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How to broadcast a transaction to the Bitcoin Peer-to-peer network?

Let’s say a developer wants to broadcast transactions from their app directly to the P2P network (not using RPC calls). How would this be done? I assume a TCP/IP connection needs to be established to one of the active nodes. What follows after that? Which messages need to be exchanged (examples would be very welcome)? Can connection be closed after the broadcast or should the app maintain its connection?

Bonus question: How to discover other nodes and broadcast the transaction to multiple peers in parallel?

Is there any curated list of the IP addresses of the nodes that belong to major miners?

EDIT: It is true that Merchant API will be the way to go when available (it is not at the moment) and that using APIs such as Matter Cloud or What’s on chain is the easiest way to do it right now. But this question is more about understanding how Bitcoin’s server network works. It is an interesting piece of technology. It might also be useful for someone - API providers need to deliver transactions to miners at some point after all.

With that said; this question remains open and bounty still waiting for the right response.

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How to create a valid Bitcoin transaction?

If I want to create a Bitcoin transaction, which are the parts I should add to it? What is the meaning of each part and what are any special considerations that I should think of?

I would also like to, assuming I am looking at a transaction’s HEX blob, be able to decode it/determine various parts of it.

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How to decode merkle/transaction proof that Bitcoin SV software provides?

One can ask Bitcoin SV not to provide a proof that a given transaction was included in a block. E.g.:

➜ bitcoin-cli gettxoutproof '["ea32120687851afe3418ab3642af94a4c69684e4b87f8a529807489e09d74ec5"]'
00008020044b32cb5a9d9c5a4d8df9b7d3db277897cd3326900ffb0200000000000000009c34e7a224a4aab8df6a82bf29710a343e000ec5494348ff1a4cf028e55ec81035a1f85dbc10071870a3284fea2400000f98e8f40fdb92f5359abf62b6a56dc03adf7da95390635c2e5e4fafbbee3f753dc54ed7099e480798528a7fb8e48496c6a494af4236ab1834fe1a8587061232ea86f9873bc1bbb24ff46e666c5370ac4b51ca3f5a0ffd03e0713c7be7612e9f610f245966d85fa863a32038e349aaf1b63ccde8b89b395aa2494fa0540d11cf183ef019baee80e4f38fcf2fe3bc23619e3d6edec65dfd2ab452f186e922492ffb668dbc25e8be0c6050247399209dfdda4934cca52f02c399d0fd6dc97c23b4615d4e9ffb22c3de0b35e8dcecb3aa23007defa4ec8e105af05dc87108ded9dccc3b80e338ba14f4390cc5c775c7fba36590bd460f3601e64b8ab55cae0a71f1224f06f0b18a11596a37a49fab86c2a7764b92f114aacad9853b8bea7f23283076cefc60d6f7f600e8d1e32342e8169e49523917c6b9b8ad7931edff1f876ae7c0a149ee3ea75ba806c441f772cbd7fb326f4b0f13b891a364a7399805749bc38016016d6a64aefe4bc7fe48f4ca8bd6f766edb0fdb183d9ba0df7f58dd280692da7dd94048aab0b5b0ebfc83066e85cc8d2cabb133739b872fb4312db5fad41e6e7d55fb7d9addfd810a561ed49634225cd88d2a04638fdc8efaf0d6044e78bdf09455aab9b4d25a5c60cac2376237b064b10b88081f52d241fff4a2d35b464f504ffdf0000

Proof can be verified using the verifytxoutproof RPC command, but let’s say I would like to verify the proof in a custom application that does not have access to a Bitcoin node.

How can I decode the proof HEX blob? What data is part of it and how can I get block, merkle proof and transaction information from it?

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If transaction hashes only are stored in blocks, then where is OP_RETURN data stored?

An answer to a previous question and the whitepaper both agree that blocks don’t store full transactions, but rather, transaction hashes.

So then, what if I add data in OP_RETURN, say, the text “Hello, world!” Isn’t that a transaction output, or at least contained in an output, and therefore part of a transaction?

If not, or if so and only transaction hashes, not transactions themselves persist, then how does the OP_RETURN data stay on the blockchain?

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