Ethereum Chain Splits While Constantinople Now Scheduled for 27 February with 7.28M Block

The Ethereum Constantinople hard fork got delayed due to unexpected security vulnerability found by smart contract audit firm ChainSecurity, but some ETH node operators didn’t follow through. Now, Ethereum is going through a chain split.

Michael Hahn of MyCrypto said, “We were not able to get in contact with every single mining entity about the postponement of the upgrade.”

He further added, “Compare the hashrate on the non-constantinople chain to what the combined chain was pre-fork. Doing this you can see ~10-20TH/s is what is actually missing from the non-constantinople (correct) chain.”

This means over 10 percent of miners are on Constantinople now which is actually twice the number of current miners on Ethereum Classic (ETC). However, it’s still not known if the split has been accidental on miners’ part or it has been done intentionally. Given the fact that these miners are spread all over the globe, it is likely they just don’t know about the change.

Meanwhile, the difficulty of this chain is going down and with far less hashrate, blocks are found more slowly. But as it moves on and more blocks are found, the chain moves closer to normality.

No Constantinople Until Late-February

As for the Constantinople hard fork itself, it has been postponed to late February, 27th to be exact. Peter Szilagyi, the team lead at Ethereum announced this on Twitter,

“Seems we're going with block 7.28M for the Ethereum Constantinople refork scheduled for the 27th of February! Will be a single fork on mainnet and a post-Constantinople-fixup fork on the testnets to get them back in line feature wise with the main network.”

One Ethereum enthusiast had this to say on this delay, “This is good news, thanks. All shows how incredibly hard it is to upgrade a protocol with much history/activity. Eth is leading the way in this regard.”

This upcoming hard fork has been an upgrade to the Ethereum network that includes five Ethereum Improvement Proposals (EIPs) targeting speed, efficiency, and cost factors while making a transition from the current proof-of-work (PoW) to the more energy efficient proof-of-stake (PoW).

One of the major improvements has been block rewards reduction and difficulty bomb. This EIP is to delay the difficulty to about 12 months. These improvements will change the Ethereum blockchain fundamentally by preventing any backward compatibility. This means, either the nodes must update with the entire system or get left behind to run on a separate blockchain.

Over the last few weeks, as the hard fork came closer to its launch date, a number of exchanges viz. Coinbase, OKEx, and Kraken among others confirmed their support for Constantinople hard fork.

On the price front, the 3rd largest cryptocurrency has been moving just like the rest of the crypto market. At the time of writing, it has been trading at $125 while registering gains of 2.42 percent gains in the past 24-hours.

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