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In our previous article (How mining works in Ethereum), we discussed mining in Ethereum.

In this article, we review tools and technologies that are used in the Ethereum ecosystem.

Working with tools and technologies in Ethereum ecosystem

By now, we have introduced blockchain technology, key concepts in Bitcoin, and Ethereum. We delved deeper into detail on how the blockchain is maintained and how a decentralized network of peers reaches the consensus. One key takeaway is that Ethereum is a decentralized computing platform that has the potential to become a disruptor for the years to come. Thanks to the vibrant community and ecosystem, developers around the world can take advantage of the rich set of development tools to jump-start the implementation of decentralized applications. In this article, we will provide some of the key tools, technologies, and utilities to get you started. Some more details regarding some of the tools can be found in our future article series.

Ethereum client

Ethereum clients run the EVM and are written in a programming language. The following are two of the most popular Ethereum clients:

  • Geth: It is also called the go-ethereum client. It was implemented in Go and was one of the three original implementations (along with C++ and Python) of the Ethereum protocol. It provides the command-line interface for running a full Ethereum node and has a JSON-RPC server interface for DApps to interact with. It can be downloaded from
  • Parity: Parity Ethereum aims to become the fastest, lightest, and most secure Ethereum client. It is a full Ethereum node implementation developed using the Rust programming language. Parity Ethereum is licensed under the GPLv3 license and can be downloaded from the Ethcore website: parity/.


The Web3 Server API

All Ethereum clients provide a set of JSON-RPC methods for external DApps to interact with the Ethereum blockchain network. JSON is a lightweight data-interchange format. JSON-RPC is a stateless, lightweight Remote Procedure Call (RPC) protocol. The DApp UI layer implemented in the web and JavaScript has the option to use the web3.js JavaScript library to interface with Web3 JSON-RPC methods on the blockchain.
The following is a list of protocol supports among different Ethereum clients:







Batch requests




Most notable, JSON-RPC 2.0 is supported by all listed clients. Interested readers can check the Ethereum wiki site for details of interface and methods:

DApp development tools

You can develop smart contracts in any editor and deploy them on the Ethereum blockchain using rudimental command-line utilities. There are quite a few essential tools, such as the ones mentioned here, which can leverage to speed up DApp development:

  • Web UI development with web3.js
  • Remix development IDE
  • A command-line framework with Truffle and Embark
  • Ethereum blockchain with Etherscan


Web UI Development with web3.js: The web3.js library is a collection of JavaScript modules that UI and JavaScript developers can leverage to integrate DApps with the Ethereum blockchain network. It provides the following sub-packages:

  • web3-eth: A package for interacting with Ethereum blockchain and smart contracts
  • web3-shh: A package to support the Whisper protocol for P2P messaging
  • web3-bzz: A package to support the Swarm protocol and the decentralized file storage
  • web3-utils: A package of utility functions for DApp developers

We will introduce whisper and Swarm in our future series.

Remix development IDE: Remix is an open source, browser-based IDE that enables Ethereum developers to develop, compile, test, debug, and deploy smart contracts in Solidity. Developers can use Remix in the browser as well as locally. It also comes with its own code analyzer to check and ensure code quality. Remix communicates with the Ethereum blockchain through Metamask. Metamask is a browser extension for Chrome, Firefox, and Opera and allows developers to run DApps right within the browser.

A command-line framework with Truffle and Embark: Truffle is one of the most popular blockchain frameworks aiming to make developing smart contracts easier. The development environment gives developers a configurable build pipeline allowing for streamlining your DApp coding, testing, deploying process. Ganache CLI, part of the Truffle suite of the Ethereum development tools, is the command-line version of Ganache, your local blockchain for Ethereum development.
Another popular one is Embark. Similar to Truffle, Embark makes it easier for developers to code, test, and deploy smart contracts DApps and provide integration with Ethereum blockchain, decentralized storage platform (IPFS and Swarm) and decentralized messaging (Whisper). We will discuss more about IPFS, Swarm and Whisper in our future article series.

Ethereum blockchain with Etherscan: We have shown several screenshots of Etherscan in the previous sections and articles. Etherscan is one of the really handy tools a DApp developer could wish for. It allows you to search and view all transactions and smart contracts on the blockchains.


Next Article

Now that we have finished our second article series, we can move on to our next article series where we dive into more Ethereum topics. Specifically, we cover the following 12 articles:

This article is written in collaboration with Brian Wu who is a leading author of “Learn Ethereum: Build your own decentralized applications with Ethereum and smart contracts” book. He has written 7 books on blockchain development.


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