Ethereum Suffers from Chain Splits Due to Technical Issue, over 54% Network Affected


The Ethereum network has suffered a chain split as some validators were running operations on the older versions of the Ethereum network. Client Geth were cut off from the main network.

This occurrence of the incident as validators cut off refused to update their software to suppress the impact of a bug in the network. The chain split has been identified to affect about 54% of the network as the Geth client harbours as much as 75% of all Ethereum nodes, with about 73% running at the time of the fork.

According to a tweet from Ethereum Foundation security lead Martin Swende, the bug specifically impacted v1.10.1 and earlier versions of Geth clients. 

“A consensus bug hit #ethereum mainnet today, exploiting the consensus-bug that was fixed in Geth v1.10.8… Fortunately, most miners were already updated, and the correct chain is also the longest (canon),” In a follow-up tweet, Sweden said that “it was a really close impacting over 50% of Ethereum clients leads to a fork.” 

The Ethereum network is known to always suffer chain split due to a bug in the Geth client. A similar event was observed in November 2020, and a different approach was taken to resolve the bug behind the scenes.

Back then, the developers were faulted for the split as many believe a more forthcoming update from the team would have fueled the update by most miners and prevented the break. 

This time around, the bug was first pointed out a few days ago, and the calls for an update was not promptly adhered to by miners. However, most mining pools, including Flexpool, and Binance, were notified, and prompt actions were taken.

While thought leaders in the Ethereum ecosystem have advocated for a temporary cool off in transactions on Geth clients, the threat by virtue of the chain split will easily be resolved when most validators update their software to the corrected version. 
Image source: Shutterstock

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