Fabric has a highly modular and configurable architecture, enabling innovation, versatility and optimization for a broad range of industry use
cases including banking, finance, insurance, healthcare, human resources, supply chain and even digital music delivery.
Fabric is the first distributed ledger platform to support smart contracts authored in general-purpose programming languages such
as Java, Go and Node.js, rather than constrained domain-specific languages (DSL). This means that most enterprises already have the skill set
needed to develop smart contracts, and no additional training to learn a new language or DSL is needed.
The Fabric platform is also permissioned, meaning that, unlike with a public permissionless network, the participants are known to each other,
rather than anonymous and therefore fully untrusted. This means that while the participants may not fully trust one another (they may, for example,
be competitors in the same industry), a network can be operated under a governance model that is built off of what trust does exist between participants,
such as a legal agreement or framework for handling disputes.
One of the most important of the platform’s differentiators is its support for pluggable consensus protocols that enable the platform to be more
effectively customized to fit particular use cases and trust models. For instance, when deployed within a single enterprise, or operated by a trusted
authority, fully byzantine fault tolerant consensus might be considered unnecessary and an excessive drag on performance and throughput. In situations
such as that, a crash fault-tolerant (CFT) consensus protocol might be more than adequate whereas, in a multi-party, decentralized use case, a more
traditional byzantine fault tolerant (BFT) consensus protocol might be required.
Fabric can leverage consensus protocols that do not require a native cryptocurrency to incent costly mining or to fuel smart contract execution.
Avoidance of a cryptocurrency reduces some significant risk/attack vectors, and absence of cryptographic mining operations means that the platform
can be deployed with roughly the same operational cost as any other distributed system.
The combination of these differentiating design features makes Fabric one of the better performing platforms available today both in terms of
transaction processing and transaction confirmation latency, and it enables privacy and confidentiality of transactions and the smart contracts
(what Fabric calls “chaincode”) that implement them.
Hyperledger Fabric was initially contributed by Digital Asset and IBM.
What are some of the most important features of Hyperledger Fabric?
Fabric uses a channel concept for identifying which partners to share confidential information with.
Ordering Service delivers transactions consistently to peers in the network.
Endorsement policies for transactions.
CouchDB supports wide range of queries.
Bring-your-own Membership Service Provider (MSP).
Creation of smart contracts, or what Fabric calls “chaincode”, functions as a trusted distributed application that gains its security/trust from
the blockchain and the underlying consensus among the peers. It is the business logic of a blockchain application.