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I created a genesis.json initial_key using very helpful instructions from gensis.json initial key parameter: what is it?.

My question - does the initial key have any crypto significance or is it simply a hash for nodes to verify if they are properly on the same network?

Do I need to keep the private key generated for the initial_key safe? Does it have any use?

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Did some testing trying to make the initial_key something completely different than the initial signature-provider keypair and nodeos started throwing the following errors:

error 2020-06-06T07:36:25.001 nodeos    producer_plugin.cpp:1457      start_block          ] Not producing block because I don't have any private keys relevant to authority: [0,{"threshold":1,"keys":[{"key":"EOSRandomInitialKey","weight":1}]}]

So through my initial findings, yes - that key is significant otherwise subsequent blocks cannot be added.

I'd still love for someone to answer the why or how it works.

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