How to Set Up a Celestia Validator Node and Participate in the Network

Staking Facilities
10 min readMay 15, 2023

In this blog post, we will guide you through the process of setting up a Celestia Validator Node. Following these steps, you will be able to participate in the consensus and have your node up and running.

Hardware Requirements

Before getting started, ensure that your machine meets the minimum hardware requirements for running the validator node:

  • Memory: 8 GB RAM
  • CPU: 6 cores
  • Disk: 500 GB SSD Storage
  • Bandwidth: 1 Gbps for Download/1 Gbps for Upload

Install the dependencies

First, ensure you’ve set up your instance and SSH into it to start installing the necessary dependencies.

Update and upgrade your operating system with the following command:

APT: sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade -y
YUM: sudo yum update

Next, install the essential packages required for executing tasks like downloading files, compiling, and monitoring the node:

APT: sudo apt install curl tar wget clang pkg-config libssl-dev jq build-essential git make ncdu -y

YUM: sudo yum install curl tar wget clang pkg-config libssl-dev jq build-essential git make ncdu -y

Install Golang

The Celestia-app and celestia-node are written in Golang, so it is necessary to install Golang to build and run them.

First, execute the following commands to download and install the desired version of Golang:

cd $HOME
wget "$ver.linux-amd64.tar.gz"
sudo rm -rf /usr/local/go
sudo tar -C /usr/local -xzf "go$ver.linux-amd64.tar.gz"
rm "go$ver.linux-amd64.tar.gz"

Now, add the /usr/local/go/bin directory to $PATH:

For bash users:

bash: echo "export PATH=$PATH:/usr/local/go/bin:$HOME/go/bin" >> $HOME/.bash_profile
source $HOME/.bash_profile

zsh: echo "export PATH=$PATH:/usr/local/go/bin:$HOME/go/bin" >> $HOME/.zshrc
source $HOME/.zshrcFor zsh users:

To verify if Golang has been installed correctly, run:

go version

The output should display the installed version:

go version go1.19.1 linux/amd64

Install celestia-appd

Building the Celestia-Appd Binary

The steps below will create a binary file named celestia-appd inside the $HOME/go/bin folder, which will be used later to run the node. Be sure to select the correct network to install the binary for.

Execute the following commands to build the binary:

cd $HOME 
rm -rf celestia-app
git clone
cd celestia-app/
git checkout tags/$APP_VERSION -b $APP_VERSION
make install

To verify if the binary was successfully compiled, run the binary using the— help flag:

celestia-appd --help

You should see a similar output with helpful example commands:

Start celestia-app

celestia-appd [command]

Available Commands:
add-genesis-account Add a genesis account to genesis.json
collect-gentxs Collect genesis txs and output a genesis.json file
config Create or query an application CLI configuration file
debug Tool for helping with debugging your application
export Export state to JSON
gentx Generate a genesis tx carrying a self delegation
help Help about any command
init Initialize private validator, p2p, genesis, and application configuration files
keys Manage your application's keys
migrate Migrate genesis to a specified target version
query Querying subcommands
rollback rollback tendermint state by one height
rollback rollback cosmos-sdk and tendermint state by one height
start Run the full node
status Query remote node for status
tendermint Tendermint subcommands
tx Transactions subcommands
validate-genesis validates the genesis file at the default location or at the location passed as an arg
version Print the application binary version information

-h, --help help for celestia-appd
--home string directory for config and data (default "/root/.celestia-app")
--log_format string The logging format (json|plain) (default "plain")
--log_level string The logging level (trace|debug|info|warn|error|fatal|panic) (default "info")
--trace print out full stack trace on errors

Use "celestia-appd [command] --help" for more information about a command.

Configuring Ports for the Validator Node

When interacting with a Celestia node, you may need to open ports on your machine to allow communication between nodes, such as bridge nodes. It is essential that specific ports are accessible. Make sure that your firewall allows connections to the correct ports.

If you run a node on a cloud server, ensure that the ports are open on the server’s firewall. If you run a node at home, ensure that your router allows connections to the correct ports.

For example, validator ports 9090 and 26657 need to be accessible by the bridge, and port 26656 is required to be open to the world for P2P connections

Celestia App Nodes Ports:

Celestia App Nodes Ports

Set up the P2P networks

Clone the networks repository and initialize the network with your desired node name and the — chain-id parameter set to “mocha”. Note that the chain-id might change if a new testnet is deployed. Replace the genesis.json file with the one for the mocha network and set the seeds and peers.

cd $HOME
rm -rf networks
git clone
celestia-appd init "node-name" --chain-id mocha
cp $HOME/networks/mocha/genesis.json $HOME/.celestia-app/config
SEEDS="some seeds"
PEERS="some peers"
sed -i -e 's|^seeds *=.*|seeds = "'$SEEDS'"|; s|^persistent_peers *=.*|persistent_peers = "'$PEERS'"|' $HOME/.celestia-app/config/config.toml
sed -i -e "s/^seed_mode *=.*/seed_mode = \"$SEED_MODE\"/" $HOME/.celestia-app/config/config.toml

You can find more peers here.

Configure pruning (optional)

To reduce disk space usage, we recommend setting up pruning with the following configurations. You can modify these settings to fit your pruning preferences.


sed -i -e "s/^pruning *=.*/pruning = \"$PRUNING\"/" $HOME/.celestia-app/config/app.toml
sed -i -e "s/^pruning-keep-recent *=.*/pruning-keep-recent = \
\"$PRUNING_KEEP_RECENT\"/" $HOME/.celestia-app/config/app.toml
sed -i -e "s/^pruning-interval *=.*/pruning-interval = \
\"$PRUNING_INTERVAL\"/" $HOME/.celestia-app/config/app.toml


By default, a consensus node will sync using block sync. For quicker syncing, you can choose between State sync and Quick sync.

Quick sync (recommended)

To use Quick sync, download the entire data directory from a third-party provider.

cd $HOME
rm -rf ~/.celestia-app/data
mkdir -p ~/.celestia-app/data
SNAP_NAME=$(curl -s | \
egrep -o ">mocha.*tar" | tr -d ">")
wget -O -${SNAP_NAME} | tar xf - \
-C ~/.celestia-app/data/

State sync

Set up State sync by configuring rpc_servers, trust_height, and trust_hash fields in the $HOME/.celestia-app/config/config.toml file. Make sure to provide at least two different RPC endpoints.

rpc_servers = ""
trust_height = 0
trust_hash = ""

Start the celestia-app

Start your validator node by running the celestia-appd start command. Make sure to check the ports section for information on which ports need to be open on your machine.

celestia-appd start

Recommended: start the validator node with SystemD

SystemD is a daemon service useful for running applications as background processes.

Create Celestia-App systemd file:

sudo tee <<EOF >/dev/null /etc/systemd/system/celestia-appd.service
Description=celestia-appd Cosmos daemon
ExecStart=$(which celestia-appd) start

If the file was created successfully you will be able to see its content:

cat /etc/systemd/system/celestia-appd.service

Enable and start celestia-appd daemon:

sudo systemctl enable celestia-appd
sudo systemctl start celestia-app

Check if daemon has been started correctly:

sudo systemctl status celestia-appd

Check daemon logs in real time:

sudo journalctl -u celestia-appd.service -f

To check if your node is in sync before going forward:

curl -s localhost:26657/status | jq .result | jq .sync_info

Make sure that you have “catching_up”: false, otherwise leave it running until it is in sync.

Set up your wallet

Create an Application CLI Configuration File

First, create an application CLI configuration file by running the following command:

celestia-appd config keyring-backend test

Choose a Wallet Name and Create a Wallet

You can pick any wallet name you prefer. In our example, we use “validator” as the wallet name:

celestia-appd keys add validator --interactive

Make sure to save the mnemonic output, as it is the only way to recover your validator wallet in case you lose it.

Check Your Wallets

To view all your wallets, run the following command:

celestia-appd keys list

Fund Your Wallet

To fund your wallet, use the public Celestia address provided. You can fund the wallet via Discord by sending a message to either the #mocha-faucet or #arabica-faucet channel:

$request celestia1xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Wait for a confirmation indicating that the tokens have been successfully sent.

Verify Token Receipt

To check if tokens have arrived successfully to your wallet, run the following commands, replacing the public address with your own:

# With the celestia-appd service running
celestia-appd query bank balances celestia1xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Delegate stake to a validator

Create an environment variable for the address and delegate tokens to the celestiavaloper validator.


In order to allocate additional stake to any validator, including your own, you’ll require the validator’s celesvaloperaddress. If you wish to delegate more to your local validator wallet, you can retrieve its celesvaloper address by executing the following command:

celestia-appd keys show $VALIDATOR_WALLET --bech val -a

After entering the wallet passphrase you should see a similar output:

Enter keyring passphrase:

To delegate tokens to the celestiavaloper validator, as an example you can run:

celestia-appd tx staking delegate \
celestiavaloper1q3v5cugc8cdpud87u4zwy0a74uxkk6u4q4gx4p 1000000utia \
--from=$VALIDATOR_WALLET --chain-id=mocha

If successful, you should see a similar output as:

code: 0
codespace: ""
data: ""
gas_used: "0"
gas_wanted: "0"
height: "0"
info: ""
logs: []
raw_log: '[]'
timestamp: ""
tx: null
txhash: <tx-hash>

You can check if the TX hash went through using the block explorer by inputting the txhash ID that was returned.

Deploy the Celestia Node (bridge node)

Install Celestia Node

  1. Install the same dependencies like before as well as the Golang
  2. Install the celestia-node
cd /data
rm -rf celestia-node
git clone
cd celestia-node/
git checkout tags/v0.9.3
make build
sudo make install
make cel-key

Verify that the binary is working and check the version with the celestia version command:

$ celestia version
Semantic version: v0.9.3
Commit: 7f556f06e175267e0dd60b444a68554f592710a0
Build Date: Thu Dec 15 10:19:22 PM UTC 2022
System version: amd64/linux
Golang version: go1.20.2

The following ports are used by Celestia nodes:

Initialize the bridge node

Run the celestia bridge init command with the IP address of the core node (the validator you just set up in the previous step).

celestia bridge init --core.ip <ip-address>

Run the bridge node

Start the bridge node by running the celestia bridge start command.

celestia bridge start

Optional, but recommended: start the bridge node with SystemD

Create Celestia Bridge systemd file:

sudo tee <<EOF >/dev/null /etc/systemd/system/celestia-bridge.service
Description=celestia-bridge Cosmos daemon

ExecStart=$(which celestia) bridge start


If the file was created successfully you will be able to see its content:

cat /etc/systemd/system/celestia-bridge.service

Enable and start celestia-bridge daemon:

sudo systemctl enable celestia-bridge
sudo systemctl start celestia-bridge && sudo journalctl -u \
celestia-bridge.service -f

Now, the Celestia bridge node will start syncing headers and storing blocks from celestia-app.

Note: At startup, we can see the multiaddress from Celestia Bridge Node. This is needed for future Light Node connections and communication between Celestia Bridge Nodes



You should be seeing logs coming through of the bridge node syncing.

Set up QGB keys

This step helps get you prepared for when the Quantum Gravity Bridge is enabled. You would still need to go through this step before running a validator to configure an extra key.

evm-address: This flag should contain a 0x EVM address. Here, you can add any Ethereum-based address to this flag. You can also modify it later if you decide to switch addresses.

You can set this value to the above flag as an environment variable:


Remember to add the value for your address in the above environment variable before setting it.

Run a validator node

After completing all the necessary steps, you are now ready to run a validator! In order to create your validator on-chain, follow the instructions below. Keep in mind that these steps are necessary ONLY if you want to participate in the consensus.

Pick a moniker name of your choice! This is the validator name that will show up on public dashboards and explorers. VALIDATOR_WALLET must be the same you defined previously. Parameter --min-self-delegation=1000000 defines the amount of tokens that are self delegated from your validator wallet.

Now, connect to the network of your choice.

You have the following option of connecting to list of networks shown below:

Here are the steps to connect your validator to Mocha:


celestia-appd tx staking create-validator \
--amount=1000000utia \
--pubkey=$(celestia-appd tendermint show-validator) \
--moniker=$MONIKER \
--chain-id=mocha \
--commission-rate=0.1 \
--commission-max-rate=0.2 \
--commission-max-change-rate=0.01 \
--min-self-delegation=1000000 \
--evm-address=$EVM_ADDRESS \

You will be prompted to confirm the transaction:

confirm transaction before signing and broadcasting [y/N]: y

Inputting y should provide an output similar to:

code: 0
codespace: ""
data: ""
gas_used: "0"
gas_wanted: "0"
height: "0"
info: ""
logs: []
raw_log: '[]'
timestamp: ""
tx: null
txhash: <tx-hash>

You should now be able to see your validator from a block explorer like here.

Run the QGB Orchestrator

All validators need to run the QGB orchestrator to sign attestations once the QGB is enabled for Blockspace Race (BSR). Follow the instructions in the docs to run the QGB orchestrator.


You have successfully set up a Celestia Validator Node and can now participate in the network. Remember to keep an eye on your node’s performance and adjust the settings as needed to ensure optimal operation.

Let’s hear about it!

Missing anything? Thoughts, feedback, or questions about the post?

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Please note that none of this is to be considered financial nor investment advice. We highly advise you to always do your own research (’DYOR’) before interacting with any of the projects or tools we write about. Crypto is a highly dynamic and fast paced environment with lots of moving parts that can quickly change.



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