Can this be done or do everyone updating their client everytime a new version is announced on bitcoin.org has to re-do the whole process over again?

On OS X, (probably with the other two OS's as well) blockchain data is kept on a seperate directory in ~/Library/Application Support/Bitcoin ; however a new version of the client needs to reindex the whole thing over again- which is a super time-consuming process..

1 Answer 1


Version 0.8 of the reference client changed the database format completely, in order to scale better. That meant a one-time rebuild that everyone had to go through, as converting the old database would have been error-prone.

With that change, the transaction index was made optional, and off by default. This is because for normal operation (verifying and processing blocks and transactions, and maintaining a wallet), such an index is not necessary.

An option -txindex (or txindex=1 in bitcoin.conf) was introduced to re-enable this transaction index (which is necessary for the getrawtransaction RPC call). It has to be specified when the database is created though, so at first run of a post-0.8 version, or when explicitly rebuilding the index (with -reindex).

This type of database format change is not expected to happen frequently.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.