I was looking to develop an application using Whisper & NodeJS and I'm having trouble finding an example that works and is updated.

I've encountered this doc web3js.readthedocs.io/en/1.0/web3-shh.html and this guide https://github.com/ethereum/wiki/wiki/Whisper-Overview, but they are incompatible with each other ( probably version thing).

I've managed to get this far, in what I think should publish a message on Whisper, but I don't know why isn't working nor how to listen to it.

var net = require('net');
var Web3 = require('web3');
var web3 = new Web3(new Web3.providers.IpcProvider('/Users/tloriato/Library/Ethereum/geth.ipc', net));

var KeyID;
var PubKey;

var message = web3.utils.toHex("Test");

web3.shh.newKeyPair().then((data) => {
    web3.shh.getPublicKey(KeyID).then((data) => {
    }).then(() => {
            pubKey: PubKey,
            sig: KeyID,
            ttl: 120,
            payload: message,
            powTime: 2,
            powTarget: 1
            }, function(err, data){
                if (err) console.log(err);

[Q]: Does anybody has a working example for whisper working with the recent version of geth or partiy?

1 Answer 1


Based on the Whisper V5 RPC API documentation, I was finally able to construct a working example with private/public keys. I have tested this in a private network with geth 1.7.2 console. In mainnet, whisper will most probably not work, since the majority of nodes will not have this protocol enabled.

On the receiver node:

1/ create a new keypair

var kId = web3.shh.newKeyPair();

2/ create a message filter. The most simple version is to specify the private key. All messages encrypted with the corresponding public key will trigger the callback function. You can narrow this downs by specifying a topic.

    function(err, res) {console.log(JSON.stringify(res))});

3/ get the public key (which is needed by the sender)


On the sender node:

(replace PUBLIC_KEY_OF_THE_RECEIVER with the value from Step 3 above in between single quote ('))

  ttl: 7,
  topic: '0x07678231',
  powTarget: 2.01,
  powTime: 2,
  payload: web3.fromAscii("Hello there!")

ttl, topic, powTarget, powTime are values from the documentation.

  • geth version is 1.8.0 but I am having: Error: The method shh_newKeyPair does not exist/is not available. Please see in depth: ethereum.stackexchange.com/q/51585/4575 @ivicaa
    – alper
    Commented Jun 19, 2018 at 14:44
  • I tested this with geth 1.7.2 as I wrote above... Didn't test it with geht 1.8.0 yet.
    – ivicaa
    Commented Jun 19, 2018 at 15:00
  • On the receiver node side res.payloadstring should be decoded to see the sender's original message. Please follow (ethereum.stackexchange.com/a/51605/4575) in order to decode the sender's sent message.
    – alper
    Commented Jun 19, 2018 at 19:33
  • @alper You need to run geth with --shh flag
    – syzygy
    Commented Sep 20, 2018 at 3:01

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