This site requires Javascript to be enabled.
  • Docs
  • Run a node
  • Perform a node migration

Perform a node migration

There are a few reasons why migrating your validator node might be required. Some of those reasons may include changing the underlying infrastructure of the node, such as increasing performance or upgrading storage. It may also be necessary to migrate the node if it is not as reliable as expected.

When performing a node migration, there are several things to consider:

  • Data migration: You will need to migrate any relevant data to the new node, such as blockchain data, application data, and configuration files.
  • Node configuration: You will need to configure the new node with the same parameters as the old node, such as the chain ID, genesis file, and network settings.

There are a few tips that may help you with the node migration process:

  • Plan ahead: Plan the migration carefully and ensure that you have a clear understanding of the process and the potential risks involved.
  • Back up your data: Take a backup of all your data, including the blockchain data, application data, and configuration files, before starting the migration process.
  • Test the migration: Before migrating your node to the new infrastructure, test the migration process on a testnet or a staging environment to ensure that everything works as expected.
  • Monitor the new node: Monitor the new node closely after the migration to ensure that it is working properly and is in sync with the network.
  • Update your peers: Once the migration is complete, update your peers and let them know that you have migrated your node to the new infrastructure.


First, make sure to have looked into the prerequisites, installation, and keys sections in order to set up a new node.

Backup the necessary files

In order to migrate or restore your validator node you need to have a backup of the following files located in the config folder:

You can find those files in the ~/.archway/config folder:

cd "${HOME}"/.archway/config

Within that folder, you can find files that you need to back up:

  • priv_validator_key.json
  • node_key.json

If the node you want to migrate is running on a server, you can launch the following command from your local machine:

scp <user@IP_address>:~/.archway/config/priv_validator_key.json /<path-on-local-machine>/priv_validator_key.jsonscp <username>@<IP address of node>:~/.archway/config/node_key.json /<path-on-local-machine>/node_key.json

Make sure to substitute the values <user@IP_address> and <path-on-local-machine> with your own values, for example:

scp <[email protected].97>:~/.archway/config/priv_validator_key.json /"${HOME}"/Desktop/priv_validator_key.jsonscp <[email protected].97>:~/.archway/config/node_key.json /"${HOME}"/Desktop/node_key.json


Make sure to have a backup the mnemonic used to create your validator node.

If you customized your node, you may want to backup also the following files:


Make sure the new node is fully synced

Start a new node by joining a network and make sure the new node is fully synchronized. The new node should have a priv_validator_key.json and new node_key.json.


Never run more than one node simultaneously with the same priv_validator_key.json, as this counts as double signing and your node will be slashed and permanently jailed.

Run the command:

archwayd status

and look for the sync_info section. If the catching_up field is set to false, then your node is fully synchronized.

The output also shows the latest block height that your node is aware of, and you can look at the blockexplorer to see if it corresponds with the latest block height appended to the blockchain.

Stop the old node

Stop the old node to prevent it from signing transactions.

sudo archwayd stop

In case you have Cosmovisor enabled, stop it with:

sudo systemctl stop cosmovisor

Make sure that the service has stopped and check the blockexplorer to make sure the node is no longer signing blocks. You can also take precautionary steps by renaming priv_validator_key.json to priv_validator_key.json_backup and node_key.json to node_key_backup.json

Replace the backed-up files

Now, stop the new node too, and double check that the service is no longer running. Once stopped, the node should not be able to sign blocks which should be visible on the blockexplorer. Backup the priv_validator_key.json and node_key.json files and replace them with the respective files from the old node. If the backed-up files are stored on your local machine you can execute the following to copy the files to your new node:

scp /<path on local machine>/priv_validator_key.json <user@IP_address>:~/.archway/config/priv_validator_key.json
scp <user@IP_address>:~/.archway/config/node_key.json /<path on local machine>/node_key.json

In case you made some changes to the /.archway/config/config.toml and /.archway/config/app.toml files, make sure to copy over those changes to the new node.

Once all required files are updated, restart the archwayd or cosmovisor service. You should be able to check the block explorer to see if the node is now signing blocks.

Add the old keys

You can also backup the keyring-archway folder from the new node and run the following command to add the keys from the old node:

archwayd keys add --recover

You can then paste the old mnemonic which will add the account from the previous node to the keyring.