that makes it possible to send and receive digital currencies.


One of the main differences between mainnet and testnet is that mainnet nodes are public, while testnets are usually private. This means that anyone can connect to a mainnet node and send transactions, but in order for someone to connect to a testnet, they need an invitation from the developer. The difference in visibility can make mainnets more vulnerable than testnets.


Both testnets and mainnets have their own independent genesis blocks. However, the content of both genesis blocks can be similar.

As the cryptocurrency and blockchain system continues to grow and evolve, several blockchain projects are on the brink of launching their mainnet. For crypto investors and crypto traders, carefully following the stages of a project will help you make better investment decisions. All core blockchain projects are evaluated based on the performance of the mainnet.


Mainnet launches tend to get users, developers and investors excited. It is a crucial milestone for a project that is in development to highlight  its existing technology to a wider public. Mainnet launch is the time to show the world what your real potential is !