Ethereum Merge

The Ethereum Merge is inching closer, and the Ethereum core developers are doing everything to ensure that the process will go on without any issues. As the Merge date nears, Ethereum devs have conducted numerous tests to ensure there are no surprises as Ethereum transitions to a proof-of-stake (PoS) network.

Ethereum completes the last shadow fork

The Merge is expected to happen next week. According to Ethereum developers, the final dress rehearsal for the upgrade has been completed. The 13th Ethereum shadow fork has been completed successfully without a hitch.

Shadow forks are trial runs that are done to show what is to be expected during the Merge. These trials were conducted to ensure that no potential issues could be exploited. These tests and conducted by simulating the transition of Ethereum from proof of work to proof of stake.

The Merge is expected to end mining on the Ethereum network, with the Ethereum Foundation saying that Ethereum’s energy demands will be reduced by 99% after the process is completed successfully. The tests conducted on the Merge, including the last one, have not raised any issues, showing a high chance of the Merge going on as planned.

Bellatrix upgrade raises key issues

Last week, Ethereum also completed another crucial upgrade known as the Bellatrix upgrade. Bellatrix was also an important upgrade that needed to be done before the Merge. There were notable issues during the upgrade where the “missed block rate” increased by a staggering 1700%.

The missed block rate is a metric that shows the rate at which the Ethereum network failed to verify a block slated for validation. It is estimated that 0.5% of blocks face this issue, but hours after the Bellatrix upgrade, the rate increased to 9%.

The Ethereum developers were quick to explain that the reason behind it was the failure of some node operators to update their clients to the merge-ready software. By the time the Bellatrix upgrade was happening, 25.2% of Ethereum nodes were yet to upgrade their software. However, data from Ethernodes shows that the number has significantly dropped to 15.4%.

One of the Ethereum core developers, Terence Tsao, said that the shadow fork tested the issue of the missed block rate and found that the network was functioning “basically perfectly.”

The past few months have been hectic for the Ethereum developers. The developers have been conducting rehearsals nearly every week during the last few months leading up to the Merge to detect and prevent any scenarios that could affect the execution of the Merge.

Ethereum is one of the most utilized blockchain networks. The network has millions of dollars in total value locked (TVL). Digital assets, decentralized applications, and decentralized finance (DeFi) products have been built on the network. Therefore, the developers are keen to ensure that there will be no margin of error.

The Ethereum developers have also assured the community that the Merge will go as planned. However, test runs have been done on the network to make the community optimistic that the Merge will be successful.

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