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I'm hacking around with the js lib but everything happens very slowly - sending transactions, promoting, etc... I'm also connected to a personal fully synched node, which doesn't add any speed to my tests. Is there a way to speed dev tests on an alternative environment where there aren't as many transactions?

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There is a public testnet available (you can use https://seeedy.tangle.works/) to receive a seed with 2000 iota for testing).

A public testnet node: https://testnet140.tangle.works/

A testnet Tangle explorer: https://testnet.thetangle.org/live

If you want to provide your own testnet node, best ask on Slack for neighbors (#testnet channel).

Testnet uses MWM=9 and has fewer transactions than mainnet, and therefore should be faster for testing.

There is also an unofficial script collection (not endorsed or supported by the IOTA foundation) at https://github.com/schierlm/private-iota-testnet. This will set up your own snapshot.txt with addresses you control and create the initial milestone transaction on "your" network, also allows you to set MWM to any value you like. You should be comfortable patching and recompiling Java applications (iri) though, before considering to use it.

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