As CCN previously reported, the aborted Constantinople network upgrade has created several problems for Ethereum. One of these problems is a significant group of miners continuing to mine as if the hard fork had actually taken place. Another problem is how to proceed with the upgrade intended to produce lower transaction fees, among other improvements. After a developer meeting Friday, Ethereum has decided to postpone the Constantinople upgrade and to disinclude the source of the “reentrancy bug,” that is, all code changes related to EIP-1283. Several proposals led up to the decision.
The upgrade has moved back 6 weeks. The second version of Constantinople will not actually hit the network until February 27th. The target discussed in the video is Ethereum block 7280000.
There was no discussion of re-including EIP-1283 down the line. The damage done by the initial security vulnerability revelation seems to have significantly scarred the developers and the community.
There was discussion of a “two fork” strategy to ensure that the entire network gets on board with the next planned hard fork. Some Ethereum miners have continued mining a falsified Ethereum Constantinople chain and thus require special treatment in order to be cleanly upgraded to current software.
There was talk of coming up with a name other than Constantinople, but it didn’t go anywhere. The conclusion seemed to be that the naming of things was less important than the actual work required.
Vitalik Buterin was in the call. He mentioned that perhaps it would be a good idea to achieve the new upgrade faster due to an upcoming “difficulty bomb.” The difficulty bomb will have an effect on actual block times on the Ethereum network, although not a noticeable one for users necessarily. Buterin said:
Right now block times are already increased something like 9% from the ice age. So in six weeks let’s say we’re rolling in two steps up from the ice age, which would take block times maybe up to 20-21 seconds. If we were to be more aggressive and say something like 3 weeks, then we could avoid a big step like that.
He concluded that the six-week timeline is realistic and fair. The upgrade will include more than simply removing code related to EIP-1283. Work on actual Ethereum client wallets will be necessary as part of the final upgrade.
The Ethereum price took an immediate nosedive after the news of the postponement went took place, dropping over 5% on Wednesday. The 7-day high of $129 seems unattainable from where it currently sits in light of the news. It seems likely the price could slump a bit further until the planned hard fork takes place.
It’s hard to make an Ethereum forecast in a bear market with fewer ICOs than ever. Price news drives wider interest, which drives demand. We could see the opposite effect as alternative platforms make larger and larger strides.
Featured Image from Shutterstock. Price Charts from TradingView.