Differences Between `clarity-cli` and a Stacks mainnet Node Behavior

Hey All,

I’m Stephen! I’m new to this community but I’ve been exploring the landscape for awhile.

My question: is there any difference between the contract analysis and behavior observed via the clarity-cli (check, launch, execute) commands and launching/calling a contract on mainnet via submitting a transaction to a real Stacks node?

For context: I’m interested in understanding the Clarity language deeply.

Sometimes, when can’t find something in the docs, I turn to reading the Rust source directly (though reading code can take a bit) or to tools, e.g., clarity-cli. For that reason, I would love a convenient, local method that produces behavior identical to a real Stacks node (or as close as possible) as a way to easily check my understanding. Of course, I can spin up a node and write tests against it but it would be great to know if clarity-cli is sufficient.

Any feedback is appreciated! Thanks in advance all.

It uses the same VM and cost limits as Stacks, so any differences in behavior between Stacks and clarity-cli will be treated as bugs in clarity-cli.

Thanks much @jude for stepping in to clarify this point!