Ethereum’s Mainnet Tenth 'Shadow Fork' Goes Live Ahead of September Merge

Developers focused this time on testing key releases similar to the ones in the upcoming Goerli merge – the final testnet hard fork before the real Ethereum Merge.

AccessTimeIconJul 27, 2022 at 3:23 p.m. UTC
Updated May 11, 2023 at 3:53 p.m. UTC
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Ethereum’s tenth "shadow fork" went into effect Tuesday, 26 hours earlier than expected, as the network continues to run tests ahead of the anticipated shift from using the energy-intensive proof-of-work protocol to proof-of-stake.

In preparation, Ethereum has been undergoing a series of test, or shadow, forks, which copy data from the main network (mainnet) to a test environment network (testnet).

  • The fork occurred at 11:45 UTC (7:45 a.m. ET) when Terminal Total Difficulty (TTD) was overridden at 54,892,065,290,522,348,390,492 at block 15217902.
  • The shadow fork brings the project one step closer to Ethereum's mainnet upgrade in September. The third and final testnet merge, Goerli, is expected to happen Aug. 10.
  • Ethereum DevOps Engineer Parithosh Jayanthi told CoinDesk that this shadow fork will test releases that approximate the releases that will be used in the Goerli merge.
  • As for why it happened earlier than expected, Jayanthi said there was a clear change in the hashrate, or computational power, that could have sped up the process.
  • This will not be the last mainnet shadow fork, and Ethereum will continue to run mainnet shadow forks until the Merge.
  • No significant glitches were reported.

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Margaux Nijkerk

Margaux Nijkerk reports on the Ethereum protocol and L2s. A graduate of Johns Hopkins and Emory universities, she has a masters in International Affairs & Economics. She holds a small amount of ETH and other altcoins.


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