When I am connected to rpcalpha.tzbeta.net through tezos-client -l -A rpcalpha.tzbeta.net -S -P 443 config update I can succesfully call tezos-client activate account alice with <path_to_downloaded_json>.

But when I connect to my own node an run the same command, I get:

% tezos-client activate account alice with <path_to_downloaded_json>                                                                                                                     ~ tezos-node
  Unrecognized command.
  Try using the man command to get more information.


My '~/.tezos-client/config' content when connected to my own node is

    "base_dir": "/home/troels/.tezos-client",
    "node_addr": "",
    "node_port": 9999
  • Can you check that your node is synchronized? Try running tezos-client get timestamp.
    – arvidj
    Commented Jul 16, 2020 at 15:46
  • I can confirm that my own node is not syncronized. Does that make a difference? Commented Jul 16, 2020 at 15:46
  • 1
    Yes. Some of the commands in tezos-client are defined by the protocol. If your node is not synchronized, then it is probably running a bare bones protocol, that lack even basic commands like get balance for. Are you just testing the node, or do you want to get the balance for a real account on the chain?
    – arvidj
    Commented Jul 16, 2020 at 15:50
  • 1
    If the latter, you need to synchronize to get the full state of the block chain and the latest protocol. If the former, you can check out sandbox mode: tezos.gitlab.io/user/sandbox.html
    – arvidj
    Commented Jul 16, 2020 at 15:51
  • For now I am just running a node on the Carthage test net. But I would like a real (and syncronized) node and real account up and running. Commented Jul 16, 2020 at 15:52

1 Answer 1


Yes, a subset of the RPCs exposed by the node is provided by the protocol. Thus, depending on the node that you connect to and the protocol that it is running, some RPCs will be available or not. The documentation gives a note on this:

Beware that the commands available on the client depend on the specific protocol run by the node. For instance, get timestamp isn’t available when the node runs the genesis protocol, which may happen for a few minutes when launching a node for the first time.

Here it talks about tezos-client commands, but these are often just wrappers around calls to the node RPCs, a subset of which are defined by the protocol.

  • So to be absolutely clear: The set of available RPC calls will change as the node is syncing and its local version of the blockchain gets longer? Without further configurations from the node administrator? Commented Jul 16, 2020 at 18:01
  • 1
    Yes, that is correct.
    – arvidj
    Commented Jul 17, 2020 at 9:17

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