I have a node synched in normal mode up until number=5143444

Node started with

geth --datadir "./"
--maxpeers 100 
--maxpendpeers 10 

I'm trying to test the geth traces (compared to parity traces) but it seems I cannot get old transactions.

I've tried running trace on a recent transaction and it works

> debug.traceTransaction("0x59ae735c0291ec79460968d01dbd5b4adf007571bfaa308b8ab1005bb5e3f500")
  failed: false,
  gas: 21000,
  returnValue: "",
  structLogs: []

But if I try running trace on an older transaction (from block 1580796), I get this

> debug.traceTransaction("0x8e5b38db03e0941677ba65275d78fe18df999c11a7be1921831082121ae73390")
Error: required historical state unavailable
    at web3.js:3143:20
    at web3.js:6347:15
    at web3.js:5081:36
    at <anonymous>:1:1

I know with parity I need to specifically set tracing and archive on:


And this creates a HUGE database. Is there something similar for geth? The command line options don't seem to have anything about this


In order to have available all of the information you need to sync your node with --syncmode full

  • Hi there, I tried the following command but still got the same error: geth --cache=1024 --rpc --rpcapi "eth,net,web3,debug" console --syncmode full. Any idea on that? Nov 28 '18 at 16:52
  • Was the node fully synchronized when you tried it? Nov 29 '18 at 10:05
  • Yes, I use eth.syncing to check the current block, then check a block that is order than the current one. Nov 29 '18 at 10:16
  • this answer is incorrect. You need archival node to trace old transactions. Full node only tracks 128 states in memory and some trace log info to be able to reconstruct few weeks of old states. But a transaction year old won't traceable because states are pruned.
    – Nulik
    Jun 15 '21 at 22:59

You must set gcmode=archive when start geth.

  • this is the correct answer. Though as of today you need 8 Terabytes of SSD storage to have archival node. One could get help from bcache and use 1GB SSD disk with 8TB backing device
    – Nulik
    Jun 15 '21 at 23:09

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