How does Chia intend to fight back against HPool with code?

This has come up in a few topics but I wanted a full topic to track it. I know the Chia developers have gone on record multiple times saying that it’s a bad idea to join HPool, mainly because you are running custom executable code on your machine that can do whatever it wants, instead of the official Chia source code.

And there’s a funny epic rant here about it:

So the Chia developers have two strategies here:

  1. Offer their own, official pooling protocol so people can join that instead of Hpool, ala Calling out all pools to form a mega pool to pit against Hpool

  2. Change … something … about the Chia protocol that prevents HPool from doing their unofficial pooling.

I guess that’s my question. What, if anything, do the Chia developers plan to do in code to discourage people from joining hpool and creating this mega-pool monster user so early in the life of the cryptocurrency? What will they change about the Chia protocol, or the Chia software, as a reaction to HPool?

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Simply put, the more attractive official pooling is, the more people will be willing to use it. Full stop.

If Hpool is still more convenient or better than official pooling, people will use Hpool. Most likely this will not be the case, and official pooling will be popular.

The problem will solve itself at that point.


HPool’s strategy is overly short-term. The patience will win (whoever has it).

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That rant is exactly that, a rant…random unfounded accusations without any cohesion or even a clear point to be made.
Regarding your question. I don’t think Chia dev’s are planning to do anything against Hpool, nor do they need to, except launch the official pool protocol.
The current system employed by Hpool for Chia is unreliable, easy to cheat and requires you to compromise your private key. The rewards are significantly lower than they should be, at least in part because of pool participants cheating the system.

As soon as there are real pools, working with smart contract to mitigate the cheating part and allow for competition in the pool area, no one will have a reason to join hpool anymore and even have all the reason to start replotting and leave.
I would assume that Hpool will also switch to the new official protocol at some point since for them there is also no reason to continue with the current setup after that point.

The good thing about the way Chia works with regard to pooling is that it will not create massive pools who control a large chunk of the netspace, instead all the farmers will still run the nodes and the pools only serve to distribute the rewards. This - in theory at least - will prevent Bitcoin like situations where a meeting of all the stakeholders consists of a handful of Chinese guys at a Hong Kong restaurant table.

There can always be massive whales who own a large chunk of the netspace because they have massive resources, and most likely these will be Chinese individuals/groups/companies. No one can control this or do anything about it. But without pooling resources like with ETH or BTC, it is most unlikely that it will become a real problem.


Now is a time that you admit the caveat of crypto currency. If the devs have to take active counter-measures to defeat an individual, the very basics of cryptocurrency is just flawed. You’re asking for people to mine in such a way that it’s decentralized; not necessarily happening.

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Well, I don’t know if anything needs to be done; it’s a discussion… Per the other replies, it looks like HPool has something like 35% of the total network?

you made some good points here, and i agree we should support chia and not hpool, but everyone keeps repeating this stupid argument:

requires you to compromise your private key

why should i care? i will have to delete my existing plots sooner or later and replace disk space with portable plots anyway, therefore why not juice them as long as possible?

associated wallet is empty except for incoming rewards from hpool which will instantly go to another wallet or directly to an exchange.

for portable pools i will have a new key, a new wallet and a freshly installed windows on other PC, so hpool can do me no harm.


this github posting was obviously written by a pubescent conspiracy theorist who is angry because he didn’t get any chias :wink:


Option 2 is likely to be a losing proposition for the Chia devs. Anything they break (intentionally or otherwise) in the hpool client as part of an upgrade can be rectified by hpool in short order. Open source protocol vs closed-source binary is not a fair fight.

The thing about Option 1 (and this is something the dev team will never acknowledge publicly), is that they are in a race against the clock. Every day that passes is a potential nail in the coffin of the official pool protocol and a gift to hpool. With 20+EiB of existing netspace to compete with, it will take a herculean effort to unseat them. As the only pool that lets you farm your existing non-portable plots, they are in one hell of a position.

Yes you’re right this this is not really a problem, at least not for joining hpool now because you can always just create a new key.

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I guess I still don’t understand the problem. There’s been a lot of FUD around HPOOL, but:

  1. THEY DON’T ASK FOR YOUR KEY. I’ve seen this argument over and over. They ask for a hash of your key. This isn’t MUCH better, but it is better. The closed-source client could still be doing something malicious with your key which brings us to number 2.
  2. KEEP YOUR WALLET EMPTY. Even if they have your key, there’s nothing they can do with an empty wallet. Create a new wallet (on a different machine!!) and transfer your earnings to the new wallet as soon as you receive them.
  3. IT MIGHT INSTALL A BACKDOOR! This is a fair point! Most farmers have dedicated machines for farming - take cautions to segment this machine from your main network if possible, make sure to not access your bank checking account from it, etc. Treat your farming machine as an unknown intruder. Pro-tip: treat every machine as an unknown intruder. :rofl:
  4. WHAT WILL BRAM THINK??? To be blunt, I don’t give a fuck. Aww, boo hoo, they didn’t think netspace would grow so fast. Welp, it did, they made the wrong decision, and now my investment is on the line. I will take my ROI where I can get it and I will happily jump ship to an official pool once they exist and ROI beats my current deal. To expect “more” of me is absolutely selfish and greedy on the part of Bram and friends.
  5. 51% attack!?! The Chia devs themselves have said this isn’t possible. If they aren’t worried, I’m not either.

But to answer your question: how will Chia fight against HPOOL? Simple: release pooling. HPOOL just needs competitors. I’ll switch immediately; I have no loyalty either way. What I don’t understand is why people don’t join HPOOL now to get their ROI and then switch later? What is your reason, if I may ask? Is it a “morality” or “loyalty” thing at this point? Sinophobia? Something else?


You don’t know this. You installed a piece of software on your system that has no background. For all you know, it has installed a backdoor that will allow them to do whatever they want in six months after you have earned something worth taking and after they have had the time to document every account you have.

Do I think this is what is happening? I have no clue. But that is the point.

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There are a lot of people here who are obstinately doubling down on past decisions, because updating their opinions means accepting that things are not going to turn out as planned.

My guess is this forum will see more and more of it. It becomes self-selecting, in a sense, because these types are the only ones who will stick around. My opinions tend to be pretty unpopular around here so I, by way of example, will probably not be sticking around too much longer.

(I also joined HPool some time ago, for what it’s worth)

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This is a fair point for sure - gonna update my list above

I dont trust Chia Software in same way, Have onyone here inspectet there code?
I dont realy think so.


i get your point, and i agree you can not be suspicious enough. but this is not my work PC… it was used for farming, now new windows installed just to run hpool software, then will cash out and then will delete everything/install windows again. its in no way a critical system, just a second PC to play with…


This is a fair point also.

even thought I’m quite sure lot’s of people have actually looked at this code for chia. In general people tend to have way too much of a romantic idea of anything open source. It only works if a lot of people actually look at it very thoroughly. And then still there’s a chance that some obfuscated code exists.

Just to be save, I will be wiping all my systems before switching to a new key

The code is open source and you can compile it yourself. That’s about as trustworthy as you can get.

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It’s a fair point… assuming you trust hpool, and are OK with the 20% cut they take off the top… if you don’t think you will ever get lucky enough to win 2 XCH, e.g. “1 year to win”, then you could pool for ~6 months and earn some fractional amount of XCH versus… nothing.

Yes, exactly, and well stated. Not having pooling is turning out to be a critical and potentially fatal error for Chia. All because they wildly underestimated how popular it would be, I guess?

This is also a fair point. And as far as malicious code goes, it does not serve HPool to do anything malicious, because that would discredit them and their business, and prevent future folks from joining. So unless this is a one-time pump and dump…

Yes, because it is fully open source, HPool code is not open source. That part of the argument is 100% valid.

So the answer to my question seems to be “nothing”. There will be no code changes, just … official pooling, as soon as is humanly possible.


I would reinstall the operating system on any machine that had the hpool client on it. It may as well be malware.

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