In an effort to inform the broader public about the changes planned for the 2.0 Ethereum, Vitalik Buterin wrote five posts on Ethresearch. For those who have no time to master at least one of the posts Buterin (not to mention five of them), Christine Kim from Coindesk has prepared a recap with comments of experts.
1. The movement of ether from the Ethereum 2.0 in the old blockchain could be possible in the short term.
It will be years before the old blockchain of Ethereum (based on the consensus algorithm Proof-of-Work, PoW) will be fully integrated with the new (at the Proof-of-Stake, PoS). The transfer of air between the two blockchains will be limited.
This is due to difficulties in the development of the bilateral bridge. According to the developer of Ethereum 2.0 Preston van Loon, such a bridge “threatens the security” of the old and new blockchains.
“A possible scenario in which a single blockchain will negatively affect the second, and we had to do a complete rollback to the refund; there is also an exploit where someone can print money,” said van Loon.
“It is expected that in the first few months in the blockchain 2.0 will be a limited number of validators of the transactions (stakanov), and potentially it will have a lower security level than the blockchain 1.0”, — said Ben Edgington from the company Consensys. “This is a potential attack vector. If someone wants to free the air in the blockchain 1.0, he might try to attack the Ethereum 2.0 and then move the [fake] money in the blockchain 1.0”.
In his post Buterin suggested two ways of creating a bilateral bridge between the two blockchains. He admits that “both of these proposals would require urgent remedial action on the side of Ethereum 1.0, if the Ethereum 2.0 something goes wrong.” To reduce such risks, Buterin proposed to introduce periods of voting, which would allow to cancel the transfer of air.
But while this is only a suggestion. At the moment the developers have not added the two-way bridge in the plan for the transition to Ethereum 2.0.
2. The Ethereum 2.0 can function as a separate blockchain for many years before both of the blockchain will be fully integrated.
Beacon chain is the “heart” of new blockchain to PoS. The blockchain will act as a Central command center to receive data on confirmed transactions from other mini-blockchains (also called shards) in the Ethereum 2.0.
In the first phase will be launched shards to communicate with the beacon chain. In the second phase, the developers deployed the shards for different types of decentralized applications (dpow). After that, the entire infrastructure of Ethereum 2.0 will be configured so that the existing core network Ethereum could safely fully unite with the new network.
Edgington suggests that it will take three to four years: “the Ethereum Ethereum 1.0 and 2.0 can work in this configuration so much time. Time here does not play an important role.”
The main priority is the safety of the assets in the current network Ethereum.
Buterin expects that the transition will be smooth “If you’re an application developer or user… changes and potential disruption will be very limited. Existing applications will work without changes,” he writes.
3. The cost of transmission of data in Ethereum will increase.
The developers of dpov will face increased commissions associated with changes in the state of Ethereum.
“The way the state changes completely in the Ethereum 2.0. If I now perform a contract on the Ethereum, the state is on my hard drive or the hard drive of the nodes with which I interact,” said Edgington. “The Ethereum 2.0 is stateless… I can store information about the state in which I am interested, locally, or there are providers such as Infura that spetsializiruyutsya on providing state. The idea is that there will be an environment in which people will store data on behalf of others.”
4. The Ethereum will lose the ability to perform transactions atomically.
This is perhaps most important for developers of applications on the Ethereum: the following implementation of Ethereum will break the ability of the atomic execution of transactions in Ethereum (i.e. all at once). Today it is possible in Ethereum because of all dappy live in a single shared blockchain.
The Ethereum 2.0 will break the transactional load on different shards. Theoretically dappy creating a new transaction in Ethereum will be hosted in different shards. This introduces a new dynamic to complete transactions on the blockchain of Ethereum, so that one shard will not be able to instantly know the full state of the other shards.
“If I perform a transaction with the first shard, and then you want to deal with something on the second shard, it will require the whole block before the second shard will know what happened first,” said Edgington.
According to Edgington, this introduces complexities in the programming of dpov, but it is not something completely unfamiliar to the traditional computer science. “Database developers do it all the time. There are blocking mechanisms that allow you to temporarily block I’m interested in resources and unblock them later when I’m sure everyone has done,” said Edgington.
However, some in the community Ethereum are concerned about the negative impact that this change may have on dippy, or as Buterin writes in his post, “on the ability of different applications to easily communicate with each other”.
According to Dieter Shirley from blockchain startup Dapper Labs (the developer CryptoKitties) managing large-scale dopami that require multiple shards, it will be harder. “Moving tokens between shards is not a problem… But when we look at something like CryptoKitties, it is much more than just a few token”, — he said. “Sharding does not make something impossible. It just complicates the implementation of some things.”
5. The Ethereum 2.0 will have only half the bandwidth of the initial plan.
Post Buterin implies a sharp reduction in the total number of Shadrov at startup.
Initially it was assumed that the new network will have 1024 shard, but Buterin offered only 64. According to him, the main advantage will be faster and easier communication between the shards.
“In the previous concept Ethereum 2.0 was this: if the first shard wanted to know the status of the second, he had to wait for a 64 slot (about six and a half minutes). In accordance with this idea, the shards can learn about the state of the other shards in one slot, that is, about six seconds,” said Edgington.
But the total capacity of the Ethereum 2.0 at the start will be significantly reduced. “We orientirueshsya about half of the originally planned bandwidth,” said Edgington.
Van Loon says that the increase in data transfer speed between shards is justified:
“We don’t have 1024 times more opportunities of Ethereum. 64 Sharda is also very much, and if we could make more rapid cross-communication between the shards, I think that the compromise is really worth it… We can increase the number of shards later.”
As noted by Zach Cole, founder and CEO of blockchain startup Whiteblock, in General, the Ethereum 2.0 is still under development, and the word Vitalik Buterin is not the law: “the Fact that he publishes something, does not mean that it is carved in stone. These publications aim to stimulate discussion in the community.”