Arbitrum Hit by 'Partial Outage' Due to Traffic Surge

The layer-2 blockchain stopped working as intended Friday morning.

AccessTimeIconDec 15, 2023 at 4:46 p.m. UTC
Updated Mar 8, 2024 at 6:45 p.m. UTC

The Arbitrum (ARB) network experienced a "partial outage" Friday amid a surge in transaction traffic that impacted the layer-2 blockchain's sequencer.

Arbitrum's sequencer stalled "during a significant surge in network traffic," according to posts across the network's social media on Friday. "We are working to resolve as quickly as possible and will provide a post-mortem as soon as possible," read a post on Arbitrum's status webpage.

Sequencers have been likened to an "air traffic control" for deciding which transactions land first on layer-2 networks such as Arbitrum. They're an essential link between the L2 and and the base chain, Ethereum. But they're also a single point of failure.

The outage spawned chaos and confusion in the Arbitrum community. A previously scheduled 12 p.m. ET (17:00 UTC) "ask me anything" Twitter Spaces was abruptly canceled by an Arbitrum employee shortly after it began. The Arbitrum Discord piled high with messages from traders fearful of what would happen to their positions when the network came back online.

Arbitrum's sequencer last stalled out in June after a bug created a backlog of unprocessed transactions. That issue was patched in a matter of hours.

The tech issues failed to rattle markets for Arbitrum's ARB token, which was already trading slightly down for the day.

Edited by Nick Baker.


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Danny Nelson

Danny is CoinDesk's Managing Editor for Data & Tokens. He owns BTC, ETH and SOL.

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