The phase zero of the much awaited Ethereum (ETH) upgrade, Ethereum 2.0 has finally launched its pre-release. According to the announcement “this marks the first release in a series of weekly releases through February 2019. Phase 0 in v0.1 is relatively feature complete and approaching stable.”
Much of ETH’s future has been depending upon the Ethereum 2.0, as it bears the weight of tons of expectations regarding the networks improvement. An announcement for the phase zero was published on Ethereum’s GitHub on Jan. 31. Also known as Serenity, the Ethereum 2.0 is planned to be the network’s final upgrade.
The entire network of ETH will transition from a proof-of-work (PoW) to a proof-of-stake (PoS) consensus algorithm that will enable it to tackle the fundamental problems the network is currently facing, namely scalability, economic finality, and security.
Serenity is the last stage in a series of four stages, set out in the platform’s roadmap. Currently, the network is running its third stage (Metropolis) that includes two system-wide hard forks, Byzantium and Constantinople. Both hard forks are aimed to pave the path for Ethereum 2.0, however, the latter had been delayed due to a vulnerability issue detected mid-January.
Vitalik Buterin, the co-founder of Ethereum commented on the pre-release for Serenity on his Twitter page:
See docs. *baaasically* feature complete for Casper.
— Vitalik Non-giver of Ether (@VitalikButerin) January 31, 2019
Reportedly, Casper the Friendly Finality Gadget (FFG) was initially published in October 2017. The PoS-PoW hybrid consensus model was designed to provide stronger economic finality and security to the network.
Notably, the other PoS solutions planned for Ethereum 2.0 will include the sharding scalability feature, it split-ups transaction processing between smaller groups of nodes to increase the blockchain’s total throughput. Alongside Ethereum 2.0’s first pre-release, “Gorli”, a new testnet went live yesterday. It will reportedly serve to trial a key sharding client for Serenity, known as Prysm.
As for developers, the testnet provides a simulated version of the primary network in order to enable them to try out smart contracts or upgrades without having to pay “gas” (computation fees) for their execution. Gorli, an open-source is basically a community-built initiative that will reportedly be instrumental in synching other major Ethereum clients such as Parity, Geth, Nethermind, Pantheon, and EthereumJS.
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