Getting Started

ton-auction is a multi-purpose smart-contract for TON blockchain implementing both an auction system and a shop. It was made by Denis Olshin as part of Telegram contest announced on 09/24/2019 (https://t.me/contest/102).

Instructions below assume that you are using TON's lite-client with FunC and Fift binaries available at PATH, and that you're familiar with those tools.

For basic info about running Fift scripts and uploading messages to TON, please refer to https://github.com/ton-blockchain/ton/blob/master/doc/LiteClient-HOWTO.

What's included

The Github repository of this project contains following files:

If you wish to make modifications to the contract's code, it's better to test it using test-... scripts without actually uploading it to the blockchain. The same can be done in case something goes wrong (see "Troubleshooting" section below).

(Re)building the contract code

As was mentioned above, the smart contract code is located in code.fc and its getters are in getters.fc. These files are written in FunC language, so after you make any changes to them, you need to run FunC transpiler before you can upload the updated code.

Run these commands (<path-to-source> here is the root directory with the TON source code):

func -o"code-getters.fif" -P <path-to-source>/crypto/smartcont/stdlib.fc code.fc getters.fc
func -o"code.fif" -P <path-to-source>/crypto/smartcont/stdlib.fc code.fc

This should rebuild files code-getters.fif (full version of the contract) and code.fif (stripped-down version, without getters).

How to use

This contract allows you to conduct any number of simultaneous auctions. Each auction is defined by the initial price, (optionally) the buyout price, bidding fee, start and end time, and other configuration params. By setting the initial price equal to the buyout price, this can be turned into a trading process. In this case it's also very useful to set the stock size option.

While an auction is active, anyone can place a bid by sending an internal message to this contract. If the attached amount of grams is above the current price, it's accepted, and the previous top bid is cancelled (its amount, minus the bidding fee, is returned to the bidder).

Auction ends at the specified end time, or if the current price reaches the buyout price. At that moment a special internal message to a predefined "notification address" is generated (to notify some other contract about the completion). Note that the actual transfer of goods to the winner is the responsibility of that contract (or some off-chain script monitoring the blockchain state).

Special case: blind auctions. In this case every participant submits an internal message with a fixed amount of grams, and attaches to a signature of his actual bid. For some predefined time after the auction end, participants provide their bids (and their public keys, so the original signatures can be validated), so the winner can be determined. All non-winning bids are fully returned (minus bidding fees), and winner receives only the difference between the amount he sent and his actual bid.

Owner of the auction contract can withdraw funds at any time on condition that the remaining balance is at least equal to the sum of all currently active top bids (so they can be always returned).

Initialising a new contract

./init.fif <workchain-id> <notification-addr> [<filename-base>] [-C <code-fif>]

This script is used to generate an initialisation message for your contract. It will provide you with a non-bounceable address to send some initial funds to, and after that you can upload to contract's code (using sendfile in your TON client).

Note that you're required to specify a "notification address" here. After completion of each auction, an internal message with an op = 0x27fca6b9 is generated, containing the following body:

This message does not require any response (so it does not contain a query_id field), and can be even bounced back (bounced message will be silently ignored). The only purpose of it is to notify other contract (or outside world) of the auction's completion.

Notification message is not sent when the auction is cancelled.

Starting a new auction

./new-auction.fif <contract> <seqno> <auction-id> <auction-type> <end-time> [<decrypt-time> <fixed-amount>] [-c <comment>] [-s <minimum-step>] [-t <start-time>] [-f <bidding-fee>] [-i <initial-price>] [-b <buyout-price>] [-n <stock-size>] [-O <output-boc>]

As this contract allows multiple concurrent auctions (or trades), the owner of it needs to create them first with this script.

It has many options, and almost all of them can be sensibly combined with each other. It gives lots of flexibility and covers many different use cases.

List of options:

Some notes about stock-size. When the auction with a non-zero stock size completes, it automatically re-created again, but with stock size decreased by 1. So the first internal message to notification address will contain the original value of stock-size, the second — stock-size - 1, and so on. The actual number of times the auction will be conducted will be equal to stock-size + 1. The start-time and end-time are not updated, those options define the whole time range for all runs of the auction.

When a bid is returned (because someone placed a larger bid), by default no fees are deducted. To prevent draining funds on forwarding fees, it's recommended to always set bidding-fee to some small value.

Cancelling an auction

./cancel-auction.fif <contract> <seqno> <auction-id> [-O <output-boc>]

The owner can cancel an auction at any moment. All current bids will be returned to their bidders.

Placing a bid

./place-bid.fif <auction-id> [<wallet-addr> <bid-amount> [-B <bid-filename>]] [-O <output-boc>]

To place a bid in an auction, you need to send an internal message to this contract (from your wallet, for example). Such message should contain body with an op = 0x64, some arbitrary query_id and some other details. This script helps to create it.

For an open auction, the process is simple: only the auction-id is required here. After running place-bid.fif, you take the generated boc-file, and pass it to your wallet's order creation script as a body.

For blind auctions (first-price or second-price), it's a bit trickier. Your bid should remain secret until the second stage of the auction (decryption phase). You provide auction-id, your wallet's address (the internal message sender), and the intended bid amount. This script will store this data to a file named <bid-filename>.boc, generate a signature for it, and put it to <output-boc>.boc (which, again, should be passed to your wallet's order creation script). Keep the file <bid-filename>.boc until the auction ends, and after that use decrypt-bid.fif script to send a decryption message.

Remember that in a blind auction you specify the actual bid here, but attach (a larger) fixed-amount, which is specified in an auction descriptor. This allows you to hide the sum you bid (the difference will be returned to you after the auction's completion).

Decrypt a bid

./decrypt-bid.fif <contract-addr> <seqno> [-B <bid-filename>] [-O <output-boc>]

If you participated in a blind auction, you're expected to present your bid after the end-time, but before the decrypt-time of the auction. You do that by using this script (and passing to it a <bid-filename>.boc, created by place-bid.fif script).

Pinging an auction

./ping-auction.fif <contract-addr> <seqno> <auction-id> [-O <output-boc>]

After the auction's deadline (defined by end-time), anyone can trigger the actual completion event by pinging the contract.

Withdrawing funds from the contract

./withdraw.fif <contract> <dest-addr> <seqno> <amount> [-O <output-boc>]

At any moment, the owner of the contract can withdraw any amount of Grams stored in it, if the remaining balance of enough to pay back all current bids.

Upgrading contract's code

./upgrade-code.fif <contract> <seqno> [-C <code-fif>] [-O <output-boc>]

Use this request to update your contract's code. By default it uses code from code-getters.fif, but you can pass any file via -C option.

Inspecting contract's state

./show-state.fif <data-boc>

This script will help to examine the current state of the contract. First, you need to download its state using the saveaccountdata <filename> <addr> command in the shell of your client. After that you can pass the generated boc-file to this script.

It should output detailed info about cotract's params, list of active auctions and bids. Alternatively, you can use get-methods to inspect those values (see the next section).

Get methods

In case you've used the default (non-stripped down) version of the contract, it will include some get-methods. You can run them in the TON client using the runmethod command. Note that they return raw data, so you may prefer using show-state.fif instead (see "Inspecting contract's state" section).

List of available methods:

Troubleshooting

After the request is uploaded to TON, there's no practical way to check what's happening with it (until it will be accepted). So if something goes wrong and your message is not accepted by the contract, you can only guess why.

Fortunately, there's couple of scripts that will help in this situation. First, you need to perform saveaccountdata <filename> <addr> command in the TON client shell. This will produce a boc-file containing current state of your contract.

Now you can inspect it using show-state.fif. Alternatively, you can manually call get-methods of the contract using test-method.fif (it should produce the same info, but in raw format).

But most importantly, you can run test-external.fif or test-internal.fif with a message file (that you were trying to upload) to simulate the execution of the smart contract, and check the TVM output. In addition to builtin errors, there are some error codes that could be thrown:

For internal messages, instead of throwing errors, the error code is returned as a 32-bit number in the body of the response, after 32-bit op (=0xfffffffe), 64-bit query_id, and 32-bit original op.

Fift words conventions

Fift language is quite flexible, but it can be difficult to read. There's two main reasons for that: stack juggling and no strict conventions for word names. To make the code more readable, some custom conventions were introduced within this repository:

kebab-case-words() are helper functions (defined in common-utils.fif and auction-utils.fif). Note that the name includes the parentheses at the end. (The only exceptions are maybe, and maybe@+)

CamelCaseWords are constants, defined using a =: word.

Those styles are chosen to stand out from the builtin words and from each other as much as possible.