Microsoft's Project Bletchley Speeds Consortium Blockchain Setups
This week, Microsoft released Bletchley to its blockchain-as-a-service ecosystem and a toolkit for deploying containerized HPC workloads.Project Bletchley, the Ethereum-based consortium blockchain technology that Microsoft announced back in June, is now available, the company said this week. Bletchley v1 slashes the time it takes to deploy a consortium Ethereum network, according to Marley Gray, principal program manager at Microsoft Azure Blockchain Engineering. "It reduces the estimated three-week process of setting up a globally distributed multi-node consortium Ethereum network down to 8 questions and 5-8 minutes," he wrote in a blog post. "Not only does Bletchley v1 automate the setup of the network infrastructure but it sets up a portal for rapidly getting started developing applications on Ethereum." The ability to set up and run consortium blockchains is a major step toward creating scalable, next-generation enterprise applications that harness blockchain, the distributed ledger technology used in cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. The Ethereum Foundation describes the consortium blockchains as blockchains "where the consensus process is controlled by a pre-selected set of nodes; for example, one might imagine a consortium of 15 financial institutions, each of which operates a node and of which 10 must sign every block in order for the block to be valid." Consortium blockchain networks can be public, restricted to participants or partially decentralized.
Currently, Bletchley v1 is meant to help developers come to grips with private multinode consortium networks. Microsoft plans on rapidly growing this part of its Azure blockchain-as-a-service ecosystem by integrating with the company's other cloud-based services.