SteemSQL is moving to a monthly subscription model

in steemsql •  2 years ago  (edited)

More and more people are using SteemSQL and rely on its availability and performance to provide services and information to all Steemit users.

The number of daily transaction is growing fast and I regularly have to upgrade the infrastructure and monitor performances to ensure 24x7 availability and enterprise class responsiveness.

Once month ago, I made a call for help and support to keep SteemSQL public and free for all.

Unfortunately, it wasn’t followed with the expected support from the community. Although the post got a decent reward, and a few made some donation, it was not enough to cover the costs of the SteemSQL infrastructure (which will grow given the new features I will release very soon).

New monthly subscription model

Given the current and growing load and usage of SteemSQL, I have decided to move to a monthly subscription fee model for users to access SteemSQL.

This will help SteemSQL to continue to provide high availability to its users and will enable SteemSQL to maintain the current level of performance whatever the growth of blockchain activity.

As of 2018-01-24 at 12:00:00 UTC, SteemSQL will only be available to users with an active subscription!

How do I activate my subscription?

The subscription activation process is very simple. The @steemsql dedicated technical account has been created for this purpose.

  1. Transfer 20 SBD to @steemsql (no memo required)*

  2. As soon as @steemsql receives your payment, your activation will be processed

  3. You will receive a micro-transfer back from @steemsql.

The memo of the transfer will be encrypted.
To see its content, you must log in with your memo key.

The memo that comes with this transfer contains the following information:

  • the server hostname to connect to SteemSQL.
  • your personal login
  • your password
  • the expiration date and time of your current subscription.

Your subscription will be valid for 1 month.
You can make a series of payments if you want to subscribe for several months.

How do I extend my subscription?

The process is exactly the same.

  1. Transfer 20 SBD to @steemsql
  2. You will receive a micro-transfert back from @steemsql.
    The memo is encrypted and see its content, you must log in with your memo key.
    The memo will also mention when your new subscription expiration date

What happens if my subscription expire?

You will no more be able to connect the SteemSQL with your login information.
You can reactivate your subscription at any time and you will get new login information.


Users with an active subscription will be entitled to priority support.

Support for SteemSQL will be provided on the dedicated SteemSQL channel on only!


All SBD / STEEM sent to @steemsql with an amount lower than the above mentioned fee will be considered as a donation to SteemSQL.

There will be no refund unless it is proven that you have not received confirmation of your subscription via a transfer with your login information.

  • Given the current volatility of the SBD price, subscription fee may vary.
    Check SteemSQL website for the latest information..

I want to thank the ones who already made some donations for SteemSQL, even tiny ones:

@abh12345 , @ace108, @bitrocker2020, @carlgnash, @eastmael, @ecoinstant, @freebornangel, @isaideureka, @joythewanderer, @justyy, @lextenebris, @lpessin, @magicmonk, @mermaidvampire, @misterakpan, @revisesociology, @remuslord, @shehbaznawaz.

I am extremely grateful for what you have done and therefore I offer you a free month subscription!

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I am your first customer! Thank you and I'll support you as always!

Thanks for being the very first one subscriber!
And thanks you so much for your support! You rock!

That right

  ·  2 years ago (edited)

Your "1 free month subscription" has been allocated. Thanks for using SteemSQL and your previous donation!

Thank you!

Hello @arcange, I complete understand the needs for SteemSQL. And is a very useful tool that I use almost everyday. I even made a few excel dashboards to friends search for data related with their projects(@brazilians as example) , and they use it very often too. So we really appreciate you effort and what you spended to keep up till now. For sure I'll subscribe, and Ill do another small donation.

Thank you @lpessin. Glad to read that SteemSQL is useful for a lot of people.
And thank you so much for your donation! Really appreciated!

Thank you with this brave move!

I'm not your customer but I believe that you should charge money for your work. This will help to start the Steemit ecosystem moving in the right direction. Let the market decide on the price and everything is going to be just fine.

  ·  2 years ago (edited)

Thanks for your comment.

I believe that you should charge money for your work.

I only partially agree with you. In a way, I believe I shouldn't.
There are some mechanisms to fund projects on the platform. Using them would be better and beneficial to all. By charging for my services, I prevent some less wealthy users to play with it. The market is not always the best solution.

As expected, you're seeing a bit of resistance to the obvious outcome to managing a SQL Server that is literally hammered by TONS of connections. That infrastructure is NOT cheap and the time to manage it is not free. It's unrealistic for anyone to expect this to continue indefinitely.

Since you'll filter off a lot of that traffic, the service will be even better for your remaining users. Also, you'll have cash flow now to possibly upgrade your infrastructure even further.

And frankly, this opens the door to the community to spin up another public instance. Thanks for all your work and contributions!

@blervin, thanks for your very supportive comment!

Indeed, managing such an infrastructure requires money and time. And as you wrote, it would have been unsustainable to continue to provide such a service for free.

And yes, I hope this subscription model will allow me to provide even better service.

I'm in! 10SBDs paid and access granted.. Let the querying commence!

Thank you for using SteemSQL.

r.i.p freedom

Hmm ... this has nothing to do with freedom ... does it?

you say it yourself with: ''More and more people are using SteemSQL and rely on its availability and performance to provide services and information to all Steemit users'' im willing to make noise if you cant make it up to keep it for free and fix some people who have actual benefit for this like some people who are saying they are executives and have a lot of sp and strange delegations to asian stereotypes.. so what can be done is a crowdfunding but if you take away our information that we can use to make our investmentstrategy or just info about the state at all you cannot make that premium. if you really do then you show the wrong intentions.. especially if there is no other option to get all information out.. and since the environement grows and matures, you took the responsibility so you have to provide that.. whatever happens if you do that I will completely lose my likes.. because the system is super pyramid at the higher sp's and the lower sp's are not able to get information of a free opensource blockchain... smt is what is going to add to the ''restrictions'' too as i see it.. but to come to the point.. if you are providing a service that gives valuable information, and do so since the start of all.. you had not the intentions to earn money with it anyway but now you can't i have rights on that information else this whole system here on steem is getting too centralized. I am willing to help in getting donation

Hi - thanks - NB just for the record, my donation was one of those tiny ones, but I haven't actually accessed the database yet (well except for one test run when I just cut and past some of your code from one of your tutorials): I just wanted to make a small gesture of my appreciation (also I'm one of those people who would defo benefit from the 'minnow plan' mentioned below - just the phrase made that worth an upvote).

I'm intending to use it a lot from summer once I've quit my current job and actually have time to get stuck into data analysis proper.

Anyway, I'll still continue to make small donations once a month, I do know how much work goes into maintaining these things. I think it's a very reasonable price as people do very nicely out of those data analysis posts!


@revisesociology, thanks for your donations.
It's each time really appreciated, even if tiny ones!

Thanks a lot for steemsql! I like steemsql very much and I subscribed last month. Just now I was renewing it, but I transferred 10 SBD to @arcange rather than @steemsql! May I have it back? Sorry for the trouble.

Sent the 10 SBD back to you ;)

received. Thank you very much:)

As much as I believe that 10 SBD a month may be fairly steep, I understand that running a 24/7 high-availability server is no small feat.

I wish you luck with this project going forward; it has definitely been a source of rare actual informational access to the blockchain with tools that anyone might possess.

As much as I believe that 10 SBD a month may be fairly steep

Anyone using SteemSQL service and providing interesting statistics will make more than 10 SBD with one post. ROI is guaranteed!

Oh, be careful with talk like that. Never guarantee a ROI; somebody might take you seriously and thence to court.

And I don't mean that entirely seriously but I don't mean it entirely un-seriously either.

(I'm pretty sure that I could come up with interesting statistics that no one but me would care about, even if I included really nice graphs. I have a gift for irrelevance.)

Haha... a gift for irrelevance sounds nice! :D

Well, would be curious to see what kind of stats are in your mind.

True. This is why I'm now considering selling some of my Bitshares to purchase a 1 month subscription.

Interesting ! I resteemed this post.
and vote for witness @arcange.

Thanks @yasu24 for your support!

I must say, this is so long overdue. And I really really appreciate the month of free subscription. I often feel like I should do more. Thank you for the query service. Trust I am going to be a regular subscriber after my first one month. Thank you :-)

Thanks for the support you provided with your previous donations.

Trust I am going to be a regular subscriber after my first one month.

Unfortunately, you will have first to initiate a subscription by yourself. I was a bit quick at talking about gift .. and did not implemented such feature in the whole infrastructure. My bad.
To avoid revamping my whole code in a hurry (scary to me), I need a first transaction from the user to be able to extend the subscription.
Please apologize for that!

Oops! I already made another donation assuming I was going to be able to redeem my free sub immediately. Lemme try and fetch 10 SBD. Thank you still <3

  ·  2 years ago (edited)

Your "1 free month subscription" has been allocated. Thanks for using SteemSQL and your previous donation!

Please could you check my deposit? It's been 30 minutes now and I haven't gotten the reply transfer with login details. Thank you for refunding that erroneous transfer to arcange :-)

Your transfer to @steemSQL went in while a was fixing a small bug.
Your subscription is now activated. Please apologize for delay.

Thank you for refunding that erroneous transfer to arcange :-)

You're welcome! Thanks for using SteemSQL =)

Login details received and logged in now :-)

  ·  2 years ago Reveal Comment

It's still cheaper than than you set up your own infrastructure.

  ·  2 years ago Reveal Comment

Good comment. May be the man will hear you 😎 but I think it won't be easy deal with the fluctuations with different currencies and fiat currency is not a convenient option for a global platform.

For some, it might be a lot ... depending on how they use SteemSQL.
But for the vast majority of SteemSQL users, this represents a tiny fraction of what they receive back via the platform by publishing data related posts or by monitoring their activity using SteemSQL.

Any chance you can introduce a minnow plan? I just want to throw a few queries at it a month to get some analytics on how my followers/upvoters/posts are interacting.

Like, I'm talking 50 queries max. Probably closer to 5.

This post might be an answer to you ;)

Already replied to that! Thanks!

I just discovered your fantastic service a couple of days ago. I get your cost issue. I was about to learn and test basic queries from learning and reading former post related to steemsql. As a plankton, 10 SBD/month looks quite unaffordable for me. You could maybe later on consider subscription based on usage and max number of req/month (or even bundled with other kpi like rep, sp) etc so that little individuals with low consumption can still profit of this wonderful service. I understand that it will need some extra monitoring implementation from your side and that a first flat flee plan is the straight forward solution but i fear it will exclude the beginners and the weakest ones. I hope your short notice action will restore the necessary financial balance needed to keep your excellent service running.

You could maybe later on consider subscription based on usage and max number of req/month ...

That was one of my idea to keep SteemSQL affordable for some low usage people. But it's quite more complex to implement. This is something I might do in the future.

Steemsql looks like great work and should be rewarded

If you are looking for potential "mini" subscription solution
You can use Logon Triggers to ex. limit the number of 'mini' user logons to 1 a day or week (this should be enough for people who just want to run single report )

Logon Triggers doc -

Good move it was

Hey @arcange. I give you a shout out every month on my Witness Engagement Report which uses SteemSQL. I'm sorry I missed your last post on this, and you didn't receive the support you want. As a developer (and at the current prices of SBD), $70 a month seems a bit high to me considering I may be able to obtain the data myself. That said, I do want to support this project and ensure it continues because I think it's a great service for people. I also think you should be rewarded for your efforts! Thanks for everything you've done to make this available. Since you're listed on the developer resources page, maybe steemit, inc could help subsidize this?


I have a discord bot running to check queries to SteemSQL. I will support you for this project. Just wait until I got enough SBD to pay for subscription.

Can`t afford 10 sbd for now. I will surely support you soonest! A nice project indeed!

Thank you for your support =)

Totally understand this approach of course.

I have one question. If someone is offering a service to multiple other users and this service connects to steemsql, is the charge the same? I guess there has to be a point at which a large number of users effectively all using the same login details and proxying through a single app (such as a discord bot) is going to become a problem again.

This is something that I have already thought about and will be managed on a case by case basis at first.
From now, I want to work in "trust" mode.
The infrastructure is under monitoring and if abuse is noticed, there will be reaction to avoid good standing users to be penalized.

we respect your decision @arcange and thank you for all the hard work that you put into @steemsql . i suggest to make a discount for the new users (or a testing period) so they can test the features of the service and decide whether to use it or not and thank you .

@thegoldenphoenix, thanks for your comment.

suggest to make a discount for the new users (or a testing period) so they can test the features of the service and decide whether to use it or not

This is something I might consider to do later

well this will be great ;)

You might be happy when reading this post

Hopefully there will be multi-tier subscription fees for smaller user, or per-times basis type of subscription.
New here, I don't even have 10 SBD from all my posts. 😅
Have just learned to use SteemSQL recently.

Thanks for letting us to use the tool free previously. It really is a useful tool.
I have some good time learning and using SteemSQL. 😊

This post might be an answer to you ;)

Before I send over, a question.
Will there be discounts for longer subscription like 6 months or a year?

  ·  2 years ago (edited)

I have asked @arcange ... not implemented yet.... but I agree, this is good for those who want to use it for a longer term

Thanks for replying :-)

I will go step by step, and first see how the community react to this change.
But yes, this is something I would like to see to reward loyal subscribers.

Thanks. Let me go to a desk in the office to get the transfer done. 😎
There's too many people in the train

  ·  2 years ago (edited)

Your "1 free month subscription" has been allocated. Thanks for using SteemSQL and your previous donation!

Yay... you're welcome and thanks.

Hi @arcange

I missed this post yesterday but have noticed my name in lights above :D

Is this free first month valid for me? I have no issue paying monthly for this great service, just don't have 10 SBD today!


Please check your DM on

  ·  2 years ago (edited)

My dear @arcange,

I am sorry that you didn't get a lot of support when you asked for it to the community...

Unfortunately, it wasn’t followed with the expected support from the community.

A community who is using everyday your database in all their projects. Without you it would be not so simple to collect all theses datas.... (And make money with it..... Generally a ton of money if published by Utopian!)

Steem is a real disaster for that... I see it everyday. People prefer to upvote MEME at +100$ sometimes 300$ ... than to help someone who is really working for the community.

Steem turn like Youtube/Facebook... Simple content get rewarded. I was hoping Steem turn like Medium with the rewards... It will apparently will not be the case.

I am sad that you have to do this pay mode but you also have to support all your costs... What do people think ?

Once more, you got my full support because I do believe the job you do worth much more. If Steem is not seeing how valuable you and your project are and how much we all need you...

We need people like you. It's people like you who can facilitate the Steem daily life and make it grow.

Thank you for the free monthly subscription. I'm good with the monthly subscription.

Well I for one will be happy to pay it and certainly receive a lot more value out of SteemSQL monthly than 10 SBD. I mean just 3 days ago I donated (2nd donation? 3rd donation?) 8.496 SBD toward SteemSQL and still won't flinch to send another 10 SBD as soon as I finish typing this comment. Sure that is expensive for many casual users. That is kind of the point I think right? - there won't be as many casual users. Honestly it is pretty remarkable to me that you didn't receive more support when you asked for it, given the use the database saw when it was public and free. I was always happy to donate and will be happy to pay.

Cheers - Carl

Thank you for your comment, @carngnash. Very supportive!
Your "1 free month subscription" has been allocated.
Thanks for using SteemSQL and for your previous donations!

Cool memo received / decrypted and the extra month on the end of the expiration date noted :)

Cheers - Carl

Just discover this today with the help of your post. Thanks for sharing and I will be among your customer

This is an awesome move. I will give it a trial.

I m not sure how I log in with memo key, its not allowing me to do so.

Hi @arcange.

I'm very grateful for steemsql and the service you provide - it's a great tool and I think very valuable to steem. I've sent over my subscription now.

I hope that some kind of solution can be reached to reduce or eliminate the subscription cost - I think for new users or users where $60-$70 a month is a very significant sum this could be a big barrier to entry, which would be a shame.

Hopefully you manage to sort out something with Luke. If not I could see a delegation / upvote system being a potential approach - this would also have the cost bear more on the established / successful users that the new guys.

Anyway thanks again and I look forward to future developments with SteemSQL.

Hi @miniature-tiger,

Thanks a lot for your subscription!

My goal as always be to keep the fee as low as possible, or even better free! I honestly didn't know how people would react to such a change.

It is certain that this model will evolve in the future. Let's spend some time.


Thanks for running SteemSQL. I'm willing to contribute to your costs but I can't justify 10SBD a month for the handful of ad-hoc queries I run.

This post might be an answer to you ;)

Thank you. I did go ahead with the monthly subscription this month and am trying to get some analysis posts going to see if they are worthwhile, but I will keep the daily subscription in mind if my analysis posts don't get any traction.

I love steemsql. Any chance of reducing the subscription fee?

I contacted you on

As a minnow (3rd week on SteemIt) subscribing right now would badly damage my earnings.

I really enjoyed using your database while it was free access, and was working on a small project to help SteemCleaners in identifying abuse of the SteemIt system.

Have you considered opensourcing this so that other people can set it up on their local machines, or is that too complicated - Would that involve running a node?

In any case, thanks for providing the service while it was available for free. I might subscribe at some point once my earnings get bigger.

Edit: Looks like I got it to work, it was just really slow through Power BI. You can disregard!

I got 2 separate messages back with credentials, and neither set will authenticate. Also, the URL for your 'dedicated support channel' is invalid.

  ·  2 years ago (edited)

I only used it once a month to calculate how much I need to donate from my daily devotions. 10 SBD is way too much for me given the current price of SBD. Not to mention I can get the information myself by a javascript code directly from the blockchain which is what I'm gonna do now. I see you've already received appx 3500 USD not to mention the value of this post so you should be good now. Good luck!

Please kindly consider a free trial period for newcomers.

This post might be an answer to you ;)

Always a supporter @arcange .. will subscribe once I get some SBD in

I fully appreciate the need for support for this project and it's a very useful project. I have you approached Steemit Inc. for funding? Or considered using Utopian in some way to get delegation for it? Maybe a utopian delegation requirement in order to use the system would be more attractive to some users?