# Getting Started

# Working examples

Working code can be worth a thousand words, so a good place to start is the GSN integration workshop (opens new window) which shows a barebones dapp before and after GSN integration.

Another resource is Capture The Flag (opens new window), a sample React dapp.

A more elaborate example is MetaCoin (opens new window), which implements a gas-free ERC20 token. After playing with the live demo (opens new window) on testnet you can check out the code and explore:

git clone git@github.com:opengsn/metacoin.git
cd metacoin
npm install

npx gsn-with-ganache

You have now a running ganache instance, with active GSN

In another window, run:

# deploy MetaCoin contract and start local web server
npx truffle migrate && npm run dev

If you want more control over the local GSN instance, you can start in one window ganache, and in another window do npx gsn start

# Adding GSN support to existing App

Adding GSN involves 4 steps

  1. Start GSN on your network
  2. Add GSN to your contract
  3. Select a paymaster and forwarder contract addresses
  4. Add GSN RelayProvider in your app

# Start GSN on your network.

GSN is already deployed to many testnets (and mainnets) - see the full list here. But for testing it locally, you need start it over your local ganache instance. To start GSN on local ganache, run the command:

npx gsn start

Or, if you like to run it together with ganache, add a script command:

  "scripts": {
    "gsn-with-ganache": "run-with-testrpc --networkId 1337 --chainId 1337 'gsn start'"

# Add GSN to your contract

When receiving a meta-transaction, a contract must be able to recognize the caller, which is usually msg.sender When receiving meta (relayed) transactions, the sender is different, so you must inherit a specific baseclass (BaseRelayRecipient) and use helper method _msgSender() to get the address of the sender. You also need have aforwarder, which is the contract you will receive the calls through. See "delpoyment" below on how to set its value.

import "@opengsn/gsn/contracts/BaseRelayRecipient";

contract MyContract is BaseRelayRecipient {
    constructor(address forwarder) {
        trustedForwarder = forwarder;

    ... your contract code

# Select a paymaster and forwarder

The forwarder address is needed when deploying your contract. We have a forwarder deployed on each network. On your local ganache environment, the gsn start script described above saves locally the contract addresses, so you can deploy your contract as follows:

    // assuming this script is in "test" or "src" folder, 
    const forwarder = require( '../build/gsn/Forwarder').address
    myContract = MyContract.new(forwarder)

The Paymaster contract is the one which will actually pay for the transaction. For testing purposes, our gsn start deploys a paymaster that will accept and pay for all transactions.

    const paymaster = require('../build/gsn/Paymaster').address

We also deploy such a paymaster on all test networks For obvious reasons, there is no such "accept everytihing" paymaster on mainnets - any such deployed paymaster will soon get depleted by hackers.

# Add Use GSN RelayProvider in your app

Once your contract is set, you need to use a RelayProvider to access your contract. This is a wrapper to the regular web3 provider. All "view" operations are sent directly, but all transactions are relayed through GSN

const { RelayProvider } = require('@opengsn/gsn')

const config = { 
    loggerConfiguration: {
        logLevel: 'debug',
        // loggerUrl: 'logger.opengsn.org',
const provider = await RelayProvider.newProvider({ provider: web3.currentProvider, config }).init()
const web3 = new Web3(provider);

With these changes, your application will route the requests through GSN. The "loggerUrl" is optional: setting it to https://logger.opengsn.org, will send the logs to opengsn global logger using the specified logLevel, to help troubleshooting by the GSN support.

To see that the sender address doesn't have to have eth, you can create a new one:

    from = provider.newAccount().address

or using web3:

    from = web3.personal.newAccount('pwd')

The sender address doesn't have to have any eth - if you're using metamask, you'll notice that it pops up a "sign" request, which cost you nothing, and not "send transaction"

See advanced section for all available configuration parameters.

Once you have connected your web3 instance to a RelayProvider, all transactions sent to contracts will be automatically routed through GSN:

const myRecipient = new web3.eth.Contract(abi, address);

// Sends the transaction via the GSN
await myRecipient.methods.myFunction().send({ from });

// Disable GSN for a specific transaction (but require that the sender has eth!)
await myRecipient.methods.myFunction().send({ from, useGSN: false });

# Running GSN on a local network

GSN is deployed on all major test and public networks. In order to test it locally with ganache, you need to deploy it locally.

See gsn start on how to start it locally, on your ganache instance.

Last Updated: 2/1/2021, 10:23:20 PM