New tools needed for the growing Web3 economy
Even as the Web3 economy has seen incredible growth over the past 5 years, developing, launching and maintaining Web3 products still remains a significant challenge. Talent is scarce, standards are largely non-existent, and mistakes are costly. Bugs in a smart contract discovered after launch can be fatal to a project, causing significant reputational and financial risks for development teams and brands.
As projects grow in size, ambition, and scope, such errors only become more likely. And unlike with traditional software development, correcting these errors can require significantly more than simply pushing out a patch. As code deployed to the blockchain is immutable it could require full redeployment to fix, and in the meantime users assets and funds could even be at risk. Getting things right from the beginning is of paramount importance in Web3.
Against this backdrop, testing has never been more important. And yet options available to developers remain extremely limited. Teams typically choose between either a public testnet where work in development has the potential to be discovered by the competition or customers prematurely, or within an isolated/local environment on a single developer’s machine severely limiting the ability to work across large teams. Neither of these options is ideal.
Testing in public introduces unnecessary risk and scrutiny
The standard practice of testing on public testnets introduces a number of risks to Web3 projects:
Brand assets and IP at risk of premature leaks
Deploying a smart contract to a public testnet allows anyone, customer or competitor to examine the code in its entirety. For a Web3 dApp this can expose the logic of the application well before launch leaving considerable time for competitors to copy and rush out with a competing platform. For a new game, it could reveal interesting features before the developers are ready to announce or support them. For an NFT project it could prematurely reveal media assets or clues to unannounced roadmap features like composability.
In order to maintain some semblance of privacy and keep assets under wraps, it’s standard practice to use obfuscated assets instead of actual media assets when deploying to testnets. Even this practice is not ideal as it leaves the important job of deploying media and other assets untested. For an NFT gaming project, assigning the wrong assets to the wrong tokens can be fatal.
Increased susceptibility to bots and exploits
Deploying code to a public testnet gives bot creators or even malicious actors time to build bots and construct exploits before you are ready to launch. For NFT or gaming projects selling an initial mint, bots can be used to instantly buy out a project ruining the experience for potential customers. Even worse, exploits can be used to steal assets or funds from both customers and the developers. Furthermore, with testing being done in the open, malicious actors may even be able to learn from the results.
Limited control over the testing environment
Privacy in testing is of course important. However, limited control over the testing environment opens Web3 projects to a number of issues that severely limit what can be tested in the first place. Modern Web3 projects include a number of parts beyond the smart contract, from IPFS and Arweave to store media to front-ends. And while testnets do provide a realistic blockchain experience to test smart contract logic, the lack of control over them makes it difficult to test edge cases such as block reorganizations, spikes in gas costs, or high transaction volumes.
And as testnets are typically a shared resource, even if teams were able to simulate some adverse network conditions, doing so would negatively impact its usage by other teams.
Private shared software development testnets provide a significant advantage over public testnets and isolated/local environments
As Web3 projects grow in size and complexity, development teams increasingly need to work collaboratively to battle test their smart contracts and asset deployment in realistic blockchain environments. A private shared software development testnet provides a number of advantages for Web3 teams over the status quo.
Teams need a place to battle test smart contracts free from public scrutiny
A private shared software development testnet provides a sandbox free from public scrutiny for teams to develop and test their smart contracts. It combines the privacy of an isolated/local environment with the realistic environment of a public testnet. Only in such an environment can teams feel confident battle-testing their smart contracts to their full limits without revealing all aspects of the project. And for projects with planned future expansions, testing and development can be done without tipping their hat to competitors or customers about future plans.
Teams can also feel confident they won’t be judged on failed experiments or missteps. They can feel confident that only the final product will find its way into the public eye.
Modern software development requires collaborative effort
Teams require a development environment in which they all have shared access to the code. Currently, when teams require privacy to test new features or keep brand assets hidden from public view, they will test on a single developer’s local machine. This approach makes it very difficult for multiple developers to work together on the same product, or for supervisors to monitor code for quality. As Web3 projects grow in size and scope, developing on a single machine becomes impossible.
Stealthtest is the first tool to be released from the nameless product suite, allowing you to test your Web3 or NFT project within a secure, cloud-based private testnet.
Secure, private testing environments for Ethereum, Arweave, and IPFS
Stealthtest allows teams to test Web3 applications built for the Ethereum blockchain along with full integration to Arweave and IPFS - the two most widely used decentralized storage applications. This service, which includes ready-to-use, pre-funded test wallets, allows teams to quickly and securely launch private testnets that span the full scope of any Ethereum based Web3 deployment.
Stealthtest is not a public testnet. It is a private network dedicated to a single build of a project for developers to test without outside eyes watching. With StealthTest, Web3 development teams can finally test their full project from their smart contract to their front-end to their deployment of assets to IPFS or Arweave simultaneously under realistic simulated network conditions all without the risk of leaking any alpha about the project to competitors and users alike.
Remove the whitespace in your development lifecycle
Stealthtest can be easily integrated into development teams’ current Web3 toolset and CI/CD software development lifecycle processes. By providing a shared development testnet, individuals or teams across an organization can seamlessly work on multiple aspects of a project such as working on independent components or simultaneously testing a new feature.
Protect your brand, IP, and future plans from prying eyes
Stealthtest lets you test in private.
Once deployed to a public testnet, the smart contract and any assets become available for anyone to see, exposing Web3 teams to a host of potential issues.
- Competitors may analyze and fork the smart contract code and attempt to go to market quicker.
- Customers may see future plans too early ruining coordination with marketing or other objectives.
- And even worse, malicious actors may be able to leverage bots or find other exploits well before the code is deployed to the mainnet, making dealing with hacks that much more dangerous.
By allowing you to test in a secure private testnet, StealthTest gives teams the confidence to test their code thoroughly without feeling like they must rush to get to market before the world figures out their plans.
Stealthtest allows Web3 development teams complete control on who can and cannot access the testnets.
By controlling access, the private cloud-based testnets in StealthTest not only allow teams to test in parallel but also allows teams to invite select community members and other stakeholders to participate. By using our custom-built faucet, teams can bring these outsiders in for pre-release testing and post development validation, opening the door to closed alpha and beta testing without worrying about leaking key features prematurely to the general public.
Testing and quality assurance is not just about making a Web3 application safe, but also providing a positive experience for the user. StealthTest allows you to go further than just making sure an application works, but gives you the tools to ensure that the end user’s experience is the one intended.
The next generation of tools are needed for the growing Web3 economy. Here at nameless we are building them.
Private testnets for testing Web3 applications have never been more needed. Security remains a primary concern throughout the industry both to protect assets and brand reputation. Tools are required that give teams the confidence to battle test their applications without worrying about competitors stealing their ideas or tipping their hat to future plans.
StealthTest, the first release from our product suite, gives Web3 development teams a space to test their Ethereum dApps in a cloud-based private testnet free from prying eyes. Along with IPFS and Arweave integrations, StealthTest allows developers to quickly spin up secure private testnets so they can test with confidence while eliminating the risk of leaking alpha on public testnets. And by controlling access, teams can further engage their communities in closed alpha and beta testing, further enhancing the testing cycle, giving them the confidence to ship a polished product.
Build with maximum privacy.