S12 E8: Lisa Neigut on Running a Core Lightning Node from Home

Lisa Neigut works at Blockstream to make Core Lightning (formerly known as c-lightning) a reliable and robust Lightning network experience. Since September 2018, she has contributed with more than 2000 GitHub commits that helped build and/or improve projects such as Blockstream’s Elements and c-lightning, ACINQ’s eclair, BTCPay Server, mempool.space, and the universal Lightning BOLT system. She reviewed code, fixed bugs, built plug-ins, and made proposals to improve the LN experience. In the process, she always expressed energetic joyfulness and contagious enthusiasm.

Given her experience and line of employment, it comes as no surprise that Lisa recommends Lightning network enthusiasts to use Core Lightning. When I asked her which version of the RaspiBlitz software I should run on my node, Niftynei (also known under the Neil Saitug anagram) began to present the unique features from Blockstream’s client.

But Lisa Neigiut’s recommendation wasn’t just a way to pledge allegiance to her employer, though. It was much more than a mere act of shilling, as she clearly explained why Lightning Labs’ LND client has faced synchronization issues in recent weeks. These bugs reminded us that we are still in the early days of the Lightning network and there are still on-chain events (like a 999 out of 1000 multisig) that can cause unexpected downtimes. Yet interestingly, Blockstream’s Core Lightning was not affected by these events and kept on working while LND nodes were offline and bound to get patched as soon as possible.

It’s not all about the stability and lack of bugs, though: Lisa is very enthusiastic about Commando and Runes (Blockstream’s take on Macaroons). And when it comes to choosing the right hardware for your node and setting up a system which conceals your IP address, she is quite a connoisseur.

Last but not least, I must mention Lisa Neigut’s Bitcoin++ events and her base58 education platform. Outside of her coding, she is very interested in learning from other developers and sharing some of her own knowledge with others.

Listen to Lisa Neigut on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, YouTube & More!

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On the other hand, if you’re privacy-oriented then you can use this free player. It’s built on top of the free open source Podcast Generator plug-in and it offers all the features you find in big tech media players. Not only that, but you can open it using Tor browser and you also have the option to download the episode for offline listening sessions – great news for the Microsoft Zune enthusiasts who want to go out for an internet-free jog in the morning!

00:51– Intro

02:00 – Why use Core Lightning

04:40 – Commando, Runes

09:00 – Rusty and Macaroons

11:20 – Podcast apps on Core Lightning? 

11:50 – What broke LND nodes lately?

17:00 – Why were Core Lightning nodes not affected?

20:24 – Computer programming

24:30 – Did Blockstream attack LND?

30:40 – How to protect yourself from theft in Lightning

41:12 – Network-level privacy (Tor, Tunnelsats, VPN, Nym)

54:50 – Lightning node hosted on cloud services

58:30 – Should you use a Raspberry Pi?

01:02:00 – Are laptops or used servers better for Lightning nodes?

01:08:30 – Lisa’s privacy-focused Bitcoin conference from Mexico City

1:16:50 – How to follow Lisa Neigut & base58.info 

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Vlad Costea

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