Bitcoin Implementations

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A Bitcoin implementation is a software program that is capable of running a Bitcoin node and interacting with the Bitcoin network. There are several different implementations of Bitcoin, written in various programming languages. Because Bitcoin is an open source project, anyone can copy and alter its code or replicate its functionality. This strenghthens rather than harms Bitcoin’s security and utility.

Each implementation offers slightly different features and design, but all implementations must agree on the consensus rules in order to keep the Bitcoin network unified. For example, implementations can use different wallet and transaction types or coin selection and fee estimation schemes, but they must all enforce the same rules with regards to which blocks, transactions, and signatures are valid.

While there are many different implementations, Bitcoin Core, the original implementation created by Satoshi Nakamoto in 2008, is by far the most dominant. Other implementations include Libbitcoin, Bitcoin Knots, and bcoin.