Ethereum's Ropsten Testnet Set to 'Merge' Today
The Ropsten public testnet, Ethereum (ETH)'s longest-lived proof-of-work (PoW) testnet that allows for blockchain development testing before deployment on the mainnet, is expected to go through The Merge in a matter of hours.
According to the Wen Merge website, which estimates Ethereum's upcoming updates, the Ropsten testnet will merge in 6 hours and 34 minutes from the time of writing (10:20 UTC) -- however, the exact time is constantly changing based on hashrate, average blocktime, and other variables.
The developers have selected a Terminal Total Difficulty (TTD) of 50000000000000000 for the Ropsten Merge. The TTD is a metric that measures mining difficulty. When the selected TTD is reached, chains will merge.
"Due to the instability of hash rate on proof-of-work testnets, client releases supporting the upgrade were configured using an artificially high [TTD]," Ethereum developers said. "This ensured that The Merge could not be triggered before the Ropsten Beacon Chain was ready."
As reported, to provide consensus to the network, a new Ropsten Beacon Chain was launched on May 30 and activated the Bellatrix upgrade, which was scheduled at slot 24000, on June 2.
The Merge is Ethereum's much-anticipated upgrade when the current Ethereum Mainnet will merge with the beacon chain proof-of-stake (PoS) system.
Since the Ropsten merge will help check whether client software-run Ethereum nodes function smoothly during the transition, the testnet is perceived to be "a huge testing milestone towards Ethereum's mainnet merge later this year," according to Preston Van Loon, an Ethereum core developer at Prysmatic Labs.
At the time of writing, Ethereum is trading at USD 1,808, up by 2.5% over the past 24 hours and down 7% in a week.
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