Can someone explain how plotting works?

Hi @Gracevn! Welcome to the Subspace Network community! Let me try to answer your questions:

  1. The farmer and the node are indeed related to each other and work in tandem, but each has different concerns. The node is a peer on the network, receiving and propagating transactions, blocks, etc. The farmer is a peer on the Distributed Storage Network and can serve pieces of history to other farmers and nodes and help them sync and plot. You could run a node without a farmer; however, just a farmer application wouldn’t work without the node. The node relays to the farmer challenges for a chance to win a block every second, for instance.
  2. Farmers plot the chain’s history (in pieces), encoded uniquely for each farmer. So it’s both - the farmer downloads data, and the CPU does a calculation. You can read more details on plotting in this Medium post.
  3. Yes, the farmer has to download 1 GiB for each sector it plots.
  4. Replotting is a forever loop, but it becomes less and less frequent with the chain growth. See this answer for more detail.
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