- The primary objective of Etherscan — like many other blockchain explorers — is to reduce the overall workload of finding and reading blockchain data.
- Etherscan has mainnet and testnet explorers that are accessible to all users.
- Etherscan also has a feature where you can view your NFT.
Etherscan is a blockchain explorer and analytics platform that helps users find transactions for the Ethereum network. It can also help them detect suspicious activities and allow users to interact with smart contracts.
Etherscan allows users to monitor and analyze transactions on Ethereum’s network. It’s an entirely free platform created by a group of individuals who wanted to make it easier for people to use Ethereum transparently.
Another aspect to note is that contrary to prior belief, Etherscan is not a wallet but an information source.
What Is Etherscan?
Etherscan was created in August 2015 — to provide similar services to its predecessor, Bitcoin’s blockchain explorer, blockexplorer.io — as an open-source project providing free services for Ethereum users or any other enthusiasts interested in the blockchain.
As such, all users can access on-chain data concerning addresses, their balance, the latest transactions, token information for ERC-20, ERC-721, and ERC-1155, gas fees, smart contracts, decentralized applications, and more.
The primary objective of Etherscan — like many other blockchain explorers — is to reduce the overall workload of finding and reading blockchain data.
Considering millions of transactions happening every day on the blockchain, using programming skills to access the data remained impossible for the normal blockchain user. The platform eliminates the limitations, allowing everyone to be actively involved in all areas.
It has an easy-to-use interface without intermediaries, a necessary feature for all blockchain explorers. The tool also encourages transparency on the blockchain, as all transactions appear on the interface.
Furthermore, its API helps provide real-time and accurate data, including for the blockchain’s markets and user sentiments.
Switching Network on Etherscan
Etherscan has mainnet and testnet explorers that are accessible to all users. Users can access these explorers through a single drop-down.
Through this feature, users can access various testnet explorers such as Goerli, Ropsten, and Kovan. They can also use the BeaconScan (Eth2) and Ethereum Mainnet in Chinese.
The first step is to go to the navigation bar and look for a square button with an Ethereum logo. Upon clicking, a drop-down list of the testnets and mainnets comes up.
You can click any testnets to explore the various available contents on the new tab each leads. When you click on the Ethereum Mainnet explorer, the page opens up on that same display instead of opening another tab, as it happens with testnets.
The BeaconScan appears as the last item on the drop-down menu. Once clicked, it leads you to another tab displaying the official Etherscan Beacon Chain Ethereum 2.0 explorer.
Tracking Transactions on Etherscan
Tracking transactions is one of the most used features on Etherscan. It is imperative to follow your crypto from your wallet to another.
The first step to this is to open the Etherscan homepage. Then, at the top left of the page is the search bar.
Next, copy then paste the transaction ID into the search space and click on the search icon.
Finally, the information about that transaction will pop up, including the transaction hash, timestamp, sender, recipient, status(success, error, or processing), transaction fee, and the amount sent.
If you want to explore further, click on “to see more.” You will see transaction type and gas limit information, among others.
Tracking Wallet Activity
Similar to transactions, it is possible to track wallet activity. You will follow the same steps, but add the wallet address instead of the transaction ID. After searching, Etherscan will display the amount of ETH and the tokens held.
You can also access the transactions from the wallet and at the bottom of the page. You can also see the wallet address and transaction fee with each transaction, among other details.
Interacting With a Smart Contract on Etherscan
A smart contract is a digital contract executed on the blockchain when certain set conditions are met. When you add a new token to your wallet, the first thing that you need to do is determine its contract address. It is the logic that governs how it will perform the transfer of funds.
The first step is to copy then paste the smart contract address into the search bar at Etherscan’s homepage.
When it loads, it will display all the information about the smart contract.
Upon scrolling down, you can see information related to the contract. You can also click “Contract” to see more options.
You can also “Read Contract,” showing the general information. Here, you will see the balances of addresses and wallets with permission to use the token in your wallet.
When DApps and DeFi platforms are inaccessible, you can engage with the contract. Simply click on “Write Contract.”
On the “Connect to Web3” button, you can connect a wallet such as Binance Chain Wallet and interact with the contract when clicking on Write Contract.
You can also transfer the tokens from the wallet you connected to in the step above in the menu displayed. When doing this, ensure that you have the correct decimals for the value you want to transfer.
Customizing Your Smart Contract
After connecting to Web3, select any functions displayed on “connected.” It does not matter which you pick, since our intentions are not to execute the process.
If required, fill in the fields and click on “write.” Consequently, a MetaMask page says, “New address detected! Click here to add to your address book”.
You will then click on the message and open a dialogue. Among the options, select “Add a nickname.” You will add a nickname you want, then click on save. Instead of a string of letters and numbers, the address will display the nickname you added. The last step is crucial. Click “Reject” to cancel the transaction.
NFT Minting on Etherscan
NFT minting is a process that involves turning a digital file into a digital asset. To do this, first ensure you have enough ETH for minting.
Following the initial steps to interact with your smart contract, connect your wallet using “Connect to Web3”. Then, select “mint” or “claim.” However, this may vary from one project to another, ensuring the function is correct.
The next step involves adding ETH and the token amount you want to mint. Countercheck to get all details correct. Then, click on “Write.”
Finally, a MetaMask dialogue pops up. Here, you will confirm the transaction. Just like that, you have made your first mint.
View Your NFTs
Etherscan also has a feature where you can view your NFT. Open the NFT collection’s smart contract by typing its address in the search bar.
Scrolling up, you will come across the inventory tab that gives you information on the NFT. This inventory is organized and displays token ID, last traded amount, owner address, and image.
When you click on an NFT, you will see information on the owner, last sale, the lowest last price, creator, contract address, original content URL, token ID, and token standard.
When you expand the properties tab, you can view more information. For example, you can see the NFT traits and rarity percentage. On the description tab, the information about the project is revealed.
Another exciting feature is the “Chat with Owner.” When you click on it, you can chat with the person who owns the NFT at the time. To chat, a new page opens on Blockscan Chat that requires you to log in through a wallet connection to talk to the owner.
However, note that the function is unavailable for all NFTs, such as BAYC. However, you can still check out other NFTs.
Submitting your Smart Contract
After creating a smart contract, you can submit it and allow people to view it through Etherscan. All you have to do is verify the smart contract, and users can interact and view the source code.
The first step is to generate an API key on your Etherscan account. The API key will allow you to verify that you own the smart contract.
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