EIP 1319: Smart Contract Package Registry Interface Source

AuthorPiper Merriam, Christopher Gewecke, g. nicholas d'andrea
TypeStandards Track

Simple Summary

A standard interface for smart contract package registries.


This EIP specifies an interface for publishing to and retrieving assets from smart contract package registries. It is a companion EIP to 1123 which defines a standard for smart contract package manifests.


The goal is to establish a framework that allows smart contract publishers to design and deploy code registries with arbitrary business logic while exposing a set of common endpoints that tooling can use to retrieve assets for contract consumers.

A clear standard would help the existing EthPM Package Registry evolve from a centralized, single-project community resource into a decentralized multi-registry system whose constituents are bound together by the proposed interface. In turn, these registries could be ENS name-spaced, enabling installation conventions familiar to users of npm and other package managers.


$ ethpm install packages.zeppelin.eth/Ownership
const SimpleToken = await web3.packaging


The specification describes a small read/write API whose components are mandatory. It allows registries to manage versioned releases using the conventions of semver without imposing this as a requirement. It assumes registries will share the following structure and conventions:

  • a registry is a deployed contract which manages a collection of packages.
  • a package is a collection of releases
  • a package is identified by a unique string name and unique bytes32 packageId within a given registry
  • a release is identified by a bytes32 releaseId which must be unique for a given package name and release version string pair.
  • a releaseId maps to a set of data that includes a manifestURI string which describes the location of an EIP 1123 package manifest. This manifest contains data about the release including the location of its component code assets.
  • a manifestURI is a URI as defined by RFC3986 which can be used to retrieve the contents of the package manifest. In addition to validation against RFC3986, each manifestURI must also contain a hash of the content as specified in the EIP 1123.


Package Names / Release Versions

"simple-token" # package name
"1.0.1"        # version string

Release IDs

Implementations are free to choose any scheme for generating a releaseId. A common approach would be to hash the strings together as below:

// Hashes package name and a release version string
function generateReleaseId(string packageName, string version)
  returns (bytes32)
    return keccak256(abi.encodePacked(packageName, version));

Implementations must expose this id generation logic as part of their public read API so tooling can easily map a string based release query to the registry’s unique identifier for that release.

Manifest URIs

Any IPFS or Swarm URI meets the definition of manifestURI.

Another example is content on GitHub addressed by its SHA-1 hash. The Base64 encoded content at this hash can be obtained by running:

$ curl https://api.github.com/repos/:owner/:repo/git/blobs/:file_sha

# Example
$ curl https://api.github.com/repos/rstallman/hello/git/blobs/ce013625030ba8dba906f756967f9e9ca394464a

The string “hello” can have its GitHub SHA-1 hash independently verified by comparing it to the output of:

$ printf "blob 6\000hello\n" | sha1sum
> ce013625030ba8dba906f756967f9e9ca394464a

Write API Specification

The write API consists of a single method, release. It passes the registry the package name, a version identifier for the release, and a URI specifying the location of a manifest which details the contents of the release.

function release(string packageName, string version, string manifestURI) public
  returns (bytes32 releaseId);

Read API Specification

The read API consists of a set of methods that allows tooling to extract all consumable data from a registry.

// Retrieves a slice of the list of all unique package identifiers in a registry.
// `offset` and `limit` enable paginated responses / retrieval of the complete set.  (See note below)
function getAllPackageIds(uint offset, uint limit) public view
  returns (
    bytes32 packageIds,
    uint offset

// Retrieves the unique string `name` associated with a package's id.
function getPackageName(bytes32 packageId) public view returns (string name);

// Retrieves the registry's unique identifier for an existing release of a package.
function getReleaseId(string packageName, string version) public view returns (bytes32);

// Retrieves a slice of the list of all release ids for a package.
// `offset` and `limit` enable paginated responses / retrieval of the complete set. (See note below)
function getAllReleaseIds(string packageName, uint offset, uint limit) public view
  returns (
    bytes32[] ids,
    uint offset

// Retrieves package name, release version and URI location data for a release id.
function getReleaseData(bytes32 releaseId) public view
  returns (
    string packageName,
    string version,
    string manifestURI

// Retrieves the release id a registry *would* generate for a package name and version pair
// when executing a release.
function generateReleaseId(string packageName, string version)
  returns (bytes32);


getAllPackageIds and getAllReleaseIds support paginated requests because it’s possible that the return values for these methods could become quite large. The methods should return an offset that is a pointer to the next available item in a list of all items such that a caller can use it to pick up from where the previous request left off. (See here for a discussion of the merits and demerits of various pagination strategies.) The limit parameter defines the maximum number of items a registry should return per request.


The proposal hopes to accomplish the following:

  • Define the smallest set of inputs necessary to allow registries to map package names to a set of release versions while allowing them to use any versioning schema they choose.
  • Provide the minimum set of getter methods needed to retrieve package data from a registry so that registry aggregators can read all of their data.
  • Define a standard query that synthesizes a release identifier from a package name and version pair so that tooling can resolve specific package version requests without needing to query a registry about all of a package’s releases.

Registries may offer more complex read APIs that manage requests for packages within a semver range or at latest etc. This EIP is agnostic about how tooling or registries might implement these. It recommends that registries implement EIP 165 and avail themselves of resources to publish more complex interfaces such as EIP 926.

Backwards Compatibility

No existing standard exists for package registries. The package registry currently deployed by EthPM would not comply with the standard since it implements only one of the method signatures described in the specification.


A reference implementation of this proposal is in active development at the EthPM organization on Github here.

Copyright and related rights waived via CC0.