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  • Writer's pictureDavid Manion

Ethereum Bellatrix Set To Go Live Today


Ethereum today took the first steps in implementing “The Merge” with the Bellatrix hard fork, set for the 6th of September.


The Bellatrix upgrade sets up the Beacon Chain to be able to execute transactions.


Over 70% Of Nodes Merge Ready

Ethereum is well on the way to implementing the Merge, with the protocol all set for the Bellatrix upgrade, scheduled to occur on the 6th of September. According to data from Ethernodes, nearly 73.5% of all Ethereum nodes are marked as “Merge Ready.” The Bellatrix hard fork will be initiated when Ethereum’s Epoch value hits 144,896 on the Beacon Chain, scheduled at 11:34:47 AM UTC on the 6th of September.


To become merge-ready, Ethereum nodes must comply with the upgrade by updating their consensus layer clients. The upgrade is among the last necessary steps Ethereum has to undertake before the official Merge takes place, which is set to take place between the 10th and 20th of September. The Merge will see Ethereum finally complete its transition from Proof-of-Work to Proof-of-Stake.


FTX has already announced that it would be suspending the trading of ETH and other ETC-20 tokens half an hour before the Bellatrix upgrade. This is being done to ensure that there are no complications with the upgrade process and that user tokens are not lost during the upgrade.


The Bellatrix Upgrade

Currently, each Ethereum node is represented on two Ethereum layers, the consensus layer and the Proof-of-Work layer, with the latter being the main network. Both layers will be combined when the Merge occurs, switching from mining to a validating system. Once the Bellatrix upgrade hits the Proof-of-Stake layer, it will begin producing the updated Beacon Blocks. Once the required TTD (Terminal Total Difficulty) is achieved, mining on Ethereum will end. The Paris Upgrade will mark the completion of the Merge and will be achieved when the required TTD is reached.

Significant Number Of Nodes “Not Ready”

While most of the nodes are “Merge Ready,” a significant chunk, nearly 27%, is marked as “Not Ready” for the Merge. Vitalink Buterin, Ethereum co-founder, and Tim Beiko have taken it upon themselves to push these node operators to update their clients for the Merge.

“Bellatrix is tomorrow. Last chance to upgrade your node if you haven’t yet! We’re mergiiiing.”

Buterin himself took to Twitter to urge node operators to update their clients, stating,

“The Merge is still expected to happen around Sep 13-15. What’s happening today is the Bellatrix hard fork, which *prepares* the chain for the Merge. Still important, though - make sure to update your clients!”

The Ethereum Foundation warned that the node operators that do not make the required updates before the Bellatrix upgrade would cause Ethereum clients to sync to the pre-fork blockchain, stating,

“[Node operators] will be stuck on an incompatible chain following old rules and will be unable to send Ether or operate on the post-Merge Ethereum network.”

Data from Ethernodes showed that most nodes marked as “Not Ready” are on the geth client and have yet to upgrade to Geth v1.10.23 or higher. Other Ethereum clients that require updating before Bellatrix are Besu, Erigon, and Nethermind.


The Paris Event

Once the Bellatrix upgrade is completed, the final stretch of the Merge will take place through a process dubbed the “Paris Event.” The “Paris Event” will be triggered once Terminal Total Difficulty reaches 58750000000000000000000, which is estimated to occur around the 15th of September. Once this point is surpassed, the next block will be produced by a Beacon Chain validator, marking the completion of Ethereum’s transition to Proof-of-Stake. The Ethereum Foundation noted that users are not required to do anything with their ETH during the Merge but should be mindful of any scams.


Disclaimer: This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.

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