I think both of --network id 3 and --testnet mean to the Ropsten network.

But, The result of "eth.syncing" differ from each.

--testnet result "highestBlock: 3852529"

$ geth --testnet console 2>> geth-test.log
> eth.syncing
  currentBlock: 3788019,
  highestBlock: 3852529,
  knownStates: 18107905,
  pulledStates: 18107905,
  startingBlock: 3787849

--networkid 3 result "highestBlock: 6105050"

$ geth --networkid 3 console 2>> geth-test.log
> eth.syncing
  currentBlock: 1181005,
  highestBlock: 6105050,
  knownStates: 1529557,
  pulledStates: 1529557,
  startingBlock: 1181005

I do not know why this is the case... Are not they the same?

  • Ropsten's network ID is 3, but setting just --networkid 3 without --testnet will not put you on ropsten, apparently. – Raghav Sood Aug 17 '18 at 3:28

I think it's a bug in Geth and has been reported a while ago on GitHub. --networkid 3 brings to the mainnet.

If you want to connect a public test network, use

  • --testnet for Ropsten
  • --rinkeby for RinkeBy

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