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If you’re a developer looking to explore new possibilities in blockchain technology, then buckle up and get ready! In this article, I will take you on a journey into the fascinating ecosystem of Hyperledger Besu. Discover a wide range of powerful tools and resources that will empower you to revolutionize the way you approach blockchain development. From customizable consensus algorithms to comprehensive documentation and tutorials, Hyperledger Besu has it all. So, join me as we dive into the deep end of this exciting blockchain universe!

Hyperledger Besu Overview

What is Hyperledger Besu?

Hyperledger Besu is an open-source Ethereum client developed under the Hyperledger project. It is designed to be a flexible and enterprise-grade blockchain platform that enables organizations to build and deploy decentralized applications (dApps) and smart contracts. Besu aims to provide developers with a scalable, reliable, and secure infrastructure for building blockchain solutions.

Key Features

Hyperledger Besu offers several key features that make it a powerful tool for blockchain development. First and foremost, it supports the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM), allowing developers to code smart contracts using the Solidity programming language. Besu also supports the Web3 API, enabling easy integration with existing Ethereum applications and tools.

Another important feature of Besu is its permissioning system. It allows organizations to create private, permissioned networks where access to the blockchain is controlled and limited to approved participants. This makes Besu suitable for industries that require confidentiality and privacy in their blockchain networks.

Besu’s enterprise-friendly features also include support for enterprise-grade databases, such as Oracle and PostgreSQL, as well as integration with external systems through messaging protocols like Apache Kafka. These capabilities enable organizations to easily connect their blockchain applications with existing business systems and databases.


Hyperledger Besu offers several benefits to developers and organizations looking to build blockchain solutions. Firstly, as an open-source project under the Hyperledger umbrella, Besu benefits from the collective knowledge and expertise of a vibrant community of developers and contributors. This ensures that the software remains up-to-date, secure, and well-supported.

Besu’s scalability and performance are also notable advantages. It employs various optimization techniques to enhance throughput, making it suitable for use cases that require high transaction processing capabilities. Additionally, Besu’s support for private networks and permissioning mechanisms allows organizations to meet their specific needs for privacy and security.

Besu’s compatibility with existing Ethereum tools and applications further lowers the barrier for developers. They can leverage popular development frameworks like Truffle and libraries like Web3.js to easily build and deploy their dApps and smart contracts on a Besu network. This compatibility also provides seamless integration with existing Ethereum infrastructure, opening up a wide range of existing tools and resources to developers using Besu.

Overall, Hyperledger Besu provides developers and organizations with a powerful, flexible, and scalable platform for building and deploying blockchain solutions.

Development Environment Setup

System Requirements

Before setting up the development environment, it is essential to meet the system requirements for running Hyperledger Besu. These include a minimum amount of memory, disk space, and supported operating systems. It is recommended to review and ensure that your system satisfies these requirements to ensure a smooth installation and development experience.

Installing Hyperledger Besu

Installing Hyperledger Besu varies depending on the operating system being used. Detailed installation guides are available in the official documentation of Hyperledger Besu. The guides provide step-by-step instructions for installing Besu on various platforms, including Linux, macOS, and Windows.

It is important to follow the installation guide specific to your operating system to ensure a successful installation. The process typically involves downloading the necessary software packages, configuring network settings, and initializing the Besu client.

Configuring Besu Network

Once Hyperledger Besu is installed, the next step is to configure the Besu network. This involves defining the genesis block, configuring network parameters, and setting up the desired consensus mechanism for the network.

The genesis block is the initial block of the blockchain and defines crucial information such as the network ID, the initial account balances, and the smart contracts to be deployed. By customizing the genesis block, developers can create a network with specific parameters and initial conditions according to their requirements.

Besu provides a configuration file where network parameters, consensus settings, and other options can be specified. Developers can customize this file to tailor the network to their desired specifications. Additionally, Besu supports several consensus mechanisms, including Proof of Work (PoW) and Istanbul BFT, allowing developers to choose the most suitable consensus algorithm for their use case.

Setting up and configuring the Besu network not only ensures a smooth deployment process but also enables developers to create a network environment that aligns with their specific needs.

Besu APIs and SDKs


Hyperledger Besu provides a JSON-RPC API that allows developers to interact with the blockchain network programmatically. This API allows developers to send transactions, query blockchain data, and access various functions and features of the Besu client.

Using the JSON-RPC API, developers can build applications that interact with the blockchain, automate tasks, and retrieve blockchain data for analysis and reporting purposes. The API provides a wide range of methods to access and manipulate blockchain data, including querying account balances, retrieving transaction information, and executing smart contracts.

Websockets API

Besu also offers a Websockets API that enables real-time communication with the blockchain network. This API allows developers to subscribe to events and receive updates whenever specific actions or changes occur on the blockchain.

By leveraging the Websockets API, developers can build real-time applications that respond to blockchain events instantaneously. This is particularly useful for applications that require immediate action based on changes in the blockchain state, such as monitoring account balances, detecting transaction confirmations, or tracking new block arrivals.


In addition to the JSON-RPC and Websockets APIs, Hyperledger Besu supports the GraphQL API. GraphQL is a query language that allows developers to retrieve specific data from the blockchain in a more efficient and flexible manner.

The GraphQL API provides a single endpoint that developers can use to query multiple data points in a single request. This reduces the number of API calls required to retrieve complex data and improves the efficiency of data retrieval. It also allows developers to specify the exact data they need, reducing the amount of unnecessary data being transferred.

The GraphQL API makes it easier for developers to design and execute complex queries on the blockchain, further enhancing the usability and flexibility of Hyperledger Besu.

Java SDK

Besu offers a Java SDK that provides a set of libraries and tools for building Java-based blockchain applications. The SDK simplifies the development process by providing prebuilt components and functions that interact with the Besu client.

Using the Java SDK, developers can programmatically interact with the blockchain, submit transactions, retrieve data, and execute smart contracts. The SDK abstracts away the complexities of network communication and blockchain interaction, enabling developers to focus on application logic.

The Java SDK seamlessly integrates with existing Java development tools and frameworks, making it easy for Java developers to get started with Hyperledger Besu.

JavaScript SDK

Besu also provides a JavaScript SDK that allows developers to build browser-based and Node.js applications that interact with the blockchain. The JavaScript SDK provides a set of libraries that abstract away the low-level details of blockchain communication, making it easier for developers to work with Besu.

With the JavaScript SDK, developers can send transactions, query blockchain data, and interact with smart contracts using familiar JavaScript syntax. This enables the development of decentralized applications that run in web browsers or server-side environments, offering a wide reach and compatibility.

The JavaScript SDK also includes Web3.js, a popular library for interacting with Ethereum-based blockchains. This allows developers familiar with Ethereum development to leverage their existing knowledge and tools when building applications on Hyperledger Besu.

Smart Contract Development

Solidity Language

Smart contracts in Hyperledger Besu are written in the Solidity programming language. Solidity is a high-level, statically-typed contract-oriented language designed to write smart contracts for Ethereum-compatible blockchains.

Solidity provides a wide range of features that make it powerful for developing complex smart contracts. It supports object-oriented programming principles, allowing developers to define data structures, functions, and modifiers. It also supports inheritance, interfaces, and libraries, enabling code reuse and modularity.

In addition, Solidity has built-in support for contract testing, enabling developers to write unit tests to verify the correctness of their contracts. This helps identify and fix issues before deployment, ensuring the reliability and security of the smart contracts.

Truffle Framework

Truffle is a popular development framework for Ethereum-based smart contract development. It provides a suite of tools and utilities that simplify the development, testing, and deployment of smart contracts.

Truffle offers a development environment with built-in smart contract compilation, migration, and testing capabilities. It also provides a command-line interface (CLI) for managing project configuration, deploying contracts, and interacting with the blockchain network.

Truffle integrates seamlessly with Hyperledger Besu, allowing developers to use the same tooling and workflows they are familiar with when building and deploying smart contracts on a Besu network. This compatibility saves time and effort, enabling rapid development and testing cycles.

Web3.js Library

Web3.js is a JavaScript library that provides a collection of API functions for interacting with Ethereum-based blockchains. It is widely used for developing decentralized applications and interacting with smart contracts.

Besu’s JavaScript SDK includes Web3.js, allowing developers to leverage its powerful capabilities when building applications that interact with Besu networks. Web3.js provides high-level abstractions for transaction handling, contract interaction, and event listening.

By utilizing the Web3.js library, developers can simplify the process of interacting with the blockchain, making it easier and more efficient to develop decentralized applications on Hyperledger Besu.

Network Management Tools

Network Creation

Hyperledger Besu offers tools and utilities for creating and managing blockchain networks. These tools help organizations set up private, permissioned networks tailored to their specific requirements.

Besu provides a network provisioning tool called “Besu Genesis,” which allows organizations to define and configure the network’s genesis block parameters. Besu Genesis provides a user-friendly interface for specifying the initial network configuration, including the network ID, block time, consensus mechanism, and initial account balances.

In addition to the Besu Genesis tool, organizations can also leverage existing infrastructure provisioning tools like Ansible or Terraform to automate the network creation process. These tools enable organizations to define and deploy the necessary infrastructure resources, such as network nodes, securely and consistently.

Network Administration

Once the network is created, Hyperledger Besu provides extensive network administration capabilities to manage and maintain the blockchain network effectively.

Besu offers administrative APIs that allow network administrators to configure network parameters, manage peer connections, and control access to the network. These APIs enable tasks such as adding or removing nodes, updating node configurations, and managing permissions and access controls.

Besu also provides monitoring and reporting tools that allow network administrators to track the health and performance of the network. These tools provide real-time information on key metrics such as transaction throughput, block generation times, and peer connectivity.

Network Monitoring

Besu supports various monitoring tools and integrations to help network administrators monitor the health and performance of the blockchain network.

Besu Metrics is a built-in tool that allows administrators to collect and monitor essential metrics from the Besu client and the underlying blockchain network. It provides real-time insights into key performance indicators such as CPU and memory usage, block propagation times, and transaction confirmation times.

Besu can also be integrated with external monitoring systems and tools such as Prometheus and Grafana. These tools enable advanced monitoring and visualizations, allowing administrators to gain deeper insights into the network’s performance and troubleshoot any issues that may arise.

With these network management tools, organizations can effectively configure, administer, and monitor their Hyperledger Besu blockchain networks, ensuring their stability and performance.

Monitoring and Debugging Tools

Besu Metrics

A built-in monitoring tool that provides valuable information about the health and performance of the blockchain network.

Besu Metrics collects data on key metrics such as block generation times, transaction throughput, memory usage, and network connectivity. These metrics can be monitored in real-time or exported for further analysis and reporting.

By using Besu Metrics, developers and administrators can identify performance bottlenecks, detect abnormalities, and optimize the network configuration for better efficiency. It provides insights that help maintain the stability and reliability of the blockchain network.

Logging and Tracing

Besu provides extensive logging and tracing capabilities, allowing developers and administrators to debug and analyze the behavior of the blockchain network.

By default, Besu logs events and actions happening within the client and the blockchain network. These logs capture valuable information about transactions, smart contract interactions, and system events. Logs can be used to troubleshoot issues, track down bugs, and analyze the flow of transactions and messages within the network.

Besu also supports distributed tracing, which allows developers and administrators to trace the execution path of transactions and smart contract calls. Tracing provides a detailed view of the execution flow, enabling in-depth analysis and debugging.

With logging and tracing capabilities, developers and administrators can gain insights into the behavior of Hyperledger Besu networks and identify possible issues, ensuring the smooth operation of the blockchain applications.

Debugging Transactions

Besu provides transaction debugging tools that allow developers to inspect and analyze the state changes and execution flow of individual transactions.

Developers can use the Besu CLI to trace and debug transactions, analyze stack and memory changes, and detect any issues or errors that may arise during the execution. The debugging tools provide detailed information about the transaction’s lifecycle, allowing developers to pinpoint and fix potential problems.

By leveraging the transaction debugging tools, developers can ensure the correctness and reliability of their smart contracts and troubleshoot any issues that may occur during transaction execution.

Integration with Databases and External Systems

Database Integration

Hyperledger Besu offers integration options with various databases, allowing organizations to store and retrieve blockchain data efficiently.

Besu supports enterprise-grade databases such as Oracle and PostgreSQL. These databases provide a robust and reliable storage solution for large-scale blockchain networks, enabling efficient querying and retrieval of blockchain data.

Besu also offers an Ethereum database driver that allows organizations to use their preferred database systems to store blockchain data. This driver enables the seamless integration of Besu with databases such as MongoDB, MySQL, and Redis, providing flexibility in choosing the most suitable storage solution.

External System Integration

Besu supports integration with external systems through messaging protocols such as Apache Kafka. This allows organizations to connect their blockchain applications with existing business systems and messaging infrastructures.

Besu can publish events and transactions on Apache Kafka topics, enabling real-time communication and data synchronization between the blockchain network and external systems. This integration facilitates the seamless flow of information between blockchain applications and other business processes.

By integrating with external systems, organizations can leverage their existing infrastructure and extend the functionality of their blockchain applications, making Hyperledger Besu an even more versatile and powerful platform.

Security and Privacy

Besu Network Security

Hyperledger Besu provides several security features to ensure the integrity and confidentiality of blockchain networks built on top of it.

Besu supports the use of secure consensus mechanisms such as Proof of Work (PoW) and Istanbul BFT. These mechanisms ensure that transactions and blocks are validated and added to the blockchain network securely and reliably.

Besu also offers multiple options for private network deployment. Organizations can create permissioned networks using Besu’s permissioning system, ensuring that only approved participants can access and interact with the blockchain. This permissioning system provides enhanced security and confidentiality for organizations that require stricter access control.

Smart Contract Security

Besu enforces a strong security model for smart contracts written in the Solidity language. Solidity incorporates various security features and best practices to help developers write secure and robust contracts.

Besu supports static analysis tools that help identify potential vulnerabilities and issues in smart contracts. These tools analyze the contract’s code and provide recommendations for improvement, ensuring that contracts adhere to best practices and avoid common pitfalls.

In addition, Besu provides support for contract testing, enabling developers to write unit tests that verify the correctness of their contracts. This helps identify and eliminate security vulnerabilities before deploying contracts to production environments.

Privacy and Confidentiality

Besu offers privacy features that allow organizations to protect sensitive information and preserve confidentiality in their blockchain networks.

Besu supports private transactions through its privacy extension. This extension allows organizations to create private smart contracts and shield the transaction payload and associated data from public visibility. It ensures that only involved participants can access and decrypt the content of private transactions.

Besu’s privacy extension is built using Zero-Knowledge Proof (ZKP) cryptographic techniques. These techniques enable the verification of transactions without revealing the actual data involved, preserving the privacy and confidentiality of sensitive transactions.

The privacy features offered by Hyperledger Besu make it suitable for industries that require confidentiality and privacy in their blockchain networks, such as healthcare, finance, and supply chain management.

Testing and Deployment

Unit Testing Smart Contracts

Hyperledger Besu provides a robust testing framework that allows developers to write unit tests for their smart contracts. Unit tests help verify the correctness and integrity of contract logic and ensure that contracts behave as expected.

Besu’s testing framework supports writing tests using various testing libraries, such as Truffle and Solidity’s built-in testing tools. These libraries provide utilities and functions specifically designed for testing smart contracts, making it easy to simulate contract behavior, interact with the blockchain network, and assert expected outcomes.

By writing comprehensive unit tests, developers can validate their smart contracts, identify and fix issues, and ensure the reliability and security of their applications.

Integration Testing

Besu supports integration testing, allowing developers to test the interaction between multiple components of their blockchain applications.

Integration testing involves testing the behavior of the entire system, including the smart contracts, the blockchain network, and the external systems that interact with the application. It helps detect issues and ensure the smooth operation of the complete application stack.

Besu’s integration testing support allows developers to simulate various scenarios, such as multiple nodes interacting with each other, conflicting transactions, and network disruptions. By testing different scenarios, developers can identify and resolve potential issues that may arise in real-world deployment.

Continuous Integration/Deployment

Hyperledger Besu integrates well with various continuous integration and continuous deployment (CI/CD) tools and frameworks. CI/CD enables developers to automate the testing, building, and deployment processes of their blockchain applications.

By integrating Besu with CI/CD pipelines, developers can automatically trigger tests whenever changes are made to the codebase, ensuring the stability and correctness of the application. CI/CD also enables seamless deployment of applications to various environments, such as testnets, private networks, or production networks.

Besu’s compatibility with popular CI/CD tools allows organizations to leverage their existing development workflows and environments, enabling efficient and automated testing and deployment processes.

Community and Support

Official Documentation

Hyperledger Besu provides comprehensive official documentation that covers various aspects of using and developing with Besu. The documentation includes installation guides, API references, tutorials, and best practices for blockchain development.

The official documentation serves as a valuable resource for developers and organizations looking to explore and utilize the features of Hyperledger Besu. It provides step-by-step instructions, code examples, and detailed explanations to help developers get started and solve common challenges.

Community Forums

Besu has an active community of developers and contributors who are passionate about blockchain technology. The community forums provide a space for developers to collaborate, exchange ideas, ask questions, and share experiences related to Hyperledger Besu.

The forums are an excellent resource to seek help, engage in discussions, and stay up to date with the latest developments in Hyperledger Besu. Experienced developers and community members often provide helpful insights, tips, and advice to assist newcomers and experienced developers alike.

Bug/Issue Tracking

Hyperledger Besu has a bug/issue tracking system that allows developers to report any bugs or issues they encounter during development or production. The tracking system ensures that developers’ concerns and problems are acknowledged and addressed by the development team.

By reporting bugs and issues, developers contribute to the continuous improvement and stability of Hyperledger Besu. The development team can track and prioritize reported issues, leading to timely bug fixes and enhancements to the software.

Contributing to Besu

Hyperledger Besu is an open-source project, and developers are encouraged to contribute to its development and improvement. Besu’s development process is transparent, and the project welcomes contributions from the community.

Contributors can participate in various ways, such as code contributions, documentation improvements, bug fixes, and feature suggestions. The official Hyperledger Besu repository provides guidelines and procedures for contributing to the project, ensuring a smooth and collaborative development experience.

Contributing to Besu not only helps enhance the software but also provides an opportunity for developers to expand their knowledge, connect with like-minded individuals, and contribute to the advancement of blockchain technology.

In conclusion, Hyperledger Besu is a powerful and versatile blockchain platform that provides developers and organizations with a feature-rich and enterprise-grade infrastructure for building and deploying decentralized applications. By offering a wide range of APIs, SDKs, tools, and resources, Besu enables developers to create secure, scalable, and customizable blockchain solutions tailored to their specific needs. With the support of a vibrant community and extensive documentation, Hyperledger Besu empowers developers to explore and leverage the full potential of blockchain technology.

By Steve Hodgkiss

I’m Steve Hodgkiss. I’m a web developer living in-between the United Kingdom and S.E. Asia. I am a fan of technology, travel and food. I’m also interested in programming and web development. Born in the UK, after finishing school I graduated from Technical College with a HND (Higher National Diploma). After working my way up as an Employee of various companies, I went Freelance in 1987. Working both in the UK and locations worldwide, I soon built up my reputation as a very competent developer, being retained by one particular Bank for 15 years. The last few years I've developed more experience that relates to Blockchain Technology and the way it can empower governments, businesses and customers. This includes the development of blockchain platforms and Cryptocurrency exchanges.