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Ethereum's Raiden network, the proposed scaling solution designed to allow faster payments with lower fees, has issued a preview that can now be downloaded for testing.

Aimed to allow developers to familiarize themselves with the payment channel tech and its API prior to the official release, as well as feedback on potential issues, the preview isn't yet safe to use on the main ethereum blockchain as it still requires a security audit.

The Raiden team stated in an announcement:

"We hope that developers will check out the release, start prototyping [decentralized applications] and find and report bugs which will help us improve Raiden on our way towards a [minimum viable product] release."

Announced in 2015, Raiden is one of ethereum's answers to scaling, as it seeks to shift the majority of transactions off the main ethereum blockchain and thereby massively increase transaction speeds – potentially enabling millions of transactions per second. 

Raiden also accommodates token exchange – meaning users don't need to use a centralized platform to trade – and features an API that can facilitate interactions with decentralized applications, or dapps.

All in all, with a test network for Raiden deployed by developers last week, the solution appears to be making strides toward production.

When that might be is still unclear, however. Raiden addressed the reasons for the uncertain timeframe in the announcement, saying, "payment channel network technology is even harder than anticipated, involving a complexity that goes beyond most common software development challenges."

To illustrate the project's advancement, its developers recently released an animated visual of its commits to GitHub (having made over 2,000 in the last six months). Further, a fully interactive visualization of the Raiden test network is available here

Car lights image via Shutterstock

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