Number of pending channels exceed maximum

A peer who is trying to open a channel with me is getting the following response: “Number of pending channels exceed maximum”. Initially he tried to open with a too low fee, the channel did not broadcast, and is now stuck for ever as a zombie/pending channel open. When he is trying to open again, he gets the error message above. I now have two of these pending channels that will never go away (one has been there for about 8 months).

I have tried two solutions, of which none has worked:

  1. Use abandonchannel from lncli. This does not work because the command is only included in dev builds of lnd.
  2. Add maxpendingchannels=5 to lnd.conf. However, when I restart lnd the the lnd.conf is overwritten without my edit.

Any other suggestions on how to solve this?

Thanks for reporting this issue. The forthcoming 0.17.2 release of LND on StartOS will include a config option for maxpendingchannels.

Keep an eye out for this update in the very near future.


Thank you for this update about the forthcoming LND release. While this is great news, I still hope there is a way to do manual edits of conf files on Start9. A short explanation of how to achieve this, at least as a temporary workaround, would be highly appreciated, as this channel opening is part of a pool exchange and a bit time sensitive.

I am also looking for a way to purge these zombie channels from my node. As it is now, they will just stay there as long as I keep this node alive. Which is not very satisfying. Could we please have the abandonchannel command included in a future release? Users who venture into lncli on Start9 know the risks and dangers of this, and can take the responsibility for their actions.

There isn’t really any harm in hanging entries in pending provided maxpendingchannels is sufficiently high in the config.

However, if you absolutely cannot wait until the next LND release, you can use abandonchannel with the flag --i_know_what_i_am_doing to bypass the debug/dev mode requirement. But be warned, abandonchannel is a destructive action that can result in unrecoverable loss of channel data.

Thanks, adding that flag solved it. Appreciate your help.