--- tags: newineth2 description: The latest update on Ethereum 2.0 development image: https://benjaminion.xyz/f/favicon-96x96.png --- <style> a {text-decoration: underline;} a {color: #0000ee;} a:visited {color: #551a8b;} .ui-infobar {visibility: hidden; padding-top: 0;} .community-button {visibility: hidden;} .markdown-body {padding-top: 0;} </style> # What's New in Eth2 - 26&nbsp;August&nbsp;2022 ![My avatar](https://benjaminion.xyz/f/ms-icon-144x144.png =32x32) Ben Edgington (Eth2 at [ConsenSys](https://consensys.net/) — all views expressed are my own) Edition 100 at [eth2.news](https://eth2.news/) <div style="text-align:center"> ## The Verge of the Merge Edition </div> <div style="text-align:center"> :::warning :warning: There is no ETH2 coin. Anyone offering you ETH2 coins is scamming you. :warning: ::: </div> Apparently I need to say this :man-shrugging: ## Top picks The most joyful and wholesome pleasure of the week has been following Superphiz's retweets of dozens and dozens of people's [home staking rigs](https://twitter.com/superphiz/status/1562090743237337094). He's handily tagged them all [`#stakefromhome`](https://twitter.com/search?q=%23stakefromhome). I particularly enjoyed [this one](https://twitter.com/superphiz/status/1562275928360849408) -- proof of stake vs proof of work in a nutshell -- and [this one](https://twitter.com/Infosecual/status/1562923144901697538). Home staking is real, people! ## The Merge Reminder [It's Happening!](https://twitter.com/adietrichs/status/1557747817975799808) Everything you need to know is in the Ethereum Foundation's [announcement](https://blog.ethereum.org/2022/08/24/mainnet-merge-announcement). :::danger **Reminder:** Everybody who runs any kind of Ethereum node _must take action_. This is not your standard upgrade. See the [announcement](https://blog.ethereum.org/2022/08/24/mainnet-merge-announcement) for more info. ::: Stakers, you _must_ run and configure an Eth1 client, now known as an execution client (Besu, Nethermind, Erigon, or Geth). You can no longer use a third-party Eth1 node such as Infura. People running Eth1 nodes, you _must_ now also run a consensus client (Teku, Nimbus, Lodestar, Lighthouse, or Prysm). To get up and running quickly, do a [checkpoint sync](https://notes.ethereum.org/@launchpad/checkpoint-sync). Infura provides [mainnet checkpoints](https://docs.teku.consensys.net/en/latest/HowTo/Get-Started/Checkpoint-Start/). The deadline for stakers to upgrade their consensus clients is September the 6th at 11:34:47am UTC, which is when the Bellatrix upgrade will happen in order to get the beacon chain Merge-ready. The Merge will happen some time after the Bellatrix upgrade, when the proof of work network finally reaches the terminal total difficulty (TTD) that we've chosen. There are three Merge trackers that I know of: - Mario Havel's [bordel.wtf](https://bordel.wtf). - Matthew Rabinowitz's [spreadsheet](https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/e/2PACX-1vRuiWuO6Zy2KrXIZlwMaCfwzIrNQ8zVhnTq9HtTBflZc1X02xUTEGW4nPyEzM0tPITDCmKSCF4PU9xk/pubhtml?gid=1693934945&single=true). ([Text-only](https://797.io/themerge/) version.) - SixdegreeLab's [Dune dashboard](https://dune.com/sixdegree/ethereum-the-merge). Each uses slightly different assumptions and estimation processes, but we're generally looking at the early hours the morning UTC on Thursday, September the 15th as I write, but it moves around a little as hash rate goes up and down. ### Testing the Merge We continue to run mainnet shadow forks to root out any last issues and make sure that there are no regressions. MSF11 went very smoothly indeed, apart from some bad blocks from Erigon which are under investigation. MSF12 is [planned for next week](https://twitter.com/abcoathup/status/1562545482802806784?s=20&t=zNRk7kK1q2BQyoxFCB-EPg). A few clients [hit some bumps](https://notes.ethereum.org/@parithosh/goerli-merge) during the (overall successful) Goerli testnet Merge. Łukasz has written a [nice thread](https://twitter.com/URozmej/status/1558421724185624576) on the Nethermind issue and the fixes. ## Prepping the Merge Infura has put together a [great overview](https://blog.infura.io/post/what-you-need-to-know-to-get-ready-for-the-ethereum-merge-infura-developers-edition) of what it means to be Merge-ready that covers all the bases, from solo stakers to smart contract developers. Also check out Terence's Merge-readiness [pitfalls](https://twitter.com/terencechain/status/1563183903938007041): > - Unaware you need two clients (consensus & execution) > - Still on old port 8545 > - Didn't authenticate jwt > - Forgot to set fee recipient > - Using a firewall, forgot to hole-punch for new port This is not your typical upgrade; we all need some help. And that help is available! The legend in human form, Somer Esat, has [updated](https://twitter.com/SomerEsat/status/1561941005795880961) his outstanding [client setup guides](https://github.com/SomerEsat/ethereum-staking-guides) for the Merge. These are absolutely the industry standard and have helped so many people. I know from experience that Somer's guides are always thorough and accurate. If you previously used one of his guides to set up your rig (as I did) then the [supplementary guide](https://someresat.medium.com/supplementary-guide-to-staking-on-ethereum-for-existing-stakers-57493678a460) gives you only the necessary extra steps to become Merge-ready. The pages on the Ethereum.org website on [nodes and clients](https://ethereum.org/en/developers/docs/nodes-and-clients/) and [running a node](https://ethereum.org/en/developers/docs/nodes-and-clients/run-a-node/) have been [updated](https://twitter.com/TMIYChao/status/1559970029332058112) for the Merge (despite what the large banner at the top is saying when I view them). [自宅サーバーでETHをステーキングする方法](https://gure-it-memo.com/eth-staking/) covering Merge setup for Besu (ベース) and Lighthouse. (Naturally, the name Teku/ テク also comes via Japanese.) And EthStaker's [Merge Workshop #4](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jra2cx0Wcss) was a couple of days ago. There is so much help available in these sessions. Whatever approach you take, be sure to verify your setup against the [merge readiness checklist](https://launchpad.ethereum.org/en/merge-readiness). ## Staking Solo staking is trendy! Not only can you have your rig retweeted by Superphiz, but Leo Glisic is organising a [solo staker NFT initiative](https://twitter.com/Leo_Glisic/status/1558203895293259776), now accepting submissions for the NFT art style, with [cash rewards](https://www.ethstakerincentives.org/). If you're wondering what's in it for you, beyond an NFT, if you take up solo staking, [Marceau explains](https://twitter.com/marceaueth/status/1562539586118512641) with a helpful chart. ## Tooling Nethermind has been quietly working on their [sedge](https://github.com/NethermindEth/sedge) tool, which is "A one click setup tool" for Merge clients, using Docker images. On the execution side it supports Nethermind and Geth, and on the consensus side, Lighthouse, Lodestar, Prysm and Teku. The Kiln staking service (formerly SkillZ) explains how to [monitor staking at scale](https://www.kiln.fi/post/monitoring-ethereum-staking-infrastructure-at-scale). Even if you are not operating at scale, there's some good advice and useful stuff there for all stakers. Alex Stokes has [made a release](https://twitter.com/ralexstokes/status/1562123776552214529) of [alabaster](https://github.com/ralexstokes/ethereum-consensus/releases/tag/v0.1.0), an implementation of the consensus specs in Rust. In case you are wondering, the spec implementation makes up maybe less than 5% of a full client implementation, all things considered. But it will be very useful to any Rustaceans who want to play with the state transition, and maybe create some tooling. Reminder that the consensus spec itself is written in Python and [is executable](https://eth2book.info/altair/appendices/running). Dune shared seven of their top [dashboards](https://twitter.com/DuneAnalytics/status/1562021273575751680) presenting a variety of Eth2 and Merge data. Ever needed to download blocks from a non-canonical fork? I thought so. Well, Adrian Sutton has [the answers you seek](https://www.symphonious.net/2022/08/18/beacon-rest-api-fetching-blocks-on-a-fork/). ## The Great Explainers Toghrul Maharramov explains the validator [exit queue](https://twitter.com/toghrulmaharram/status/1562965677342101505). The current exit rate limit is 6 validators per epoch (1350 per day), which is useful to know if you expect to have to become a censoring validator and need to [gtfo](#Editorial-fallout-from-the-tornado) before the Merge. With the Merge looming, it's easy to forget that that's just the first delivery in the full Ethereum&nbsp;2 vision. There is plenty more to come. In that vein, Haym Salomon gives us a terrific Tweet-form overview of how Ethereum plans [to scale](https://twitter.com/SalomonCrypto/status/1559402384526258176): "The Roadmap to 100k Transactions per Second". Anjali Mishra has published a very nice explainer of the [Incentives of being Ethereum Validators](https://etherworld.co/2022/08/25/incentives-of-being-ethereum-validators/). ## Media and stuff Fortune Magazine put together an actually quite good article about [the Merge](https://fortune.com/2022/08/19/everything-to-know-about-the-ethereum-merge/) last week, "Everything you need to know". The excellent Ethereum Cat Herders' [Know your Client](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Flhe8xBTLKU&list=PL4cwHXAawZxoruie1hmYWJfiakpYivXft) series continues, with Artem Vorotnikov discussing [Akula and The Merge](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Flhe8xBTLKU). SSV Network's series of Twitter spaces reached its climax this week. First Anthony Sassano spoke with Alon Muroch on "Distributed Validator Tech as Staking Infrastructure", followed by Vasiliy and Izzy from Lido, and Darren and Dave from Rocket Pool on "Liquid Staking Design Choices". Here's [the link](https://twitter.com/ssv_network/status/1561706822259691522). I haven't yet heard it, but definitely plan to (Twitter spaces are a pain to listen to offline, but I think the talks will be [published](https://twitter.com/ssv_network/status/1562034978829000706) soon). ## Editorial: fallout from the tornado The storm of hot takes on the sanctioning of Tornado Cash by the US's OFAC has been relentless. I'm certainly not going add to the bluster. But just a few remarks in respect of how this might affect stakers. There is great speculation that not only US citizens who interact with the sanctioned addresses, but US stakers who create blocks containing those transactions, or US stakers who merely attest to blocks containing those transactions, could be treated as sanction-breakers. Concerns about this have prompted wide-ranging discussions about censorship of the Ethereum block chain, the implications of such censorship, and how we can maintain censorship resistance. These are all superb topics to consider, and I am actually pretty happy that our complacency bubble has been pricked by all this. Having said that, aiui (not legal advice) there is currently absolutely no requirement for node operators to censor transactions. There have been Ethereum addresses on the [SDN list](https://www.treasury.gov/ofac/downloads/sdnlist.txt) for ages and these did not send the community into a tailspin or freak out miners. OFAC might clarify this at some point, or they might not. Meanwhile, individual stakers will need to form their own views post-Merge. We spent some time discussing censorship and responses on last week's All Core Devs call. Vitalik made a couple of [useful observations](https://youtu.be/jJaCaS0WbIw?t=1633) about degrees of censorship. One way that stakers might censor is by simply refusing to include certain transactions in blocks that they propose. This is "self-censorship", and Ethereum is highly resistant to it. Only if close to 100% of stakers self-censor would the protocol itself become censoring. Conversely, even if only a small proportion of stakers does not self-censor then all transactions can get on chain eventually, albeit with degraded user experience, and possibly at high cost. Now, I doubt that many of us regard this as acceptable - and I would strongly recommend following Brian Armstrong's [commitment](https://twitter.com/brian_armstrong/status/1560016827253551104): if you feel you must self-censor then gtfo - but it is not the end of the world if some do this, and certainly not the end of Ethereum. More sinister is actively censoring transactions in other people's blocks. This could be done by configuring your execution client to declare any block containing certain transactions to be invalid, thus you would never attest to them or build on them. In general this is a losing strategy, but if over 50% of stake were to do this then the Ethereum protocol becomes censoring. [50+%](https://twitter.com/nicksdjohnson/status/1561811555716513792) attacks are always difficult to handle in blockchains. But, under proof of stake, we do at least have a defence against this. We can [agree as a community](https://ercwl.medium.com/the-case-for-social-slashing-59277ff4d9c7) that we will slash validators that actively censor like this - after all, they are acting against the protocol just as much as any validator that gets slashed automatically today. This would basically split the chain in two, a censoring chain and a non-censoring chain, and it would be very messy. But as a threat of last resort I expect it to be effective. This was raised on both the last All Core Devs call and yesterday's consensus devs call. Once again, if you feel you need to censor like this then it's absolutely better for you to just to gtfo now. It's worth noting that both of the censorship resistance criteria discussed above apply in exactly the same way to proof of stake and to proof of work, only in PoS we actually have a credible remedy for the second one, which is absolutely not the case in PoW. Notwithstanding the above, working towards greater censorship resistance is an absolutely worthy goal, and we have already seen some positive developments. Under pressure over the fact that they are known to censor transactions, Flashbots has [open sourced](https://writings.flashbots.net/writings/Flashbots-Relay-open-sourcing/) their relay code. This will make it much easier for third-party block builders to join the party, giving stakers more options over where they source their blocks from if they wish to be MEV extractors (it is [not compulsory](https://twitter.com/superphiz/status/1560603422281281536) to take MEV). A couple of organisations have declared that they plan to provide blocks independently of Flashbots. [bloXroute](https://bloxroutelabs.medium.com/bloxroute-is-on-track-for-the-merge-4a06de9eb6f0) indicated on the [EF Discord](https://discord.com/channels/595666850260713488/692062809701482577/1009216378307346462) that only one of their three block provider options would implement the OFAC list. Manifold Finance also plans to be a block builder, and [claims a degree](https://manifold-kb.netlify.app/docs/block-construction/blockconstruction-policies/) of censorship resistance. The ultimate solution is to have full in-protocol censorship resistance. Martin Köppelmann [reminded us](https://twitter.com/koeppelmann/status/1559146241325514754) about his idea for a [shutterised beacon chain](https://ethresear.ch/t/shutterized-beacon-chain/12249?u=benjaminion). This is a way for transactions to be submitted encrypted on chain, and only decrypted for execution later. Originally intended as a way to mitigate MEV extraction, it would also greatly enhance censorship resistance. Two birds, one stone (apologies, [@LefterisJP](https://twitter.com/LefterisJP)!). ## Research Paradigm has published a deep dive on [Data Availability Sampling](https://www.paradigm.xyz/2022/08/das) by Joachim Neu which has gone straight to the top of my reading list. This is all closely related to Danksharding, about which Yuval Domb has written a paper, [A Mathematical Theory of Danksharding](https://github.com/ingonyama-zk/papers/blob/main/danksharding_math.pdf). The other topic du jour is of course MEV-Boost: - [Approaches to complete privacy for MEV-Boost](https://ethresear.ch/t/approaches-to-complete-privacy-for-mev-boost/13376?u=benjaminion) by Mikerah and friends is a review of different ways to make the current protocol trustless, among other things. - Jannik Luhn expands on one of the approaches by proposing to remove trusted relays [using threshold encryption](https://ethresear.ch/t/removing-trusted-relays-in-mev-boost-using-threshold-encryption/13449?u=benjaminion). ## Regular Calls ### All Core Devs ACD call #145 took place on the 18th of August. - [Agenda](https://github.com/ethereum/pm/issues/592) - [Video](https://youtu.be/jJaCaS0WbIw?t=323) - Notes from [Tim Beiko](https://twitter.com/TimBeiko/status/1560345029511589888) and a write-up from [Christine Kim](https://docsend.com/view/2magweham8bc6ewy) We basically just ratified the Merge TTD and then moved into a discussion about censorship. First around censorship and MEV-Boost, and then about committing as devs to slash anyone actively censoring the network (as discussed above). The censorship conversation starts around [here](https://youtu.be/jJaCaS0WbIw?t=1082) in the recording and is worth a listen. ### Consensus devs Consensus devs call #94 took place on the 25th of August. * [Agenda](https://github.com/ethereum/pm/issues/598) * [Video](https://youtu.be/tjmpu8O-xsA?t=112) * My [quick notes](https://hackmd.io/@benjaminion/Hy_d7lryj), and a [write-up](https://docsend.com/view/68ijsabyy5m8ybi4) from Christine. ### EIP-4844 breakout Breakout room #3 took place on the 17th of August. - [Agenda](https://github.com/ethereum/pm/issues/586) - [Recording](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3s_od5WjN7Y) - [Notes](https://docs.google.com/document/d/1KgKZnb5P07rdLBb_nRCaXhzG_4PBoZXtFQNzKO2mrvc/edit) ## In other news - [Bounties](https://ethereum.org/en/bug-bounty/) for Merge-related bugs are [quadrupled](https://twitter.com/JBSchweitzer/status/1562416322516066304) until the 8th of September. Responsibly disclosing a critical bug could earn you up to $1m! - Danny's [Finalized no. 37](https://blog.ethereum.org/2022/08/26/finalized-no-37), announcing... - [The Merge Data Challenge](https://esp.ethereum.foundation/merge-data-challenge): prizes of up to $30k for blog posts submitted by the 31st of October. The [Medalla data challenge](https://hackmd.io/@benjaminion/wnie2_201031#Medalla-data-challenge) two years ago produced some outstanding work. - MEV-Boost Status Update, [Aug 12-26, 2022](https://boost.flashbots.net/mev-boost-status-updates/mev-boost-status-update-aug-12-27-2022). The latest from Flashbots on being a post-Merge block builder. - The latest from Stereum, [Under the Surface #014](https://twitter.com/stereumdev/status/1563227879009165313). - Rocket Pool now has a [YouTube channel](https://www.youtube.com/c/rocketpool). ## And finally... This time, it really is "and finally". After much consideration, I've decided that this will be the last regular edition of WNIE2. One hundred editions over very nearly four years have brought us right to the verge of the Merge. I had no idea when I naively embarked on this journey what it would entail, but it has been enormous fun, and I've made so many friends along the way. I am absolutely not going anywhere! I might still do an occasional Special Edition. I might invest in upping my Twitter game a bit. I remain PM for Teku. You'll still see me around plenty. Above all, I need to focus much more ruthlessly on [The Book](https://eth2book.info/latest). Writing is so hard, and I very much want to create an excellent resource for all of you, your children, and your children's children. So, here's to enjoying an outstanding Merge together - see you on the other side. Cheers!🍾 * * * [![[Twitter]](https://benjaminion.xyz/newineth2/img/twitter.svg =40x40)](https://twitter.com/benjaminion_xyz) Follow me on [Twitter](https://twitter.com/benjaminion_xyz). [![[RSS]](https://benjaminion.xyz/newineth2/img/rss.svg =32x32)](https://benjaminion.xyz/newineth2/rss_feed.xml) We also have an [RSS feed](https://benjaminion.xyz/newineth2/rss_feed.xml). [Give Feedback](https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfkESc4CmNfRGHHjWfNeF3ceLwrXDvynetda4sKfJFJ71Oabw/viewform).