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Monero Bulletproofs Update Brings Greater Speed and Privacy to the System

Monero Bulletproofs Update Brings Greater Speed and Privacy to the System

The privacy-centric Monero (XMR) network has successfully hard forked earlier today implementing the Monero 0.13.0 “Beryllium Bullet” update. In contrast to previous updates, who were aimed at tackling the ASIC miners, the newest network upgrade is a major protocol change, via the intoduction of bulletproofs. In addition to a myriad of bug fixes and reduced transaction sizes, the two things that got the XMR community excited the most are bulletproofing and the updated PoW algorithm.

The update came about alongside the block 1685555 and has been announced a week prior, in an official blog post. Hard forks are not uncommon in the XMR ecosystem, as they are pre-scheduled and take place twice a year. Notably, they do not create any additional coins and are supported by the community and the developer team.

Ledger Nano S - The secure hardware wallet

Bulletproofs give an additional layer of security for the users, hiding the number of coins, sent in transactions. Also, according to the blog post, bulletproofing results in “an 80% reduction in transaction size, which then translates to an 80% reduction in fees as well. The space savings are even better with multiple-output proofs. This represents a significant decrease in transaction sizes. Further, our initial testing shows that the time to verify a bulletproof is lower than for the existing range proofs, meaning speedier blockchain validation.“

Developers urge the XMR users to upgrade their wallets and nodes as using the old version increases the risk of losing transactions. Monero is the first major cryptocurrency to use Bulletproofs and is actively trying to remain as decentralized as possible. XMR miners have already reported that mining difficulty has dropped since the update. Additionally, the Monero ledger will require significantly less hard disk space.

Monero’s continuous battle with Bitmain’s ASIC miners has also took another turn as the developers have updated the Proof-of-Work consensus in a bid to stave off ASIC mining. Monero’s objective is to let all its users mine the coin, which is hard to achieve due to ASIC-powered mining farms, which have gained huge influence over other networks, say bitcoin. If required, XMR developers have agreed to implement the ASIC resistance updates more frequently than twice a year and today‘s upgrade in only the latest move in the continuing battle.

ASIC mining undermines the core principle of decentralization as enormous amounts of hashing power is concentrated among a few dozens of miners. However, Monero updates can still be overcome by ASIC developers, and the XMR team has acknowledged that, “ASICs may be inevitable, but we feel that any transition to an ASIC-dominated network needs to be as egalitarian as possible in order to foster decentralization”.

The network upgrade did not result in any significant movement of the XMR price, as the 10th-largest digital asset traded around $103.70 at press time.

Image Source: “Flickr”

Ledger Nano S - The secure hardware wallet