Paras Pallet

The Paras module is responsible for storing information on parachains. Registered parachains cannot change except at session boundaries and after at least a full session has passed. This is primarily to ensure that the number and meaning of bits required for the availability bitfields does not change except at session boundaries.

It's also responsible for:

  • managing parachain validation code upgrades as well as maintaining availability of old parachain code and its pruning.
  • vetting PVFs by means of the PVF pre-checking mechanism.


Utility Structs

fn main() {
// the two key times necessary to track for every code replacement.
pub struct ReplacementTimes {
 /// The relay-chain block number that the code upgrade was expected to be activated.
 /// This is when the code change occurs from the para's perspective - after the
 /// first parablock included with a relay-parent with number >= this value.
 expected_at: BlockNumber,
 /// The relay-chain block number at which the parablock activating the code upgrade was
 /// actually included. This means considered included and available, so this is the time at which
 /// that parablock enters the acceptance period in this fork of the relay-chain.
 activated_at: BlockNumber,

/// Metadata used to track previous parachain validation code that we keep in
/// the state.
pub struct ParaPastCodeMeta {
 // Block numbers where the code was expected to be replaced and where the code
 // was actually replaced, respectively. The first is used to do accurate lookups
 // of historic code in historic contexts, whereas the second is used to do
 // pruning on an accurate timeframe. These can be used as indices
 // into the `PastCode` map along with the `ParaId` to fetch the code itself.
 upgrade_times: Vec<ReplacementTimes>,
 // This tracks the highest pruned code-replacement, if any.
 last_pruned: Option<BlockNumber>,

struct ParaGenesisArgs {
  /// The initial head-data to use.
  genesis_head: HeadData,
  /// The validation code to start with.
  validation_code: ValidationCode,
  /// True if parachain, false if parathread.
  parachain: bool,

/// The possible states of a para, to take into account delayed lifecycle changes.
pub enum ParaLifecycle {
  /// A Para is new and is onboarding.
  /// Para is a Parathread (on-demand parachain).
  /// Para is a lease holding Parachain.
  /// Para is a Parathread (on-demand Parachain) which is upgrading to a lease holding Parachain.
  /// Para is a lease holding Parachain which is downgrading to an on-demand parachain.
  /// Parathread (on-demand parachain) is being offboarded.
  /// Parachain is being offboarded.

enum PvfCheckCause {
  /// PVF vote was initiated by the initial onboarding process of the given para.
  /// PVF vote was initiated by signalling of an upgrade by the given para.
  Upgrade {
    /// The ID of the parachain that initiated or is waiting for the conclusion of pre-checking.
    id: ParaId,
    /// The relay-chain block number that was used as the relay-parent for the parablock that
    /// initiated the upgrade.
    relay_parent_number: BlockNumber,

struct PvfCheckActiveVoteState {
  // The two following vectors have their length equal to the number of validators in the active
  // set. They start with all zeroes. A 1 is set at an index when the validator at the that index
  // makes a vote. Once a 1 is set for either of the vectors, that validator cannot vote anymore.
  // Since the active validator set changes each session, the bit vectors are reinitialized as
  // well: zeroed and resized so that each validator gets its own bit.
  votes_accept: BitVec,
  votes_reject: BitVec,

  /// The number of session changes this PVF vote has observed. Therefore, this number is
  /// increased at each session boundary. When created, it is initialized with 0.
  age: SessionIndex,
  /// The block number at which this PVF vote was created.
  created_at: BlockNumber,
  /// A list of causes for this PVF pre-checking. Has at least one.
  causes: Vec<PvfCheckCause>,

Para Lifecycle

Because the state changes of parachains are delayed, we track the specific state of the para using the ParaLifecycle enum.

None         Parathread (on-demand parachain)    Parachain
 +                        +                          +
 |                        |                          |
 |   (≈2 Session Delay)   |                          |
 |                        |                          |
 +----------------------->+                          |
 |       Onboarding       |                          |
 |                        |                          |
 |       Onboarding       |                          |
 |                        |                          |
 |                        +------------------------->+
 |                        |   UpgradingParathread    |
 |                        |                          |
 |                        +<-------------------------+
 |                        |   DowngradingParachain   |
 |                        |                          |
 |<-----------------------+                          |
 |   OutgoingParathread   |                          |
 |                        |                          |
 |                        |    OutgoingParachain     |
 |                        |                          |
 +                        +                          +

Note that if PVF pre-checking is enabled, onboarding of a para may potentially be delayed. This can happen due to PVF pre-checking voting concluding late.

During the transition period, the para object is still considered in its existing state.

Storage Layout

fn main() {
use frame_system::pallet_prelude::BlockNumberFor;
/// All currently active PVF pre-checking votes.
/// Invariant:
/// - There are no PVF pre-checking votes that exists in list but not in the set and vice versa.
PvfActiveVoteMap: map ValidationCodeHash => PvfCheckActiveVoteState;
/// The list of all currently active PVF votes. Auxiliary to `PvfActiveVoteMap`.
PvfActiveVoteList: Vec<ValidationCodeHash>;
/// All parachains. Ordered ascending by ParaId. On-demand parachains are not included.
Parachains: Vec<ParaId>,
/// The current lifecycle state of all known Para Ids.
ParaLifecycle: map ParaId => Option<ParaLifecycle>,
/// The head-data of every registered para.
Heads: map ParaId => Option<HeadData>;
/// The context (relay-chain block number) of the most recent parachain head.
MostRecentContext: map ParaId => BlockNumber;
/// The validation code hash of every live para.
CurrentCodeHash: map ParaId => Option<ValidationCodeHash>;
/// Actual past code hash, indicated by the para id as well as the block number at which it became outdated.
PastCodeHash: map (ParaId, BlockNumber) => Option<ValidationCodeHash>;
/// Past code of parachains. The parachains themselves may not be registered anymore,
/// but we also keep their code on-chain for the same amount of time as outdated code
/// to keep it available for secondary checkers.
PastCodeMeta: map ParaId => ParaPastCodeMeta;
/// Which paras have past code that needs pruning and the relay-chain block at which the code was replaced.
/// Note that this is the actual height of the included block, not the expected height at which the
/// code upgrade would be applied, although they may be equal.
/// This is to ensure the entire acceptance period is covered, not an offset acceptance period starting
/// from the time at which the parachain perceives a code upgrade as having occurred.
/// Multiple entries for a single para are permitted. Ordered ascending by block number.
PastCodePruning: Vec<(ParaId, BlockNumber)>;
/// The block number at which the planned code change is expected for a para.
/// The change will be applied after the first parablock for this ID included which executes
/// in the context of a relay chain block with a number >= `expected_at`.
FutureCodeUpgrades: map ParaId => Option<BlockNumber>;
/// Hash of the actual future code of a para.
FutureCodeHash: map ParaId => Option<ValidationCodeHash>;
/// This is used by the relay-chain to communicate to a parachain a go-ahead with in the upgrade procedure.
/// This value is absent when there are no upgrades scheduled or during the time the relay chain
/// performs the checks. It is set at the first relay-chain block when the corresponding parachain
/// can switch its upgrade function. As soon as the parachain's block is included, the value
/// gets reset to `None`.
/// NOTE that this field is used by parachains via merkle storage proofs, therefore changing
/// the format will require migration of parachains.
UpgradeGoAheadSignal: map hasher(twox_64_concat) ParaId => Option<UpgradeGoAhead>;
/// This is used by the relay-chain to communicate that there are restrictions for performing
/// an upgrade for this parachain.
/// This may be a because the parachain waits for the upgrade cooldown to expire. Another
/// potential use case is when we want to perform some maintenance (such as storage migration)
/// we could restrict upgrades to make the process simpler.
/// NOTE that this field is used by parachains via merkle storage proofs, therefore changing
/// the format will require migration of parachains.
UpgradeRestrictionSignal: map hasher(twox_64_concat) ParaId => Option<UpgradeRestriction>;
/// The list of parachains that are awaiting for their upgrade restriction to cooldown.
/// Ordered ascending by block number.
UpgradeCooldowns: Vec<(ParaId, BlockNumberFor<T>)>;
/// The list of upcoming code upgrades. Each item is a pair of which para performs a code
/// upgrade and at which relay-chain block it is expected at.
/// Ordered ascending by block number.
UpcomingUpgrades: Vec<(ParaId, BlockNumberFor<T>)>;
/// The actions to perform during the start of a specific session index.
ActionsQueue: map SessionIndex => Vec<ParaId>;
/// Upcoming paras instantiation arguments.
/// NOTE that after PVF pre-checking is enabled the para genesis arg will have it's code set
/// to empty. Instead, the code will be saved into the storage right away via `CodeByHash`.
UpcomingParasGenesis: map ParaId => Option<ParaGenesisArgs>;
/// The number of references on the validation code in `CodeByHash` storage.
CodeByHashRefs: map ValidationCodeHash => u32;
/// Validation code stored by its hash.
CodeByHash: map ValidationCodeHash => Option<ValidationCode>

Session Change

  1. Execute all queued actions for paralifecycle changes:
  2. Clean up outgoing paras.
    1. This means removing the entries under Heads, CurrentCode, FutureCodeUpgrades, FutureCode and MostRecentContext. An according entry should be added to PastCode, PastCodeMeta, and PastCodePruning using the outgoing ParaId and removed CurrentCode value. This is because any outdated validation code must remain available on-chain for a determined amount of blocks, and validation code outdated by de-registering the para is still subject to that invariant.
  3. Apply all incoming paras by initializing the Heads and CurrentCode using the genesis parameters as well as MostRecentContext to 0.
  4. Amend the Parachains list and ParaLifecycle to reflect changes in registered parachains.
  5. Amend the ParaLifecycle set to reflect changes in registered on-demand parachains.
  6. Upgrade all on-demand parachains that should become lease holding parachains, updating the Parachains list and ParaLifecycle.
  7. Downgrade all lease holding parachains that should become on-demand parachains, updating the Parachains list and ParaLifecycle.
  8. (Deferred) Return list of outgoing paras to the initializer for use by other modules.
  9. Go over all active PVF pre-checking votes:
  10. Increment age of the vote.
  11. If age reached cfg.pvf_voting_ttl, then enact PVF rejection and remove the vote from the active list.
  12. Otherwise, reinitialize the ballots. 1. Resize the votes_accept/votes_reject to have the same length as the incoming validator set. 1. Zero all the votes.


  1. Do pruning based on all entries in PastCodePruning with BlockNumber <= now. Update the corresponding PastCodeMeta and PastCode accordingly.
  2. Toggle the upgrade related signals
  3. Collect all (para_id, expected_at) from UpcomingUpgrades where expected_at <= now and prune them. For each para pruned set UpgradeGoAheadSignal to GoAhead. Reserve weight for the state modification to upgrade each para pruned.
  4. Collect all (para_id, next_possible_upgrade_at) from UpgradeCooldowns where next_possible_upgrade_at <= now. For each para obtained this way reserve weight to remove its UpgradeRestrictionSignal on finalization.


  • schedule_para_initialize(ParaId, ParaGenesisArgs): Schedule a para to be initialized at the next session. Noop if para is already registered in the system with some ParaLifecycle.
  • schedule_para_cleanup(ParaId): Schedule a para to be cleaned up after the next full session.
  • schedule_parathread_upgrade(ParaId): Schedule a parathread (on-demand parachain) to be upgraded to a parachain.
  • schedule_parachain_downgrade(ParaId): Schedule a parachain to be downgraded from lease holding to on-demand.
  • schedule_code_upgrade(ParaId, new_code, relay_parent: BlockNumber, HostConfiguration): Schedule a future code upgrade of the given parachain. In case the PVF pre-checking is disabled, or the new code is already present in the storage, the upgrade will be applied after inclusion of a block of the same parachain executed in the context of a relay-chain block with number >= relay_parent + config.validation_upgrade_delay. If the upgrade is scheduled UpgradeRestrictionSignal is set and it will remain set until relay_parent + config.validation_upgrade_cooldown. In case the PVF pre-checking is enabled, or the new code is not already present in the storage, then the PVF pre-checking run will be scheduled for that validation code. If the pre-checking concludes with rejection, then the upgrade is canceled. Otherwise, after pre-checking is concluded the upgrade will be scheduled and be enacted as described above.
  • note_new_head(ParaId, HeadData, BlockNumber): note that a para has progressed to a new head, where the new head was executed in the context of a relay-chain block with given number, the latter value is inserted into the MostRecentContext mapping. This will apply pending code upgrades based on the block number provided. If an upgrade took place it will clear the UpgradeGoAheadSignal.
  • lifecycle(ParaId) -> Option<ParaLifecycle>: Return the ParaLifecycle of a para.
  • is_parachain(ParaId) -> bool: Returns true if the para ID references any live lease holding parachain, including those which may be transitioning to an on-demand parachain in the future.
  • is_parathread(ParaId) -> bool: Returns true if the para ID references any live parathread (on-demand parachain), including those which may be transitioning to a lease holding parachain in the future.
  • is_valid_para(ParaId) -> bool: Returns true if the para ID references either a live on-demand parachain or live lease holding parachain.
  • can_upgrade_validation_code(ParaId) -> bool: Returns true if the given para can signal code upgrade right now.
  • pvfs_require_prechecking() -> Vec<ValidationCodeHash>: Returns the list of PVF validation code hashes that require PVF pre-checking votes.


Collect all (para_id, next_possible_upgrade_at) from UpgradeCooldowns where next_possible_upgrade_at <= now and prune them. For each para pruned remove its UpgradeRestrictionSignal.