Topics Blockchain
Bybit Learn
Bybit Learn
Intermediate
Aug 10, 2022

Solscan: What It Is and How to Use It

Solscan is a free-to-use data analytics platform that allows you to search for any information on the Solana blockchain. It’s an in-demand substitute to Solana Explorer, the official Solana blockchain explorer.

Solscan is user-friendly and has an info-rich platform complete with an NFT and DeFi dashboard. You can use it to track everything that happens on the rapidly growing Solana blockchain, including transaction IDs, addresses and tokens.

So, what makes Solscan tick?

Read on to find out everything about Solscan, and why it’s become a favorite blockchain tool for such crypto giants as Alameda Research and Solana Ventures.

What Is Solscan?

Solscan is a blockchain explorer that provides easy-to-understand information about transactions and other useful details related to the Solana network. While Solana has endorsed Solana Explorer as its official blockchain explorer, Solscan has quickly become its alternative.

Do you ever come across long codes and complex transactional data when interacting with Solana?

Well, Solscan makes it easy for you to interpret such information by breaking it down in a simple, non-techy way. On it, you can explore cryptocurrencies built on Solana and find helpful information such as the circulating supply, staking details, block heights, number of validators and much more.

How Does Solscan Work?

Solscan works by scanning information throughout the Solana blockchain and updating it in real time. If you’ve conducted any transaction on Solana, then every detail about it will be on Solscan. All you need to do is enter a query in the search bar on Solscan’s homepage and wait a few seconds for the results.

An image of Solscan’s search bar

Source: Solscan

Upon receiving your query, Solscan follows the steps below to provide you with accurate information about Solana:

1. Its nodes extract data from Solana.

2. The information is forwarded to Solscan’s database software, where it’s arranged into searchable tables and simplified format.

3. The server on the user interface then creates a web page to allow you to input your search details.

4. Once you input a search query, Solscan’s API converts it into a machine-readable format.

5. The information is then relayed to the backend server by the user interface server.

6. Depending on the request, the backend server searches through the available information and converts it into human-readable form.

7. The information is then relayed to your web page in an easy-to-understand format by the user interface server.

How Solscan Works

Source: Software Testing Help

Why Use Solscan?

If you’re constantly transacting on Solana, or any other blockchain network, then understanding blockchain explorers is a must. One of the key pillars of blockchain technology is transparency, and blockchain explorers such as Solscan help accomplish this.

Reasons to use Solscan include:

Free-to-Use Tool

It’s free to use Solscan. You don’t even need to create an account on Solscan in order to view transaction data. However, to get a personalized experience relating to your transactions and enhanced functionality, you may need to open an account on Solscan. Creating an account is quick and easy.

Simple Layout

Solscan follows a similar layout as that of Etherscan, the popular blockchain explorer for the Ethereum blockchain. Solscan’s info-rich homepage is where you can find critical information about SOL (Solana’s native token) at a glance. From there, you can easily navigate to other dashboards or analytics pages.

Clarity

Have you ever conducted a transaction on Solana that went into “pending” status? Indeed, using blockchain technology is new territory for most people. However, blockchain explorers such as Solscan make it easy to track crypto transactions and tokens, or get clarification about the operations of a particular blockchain ecosystem.

Feature-Packed

From analytics to token pages, Solscan is packed with features that will provide you with useful insight about Solana and its related tokens. Additionally, Solscan has a DeFi dashboard where you can get a detailed overview of Solana’s decentralized finance (DeFi) applications. The NFT dashboard is also loaded with useful information about the non-fungible token (NFT) ecosystem on Solana.

Tracking Transactions on Solscan

The most frequently used feature on Solscan is the transaction and address search function. Every transaction carried out on the Solana blockchain has a unique identity signature. The signature is a long string of alphanumeric characters that help verify a blockchain transaction. You’ll find the number on your smart contract.

To track a transaction using Solscan, you need to copy and paste the unique signature into the search bar on Solscan’s homepage.

Solscan search bar

Source: Solscan

Once you press Enter, you’ll find all the transaction data related to that particular ID. The Solana transaction details will be divided into three sections: Overview, SOL Balance Change and Token Balance Change. The Overview tab will show you detailed information about your transaction, such as your transaction results, the wallet address that initiated the transaction, the transaction fee and so on.

An image of transaction details on Solscan

Source: Solscan

Looking Up Addresses on Solscan

Checking the activity of a wallet or blockchain address of a given cryptocurrency is important. It helps confirm the project’s validity and identify any smart contract activities on the wallet.

To obtain a detailed history of a particular wallet address using Solscan, you’ll follow a similar process as that for tracking a transaction. You’ll need to paste the wallet address (it’s usually shorter than a transaction signature) on the search bar and hit Enter.

You’ll receive an overview of the current balances in a wallet, as well as transaction data related to the address.

An image of Solscan’s wallet address overview

Source: Solscan

Finding Tokens on Solscan

Another useful feature on Solscan is the ability to track tokens. All you need to do is enter the token’s name or contract address into the search bar on the homepage and hit Enter. For accuracy, you can obtain a token’s valid contract address from its official website, or from CoinMarketCap.

This example uses the NEAR token, as shown:

Token search on Solscan

Source: Solscan

Once you select NEAR from the drop-down menu, a web page with detailed information about the token is shown.

Token overview on Solscan

Source: Solscan

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Viewing NFTs on Solscan

The Solana blockchain hasn’t been left out of the NFT boom; in fact, it has a fully-fledged NFT marketplace. You can view all the NFTs available on the Solana ecosystem, such as Degenerate Ape Academy, using the NFT dashboard available on the homepage. You can also click on the NFTs tab on the website’s header and search through those that are available.

NFT dashboard on Solscan

Source: Solscan

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Viewing DeFi Dashboard on Solscan

The Solana ecosystem is home to multiple decentralized exchanges (DEXs) with varying features. Some of the most popular ones include Raydium, Orca and Saber. Solscan has a DeFi dashboard on its homepage, but you can also select a DEX from a drop-down menu on the website.

Viewing DeFi on Solscan

Source: Solscan

Finding Active Accounts on Solscan Analytics

The Analytics feature on Solscan comes in handy when you want to obtain important metrics, such as the number of Solscan active accounts.

On the Analytics page, you can view an up-to-date count of total transactions on Solana and the transactions per second (TPS) for the last half hour.

An image of the Analytics tab on Solscan

Source: Solscan

To find the number of accounts with active wallet addresses, scroll down to the bottom of the Analytics overview page and find the information in a chart on the left.

An image of active accounts on Solana

Source: Solscan

You can also customize the report period for active accounts by entering a range of dates on the top right corner of the Analytics overview page.

Selecting a date period on Solscan

Source: Solscan

Best Alternatives to Solscan

Solscan stands out as a great alternative to Solana’s blockchain explorer. However, there are other blockchain explorers that could work for you too. Some of the best alternatives to Solscan are Solanascan and Blockchair, which also provide useful details about Solana’s ecosystem.

If you’ve been using Ethereum’s block explorer, Etherscan, then the layout of Solanascan and Blockchair will appear different to you. Since Solscan has a layout similar to Etherscan, it’ll be easy to migrate and navigate around it.

Final Thoughts

Whether you’re a novice or an experienced crypto user, interacting with a convenient blockchain explorer such as Solscan is vital. One of the most commonly used web-based tools on Solana, Solscan will provide you with essential information about the ecosystem. Whether you want to know why your transaction is pending, or check the activity on a particular wallet address, Solscan will do the job.