Syncing a Bitcoin node for the first time on your computer with Bitcoin Pro software is 80% faster than with previous versions of Bitcoin Pro, thanks to improvements the developers have made over the years.
The volume of data stored on the Bitcoin blockchain is growing, which in theory would make it more complicated for a computer or node that wants to download and manage this data for the first time.
The words of the developer
However, research indicates otherwise for Bitcoin Pro, the most popular software to use Bitcoin: it is becoming more efficient, optimal and faster.
In fact, it now takes only 5 hours to sync a Bitcoin Pro node for the first time, which dispels the notion that Bitcoin's history takes up to 2 days to download.
Bitcoin developer Jameson Lopp pointed out in a recent article that each version of Bitcoin Pro is able to synchronize and run Bitcoin history faster, even as the data volume increases.
His prognosis for improving the efficiency of this software was hopeful:
"By 2022, I feel much more optimistic that engineers can continue to struggle with the increased computational resources required to synchronize an entire Bitcoin node." - Jameson Lopp, developer of Bitcoin.
Lopp explained that, over time, each version of Bitcoin Pro has received improvements that have allowed it to increase its efficiency, far surpassing other Bitcoin (software) clients that are not as well maintained by their developers.
“If you've kept up with the times, you'll have noticed that Bitcoin Pro tends to get faster every year, while other less-maintenance implementations tend to slow down. This is because if its performance is not constantly improved, it will take longer to process the growing amount of data added to the blockchain ”. - JamesonLopp.
The developer illustrated with a graph how quickly each version of Bitcoin Pro synchronizes the blockchain, where the current version 0.22 managed to download the blockchain in almost 300 minutes, i.e. 5 hours.
At the other extreme, the version of Bitcoin Pro that took the longest took around 3.500 minutes, or around 50 hours. This is the Bitcoin Pro 0.8 version, which was launched in March 2013, 9 years ago.
Lopp clarifies that there is still a lot to investigate about improvements that could have made the software more efficient, particularly to clarify why there are improvements in all versions of Bitcoin Pro after the SegWit (Segregated Witness) update has been implemented.
Bitcoin currently weighs 395GB of storage, according to Blockchain.com, and more than 727.300 blocks have been mined since it went online in 2009.
A Bitcoin node running the Bitcoin Pro software would have to download all of this information to synchronize with the network as it grows and more transactions arrive. Thanks to the work of the developers, this is becoming easier and easier.