Ethereum Client Software Geth Upgrades To Support Constantinople Hard Fork

Go-ethereum (or Geth), the most used client software for the ethereum blockchain, has released codes for a new version of the software which will support Ethereum’s next planned upgrade in January.

A client software like Geth allows nodes—also known as clients—to connect to connect to the blockchain and carry out activities like verifying transactions and mine blocks. Other than Geth which is the most popular, another widely used ethereum client is Parity. Other client softwares include cpp-ethereum and pyethapp.

The latest Geth version, Geth v1.8.20 was released to open source repository platform GitHub on Tuesday December 13. According to the description on the page, the version contains a number of notable changes and bug fixes but the most notable is the support for the hardfork block for Constantinople.

The description read:

“Geth v1.8.20 is a bit of a special release […] it’s the release that finally enables the Constantinople hard fork on mainnet at block 7080000 (and Rinkeby at block 3660663).”

As Smartereum reported, ethereum core developers agreed on the block 7080000 for its next major planned upgrade after a delays made it impossible to launch on an earlier date. The new agreed block places the launch date at around January 14th to 18th.

During the bi-weekly developer call where the block was agreed, the security lead for the Geth client had noted that the client software update will include an emergency switch to delay the upgrade in the event of any unexpected issues encountered on the test network (testnet). Geth v1.8.20, in fact, does allow overriding the Constantinople hard-fork block from the command line.

Users have an option to adopt the upgrade or opt out. If adopted by the network’s userbase—which is expected—then the hardfork will first be activated on the Rinkeby testnet at block 3,660,663 and then on the mainnet at the agreed block 7080000.

Constantinople will implement changes to the network that will ease the transition from the current proof of work (PoW) consensus algorithm to the more efficient Proof of Stake (PoS) algorithm. It will also reduce the block mining reward from 3 ETH to 2 ETH while also resetting the “difficulty bomb” another 18 months. The difficulty bomb is preprogrammed to encourage frequent upgrades to the network.

Ethereum Heading to a New Era

In its release, Geth noted that the version will be the last if its v1.8 series. In the broader scope, ethereum is moving to another major point from its last major roadmap from Metropolis. Developers have been working towards the ethereum 1x roadmap and the ethereum 2.0 roadmap expected to feature even more major changes to the network.

Issues discussed in this line have included the introduction of blockchain storage rent to avoid clogging of the network by low priority activities; ProgProw intended to remove ASIC devices from the network; and eWASM a proposed replacement for the Ethereum Virtual machine (EVM).

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Ethereum [ETH] Price Watch

At the time of writing, ethereum’s native token ETH currently trades at around $89 pretty much the same way it started the day before. ETH had attempted a price rally yesterday with the rest of the crypto market reaching $92 around midday but that was not sustained. The second biggest altcoin currently has a total market cap of $9.27 billion with a 24-hour trading volume of about $350 million. Data were obtained from CoinMarketCap.

ethereum chart dec 12 dec 12 2018
source: coinmarketcap.com

Solomon Sunny is the market reporter for Smartereum, one of the global leaders in Ethereum, blockchain and currency news. He produces technical price updates on digital currencies and writes recent developments about blockchain.

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