New Daml Hub services accelerate time to value for app builders and ease connectivity to applications

I’m excited to announce the availability of three new services on Daml Hub - the Platform-as-a-Service offering for Daml. These new services are the Scratchpad, Participant and Synchronizer.

Last year, in 2023, applications built on Daml have continued to go-live at a steady pace while those already live have added new users and seen increasing volumes of transactions.This growth, in combination with the launch of the Canton Network has driven our development of new services to support the growing ecosystem.

Daml application builders can now access these new services to host truly distributed applications in the Canton Network on Daml Hub, enabling distributed nodes to connect into their application. Equally, Daml Hub is now the easiest way for application users to independently spin up a Participant node and connect to applications they have permission to join. Taking a Participant node means users become a first-class citizen of the networks and applications they wish to join, with full control over their data and privacy, along with assurances of real-time synchronization with other Participants.

The new services are introduced below:

The Scratchpad service is a pre-connected Participant node and Synchronizer (or Sync Domain). As the name suggests, the Scratchpad service is useful for quickly testing and developing Daml applications. The service is self-contained, meaning that the Synchronizer can’t receive connections from other Participant nodes and it is very similar to the old, standard capacity ledger.

The Participant service is a Participant node which can connect to Synchronizers hosted on Daml Hub, or to Synchronizers hosted anywhere else. This means that application operators can easily distribute nodes to their users and organizations wanting to access their application. Applications users can then easily provision the enterprise grade infrastructure they need to connect to permissioned Daml applications using the Participant service on Daml Hub.

The Participant service is available in standard capacity and in high capacity. The standard capacity Participant Node is for testing and developing distributed applications by connecting them to Synchronizers. The high capacity Participant Node is for running and testing production distributed applications workloads.

The Synchronizer service is a Synchronizer (or Sync Domain) which can receive connections from Participant nodes hosted on Daml Hub or from Participant Nodes hosted elsewhere to coordinate, sequence and guarantee consistency and finality of transactions between Participants.

The capability of the new Participant Node and the Synchronizer services allow application builders to create truly distributed applications on Daml Hub. Application users can also use Daml Hub to host their Participant Node regardless of how the Synchronizer, for the application they’re wanted to connect to, is hosted. This reduces the cost and complexity of users managing their own nodes when wanting to participate in an application.

These new services on Daml Hub also allow for a distributed application architecture of a mix of Participants and Synchronizers hosted on Daml Hub, hosted on the cloud, or self hosted. This provides application builders and users the freedom to choose where they want to host their infrastructure, without having to consider where the other organizations host theirs.

Daml Hub now provides the distinct platform services you need, depending on what you want to do:

  1. Connect: The Participant service allows you to easily provision your own node if you simply want to connect to, and use an application.
  2. Connect and extend Daml applications: The Scratchpad and Participant services allow you to develop, test and host your components if you want to connect to an application and extend it with custom automations using the Daml SDK.
  3. Build and operate: All of the new services help you to easily build, test, and host your application on Daml Hub so that you can focus on delivering value from your solution opening it up to Participants across the Canton Network.

The new services are currently released as a Beta to enterprise customers only and we anticipate the announcement of the services becoming generally available (GA) later this year. Documentation on how to use the new services and some changes to applications which will be needed can be found here. The new services also come with a full set of platform APIs documented here so that users can integrate them into their CI/CD processes.

To try the new services, log into the Daml Hub console as an enterprise user and flip the ‘Try the beta’ toggle in the top navigation bar.

All existing ledgers will still be kept and ledgers will still be available to be created during the Beta and when the new services are GA.


How do I get access to the new services?
To try the new services log into the Daml Hub console and flip the ‘Try the beta’ toggle in the top navigation bar.

I’m an existing Daml Hub Enterprise customer, what will happen to my existing ledgers?
All existing ledgers will still be kept and ledgers will still be available to be created during the Beta and when the new services are GA.

How do I upgrade to an Enterprise account to use the new Participant and Synchronizer services?
To upgrade your account to an Enterprise account and use the new Participant Node and Synchronizer services Daml Hub contact a Digital Asset seller here

How do I connect to an application from a Participant Node in Daml Hub?

Follow the steps in the documentation here to connect to the Synchronizer hosting the application that you wish to connect to.

I’m an existing Enterprise customer, will I have to migrate to the new services?
The standard capacity and high capacity ledgers are not going away with the Beta of the new services, nor when the new services become GA. Enterprise customers with ledgers which need to retain their data will eventually need to be migrated to the new services but there is currently no date for this. Daml Hub will provide tools to complete the migration and will give enough time for the migration and testing to be scheduled and take place.

Can I allow users to connect their Participants to my applications hosted on existing ledgers?
No, existing ledgers will not be migrated over to the new services therefore they won’t have the same capabilities as the new Synchronizer service of allowing connections from Participants. To allow connections from Participants, customers need to re-deploy their application to the new Synchronizer and Participant services.