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BNB Chain Set to Undergo Upgrades For Compatibility and Finality

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Binance’s BNB Chain is set to undergo two significant upgrades in the form of hard forks this August. The updates show that the blockchain becomes more compatible with other Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) networks. It will also fortify its security against malicious attacks on the blockchain.

The hard forks are part of the BNB Chain mainnet v1.2.9, which was released on August 3. This version introduced the thoroughly tested Plato and Hertz hard forks, whose deployments are set for August 10 and August 30, respectively.

Plato Upgrade Bolsters BNB Chain’s Security

The Plato upgrade, which took place earlier today, is meant to make the chain more secure by preventing the reorganization of blocks. This upgrade introduced BEP-126, which was first proposed back in 2022.

BEP-126 implements the fast finality mechanism to finalize a block such that, once the block has been completed, it won’t be reverted forever.

Speaking to Coitelegraph Arno Bauer, a senior solution architect at BNB Chain, the fast finality mechanism is expected to reduce the chance of chain reorganization. It will also further stabilize the process of block production while allowing users to access accurate information from the latest finalized block instantly.

Bauer further explained that finality is a core principle of the entire blockchain technology and cements its main functionality. Bauer said that finality, which refers to the point at which a transaction or block of transactions cannot be changed or undone, is essential in maintaining trust, accuracy, and credibility in the blockchain.

It also helps prevent double spending, said Bauer adding, “Overall, BEP-126 aims to enhance blockchain security and efficiency on the BNB Smart Chain by introducing a fast finality mechanism.”

According to the BNB Chain draft, the BEP-126 follows a sequence of steps to achieve fast finality. First, a block is proposed to the network by a validator, and other validators then receive that block. Validators then create a vote message by signing for the block with their private keys. When the immediate parent block has sufficient votes, voting aggregation occurs, where the validator votes are collected into a pool.

BNB Chain Finality rule
Source: BNB Chain Forum

When voting for blocks, validators must abide by specific rules. Those validators always vote once and only once on one height and always vote for the child of its previous vote within a predefined number of blocks.

For a block to be “justified”, according to the finality rules, its direct child block’s header has to have an attestation. It can only be finalized if the block and its direct child are justified.

For participating in the voting process, BNB Chain’s validators earn rewards. Similarly, failure to adhere to the voting rules results in penalties, mirroring Ethereum’s stake-proof protocol.

Hertz Hard Fork: Enhancing BNB Chain’s Compatibility

The Hertz hard fork is scheduled for the end of August, which aims to keep the BNB Chain up to date with the most recent advancements in EVM blockchains. As Bauer explains, the Berlin and London forks of Ethereum require the BNB Chain to maintain its block and transaction structures and base EVM.

“Therefore, for compatibility reasons, it is important that those EIPs are also enabled on BSC to ensure a smooth development and ecosystem growth,” he said.

According to Bauer, the BNB Chain’s rapid finality mechanism should make the environment for decentralized apps (DApps) safer while enhancing their responsiveness and efficiency. The upgrades will also bring changes that DApp developers should know.

For instance, a restriction courtesy of BEP-228 will prevent the deployment of any smart contracts starting with 0xEF. Due to the Hertz upgrade, there will be new transaction types, such as AccessList and DynamicFee(1559).

All in all, these changes set the BNB Chain for more seamless and secure transactions and operations.

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