Polkadot SDK

The Polkadot SDK is a comprehensive toolkit developed by Parity Technologies for building on the Polkadot network. Polkadot is a multi-chain blockchain platform that enables interoperability and secure information sharing across different blockchains. The SDK includes various components and tools that facilitate the development of decentralized applications and blockchain solutions.

Key Features

The Polkadot SDK offers a wide range of features designed to support developers:

  • Multi-Chain Interoperability: Enables different blockchains to interoperate and share information securely.
  • Substrate Framework: Utilizes the Substrate framework for building custom blockchains.
  • Cumulus and XCM: Includes support for Cumulus and Cross-Consensus Messaging (XCM) to facilitate communication between parachains.
  • Comprehensive Documentation: Extensive documentation and guides to help developers get started and build efficiently.


The Polkadot SDK documentation is thorough and provides detailed information on various aspects of the SDK:

  • Rust Docs: Detailed rust-docs for the SDK.
  • Introduction: An introduction to each component of the Polkadot SDK, including Substrate, FRAME, Cumulus, and XCM.
  • Guides: Step-by-step guides, including how to build your first FRAME pallet.
  • Templates: Templates to help you start new projects quickly.
  • Polkadot Wiki: Additional resources and guides on the Polkadot Wiki.


The Polkadot SDK has two main release channels: stable and nightly.

  • Stable: Recommended for production software. Stable releases have a support duration of three months, during which they receive bug fixes, security updates, and new non-breaking features on a two-week cadence.
  • Nightly: For developers who want to try out the latest features. Nightly releases are generated from the master branch and may include breaking changes.

To manage Polkadot SDK dependencies in your projects, you can use the Polkadot SDK Version Manager (psvm), a simple tool that helps manage and update the SDK dependencies in any Cargo.toml file.


The SDK includes various tools to assist developers:

  • Polkadot SDK Version Manager (psvm): Manages and updates Polkadot SDK dependencies in Cargo.toml files, ensuring that dependencies are up-to-date with their correct crates.io versions.


The Polkadot SDK follows strict security policies and procedures, detailed in the Security Documentation.


The Polkadot SDK repository is the amalgamation of three separate repositories: Substrate, Polkadot, and Cumulus. This consolidation aims to streamline the development process and improve collaboration. More information about the merge and its history can be found here.

The Polkadot SDK is a vital toolkit for developers building on the Polkadot network, offering extensive features and robust support to create innovative blockchain solutions.

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