Bitcoin cash plans big hard fork – here is all you need to know

Bitcoin cash plans big hard fork – here is all you need to know.

Image source: Shutterstock / Wikimedia Commons

Tim Haldorsson

tim.haldorsson@trijo.co

On November 15, the bitcoin cash community wants to implement a new network update. However, there are people in the community that disagree about how they should do it.

An update of a cryptocurrency network can be done through a so-called hard fork. This happens when a person submits a proposal on how they want to update the network. Then it’s up to all the miners, those who are working to secure the network, to decide if they want to implement the update. If a majority chooses to implement the update, then it will be used for the cryptocurrency.

On November 15, the bitcoin cash community wants to make an update of the network. However, there are three different options for miners to choose between: “bitcoin abc”, “bitcoin sv” or the more neutral alternative “bitcoin unlimited”.

Hard fork with “bitcoin abc”

“Bitcoin abc” is the largest client today for bitcoin cash and is led by the developer Amaury Sechet. This group has submitted a proposal for a bitcoin cash hard fork. The proposal mainly involves two new updates:

  • Update the language that developers use to code in the bitcoin cash network
  • Change the transaction order and how to sort them in each block to increase the scalability of bitcoin cash

This proposal is primarily supported by the Chinese mining giant Bitmain, which today controls about 19,5 percent of all bitcoin cash mining through the mining pools Viabtc, Btc.com and Antpool. Also, crypto exchanges like Coinbase and Binance have said that they support the hard fork with “bitcoin abc”, the crypto site Coinsutra writes.

Percentage of all bitcoin cash mining that different pools controlled over the last seven days. Image source: Coin Dance

Percentage of all bitcoin cash mining that different pools have controlled over the last seven days. Image source: Coin Dance

Hard fork with “bitcoin sv” (“Satoshis vision”)

“Bitcoin sv” calls themselves “Satoshis vision”, after the anonymous founder of bitcoin Satoshi Nakamoto. This group is led by Craig Steven Wright, among others, who has previously said that he is bitcoin’s founder Satoshi Nakomoto, something that is by many considered not to be true. The updates that “bitcoin sv” wants to make for bitcoin cash include:

  • To make the maximum size for each block larger – from today’s 32 mb to 128 mb per block
  • To maintain the transaction order that bitcoin cash has today, hence not changing to what the “bitcoin abc” suggests

The hard fork from “bitcoin sv” has received support from the big mining pool Coingeek, which today controls about 23,2 percent of all bitcoin cash mining, according to Coin Dance.

But “bitcoin sv” has also received support from other mining pools such as Vspool, which controls 15 percent of all bitcoin cash mining, and Bmg pool, which controls 9,2 percent.

Hard fork with “bitcoin unlimited”

This is a group led by the programmer Andrew Clifford. This group is considered the most neutral because they are open to the proposals from both “bitcoin abc” and “bitcoin sv”.

The group behind “bitcoin unlimited” will let miners vote for exactly what updates they want to make for the network, according to Cointelegraph.

“Bitcoin abc” appears to have the most capital behind it

What will happen after November 15, when the hard fork is thought to happen, is hard to know. The crypto exchange Bitmex has made an analysis that says “bitcoin abc” is the hard fork that currently seems to have the most capital behind it.

But it is hard to predict whether the developers behind “bitcoin abc” and “bitcoin sv” will be able to collaborate in the future or if the result will be that two different cryptocurrencies are created with their own blockchains, Bitmex writes in an analysis.

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