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Mt. Gox enhances site performance by partnering with cloud platform Akamai

(@emilyspaven) | Published on August 5, 2013 at 15:58 GMT

Mt. Gox has revealed a number of improvements it has made to its site and service plus a variety of changes it is set to implement in the near future.

The 'status update' states the bitcoin exchange is now supported by cloud platform Akamai, which recently reported net income of $62 million for the second quarter of the year. The partnership means Mt. Gox is now hosted on thousands of servers across the world.

"Not only does this massively increase our protection, but since the transition the performance and speed of mtgox.com has been greatly improved," the update reads.

Vladimir Marchenko, CTO at BTC Global, said: "Akamai is basically a CDN [Content Distribution Network]. While it is a big and expensive CDN, it appears to be a rather trivial technical matter."

The company also announced it has moved from being a hosted service to being entirely self-hosted at a co-located setup.

"At this level, it is again a trivial technical matter and, frankly, given information security concerns, they should have been in 'colo' setup years ago," said Marchenko.

He was more positive about the company's new trading engine, which will be launched soon following a couple of hardware updates. Called Midas, the engine is being tested with over 500,000 trades per second (TPS), but it will be capable of processing a higher volume than this.

"500,000 TPS is pretty close to what the best engines can do so this is good news, but again long overdue. It's quite an upgrade from their current order matching engine that, by some estimates, cannot handle more than 30-50 TPS," Marchenko explained.

Over the next few weeks, users will also notice some UX improvements, as some new interface designs are to be implemented.

Those waiting for Mt. Gox to offer Litecoin exchanges will have to wait a bit longer, as the company isn't yet ready to implement this digital currency. The rollout will happen soon, but Mt. Gox is reluctant to provide an exact launch date.

Last month, Litecoin founder Charles Lee told Coindesk: “Litecoin is becoming more popular and Mt. Gox has seen that they’re missing out on making money from litecoin, and that’s why they want to implement it.”

The company's announcement also confirms it is trying to negotiate new bank partnerships so it can speed up its transaction processes. Currently, it takes up to 10 days to process deposits because Mt. Gox's bank holds funds for 7-10 days before transferring them to the exchange's account.

"This has always been the case, and we were still crediting customer accounts before receiving the funds ourselves, but some cases in which the bank subsequently rejected the deposits meant that we incurred significant losses. The risk is now too high for us to credit accounts prematurely," the statement reads.

Marchenko said it is interesting that Mt. Gox doesn't say anything about withdrawals in the statement. He thinks people will not believe the old adage that no news is good news: "The punters are now justified to assume the worst about the withdrawals."

Mt. Gox's announcement concludes by stating:

Over the last months our mission has not changed. We are fighting as always to improve our services despite setbacks, but our mission as always is to support the widespread adoption of Bitcoin as much as we can.

 

To accomplish the latter goal, we have a team focused on communicating the beauty of Bitcoin to the world with new websites and ad campaigns aimed at global markets (news on that soon). We thank you for all of your support, and look forward to sharing our projects very soon.

Mt. Gox still has work to do to win back the trust it has lost over the past few months, exemplified by payment processors such as BIPS switching away from it to Bitstamp - and Bitstamp itself making gains on Gox. However, continuing to issue updates does demonstrate an adherence to transparency and may well improve some users' opinions of the exchange.

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