Examples

Here are some common things you might want to do with web3.

Looking up blocks

Blocks can be looked up by either their number or hash using the web3.eth.getBlock API. Block hashes should be in their hexadecimal representation. Block numbers

# get a block by number
>>> web3.eth.getBlock(12345)
{
    'author': '0xad5c1768e5974c231b2148169da064e61910f31a',
    'difficulty': 735512610763,
    'extraData': '0x476574682f76312e302e302f6c696e75782f676f312e342e32',
    'gasLimit': 5000,
    'gasUsed': 0,
    'hash': '0x767c2bfb3bdee3f78676c1285cd757bcd5d8c272cef2eb30d9733800a78c0b6d',
    'logsBloom': '0x00000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000',
    'miner': '0xad5c1768e5974c231b2148169da064e61910f31a',
    'mixHash': '0x31d9ec7e3855aeba37fd92aa1639845e70b360a60f77f12eff530429ef8cfcba',
    'nonce': '0x549f882c5f356f85',
    'number': 12345,
    'parentHash': '0x4b3c1d7e65a507b62734feca1ee9f27a5379e318bd52ae62de7ba67dbeac66a3',
    'receiptsRoot': '0x56e81f171bcc55a6ff8345e692c0f86e5b48e01b996cadc001622fb5e363b421',
    'sealFields': ['0x31d9ec7e3855aeba37fd92aa1639845e70b360a60f77f12eff530429ef8cfcba',
    '0x549f882c5f356f85'],
    'sha3Uncles': '0x1dcc4de8dec75d7aab85b567b6ccd41ad312451b948a7413f0a142fd40d49347',
    'size': 539,
    'stateRoot': '0xca495e22ed6b88c61714d129dbc8c94f5bf966ac581c09a57c0a72d0e55e7286',
    'timestamp': 1438367030,
    'totalDifficulty': 3862140487204603,
    'transactions': [],
    'transactionsRoot': '0x56e81f171bcc55a6ff8345e692c0f86e5b48e01b996cadc001622fb5e363b421',
    'uncles': [],
}
# get a block by it's hash
>>> web3.eth.getBlock('0x767c2bfb3bdee3f78676c1285cd757bcd5d8c272cef2eb30d9733800a78c0b6d')
{...}

Getting the latest block

You can also retrieve the latest block using the string 'latest' in the web3.eth.getBlock API.

>>> web3.eth.getBlock('latest')
{...}

If you want to know the latest block number you can use the web3.eth.blockNumber property.

>>> web3.eth.blockNumber
4194803

Currency conversions

Web3 can help you convert between denominations. The following denominations are supported.

denomination amount in wei
wei 1
kwei 1000
babbage 1000
femtoether 1000
mwei 1000000
lovelace 1000000
picoether 1000000
gwei 1000000000
shannon 1000000000
nanoether 1000000000
nano 1000000000
szabo 1000000000000
microether 1000000000000
micro 1000000000000
finney 1000000000000000
milliether 1000000000000000
milli 1000000000000000
ether 1000000000000000000
kether 1000000000000000000000
grand 1000000000000000000000
mether 1000000000000000000000000
gether 1000000000000000000000000000
tether 1000000000000000000000000000000
>>> web3.toWei('1', 'ether')
1000000000000000000
>>> web3.fromWei('1000000000000000000', 'ether')
Decimal('1')
>>> from_wei(123456789, 'ether')
Decimal('1.23456789E-10')

Looking up transactions

You can look up transactions using the web3.eth.getTransaction function.

>>> web3.eth.getTransaction('0x5c504ed432cb51138bcf09aa5e8a410dd4a1e204ef84bfed1be16dfba1b22060')
{
    'blockHash': '0x4e3a3754410177e6937ef1f84bba68ea139e8d1a2258c5f85db9f1cd715a1bdd',
    'blockNumber': 46147,
    'condition': None,
    'creates': None,
    'from': '0xa1e4380a3b1f749673e270229993ee55f35663b4',
    'gas': 21000,
    'gasPrice': 50000000000000,
    'hash': '0x5c504ed432cb51138bcf09aa5e8a410dd4a1e204ef84bfed1be16dfba1b22060',
    'input': '0x',
    'networkId': None,
    'nonce': 0,
    'publicKey': '0x376fc429acc35e610f75b14bc96242b13623833569a5bb3d72c17be7e51da0bb58e48e2462a59897cead8ab88e78709f9d24fd6ec24d1456f43aae407a8970e4',
    'r': '0x88ff6cf0fefd94db46111149ae4bfc179e9b94721fffd821d38d16464b3f71d0',
    'raw': '0xf86780862d79883d2000825208945df9b87991262f6ba471f09758cde1c0fc1de734827a69801ca088ff6cf0fefd94db46111149ae4bfc179e9b94721fffd821d38d16464b3f71d0a045e0aff800961cfce805daef7016b9b675c137a6a41a548f7b60a3484c06a33a',
    's': '0x45e0aff800961cfce805daef7016b9b675c137a6a41a548f7b60a3484c06a33a',
    'standardV': '0x1',
    'to': '0x5df9b87991262f6ba471f09758cde1c0fc1de734',
    'transactionIndex': 0,
    'v': '0x1c',
    'value': 31337,
}

If no transaction for the given hash can be found, then this function will instead return None.

Looking up receipts

Transaction receipts can be retrieved using the web3.eth.getTransactionReceipt API.

>>> web3.eth.getTransactionReceipt('0x5c504ed432cb51138bcf09aa5e8a410dd4a1e204ef84bfed1be16dfba1b22060')
{
    'blockHash': '0x4e3a3754410177e6937ef1f84bba68ea139e8d1a2258c5f85db9f1cd715a1bdd',
    'blockNumber': 46147,
    'contractAddress': None,
    'cumulativeGasUsed': 21000,
    'gasUsed': 21000,
    'logs': [],
    'logsBloom': '0x00000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000',
    'root': '0x96a8e009d2b88b1483e6941e6812e32263b05683fac202abc622a3e31aed1957',
    'transactionHash': '0x5c504ed432cb51138bcf09aa5e8a410dd4a1e204ef84bfed1be16dfba1b22060',
    'transactionIndex': 0,
}

If the transaction has not yet been mined then this method will return None.

Working with Contracts

Given the following solidity source file stored at contract.sol.

contract StoreVar {

    uint8 public _myVar;
    event MyEvent(uint indexed _var);

    function setVar(uint8 _var) public {
        _myVar = _var;
        MyEvent(_var);
    }

    function getVar() public view returns (uint8) {
        return _myVar;
    }

}

The following example demonstrates a few things:

  • Compiling a contract from a sol file.
  • Estimating gas costs of a transaction.
  • Transacting with a contract function.
  • Waiting for a transaction receipt to be mined.
import sys
import time
import pprint

from web3.providers.eth_tester import EthereumTesterProvider
from web3 import Web3
from solc import compile_source


def compile_source_file(file_path):
   with open(file_path, 'r') as f:
      source = f.read()

   return compile_source(source)


def deploy_contract(w3, contract_interface):
    tx_hash = w3.eth.contract(
        abi=contract_interface['abi'],
        bytecode=contract_interface['bin']).deploy()

    address = w3.eth.getTransactionReceipt(tx_hash)['contractAddress']
    return address


def wait_for_receipt(w3, tx_hash, poll_interval):
   while True:
       tx_receipt = w3.eth.getTransactionReceipt(tx_hash)
       if tx_receipt:
         return tx_receipt
       time.sleep(poll_interval)


w3 = Web3(EthereumTesterProvider())

contract_source_path = 'contract.sol'
compiled_sol = compile_source_file('contract.sol')

contract_id, contract_interface = compiled_sol.popitem()

address = deploy_contract(w3, contract_interface)
print("Deployed {0} to: {1}\n".format(contract_id, address))

store_var_contract = w3.eth.contract(
   address=address,
   abi=contract_interface['abi'])

gas_estimate = store_var_contract.functions.setVar(255).estimateGas()
print("Gas estimate to transact with setVar: {0}\n".format(gas_estimate))

if gas_estimate < 100000:
  print("Sending transaction to setVar(255)\n")
  tx_hash = store_var_contract.functions.setVar(255).transact()
  receipt = wait_for_receipt(w3, tx_hash, 1)
  print("Transaction receipt mined: \n")
  pprint.pprint(dict(receipt))
else:
  print("Gas cost exceeds 100000")

Output:

Deployed <stdin>:StoreVar to: 0xF2E246BB76DF876Cef8b38ae84130F4F55De395b

Gas estimate to transact with setVar: 32463

Sending transaction to setVar(255)

Transaction receipt mined:

{'blockHash': HexBytes('0x94e07b0b88667da284e914fa44b87d4e7fec39761be51245ef94632a3b5ab9f0'),
 'blockNumber': 2,
 'contractAddress': None,
 'cumulativeGasUsed': 43106,
 'gasUsed': 43106,
 'logs': [AttributeDict({'type': 'mined', 'logIndex': 0, 'transactionIndex': 0, 'transactionHash': HexBytes('0x3ac3518cc59d1698aa03a0bab7fb8191a4ef017aeda7429b11e8c6462b20a62a'), 'blockHash': HexBytes('0x94e07b0b88667da284e914fa44b87d4e7fec39761be51245ef94632a3b5ab9f0'), 'blockNumber': 2, 'address': '0xF2E246BB76DF876Cef8b38ae84130F4F55De395b', 'data': '0x', 'topics': [HexBytes('0x6c2b4666ba8da5a95717621d879a77de725f3d816709b9cbe9f059b8f875e284'), HexBytes('0x00000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000ff')]})],
 'transactionHash': HexBytes('0x3ac3518cc59d1698aa03a0bab7fb8191a4ef017aeda7429b11e8c6462b20a62a'),
 'transactionIndex': 0}

Interacting with an ERC20 Contract

The ERC20 (formally EIP20) token standard is the most widely used standard in Ethereum. Here’s how to check the current state of an ERC20 token contract.

First, create your Python object representing the ERC20 contract. For this example, we’ll be inspecting the Unicorns token contract.

>>> import json
>>> from web3.auto.infura import w3

>>> ERC20_ABI = json.loads('[{"constant":true,"inputs":[],"name":"name","outputs":[{"name":"","type":"string"}],"payable":false,"stateMutability":"view","type":"function"},{"constant":false,"inputs":[{"name":"_spender","type":"address"},{"name":"_value","type":"uint256"}],"name":"approve","outputs":[{"name":"","type":"bool"}],"payable":false,"stateMutability":"nonpayable","type":"function"},{"constant":true,"inputs":[],"name":"totalSupply","outputs":[{"name":"","type":"uint256"}],"payable":false,"stateMutability":"view","type":"function"},{"constant":false,"inputs":[{"name":"_from","type":"address"},{"name":"_to","type":"address"},{"name":"_value","type":"uint256"}],"name":"transferFrom","outputs":[{"name":"","type":"bool"}],"payable":false,"stateMutability":"nonpayable","type":"function"},{"constant":true,"inputs":[],"name":"decimals","outputs":[{"name":"","type":"uint8"}],"payable":false,"stateMutability":"view","type":"function"},{"constant":true,"inputs":[{"name":"_owner","type":"address"}],"name":"balanceOf","outputs":[{"name":"","type":"uint256"}],"payable":false,"stateMutability":"view","type":"function"},{"constant":true,"inputs":[],"name":"symbol","outputs":[{"name":"","type":"string"}],"payable":false,"stateMutability":"view","type":"function"},{"constant":false,"inputs":[{"name":"_to","type":"address"},{"name":"_value","type":"uint256"}],"name":"transfer","outputs":[{"name":"","type":"bool"}],"payable":false,"stateMutability":"nonpayable","type":"function"},{"constant":true,"inputs":[{"name":"_owner","type":"address"},{"name":"_spender","type":"address"}],"name":"allowance","outputs":[{"name":"","type":"uint256"}],"payable":false,"stateMutability":"view","type":"function"},{"anonymous":false,"inputs":[{"indexed":true,"name":"_from","type":"address"},{"indexed":true,"name":"_to","type":"address"},{"indexed":false,"name":"_value","type":"uint256"}],"name":"Transfer","type":"event"},{"anonymous":false,"inputs":[{"indexed":true,"name":"_owner","type":"address"},{"indexed":true,"name":"_spender","type":"address"},{"indexed":false,"name":"_value","type":"uint256"}],"name":"Approval","type":"event"}]')  # noqa: 501

# Address field should be the checksum address at which the ERC20 contract was deployed
>>> erc20 = w3.eth.contract(address='0x89205A3A3b2A69De6Dbf7f01ED13B2108B2c43e7', abi=ERC20_ABI)

Fetch various data about the current state of the ERC20 contract.

>>> erc20.functions.name().call()
'Unicorns'
>>> erc20.functions.symbol().call()
'🦄'
>>> erc20.functions.decimals().call()
0
>>> erc20.functions.totalSupply().call()
2039

Get the balance of an account address.

>>> erc20.functions.balanceOf('0xD1220A0cf47c7B9Be7A2E6BA89F429762e7b9aDb').call()
1

Calculate the token count from the token balance of an account address.

>>> from decimal import Decimal

# Most applications expect *exact* results, so using the Decimal library,
# with default precision of 28, is usually sufficient to avoid any rounding error.
>>> decimals = erc20.functions.decimals().call()
>>> balance = erc20.functions.balanceOf('0xD1220A0cf47c7B9Be7A2E6BA89F429762e7b9aDb').call()
>>> balance / Decimal(10 ** decimals)
Decimal('1')

Balance is always an integer in the currency’s smallest natural unit (equivalent to ‘wei’ for ether). Token balance is typically used only for backend calculations.

Token count may be a integer or fraction in the currency’s primary unit (equivalent to ‘eth’ for ether). Token count is typically displayed to the user on the front-end since it is more readable.