Stake your Kusama Network Tokens (KSM) without running a validator

Sep 3 · 3 min read

The Kusama network is supposed to be Polkadot’s “wild cousin.” It’s a nominated proof-of-stake network that allows KSM token holders to stake their assets and earn rewards. In this article, we describe how to stake your KSM without the need to become a validator or running a node at all.

To maximize the security of the Kusama network, in nominated proof-of-stake, there are necessarily two different roles:

  • Validators run authority nodes on dedicated hardware and seal the blocks. By bonding a certain amount of KSM, validators can stake their tokens and earn rewards for progressing the chain, epoch by epoch, era by era.
  • Nominators delegate their stake to choose a set of active validators. Also, by bonding KSM, nominators can stake their tokens and earn rewards. Unlike validators, an unlimited number of parties can participate as nominators.

However, both validators and nominators, can not only be rewarded but also be penalized for misbehavior. As long as a nominator is diligent in their choice and only supports validator candidates with good security practices, their role carries low risk and provides a continuous source of revenue.

The Dothereum Validator nodes Draco, Hadar, and Orion.

The Dothereum project is providing three validators for the Kusama network. The team is experienced with running nodes in production, monitoring outages, and professional fail-over setups. Here’s how you can earn rewards from the Dothereum validators.

Step 1: Bond your tokens

To earn rewards with your KSM and become an active nominator, you will have to bond your tokens. The easiest way is to use the Polkadot user-interface.

  1. Make sure you are connected to the Kusama network (Settings → Remote Endpoint → Kusama)
  2. Import your accounts with a non-zero KSM balance (Accounts → Add Account/Restore JSON)
  3. Bond your KSM (Staking → Account Actions → New Stake)
Bonding is the strong affinity that develops in some species between the nominators and validators.

It’s recommended to not bond the entire amount of available tokens to have some KSM available to cover transaction fees.

Step 2: Nominate validators

Now, you are all set. Once the network confirms the bonding-transaction, you have the option to nominate up to sixteen trusted validators.

Just find the validators you trust in the nomination drop-down. You can change the selection anytime.

To get started, here is the list of the three active Dothereum validators:


… and …


… and …


One nominator can vote for up to 16 validators. If you need additional suggestions, please consider supporting Tartan Staking who are running the useful Polkablocks validator dashboard:


In the Staking → Account Actions tab, find the Nominate button and confirm the list of validators you want to nominate.

A successful nomination for the three Dothereum validators.

You will immediately receive rewards for nominating once the proof-of-authority phase of the Kusama network is over, and the transition to nominated proof-of-stake is concluded.

If you decide to nominate our validators, let us know — join the Dothereum Discord to discuss validators, nominators, and other staking aspects of Kusama and Polkadot.

Our lovely discord bot monitors the validators.

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