## Does a new nodes verify all transactions or only blocks

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When a node downloads the genesis and all blocks, does it verify all past transactions, or just the blocks (eg check the nonce/hash relation, thereby assuming the containing transactions must be right?)

Bitcoin Core avoids checking signatures on blocks before the most recent checkpoint. Checking signatures is one of the most time-consuming parts of checking a block. (As of writing, the last checkpoint was on April 2014, 2.5 years ago.) This can be disabled by setting the option checkpoints=0.