One of the top crypto projects to ever exist, Ethereum has been taking small steps for a while to better the blockchain. In its process to shift its energy exhaustive consensus mechanism, i.e. from Proof of Work to Proof of Stake, the crypto asset is launching smaller testnets.
Taking yet another small but a very crucial step, Ethereum launched its 10th shadow fork. The process was supposed to be going live today, on July 28, 2022, however, the event took place early; a whole 26 hours ahead of time!
Quick Fact Check: What are Shadow forks? To put it simply, Shadow forks are a focused trial run of the various aspects of The Merge that has been happening within the ETH blockchain. Using the shadow forks, the blockchains practice making one or a couple of specific changes to the blockchain that will occur down the road.
Even though a shadow fork and its implications might sound similar to a full testnet hard fork, similar to how the Sepolia testnet hard fork took place earlier this month. Besides the similarities in the understanding of the two different forks, testnet hard forks are more similar to full dress rehearsals of the merge. The testnet hard forks help in moving the entire Ethereum mainnet over to a test environment network.
According to a Decrypt reporting, the shadow fork that took place this week practiced releases of the Goerli hard fork, which is set to occur during Ethereum’s final testnet. The Goerli hard fork, which is scheduled for its launch on August 11, will be the third and the final of the three tests required before the merge is ready to be executed.
The timeline for The Merge of the Ethereum blockchain has shifted a number of times over the last two years. Earlier in June 2022, however, the core developers of the Ethereum blockchain announced their intention to deploy The Merge on September 19 of this year itself. As there is only one major event, the Goerli testnet, that remains before The Merge is ready to deploy, developers are optimistic this schedule is more or less likely to stick.
Since shadow fork 10 was deployed yesterday, there have been no significant glitches that were reported. Ethereum core developers are said to continue deploying shadow forks up until the merge is ready to happen fully.
As reported by CoinDesk;
- The fork occurred at 11:45 UTC (7:45 a.m. ET) when Terminal Total Difficulty (TTD) was overridden at 54,892,065,290,522,348,390,492 at block 15217902.
- The shadow fork brings the project one step closer to Ethereum’s mainnet upgrade in September. The third and final testnet merge, Goerli, is expected to happen Aug. 10.
- Ethereum DevOps Engineer Parithosh Jayanthi told CoinDesk that this shadow fork will test releases that approximate the releases that will be used in the Goerli merge.
- As for why it happened earlier than expected, Jayanthi said there was a clear change in the hash rate, or computational power, that could have sped up the process.
- This will not be the last mainnet shadow fork, and Ethereum will continue to run mainnet shadow forks until the Merge.
Source: CoinDesk, Decrypt
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