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  • Writer's pictureTeresa Pace

Dencun's mainnet approaches as Ethereum nears its activation following the successful implementation on the Sepolia testnet.



The Dencun upgrade recently took effect on the second of three Ethereum testnets, marking a significant step toward its integration into the mainnet. The rollout of the Dencun upgrade within the Ethereum ecosystem is progressing smoothly, with the Sepolia testnet activation being particularly notable for its absence of issues.

In a prior report by Cointelegraph, the Dencun network upgrade had been implemented on the Goerli testnet on Jan. 17. This deployment introduced various Ethereum Improvement Proposals (EIPs), including EIP-4844, designed to enable proto-danksharding. Proto-danksharding is anticipated to reduce layer-2 transaction fees substantially. Unlike the Goerli activation, which experienced a four-hour delay due to a bug, the Sepolia upgrade proceeded without incident on Jan. 30, as Ethereum educator Anthony Sassano highlighted.

There is growing optimism, as suggested by Galaxy Digital researcher Christine Kim, that the mainnet activation of Dencun is becoming increasingly likely. However, this is contingent on the successful activation of the upgrade on Ethereum's final Holesky testnet, scheduled for Feb. 7.

The Dencun upgrade encompasses significant modifications to Ethereum's consensus and execution layers, as detailed in an official announcement from the Ethereum Foundation. Its impact on the cost of layer-2 scaling protocols within the Ethereum ecosystem is expected to be substantial. Proto-danksharding specifically targets reducing the cost of rollups, which aggregate transactions and data off-chain, submitting computational proof to the Ethereum blockchain.

EIP-4844, a crucial component of the Dencun upgrade, introduces data blobs that can be sent and attached to blocks. These blobs, containing data inaccessible to the Ethereum Virtual Machine, are designed to be deleted after a certain period, leading to a significant reduction in transaction costs. Layer-2 scaling protocols, integral to the Ethereum ecosystem, stand to benefit significantly from EIP-4844.

Since Ethereum's transition to a proof-of-stake consensus mechanism following the Merge in 2022, layer-2 networks have become increasingly essential for providing fast, low-fee transactions for decentralized applications and Ethereum-based platforms. The performance of these networks is also reliant on layer-1 upgrades, such as the Dencun upgrade, to further decrease costs.

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