The Ethereum Foundation has announced plans of another upcoming hard fork for the network, notably soon after the recent fork which happened on December 7th 2019. Here we’ll break down what the upcoming fork is, and what actions you are required to take, if any.
Muir Glacier – What Is It?
The Muir Glacier hard fork has a singular purpose: to delay a built-in exponential slowing of Ethereum’s block times. This mechanism, called the difficulty bomb or “Ice Age”, was created to incentivize a change to Proof of Stake but has been delayed numerous times to buy developers time in implementing the transition from Proof of Work. The new fork delays Ethereum’s Ice Age by another 4,000,000 blocks or approximately 611 days. Further details can be found in a blog post by Ethereum Cat Herders here.
When Is It?
The Muir Glacier hard fork will happen at block 9,200,000 which is approximately January 1st 2020 at 06:50 UTC, though this may change with variable block times. You can track the countdown at this link.
How This Affects BTSE Users
BTSE will follow the “Muir Glacier” hard fork. The hard fork is not expected to be controversial, although if two chains do result, BTSE will only consider the “Muir Glacier” rules to be Ethereum (ETH). Our policy is to not support the so-called “fork coins” by default, so if you believe two chains may result from this hard fork and wish to claim any resulting tokens, please withdraw your coins to your own wallet (where you control the private keys) before the hard fork occurs.
To protect our users against network instability during the hard fork transition, BTSE will stop processing deposits and withdrawals of Ethereum (ETH) and Ethereum contract-based tokens (ERC20, etc), at approximately 23:30:00 (UTC) on 31th December 2019, from block #9198560. All affected assets are as follows:
- USDT – ERC20
Deposits and withdrawals will be resumed once we are confident that the hard fork rules have successfully taken effect across the ecosystem. We would expect this period to last less than 24 hours under normal circumstances.
Other Necessary Actions
If you are holding ETH outside of BTSE in a web wallet like Metamask, MyCrypto or MyEtherwallet, a hardware wallet like Ledger, Trezor and Keepkey, or most other major exchanges, you likely do not need to take any action unless otherwise advised by your wallet or service provider. As a node operator or miner, you will need to upgrade to the latest version of the client. More information on this can be found on the Ethereum blog.
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