The Fortuna Hard Fork: Coming in June

The second major protocol upgrade of the æternity protocol is scheduled to activate at block height 90800 (~June 5th, 2019). The Fortuna Release is already available in GitHub and live on the Testnet.

During the past few weeks, æternity developers focused on preparing the 3.x.x Release of the æternity node. All consensus and API-breaking features were merged into the master node and released as Fortuna Release Candidate 1 (RC1), versioned as 3.0.0-rc.1.

On May 20, a hard fork was triggered on the UAT Testnet upgrading all Testnet nodes to version RC1. Currently, all UAT nodes are running the latest version — 3.0.1, which includes a bug fix over the 3.0.0 Release. Developers are now able to test the compatibility of their software on the Testnet and make sure that their æpps and tools will function properly after the Fortuna upgrade.

The Fortuna Release (3.0.1) is now available in GitHub and anyone willing to support the Fortuna fork can update their æternity node:

Fortuna Tech Features

Introducing Generalized Accounts (GAs)

The main technological feature that will be introduced in the Fortuna fork will be generalized accounts. GAs address two main issues currently experienced in blockchain platforms:

  1. Lack of flexibility when controlling accounts.
  2. Requirement to own an account in order to invoke a smart contract and pay for its execution.

Generalized accounts will significantly enhance AE wallet flexibility, UX and developer experience. They enable better recovery options, multi-sig wallets, introduction of spending limits, and new security mechanisms such as vaults and covenants. Creating AE token wallets will become possible with ECDSA, EdDSA, and other cryptographic signatures. EdDSA is a Schnorr signature variant based on Twisted Edwards curves.

GAs will become a unique feature of the æternity protocol with Fortuna.

If you want to learn more about generalized accounts, have a look here:

Preparing for Virtual State Channels (VSCs)

In the period between the Minerva and Fortuna upgrades, the team led by Ulf Wiger and Dimitar Ivanov focused on improving the usability and security of æternity’s protocol-integrated State Channels. The WebSocket APIs were enhanced with various functionalities and now expose important parameters that enable better UX. The team improved off-chain transaction security by adding a whole new layer of checks.

VSCs rely on participants reaching consensus on state updates, so much of the work was dedicated to synchronising on-chain and off-chain environments. The State Channel’s Finite State Machine was greatly improved. It now features a dispute mechanism and handles numerous edge cases. æternity’s VSCs will most probably become part of the core protocol after the third protocol upgrade — Release 4.0.0 (currently unnamed)

Work on the Fast æternity Transaction Engine (FATE)

The fundamental idea behind the FATE VM is to raise the abstraction level to something that matches the objects in the blockchain. Instead of building a low-level general VM, such as for example the Ethereum VM, we want to incorporate high level concepts, such as tokens, oracles, and state channels, directly into the VM instructions. FATE continues to be a work-in-progress and will be incorporated into the third scheduled hard fork planned for September. More insights on FATE can be found in the protocol documentation (work in progress) and this article written for WeAreDevelopers conference:

72 million Tokens Migrated

More than 72 million Ethereum AE tokens were migrated to the æternity Mainnet in Phase 2. A part of that amount came from exchanges that announced their support for the Mainnet AE token and migrated their users’ ERC20 AE tokens in Phase 2. The following exchanges will support the æternity native token once the Fortuna hard fork is adopted by the community (random order):

  • Binance
  • Huobi Global
  • OKEX
  • DragonEx
  • ZB
  • Fcoin
  • Bigone
  • Coinw
  • AEX

If you have any questions or comments related to the Fortuna Release, share them in the Forum.

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