I've been syncing the ethereum blockchain for over a week now and it has stopped downloading blocks but continues to download structure. When I restart it, it resumes downloading blocks but will only get to within 50 blocks, of the nearly 4 million, before stopping again. at this point I am at 5,731,656 of 5,731,668 of chain structure.

  • Does this chain structure have anything to do with completing the download and if so how high does it go?

  • Should I keep restarting it and hope it eventually completes the last few blocks or wait for a given number of coin structure to complete ?

  • It is adding new blocks making the percent complete constantly fluctuate between 50 and 150 blocks to go. It never actually syncs, never reflects my deposited Eth, and won't allow me to create contacts. I'm using a pretty generic computer but it was able to catching up to nearly complete so I don't see why it couldn't finish off the last bit.
    – Emmitt
    Commented Jul 8, 2017 at 11:20

2 Answers 2


There is actually 3 9XXX XXX blocks in the Ethereum blockchain (7 July 2017). What you did is :

  • Downloaded the whole blockchain and so you see every transactions of the blockchain (and so you can start doing cool stuff).


There is a new block every ~11s which are the new transactions that are added in the blockchain. For example : A paid B in ether (after you finish downloading the whole blockchain) and the signed transaction is added to the ethereum blockchain. So you have to download new blocks to be aware of this transaction.

So when you restart you ethereum client the 50 blocks correspond the new blocks added to the blockchain during your restart interval. You need those blocks to be synchronize with the blockchain and this is what your ethereum client is doing when you restarted it.

  • I think Emmitt asked what happens, when it is not syncing completly. It goes to about 50 Blocks before the highest blocks, and then does state updates. So what are the state updates? Also it looks like hs client never fully syncs, cause state updates make him busy. There are several of these complains with go-ethereum, and one can search stackexchange for this. Commented Jul 7, 2017 at 19:08
  • 1
    Also there are people reportin 8 and 14mio state entries (not blocks!). Haven't seen an explication for this so far. Seems like there is no real answer. It seems that full block syncing does not happen on "slower" machines. I haven't seen any specs, but most people who can sync have powerful machines... And: if there was no full sync, and states are "blocking" the system from fully syncing, then aditional wallets are not shown in the balance overview... Commented Jul 7, 2017 at 19:09
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    Right, it never actually syncs, and the Eth I deposited isn't reflected in my wallet. No matter what I do it continues to stay about 100 blocks away.
    – Emmitt
    Commented Jul 8, 2017 at 11:10

I'm having the same issue, and I think the answer is this...

With more than 4 million blocks, and an average block size of 2mb or so, the whole Ethereum chain is ~ 8.4tb. If my calculations are correct, on a 2mb internet connection, it will take about 4 million seconds (6 weeks non-stop) to download the whole chain.

So I'm watching my directory and looking at the new blocks showing up. They're coming in a few a second at the moment, but the number of files in the director never exceeds ~20k files. So, I'm thinking this is pruning the old blocks.

If I'm right, the local block data will occupy about 40gb of local storage, containing the most recent 20k blocks, and could take a few months to get caught up.

My local Ethereum Wallet shows the same incorrect data - 97 blocks left, 67% complete. Every time I close/open the wallet, that number changes. As a previous comment mentioned, I think this number reflects the new blocks since the last time i opened the wallet.

Just a guess from my observations.

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    In averange blocks in Ethereum are much smaller, less than 50kb. Most of the time syncing is spent in disk IO not downloading
    – Ismael
    Commented Sep 13, 2017 at 15:21
  • It's easy to learn the current size of the blockchain by searching here on ethereum.stackexchange.com or on one of the many blockcrawlers.
    – DirtStats
    Commented Sep 26, 2017 at 3:27
  • Please do a simple search before posting a question or answer here.
    – DirtStats
    Commented Sep 26, 2017 at 3:33

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