State of Monero: 2014

As an open-source project, Monero is built on the back of volunteers, contributors, and donations. So let’s start with a financial report.

For donations received over the year: Monero Core Team received 21 636.40655 XMR spread over 4343 transactions, and 8.04559 BTC spread over 25 transactions. Thus average XMR donation is around 5 XMR, and average BTC donation is around 0.32 BTC. As most of costs are BTC based, XMR donations were traded into BTC where necessary (typically through OTC trades and not on-market), giving us a rough total of all receipts of 39.536205689 BTC (in XMR donations) + 8.04559 BTC (in BTC donations) = 47.581795689 BTC.

Expenditure for the year comprised of 3 totals as some costs could not be settled in BTC or were preferably settled in XMR. Our expenditure was 190.513492 BTC + 1 891.31 XMR + US $5 732.80, which is around the 212 BTC mark. Thus the shortfall of 164.5 BTC was paid out of the Core Team’s own pockets in the hopes of recovering the funds later on (ie. just in case anyone was wondering, not only do the core team not get paid at all, but we’ve put a significant amount of funds into Monero).

So, what did our ~212 BTC get spent on over the year? Or, in other words, what did we accomplish? Here’s a bit of a taste before we dig into the nitty-gritty:

The Monero 2014 Infographic

Core Development

Well, let’s start by excluding a lot of development done in branches on forks, and focusing on the master branch of the git repo. We inherited the Monero project pretty much from the end of April, with thankful_for_today’s last commit on April 30th, 2014.

In order to see what we did with some pragmatism we took two folders, one containing the Monero source on April 30th at that last commit, and one containing the Monero source on December 31st. We removed everything in the external/ folder, except the CMakeLists.txt, so that we weren’t including external libraries in our count. We then used Araxis Merge to produce a diff report between the two folders (plus Github’s compare tool to give us additional information). We then subtracted the license changes we made earlier this year (208 files were affected, which means that for each we have to remove 2 lines from the “removed” count, 1 line from the “changed” count, and 28 lines from the “inserted” count). The summary is below, and whilst it obviously precludes things like where we made several changes to the same line of code, or missteps we reverted, it gives a very general indication of the effort.

  • 35 weeks of development (245 days) since Monero was inherited by the Core Team
  • 594 separate commits
  • 11 contributors
  • 10 221 modified lines
  • 12 706 new lines
  • 32 lines removed

Now may be thinking “wow, that’s like 94 lines of code a day!”, but it’s important to remember that included in this are documentation and code comments, mnemonic word lists for several languages, as well as changes made to Bytecoin early on that we merged in.

However, it doesn’t diminish the gargantuan effort that went into the Monero core over the year, and we are truly grateful to all who have been involved. Some of the highlights of work that was committed to the Monero core master repo over the past 8 months, in chronological order, include –


  • got Monero building and running on OS X


  • removed purposely obfuscated hashing loop
  • added a ‘diff’ daemon command to show current estimated difficulty and hash rate
  • more hashing optimisations, including AES-NI support
  • new wallet RPC commands: save_bc, getaddress; new daemon RPC commands: mining_status
  • enabled checkpointing and checkpoint verification
  • fixed the block reward penalty mechanism and dynamic block sizing
  • new wallet RPC commands: incoming_transfers
  • fixed exit flags, added –exit-after-cmd simplewallet flag


  • added payment IDs to simplewallet’s ‘transfer’ RPC command
  • added Doxyfile for code documentation
  • refactored parts of simplewallet
  • added Electrum-style mnemonics to simplewallet
  • got Monero building and running on Arch Linux
  • further improvements to hashing algorithm, including huge pages and AES-NI key expansion
  • added tx auto-splitting and changed transaction creation semantics internally


  • new wallet RPC command: get_bulk_payments; new daemon RPC command: get_connections
  • new README, license changes to BSD 3-clause August:
  • optional height parameter for simplewallet refresh
  • fixed wallet restore from seed
  • new wallet RPC command: query_key; new wallet commands: seed, viewkey
  • stopped a major spam attack dead in its tracks
  • highly sophisticated attack causes the network to fork for 30 minutes, urgently and immediately patched


  • blob checkpointing added (over and above normal block hash checkpointing)
  • got Monero building and running on FreeBSD
  • major documentation of several C classes
  • new versioning system to allow for rapid identification of build commit
  • started enforcing GPG signed commits and merges, initial GPG keys added
  • testnet launched
  • dropped support for Visual Studio, added support for mingw-w64 + msys2
  • DNS resolver (libunbound) added, initial OpenAlias support
  • dynamic file-based checkpointing added
  • multi-language mnemonics introduced for wallets
  • new wordlists: Portuguese, and Spanish (first 4 letters unique)
  • DNS checkpointing added for rapid checkpoint alert / enforcement


  • reworked log level choices
  • new wordlists: English (first 3 letters unique), as well as Japanese (first 4 letters unique)
  • PoW algorithm fully documented
  • switched to RapidJSON for JSON parsing
  • changed wallet file format (encrypted JSON)
  • massive CMake overhaul begun by KitWare, the creators of CMake


  • per-kb transaction fees introduced
  • CMake overhaul completed, dynamic and static builds finally working again on all platforms


  • bug fixes, bug fixes, and more bug fixes