Ethereum: Here’s where we are with ‘The Merge’ after phasing away ‘ETH 2.0’

The Ethereum Foundation was in the news last month after it announced the Kintsugi Merge Testnet in December. The main purpose of the testnet is to experiment and identify issues with post-merge Ethereum. The AllCoreDevs on Ethereum call it the “first public, easily accessible, multi-client testnet running post-merge Ethereum!”

Following the same, now, Chair Tim Beiko has updated the community that applications will start testing deployments on Kintsugi soon. Subsequently,

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“Its next version, Kiln, will be the dress rehearsal before existing testnets transition.”

So, essentially, Kiln will replace Kintsugi. And, with Ethereum setting the sun on Kintsugi in the coming weeks, the foundation has also announced a community call on 11 February.

Meanwhile, the team is also said to have identified some issues on the network, which are being worked on. The developers also announced changes to the Engine API specification to address the same.

Parallely, the team further announced that it is working on the Shanghai hard fork. It was initially pushed for last year, a couple of months after the London hard fork. However, with a focus on The Merge emerging soon, Shanghai was delayed. According to Beiko,

“Shanghai is slowly being planned, with a focus on valuable EIPs which had been deprioritized, along with beacon chain withdrawals.”

So far, withdrawal from the beacon chain doesn’t have a formal Ethereum Improvement proposal (EIP). So, more information is expected in this regard in the coming days.

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Meanwhile, some of the smaller upgrades that the developers mentioned might make it on the network with Shanghai. These include EVM Object Format, BLS Precompiles, EIP-3074, EIP-4488, and EIP-1153. These will also include focusing on lowering transacting costs.

The Shanghai hard fork will be a crucial upgrade towards merging ETH and ETH 2.0. Especially since some of the terminology has recently been “phased out” ahead of the merge. Ethereum Foundation explained that ‘Eth1’ and ‘Eth2’ will be merged into a single chain. Therefore, Ethereum Mainnet “merge” with the Beacon Chain removes the two distinctions and makes way for only Ethereum.

“As part of that roadmap, the existing proof-of-work chain (Eth1) would eventually be deprecated via the difficulty bomb. Users & applications would migrate to a new, proof-of-stake Ethereum chain, known as Eth2.”

After this, ETH developers will announce transitioning testnets to proof of stake.

“A successful transition across all existing testnets is the last step before setting the date for The Merge on mainnet!”

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