Ethereum Developers Pencil In January for Eth 1.x 'Berlin' Hard Fork

Ethereum developers are eyeing January for the Berlin hard fork. The backwards-incompatible upgrade of the existing Eth 1.x blockchain was first set for July.

AccessTimeIconOct 30, 2020 at 4:58 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 10:25 a.m. UTC
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Ethereum’s “Berlin” hard fork remains a few months away at best, according to the All Core Developers bi-weekly call held Friday. A soft target of January is now in the works, following the planned launch of the Ethereum 2.0 beacon chain in December.

Berlin is a hard fork of the current Eth 1.x proof-of-work (PoW) blockchain. The systemwide upgrade – which includes low-level changes for improving the original mainchain while Eth 2.0 is under construction – was originally planned for July, but was pushed back this summer due to burnout of client employees and a perceived need for higher client diversity.

Since then, the process for including Ethereum Improvement Proposals (EIPs) and which ones will end up in the hard fork has shifted. 

Berlin was scheduled to have three EIPs as of June:

  • EIP-2315: Simple Subroutines for the EVM
  • EIP-2929: Gas cost increases for state access opcodes
  • EIP-2537: BLS12–381 curve operations

However, EIP-2537 will no longer be included in Berlin. That EIP would make it easier for the Eth 2.0 blockchain and Eth 1.x blockchain to speak with each other by using a similar cryptographic setup. 

The two other EIPs will be included in a short-run testnet dubbed “YOLO v3” set to release in the upcoming weeks.

Other important EIPs such as EIP-1559, which restructures Ethereum’s transaction model, will not be included in Berlin.

Watch a recording of the call below:

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