The development team of the zcash cryptocurrency has released new software that contains support elements of the network's planned Sapling upgrade, set to take place later this year.
Sapling isn't the first hard fork for zcash on the horizon – that's Overwinter, which is slated for late June of this year – but the 1.1.1 update puts the initial consensus rules in place as prepares a Sapling-based testnet, according to release notes published Wednesday.
What's missing is an activation "block height" – essentially, the exact transaction block at which point the Sapling hard fork takes effect – and according to developers, this will be included in a future update.
"As a reminder, because the Sapling activation height is not yet specified for mainnet, version 1.1.1 will behave similarly as other pre-Sapling releases even after a future activation of Sapling on the network. Upgrading from 1.1.1 will be required in order to follow the Sapling network upgrade on mainnet," the blog post explained.
As previously reported by CoinDesk, next month's Overwinter upgrade is positioned, in part, as a way to set to stage for future hard forks – a process that has stoked controversy for other blockchain protocols, namely bitcoin – to take place on zcash.
"The purpose of this is to get practice doing network upgrades," Zooko Wilcox, co-founder and CEO of Zerocoin Electric Coin Company, which develops the network, said in March.
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