3 Ethereum testnets to be shut down after merger

3 Ethereum testnets to be shut down after merger

Key facts:
  • Until the end of 2022, developers and users can migrate to Goerli and Sepolia.

  • These two testnets will still be available after the merger with the new chain.

The Ethereum Foundation, an organization that includes the main developers of this network, confirmed what will happen to several test networks after the merger with Ethereum 2.0. The Ropsten, Rinkeby and Kiln networks will cease to exist at various points this and next year.

Until its definitive closure, these test networks will be discontinuedas expressed by the statement from the Ethereum Foundation. This means that no more tests will be done on them, but they will be available for users and developers to start their migration to other test networks.

Ropsten will be the first to close, in the fourth quarter of 2022. It is the Ethereum test network that has been active the longest using Proof of Work (PoW) to validate new blocks. As reported by CriptoNoticias, this test network has already successfully made its way to block validation through proof of participation (Proof-of-Stake or PoS).

The next to be closed will be Rinkeby, in the second or third quarter of 2023. Unlike Ropsten, this one does not work with the PoW method, but with another called Proof of Authority or proof of authority that is based on the arbitrary selection of validators, whose real identity is known. Also, you also won’t have a merge to start using proof of stake.

Kiln, for its part, will be closed “shortly after” the merger of Ethereum with the beaconchain, the original snippet of the new blockchain. This testnet offers a space in which PoW and PoS methods coexisted, as CriptoNoticias reported. In this way, it fulfills its main purpose, which is to provide a testing environment for the behavior of the network after the merger is completed.

Ethereum 2.0 on the way

And when will the long-awaited transition to Ethereum 2.0 take place? According to the developers of this network, it will be sometime in the second half of 2022. For now, the tests and determination of dates for the most important events continue.

In this sense, the Gray Glacier update is scheduled for block 15,050,000 in Ethereum, projected to be mined approximately on June 29. This update postpones the activation of the difficulty bomb that will end mining, for mid-September, as reported in CriptoNoticias.

3 Ethereum testnets to be shut down after merger
In the test networks (in blue) the processes for the fusion of the main network (red) with the Ethereum 2.0 blockchain (green) are rehearsed. Font: Twitter @Ethereum_France.

Goerli and Sepolia, the trials that remain for the merger in Ethereum

In addition to the already completed move from the Ropsten testnet to the use of proof of stake, it also remains to test this mechanism in Goerli and Sepolia. In the latter, Sepolia, the Beacon Chain was recently created, the first fragment of the new blockchain with proof of participation. Goerli, meanwhile, will be combined in the merger with Beacon Chain Prater.

To advance these tests, the Ethereum Foundation encourages users and developers to migrate to these networks “as soon as possible,” the statement describes.

After their respective mergers, both networks will remain open. Goerli will be available to users who want to test validators and protocol updates on a testnet. Also, being the testnet with a state more similar to the mainnet, it can even be used to test interactions with smart contracts.

For its part, Sepolia “will work with a set of permissioned validators, as several test networks do today,” reported the Ethereum Foundation.

3 Ethereum testnets to be shut down after merger
These features will serve the remaining open Ethereum testnets, Goerli and Sepolia. Font: Ethereum Foundation.

Testnets are like a training ground for Ethereum

Real money is not used in the Ethereum testnets, but rather tokens that emulate the native cryptocurrency of the Ethereum network, ether (ETH), are used. With these tokens, it is possible to work on developments for products and applications before using them on the main network.

Over time, testnets accumulate more and more information. This can make them difficult for nodes to run and more resource intensive to maintain and use. Therefore, their durability is limited and there comes a time when it is decided to close them, as will happen soon with these three Ethereum test networks that have already fulfilled their mission.

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