What Is It?
Every Bitcoin transaction is recorded on the blockchain. These transactions are stored on blocks then added to the blockchain once filled. Block Explorer is an application that allows anyone to search for details related to transactions on wallet addresses including the amount transacted, destination and source of funds, a live feed of blocks as they are mined, and the status of the transactions. It can also be used to track the transactions of major investors known as “whales” along with secret messages that some people put in the tag lines. Below is a list of actions that can be requested.
- You can explore the transaction history of any wallet. This action allows anyone to audit any wallet address. This improves transparency on the blockchain.
- Explore the Mempool status. This tool allows you to explore all unconfirmed transactions and view the details.
- Explore receiving addresses and change addresses. The change address is an output that returns funds back to the sender to prevent too much of the input value from going to transaction fees.
- Some block explorers allow you to explore and track the largest transactions of the day along with the history of that wallet address. This is a fun tool to use when keeping track of the whales.
- Orphaned and stale blocks can be explored. These are blocks of anonymous transactions that are not attached to the longest blockchain or blocks whose owners are known but still haven’t been attached.
- Although not very common, double-spending occurs when the blockchain network is manipulated and funds are basically stolen. This happens when a thief sends a copy of the transaction to make it look legitimate. They can even erase the transaction altogether. Some block explorers let users track these transactions.
- You can view and explore Bitcoin’s genesis block. This is the very first block mined and added to the blockchain.
- Different mining pools and individuals compete to mine blocks. Explorers give us the tools to see who successfully mined the given block.
- Other data like blockchain difficulty, transaction fees, and hash rate can be viewed from every transaction made.
- Validate any wallet address. This is very important if you are unsure when sending crypto to anyone. Enter the wallet address in the search area to instantly get a validation.
- Blockchain Explorers let you see if a transaction has been sent to the wallet address it was meant to go to. This is like having public evidence that the transaction took place.
- Developers can use the block explorer to test their wallets to make sure they are working properly to send and receive funds.
These examples are just the tip of the iceberg of what the block explorer can do. As a research tool, explorers are able to help individuals make important decisions related to their personal or company finances.
Popular Blockchain Explorers
There are several popular blockchain explorers to choose from. They all include basic information like block details, size, and status of transactions. Some offer information like graphs, mining difficulty, hash rates, along with other helpful tools.
- Blockchain.com Block Explorer has been rated the most popular explorer. This website makes blockchain exploring easy and is popular with those new to Bitcoin. They support Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, and Ethereum.
- CoinMarketCap Blockchain Explorer may be fairly new, but it is ranked as one of the best. The site is clean and easy to use. It supports Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin.
- Blockchair Blockchain Explorer offers more data than Blockchain.com. This makes it appealing for those interested in further details on transactions. Along with the basics, it offers information like collected data on the blockchains, including transactions per block, on-chain volume, and circulation. They support Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple, Bitcoin Cash, Cardano, Litecoin, Stellar, Bitcoin SV, Dash, Dogecoin, Monero, Telegram Open Network, and Groestlcoin.
- TokenView Blockchain Explorer seems to have it all. This explorer has useful tools that allow you to see not only pending transactions but its block reward winners, number of active wallets, daily trading volumes along with others. Their website supports more than 100 different cryptocurrencies.
- BlockCypher Blockchain Explorer is an open-source explorer that has loads of information. Not only can you get basic information, but you can also access additional tools like estimates on block confirmation time. They support Dash, Litecoin, Grin, and Dogecoin.
- TradeBlock Blockchain Explorer is a slimmed-down explorer that won’t bother you with unnecessary banners. You can easily search and see your Bitcoin history data. Dashboard modification is easily done from the settings section. They support Bitcoin and Ethereum.
- BTC.com Blockchain Explorer is among the newest alternatives. They have quickly established themselves as a popular choice for crypto investors. Exploring is fast, easy, and reliable. They are also one of the world’s biggest mining pools ranked high among block reward winning charts. Among other details, you can find transaction history, block ID, block size, and energy consumption.
As a new user, blockchain explorers are helpful tools that can guide you to understanding how blockchains work. They are also needed to provide the transparency that is required for the network to stay decentralized.