Bitcoin Cash completed a hard fork earlier this week in an effort to ease mining difficulties on the network.
The hard fork was surprisingly smooth: 82% of network nodes had already transitioned to the new software (version 0.16.0 or later) by November 13, just hours after the hard fork was scheduled.
The new software version includes rules aimed at making Bitcoin Cash’s reward distribution system more attractive to the miners that secure its blockchain. It contains an update to the Difficulty Adjustment Algorithm, or DAA.
Any time there’s a hard fork, there’s a risk of inadvertently creating a new, competing cryptocurrency. That’s not going to be the case with Bitcoin Cash’s latest DAA hard fork. Within hours of the hard fork being introduced, the new version of the Bitcoin Cash blockchain had amassed six blocks, with no blocks mined on the older network.
The goal of the DAA hard fork is to switch to a different mining algorithm. Bitcoin Cash’s new mining algorithm will favorably adjust how hard it is for miners to create new blocks roughly every 600 seconds. The idea is that Bitcoin Cash will avoid the sudden changes in difficulty that have led to large mining pools switching between Bitcoin (BTC) and Bitcoin Cash (BCH) on a daily basis, as they take advantage of difficulty differences between the two cryptocurrencies.
Despite the hard fork, Bitcoin Cash retains its core advantages over the original Bitcoin. It still has a default blocksize limit of 8MB, significantly larger than the 1MB limit on the original Bitcoin blockchain.
The Future Looks Bright for Bitcoin Cash
Despite wild price fluctuations since launch, Bitcoin Cash is becoming an increasingly popular option for cryptocurrency users. While the main Bitcoin blockchain is struggling to scale, Bitcoin Cash has demonstrated the ability to successfully scale up to an 8MB blocksize without any major issues.
The price of Bitcoin Cash rose dramatically this past weekend, hitting a high above $2,000 before settling into a range around $1,300.
This latest successful hard fork was praised by Bitcoin Cash supporters across the internet. The hard fork was not expected to be contentious, but a smooth hard fork is always good news.
You can read more about the Bitcoin Cash DAA hard fork at the developers’ official blog here.