Dawn is coming: Ethereum merger is near

The Merge Ethereum upgrade goal is to switch the consensus mechanism and will not have a direct impact on tps. In the L2-centric expansion roadmap, the protocol layer is mainly used to ensure decentralization and security. The task of expansion will be mainly composed of Sharding and L2 to assume.

 

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Key Takeaways

  • Last week, the Ethereum testnet Ropsten successfully merged, and PoS was officially enabled on Ropsten;
  • The merger on the Sepolia and Goerli testnets will take place in a few weeks;
  • If it goes well, the merger of the Ethereum mainnet is expected to be carried out in late August to November;
  • To coincide with the eventual mainnet The Merge, EIP-5133 proposes restarting the mainnet difficulty bomb in August;
  • Due to the gradual maturity of the second-layer expansion scheme, the current work focus of Ethereum has shifted from establishing a shard chain to supporting the merger of the main network and the beacon chain. Shard chains are expected to gain support in 2023.

Over the past few years, we have seen a lot of heated discussions about PoW and PoS in the community. But in any case, it is a given that Ethereum, the largest ecological network in the crypto world today, will soon migrate from PoW to PoS. With the successful completion of the merger on the Ropsten testnet, the community is more confident about it.

Ropsten Merge

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In the early morning of June 9, 2022, Beijing time, the Ethereum testnet Ropsten successfully completed the merger. Launched in 2016, Ropsten is the longest-running Ethereum testnet to date. According to Ethereum core developers, about 14% of validators experienced downtime during the Ropsten merger, but most of them were caused by incorrect node configurations, which were quickly resolved. Additionally, the merger on Ropsten is considered near-perfect and marks a major milestone in Ethereum’s migration to PoS.

Mergers will be implemented on the Sepolia (about 3 weeks later) and Goerli (about 6 weeks later) testnets in the future. If all goes well, the Ethereum mainnet is expected to complete the merger between late August and November.

Although it has been criticized in terms of environmental protection and energy consumption, PoW is the consensus algorithm with the longest stable operation time. In contrast, PoS has not been tested for a long time. Especially for a huge ecosystem like Ethereum, which affects the whole body, what potential impact will it have after migrating to PoS is a problem that we have to consider.

It is also critical for Ethereum developers to ensure that their applications will function as usual after the merger. According to the official instructions of Ethereum, the impact of the merger on the subset of contracts is minimal, but considering the potential impact on other components such as front-end, tools, etc., it is recommended that developers perform a complete testing and deployment cycle on Ropsten, and troubleshoot issues in a timely manner feedback.

Road to Merger

The characteristics of an ideal blockchain include: sufficient transaction bandwidth, decentralization and security, and good energy efficiency. In order to achieve these goals, Ethereum plans to upgrade the consensus mechanism of PoS, as well as the expansion based on Layer2 and Sharding. The Merge, which recently took place in Ropsten, is an important upgrade for Ethereum to address energy efficiency and improve decentralization and security.

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There are two key nodes in Ethereum’s migration from PoW to PoS to achieve energy efficiency, namely the beacon chain and The Merge .

Beacon Chain

Beacon Chain supports nodes to become validators of the network by staking Ethereum tokens. Beacon Chain is the consensus layer basic network of Ethereum PoS, which was officially launched in December 2020.

Before The Merge, the beacon chain and the actual execution layer were separated from each other. The state of the PoS consensus layer is maintained solely by nodes in the beacon chain, but is not actually used by the blockchain. The state of the execution layer is maintained by PoW mining nodes, which actually serve as the consensus layer.

The Merge:

The Merge will enable the beacon chain as the consensus layer network for Ethereum block generation, replacing the original consensus mechanism actually controlled by the PoW node network. The third block shown in the figure below is the key point of The Merge: the state of the execution layer in this block is inherited from the original PoW network, and the consensus layer is inherited from the PoS network. Since then, Ethereum has successfully switched to the PoS consensus mechanism.

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Ethereum has designed a difficulty bomb mechanism to assist the switch from PoW to PoS. After the difficulty bomb is activated, the mining difficulty of the PoW network will increase exponentially and eventually freeze. As can be seen from the figure below, there have been three difficulty bombs in the history of Ethereum that raised the difficulty of producing blocks.

After the completion of the Ropsten merger, Ethereum will follow the path to start the mainnet merger. According to EIP-5133, the difficulty bomb used to assist the Ethereum mainnet The Merge will be activated in August 2022.

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It is worth adding that the upgrade goal of The Merge Ethereum is to switch the consensus mechanism, which will not have a direct impact on tps. In the L2-centric expansion roadmap, the protocol layer is mainly used to ensure decentralization and security. The task of expansion will be mainly undertaken by sharding and L2.

Epilogue

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From a narrative level, the most intuitive impact of Ethereum’s transition to PoS is better sustainability (more than 99% reduction in energy consumption compared to PoW), and the scalability brought about by the subsequent implementation of sharding in 2023 .

The transition to environmentally friendly PoS will at least help to ease the criticism of cryptocurrencies in the mainstream voice, and after sharding is adopted, complemented by scaling infrastructure such as Rollup, we can expect to see a more scalable Ethereum. We are entering the stage of a new narrative for Ethereum.

It has been a year and a half since the launch of the Ethereum Beacon Chain. There have been several development delays along this journey, but with the successful merger of the Ropsten testnet, we are getting closer to the integration of the Ethereum mainnet.

The merger is Ethereum’s most complex upgrade to date. In the image above, we can see that the end point is very close. When reviewing the live broadcast of Ropsten Community Call, we really felt the heartfelt excitement of the developers.

Although the market may be in a continued downward trend in the medium to long term, we are still excited about this milestone event and have full confidence in the future of Ethereum.

Posted by:CoinYuppie,Reprinted with attribution to:https://coinyuppie.com/dawn-is-coming-ethereum-merger-is-near/
Coinyuppie is an open information publishing platform, all information provided is not related to the views and positions of coinyuppie, and does not constitute any investment and financial advice. Users are expected to carefully screen and prevent risks.

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