Ethereum – Constantinople, St. Petersburg Hardforks Have Been Implemented
Today, two long-awaited technical upgrades of Ethereum, the Constantinople and St. Petersburg, has been activated without any issues. The information can be verified on ethstats.net.
Ethereum, whose native cryptocurrency Ether is the second largest by market cap ($14.244 billion), underwent upgrades in order to see several platform improvements, including lower transaction fees for certain functions on the Ethereum network. It can be remembered that Constantinople hard fork was postponed in January due to a newly identified susceptibility.
Today, at 19:57 (UTC), the sixth and seventh network upgrades to the software, labeled Constantinople and St. Petersburg, respectively, was implemented on the Ethereum blockchain at block number 7,280,000. Fork Monitor, a website that monitors blockchain, indicates that there is absolutely no proof of a chain split.
This implies that a division of ethereum users continue to run an older version of ethereum software. That is confirmed by Ethernodes.org as well. The website reveals that only 22.3% of Geth and Parity clients have supposedly upgraded and running the Constantinople compliant-version.
The St. Petersburg upgrade is intended to remove the previous update, named Ethereum Improvement Proposal (EIP) 1283, from Ethereum’s test chain. That is because EIP was found to contain security vulnerabilities. In the past, several hard forks implemented on Ethereum blockchain had encountered such failures. Notably, in 2016, the chain faced trouble while splitting away from Ethereum classic, which runs the first version of the software.
Technically, before a blockchain upgrade or hard fork is implemented, miners and node operators must install new client software that updates on its own at a particular block number. This avoids running two conflicting versions of the same blockchain from cracking the wider network.
With this activation, a portion of the Constantinople code, implemented back in January to remove security lapses, has been disabled by the St.Petersburg code. The code was discovered to have vulnerabilities that could be used to steal funds.
Taylor Monahan, CEO of blockchain wallet tool MyCrypto, said. “With the blockchain, everyone has to upgrade in order for everyone to be able to use [the new] features.”
Monahan further stated “About two weeks before the fork, everyone upgrades the software but none of the new features are enabled. Then, on that block number, everyone at the exact same time starts using the new features. So, that’s how we prevent differing states from existing simultaneously. It’s [also] called a consensus issue or a consensus bug.”
MyCrypto is running the latest version of Ethereum blockchain software – Parity ethereum client – in 10 to 15 systems, referred to as nodes.
Including the two updates done today, so far four differet EIPs have been implemented on the ethereum network. One of the updates introduces a fresh ‘corner case’ affecting the immutability of smart contract.
Kelly is our in house crytpto researcher, delving into the stories which matter from blockchains being used in the real world to new ico coming out.