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Cumulus ties the parachain and the relaychain together, allowing to exchange essential information necessary for the block production of the parachain. Since a parachain collator must build a block (currently) within a limited time frame after the latest relaychain block, it is dependent on the speed of the relaychain node that provides that data within the Cumulus context.

Assuming that both nodes live on the same server, how much do the relaychain node hardware requirements dictate the minimum parachain node hardware requirements?

2 Answers 2

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As far as I know the minimum requirements for a parachain are stablished by the relay-chains minimum hardware. I would have to dig deeper as to where this is imposed but there is a pretty interesting block of code that can give you some insight on the parachain-node-template service

if let Some(hwbench) = hwbench {
        sc_sysinfo::print_hwbench(&hwbench);
        // Here you can check whether the hardware meets your chains' requirements. Putting a link
        // in there and swapping out the requirements for your own are probably a good idea. The
        // requirements for a para-chain are dictated by its relay-chain.
        if !SUBSTRATE_REFERENCE_HARDWARE.check_hardware(&hwbench) && validator {
            log::warn!(
                "⚠️  The hardware does not meet the minimal requirements for role 'Authority'."
            );
        }
        ...
}
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A parachain needs to use the same hardware for benchmarking as the relay chain to ensure that the validators will be able to import the block in time.
So this is primarily about block import - not building.
A parachain can use faster hardware than the relay, as long as the weights were still generated on the reference hardware.
Otherwise there could be a situation where the collator thinks that a block should be importable in 1s, but the relay will need 10s because its benchmarking hardware is slower. And that can lead the import timing out and the parachain missing its slot.

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