Nowadays blockchain technology is creating a lot of headlines, but is very little is written about what blockchain is and how to use it. I tried to dig into blockchain technology and found the Hyperledger Project developed by Linux Foundation, to support the collaborative development of blockchain-based distributed ledgers. Hyperledger Fabric is one of the hyperledger projects but before introducing hHperledger Fabric, we should talk about what blockchain is.
What Is Blockchain?
The main component of blockchain is a distributed ledger that records all the transactions that take place in the network. In blockchain, a ledger is replicated across many network participants, each of whom collaborates in its maintenance.
Collaboration and decentralization are what makes the blockchain powerful and ideal for business transactions.
Blockchains are also described as the system of proof because we can only append into blockchains and use cryptographic techniques that guarantee that once a transaction has been added to the ledger it cannot be modified.
So now that we know a little about blockchain, we can move towards Hyperledger Fabric. Now the question is, what is Hyperledger Fabric?
Hyperledger Fabric is one of the blockchain projects within Hyperledger. Like other blockchain technologies, it has a ledger, uses smart contracts, and is a system by which participants manage their transactions.
Hyperledger is different from some other blockchains because it is private and permissioned. Also, instead of using “proof of work” to verify the identity, Fabric uses membership services provide to enroll members to the network.
The fabric delivers the following blockchain network capabilities:
- Identity management: To enable permissioned networks, Hyperledger Fabric provides a membership identity service that manages user IDs and authenticates all participants on the network.
- Privacy and confidentiality: Hyperledger Fabric enables competing business interests, and any groups that require private, confidential transactions, to coexist on the same permissioned network.
- Efficient Processing: Hyperledger Fabric assigns network roles by node type. To provide concurrency and parallelism to the network, transaction execution is separated from transaction ordering and commitment.
- Chaincode Functionality: Chaincode applications encode logic that is invoked by specific types of transactions on the channel. Chaincode that defines parameters for a change of asset ownership, for example, ensures that all transactions that transfer ownership are subject to the same rules and requirements.
- Modular Design: Hyperledger Fabric implements a modular architecture to provide functional choice to network designers. Specific algorithms for identity, ordering (consensus) and encryption, for example, can be plugged into any fabric network.
Hyperledger Fabric Model
- Assets: Asset definitions enable the exchange of almost anything with the monetary value of the network, from whole foods to antique cars to currency futures.
- Chaincode: Chaincode execution is partitioned from transaction ordering, limiting the required levels of trust and verification across node types, and optimizing network scalability and performance.
- Ledger Features: The immutable, shared ledger encodes the entire transaction history for each channel, and includes SQL-like query capability for efficient auditing and dispute resolution.
- Privacy Through Channels: Channels enable multilateral transactions with the high degrees of privacy and confidentiality required by competing businesses and regulated industries that exchange assets on a common network.
- Security and Membership Services: Permissioned membership provides a trusted blockchain network, where participants know that all transactions can be detected and traced by authorized regulators and auditors.
- Consensus: Fabric’s unique approach to consensus enables the flexibility and scalability needed for the enterprise.
So that’s it with the introduction of the Hyperledger Fabric. To explore more you can read the documentation about Hyperledger Fabric.