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Tutorial: Rainbow Bridge

The Rainbow Bridge is a product of Aurora – an Ethereum-compatible scaling solution built on the NEAR network. This bridge can be used to transfer tokens between Ethereum, NEAR and Aurora. 

 Before we get into the tutorial, here are a few important points to note:

  • Rainbow Bridge currently only supports MetaMask for Ethereum and Aurora, as well as the NEAR wallet for NEAR. You can check out our MetaMask beginner and NEAR staking tutorials for full step-by-step guides on how to set both of these up.
  • At the time of writing, Rainbow Bridge does not support NEAR Wallets secured using a Ledger device.
  • Transfers from Ethereum to NEAR and Aurora usually take up to 10 minutes. Transfers from NEAR and Aurora to Ethereum can take up to 16 hours and can be very costly. Transfers between NEAR and Aurora happen almost instantaneously and are very low cost.
  • Once begun, transactions cannot be cancelled.

 

Tutorial

Head to https://rainbowbridge.app/transfer

Transferring from Ethereum to Aurora 

In the bridge tab, select the network you want to send from (i.e. Ethereum) and the network you are sending to (i.e. Aurora).

In order to transfer tokens from your MetaMask on the Ethereum Mainnet to your account on the Aurora network, the support for the Aurora network must be added to your MetaMask if you haven’t done so already. 

 The bridge will automatically do this for you once you click ‘connect’; you just have to follow the prompts to approve.

Next, make sure your MetaMask wallet is set to the Ethereum Mainnet.

 If you are transferring to another person’s account, click the ‘transferring to another address’ box, and you will be given the option to paste in an Aurora address.

 Next, click ‘begin new transfer’. 


You’ll then need to choose the token you want to send and enter an amount. 

After, click ‘continue’ followed by ‘approve transfer’. You’ll then be prompted to confirm this transaction in your MetaMask and pay the Ethereum gas fees, which can be quite pricey. 

 A handy tool is this Ethereum heatmap, which some people use to try to submit transactions during lower fee times (i.e. when the network is quieter).

 Once the transfer request is approved (this can take a couple of minutes), you can go ahead with the actual transfer by clicking on the ‘confirm transfer’ button. This will also require you to approve the transaction in your MetaMask and pay the associated gas fee.

 Click on ‘go to my transfers’ to view your pending transactions. 

When a transaction has been finalised, it will appear in the ‘completed transfers’ section of this page.

Note that sometimes the token you deposit on the Aurora network may not automatically appear in your MetaMask if this happens, don’t panic! All you need to do is click on the three dots beside the completed transaction (as in the image above) and in the drop-down menu that appears, click ‘add token to MetaMask’. The token should then become visible in your wallet.

 

Transferring from Ethereum to NEAR 

Start by selecting the network you want to send from (i.e. Ethereum) and the network you are sending to (i.e. NEAR). You’ll need to connect your MetaMask wallet in the same way as the above example. 


Same as before, make sure your MetaMask wallet is set to the Ethereum Mainnet.

After, you will need to connect your NEAR wallet. Simply follow the prompts to approve the connection.

If you are transferring to another person’s account, click the ‘transferring to another address’ box, and you will be given the option to paste in a NEAR address.

Next, click ‘begin new transfer’. You’ll then need to select the type and amount of the token you wish to transfer. 

 Once this is done, click on ‘approve transfer’. This takes you to your MetaMask, where you’ll need to confirm the transaction and pay the Ethereum gas fee.

 As mentioned in the previous example, this Ethereum heatmap can be used to try to submit transactions during lower fee times. Once the transfer request is approved, you can proceed with the actual transfer by clicking on the ‘confirm transfer button’. This will again generate another MetaMask transaction.

NOTE: the transfer process between NEAR and Aurora is almost identical to the process of transferring between Ethereum and NEAR (except with much lower gas fees and quicker transaction speeds!).

 

Transferring from NEAR or Aurora to Ethereum  

Transferring to Ethereum follows almost the exact same process as transferring from Ethereum to Aurora, except there’s a slight catch. 

Transfers to Ethereum involve 1. the initial kick-off transaction on Aurora or NEAR and 2. another finalisation transaction on Ethereum. The finalisation can take up to 16 hours, and the cost will depend on gas prices at that time but it can get pricey.

 The Rainbow bridge will give you an idea of the total gas fees you can expect to pay at the time of your transfer.

 

 

Disclaimer: THIS IS NOT FINANCIAL OR INVESTMENT ADVICE. Only you are responsible for any capital-related decisions you make, and only you are accountable for the results.

Comment and share if you found this tutorial helpful! Also let us know what tutorials you’d like to see next!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Ali O'Meara

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Copy & Crypto School writer from Ireland. Recent neuroscience graduate who is fairly new to the crypto world!