A system-wide upgrade otherwise known as a hard fork appears to have split the bitcoin cash network in two.
Bitcoin Cash is the fourth largest cryptocurrency in the world and possesses a market capitalization of over $6 billion. The chain split occurred after the bitcoin cash network tried to upgrade to new software at block number 582,679, according to data from BitMEX Research’s Forkmonitor tool.
As noted by a user on Reddit, one version of the software by bitcoin cash developer group – Bitcoin ABC – carried a code bug affecting the bitcoin cash mempool that was unrelated to the upgrade itself.
Similar to the bitcoin blockchain, bitcoin cash requires miners to validate transactions and append new blocks. The mempool consists of all pending transactions on the blockchain awaiting approval by a miner.
As stated by Reddit user “FerriestaPatronum“:
“Looks like there was a small bug in the mempool-acceptance rules for after the [hard fork]…From what I currently understand, it looks like the operation count was being validated with the old rules, not the new one.”
Since then, however, developers have released new code to fix the bug. According to data from CoinDance and comments from observers, the bug resulted in a string of empty transaction blocks prior to the fix.
Vin Armani – CTO of bitcoin cash application CoinText – reaffirmed to CoinDesk: “Blocks were going in empty for about an hour and a half. Now the mempool is clear and transactions are going into blocks normally. All is back to normal.”
Yet it is unclear at this time how many nodes – that is, computer servers running Bitcoin ABC software – have upgraded to the fixed software.
In response to the issue, crypto exchange Poloniex announced that it was pausing withdrawals and deposits in light of the hard fork issue.
To this, Poloniex Exchange tweeted:
“BCH had an issue with the planned hard fork scheduled for today. As a result, we have disabled deposits and withdrawals for BCHABC until further notice. BCH core developers are working on it. Thank you for your patience.”
This is a developing story and will be updated. The excerpt of this story has been updated to clarify that the code bug was unrelated to the hard fork code itself.
Crossed fork image via Shutterstock