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How to Set Up an Ethereum Node for Beginners

This guide walks you through how to run an Ethereum node. Additionally, this guide will help you connect your geth node to MetaMask so that you can remotely access it. Finally, we’ll walk you through how to protect your node from crashes and show you how to set up a Linux firewall to further secure your node.

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"We would achieve maximal decentralization of a blockchain network if every person on the planet owned precisely one full node device connected to the network."

Joe Lubin

Founder of ConsenSys, Co-founder of Ethereum

Why Should You Set up an Ethereum Node?

The concept behind Ethereum is to create a network of so many nodes that hold copies of the blockchain network that it would be impossible for any government, corporate entity, or cohort of nefarious actors to take down or censor the network. It’s vital that the data be spread across the globe as widely as possible in order to ensure maximum decentralization. Therefore, if you want to help Ethereum grow, one of the best things you can do is set up your own node.

This guide contains three parts:

Part I

The first section will walk you through setting up your Ethereum node. More specifically this guide will cover the process of installing an Ethereum node remotely on a Virtual Private Server (VPS). Next, we’ll show you how to synchronize your node with the Ethereum blockchain. Finally, part one will demonstrate how to set up your node in order to allow for secure remote access.

Part II

The next section of the guide walks through securing remote access to your node using MetaMask. MetaMask is a bridge that allows you to visit the distributed web of tomorrow in your browser today. Some of you may be familiar with MetaMask already, which is great and will be useful to set up remote access. If not, you’ll need to download MetaMask, which the guide will explain. At the end of this section you’ll have secure remote access to your Ethereum node via MetaMask! We also cover how to make everything survive crashes and shutdowns so that your node is always running! 

Part III

The last section of this guide will explain the importance of setting up a firewall and then walk through implementing a Linux firewall for your remote geth node. So by the end of the guide, you’ll have an Ethereum node that is remotely accessible through MetaMask and that is protected through a firewall. This is an important step towards interacting with the Ethereum network and will provide you valuable knowledge for interacting with other applications and protocols that are built on top of Ethereum. Good luck and enjoy the process! 

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