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Pruning the execution client to free up disk space

Execution clients (formerly known as eth1 nodes) grow quickly. Run this process to prune the blockchain and free up space.

Quick steps guide

The following steps align with our mainnet guide. You may need to adjust file names and directory locations where appropriate. The core concepts remain the same.

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Why do I want to prune my execution client?

  • Free up gigs of precious disk space. Typically 200gb or more is common.

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Pre-requisites

  • Works with geth currently. Erigon and Besu prune automatically.
  • Ensure at least 50+ GB of free disk space is available otherwise database corruption may occur.

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How to prune execution client

Ensure adequate failover or backup execution clients are configured for use with your beacon-chain node before proceeding. geth is offline and unavailable during this process.
1. Note how much disk space is currently used and stop the execution client
df
sudo service eth1 stop
2. Start the pruning process and monitor it's process.
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Geth pruning Caveats:
  • Pruning can take a few hours or longer (typically 2 to 10 hours is common) depending on your node's disk performance.
  • There are three stages to pruning: iterating state snapshot, pruning state data and compacting database.
  • "Compacting database" will stop updating status and appear hung. Do not interrupt or restart this process. Typically after an hour, pruning status messages will reappear.
Geth
/usr/bin/geth snapshot prune-state --datadir $HOME/.ethereum
3. Once the pruning is finished, restart the execution client service.
sudo service eth1 restart
4. Compare the disk space of the node after pruning.
df
Nice work. Enjoy the extra disk breathing room.

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