Sat. May 25th, 2024
OIG
  • Ethereum’s Dencun upgrade has been deployed on the Goerli testnet, but it has encountered finality issues.
  • The upgrade is expected to significantly reduce transaction costs on layer 2 (L2) networks.
  • It was initially slated for October 2023 but was pushed back to late Q1 or early Q2 2024.
  • The upgrade will be implemented in three phases, starting with Goerli and then Sepolia and Holesky testnets before the mainnet release.

Dencun Rollout on Goerli Encounters Finality Delays

The much-anticipated Dencun upgrade for the Ethereum network has gone live on the Goerli testnet, but it has encountered some technical difficulties. The upgrade, which was launched at 6:32 UTC on Wednesday, failed to reach a consensus and finalize as expected.

This initial hiccup has raised some concerns among developers, who believe that the low participation rate (around 80%) and the presence of offline validators may have contributed to the finality issues. Terence, a pseudonymous X user, explained that validators could be offline due to operators not upgrading their software or a potential bug.

Given the diverse set of validators on the Goerli testnet, it could take some time to fully diagnose the root cause of the problem. However, developers plan to conduct a proper non-finality test in the coming hours or days to gain a better understanding of the situation.

Significance of Dencun Upgrade

The Dencun upgrade is Ethereum’s most significant update since the Shapella upgrade in April 2023. Shapella enabled the withdrawal of staked ether (stETH) on the network, while Dencun is expected to dramatically reduce transaction costs on layer 2 (L2) networks. These enhancements are crucial steps in Ethereum’s transition from a Proof-of-Work (PoW) consensus mechanism to a Proof-of-Stake (PoS) model following the Merge.

Dencun is designed to improve the efficiency of Ethereum L2 rollups by introducing a mechanism called proto-danksharding or ephemeral blobs (EIP-4844). This approach utilizes temporary storage space for enhanced transactional throughput by allowing access to off-chain data, thereby reducing storage demands. As a result, L2 transaction costs are expected to plummet by 10x or more, addressing a major bottleneck that has hindered the growth of these protocols.

Upgrade Implementation Schedule

The Dencun upgrade was initially scheduled for October 2023 but was subsequently postponed to late Q1 or early Q2 2024. Its rollout will occur in three phases, with Goerli’s deployment representing the first step. The next phase will involve Sepolia testnet on January 31, followed by Holesky testnet on February 7. The final release on the Ethereum mainnet is expected to follow soon after.

Conclusion

The Dencun upgrade holds immense promise for Ethereum’s scalability and transaction efficiency. While the initial hiccups on the Goerli testnet are concerning, developers are working diligently to address the issues and ensure a smooth rollout across the remaining testnets. With its potential to significantly reduce L2 transaction costs, the Dencun upgrade could pave the way for Ethereum’s continued growth and adoption in the years to come.

By Julia

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