Delegated Staking and the AR.IO Testnet

Delegated Staking gives everybody the opportunity to participate and be rewarded in the AR.IO Network.

This feature, laid out section 6.2.2 of the white paper, allows for a delegated staker to proxy their stake to gateways - entrusting gateway operators to utilize that stake in maintaining a quality of service befitting the permaweb.

AR.IO gateway operators have options when it comes to delegated staking. Operators can choose to not accept delegated stakers at all or set a Reward Share Ratio, controlling the percentage of rewards that go to delegated stakers.

The Observation and Incentive Protocol automatically distributes a gateways rewards with its delegates. Those rewards are auto-staked (akin to DRIP in tradfi) and can be withdrawn at any time, subject to withdrawal delays. You can read more about the details in Section 10.6 of the white paper.

Get started:

Test out delegating staking to a gateway

First, find a gateway that accepts delegates - this is a bit challenging right now while we work on better tools for surfacing the info, but check out the #testnet channel for operators who have also enabled it or try it with these flagship gateways:




Delegated staking requires a minimum of 100 test IO Tokens. To encourage testing this feature, we’ve sent 500 test IO Tokens to everyone who has participated in the gateway and ArNS side of the testnet.

For now, scripts are required to delegate stake so a basic understanding of the terminal is required to get started - detailed instructions can be found in our docs portal here:

Already a gateway operator and want to test out allowing delegates?

The first step is enabling delegated staking - by default this feature is turned off. Once enabled, set the percent of rewards you want to share with your delegates. Instructions can be found in our docs portal:

Next step is to get some delegated stakers - let the community know in #testnet that you’re taking on stakers & why they should use your gateway!

The first ten gateways to attract 10 delegated stakers will receive bonus test token rewards!

Welcoming new gateway operators!

Finally, after much anticipation and requests, we’re reopening applications for new gateways to join the testnet - we’ll give preference to those who want do something specific with their gateways around AO - read our latest article here.

Details about getting started can be found at

…and Saying goodbye to inactive operators!

Gateways that have failed 21 consecutive epochs will be kicked out of the Network. We do this to maintain network efficiency and reduce contract state bloat. This automatically triggers a “Network Leave” action and that gateway is subject to the associated stake withdrawal durations for both gateway stake and any delegated stake.