Understanding the Ethereum Hard Fork Constantinople

Constantinople is a long planned upgrade to Ethereum. It is scheduled for February 28, 2019, but may be pushed back. Although it is a hard fork, it is not meant to create a new token.

What block does the fork occur at? Block number 7,280,000. This block has occurred, so the fork is now live.

It is actually two forks: There are actually two forks occurring on at same block. They are the planned Constantinople and a fix to Constantinople called St. Petersburg.

What do I need to do? Most users need to do nothing. However, anyone running their own node needs to upgrade their client (see below).

What is Ethereum St. Petersburg? The original fork was supposed to occur in January, there was some additions and the fork was pushed back. The additions are called St. Petersburg.

The delay from Jan to late Feb: As noted, the Ethereum Constantinople / St. Petersburg upgrade was pushed back from January. It is now set to occur at block number 7,280,000 (predicted to occur Thursday, February 28, 2019). The exact date is subject to change and the fork could still be pushed back.

What You Need to Know About Constantinople / St. Petersburg

While some hard forks come about due to a disagreement over the direction of a network, and for this reason they result in two viable assets, other hard forks come about due to a general consensus on updating the network. In this case, it is a hard fork that has been long planned as part of the total Ethereum road map.

All that is happening here is that updates are being made to Ethereum which will require users to update their software (if they are running their own node). Otherwise, all exchanges and third party wallets should naturally be updating their software for you.

Anyone who had ETH / ETH tokens on the old chain will have them on the new one, the expected result is for all users to switch to the new chain and the old one to stop being used (it was like this with past planned Ethereum forks).

In sum, most users will never even notice the update!

The concept behind the upgrades is to improve the Ethereum network in some key ways in order to act as a bridge between the current build and the planned “Ethereum 2.0” build called “Serenity” (which will occur over the next few years).

Thus, ideally this will speed up the network while the bigger plan improvements are in the works.

The proposed activation point was originally block 7080000 (around Jan 16, 2019). However, there has already been talk of slight delays, and thus I don’t have a reliable current estimate (although Jan – Feb 2019 should still be a reasonable estimate). <—— Remember, it was indeed pushed back to Feb.

TIP: Beware of scams! It is likely there will be some scams trying to profit off low information coiners, so don’t go downloading “Ethereum fork wallets” and importing your keys into any wallet (unless you know what you are doing). There is no legit Ethereum fork producing free coins!

Download the Updated Client

Download the latest version of your Ethereum client (these are official links, feel free to verify for yourself using the official blog post below):

For a full and detailed explanation, please see Ethereum.org’s Ethereum Constantinople/St. Petersburg Upgrade Announcement.

Author: Thomas DeMichele

Thomas DeMichele has been working in the cryptocurrency information space since 2015 when CryptocurrencyFacts.com was created. He has contributed to MakerDAO, Alpha Bot (the number one crypto bot on Discord),...

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