Seven Blocks Reorganized On Ethereum Beacon Chain


Key Takeaways

  • Ethereum’s Beacon Chain has experienced a 7-block deep reorganization.
  • Developers claim the error came from out-of-date client software and known bugs.
  • The Merge is still tentatively scheduled for August.

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The Ethereum Beacon Chain has experienced a seven-block reorganization, raising concerns for the Merge.

“Nothing Systemic”

Seven blocks were reorganized on the Ethereum Beacon Chain earlier today.

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Beaconscan shows that on May 25, in Epoch 121471, from 08:55:23 to 08:56:35 AM UTC, blocks 3887075 to 3887081 were forked from the chain. It was noticed by Martin Köppelmann, who posted about it two and a half hours later on Twitter.

Köppelmann criticized the “current attestation strategy of nodes” and subsequently pointed out that Ethereum had not experienced seven-block reorganization on its mainnet for years. His tweets prompted a response from Ethereum creator Vitalik Buterin, who said client teams were already working on fixing the issue.

Among the hypotheses was Ethereum developer Preston Van Loon’s suggestion that the fork had been caused by “a non-trivial segmentation of updated vs out of date client software.” This was also the theory that Sigma Prime co-founder Mehdi Zerouali shared with Crypto Briefing, who added that it was “nothing systemic” and a “combination of known bugs.”

The reorganization comes as Ethereum prepares to update its consensus mechanism away from Proof-of-Work in a highly anticipated transition known as “the Merge.” The upgrade would see the current blockchain combined with the Proof-of-Stake Beacon Chain, which, among other things, is expected to reduce the ETH token emission rate by approximately 90%.

The Merge, according to Van Loon, has tentatively been scheduled for August, though Buterin has been more conservative and stated it could happen in September or October. The team has been criticized for its multiple delays.

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Disclosure: At the time of writing, the author of this piece owned ETH and other cryptocurrencies.

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