June 13, 2024

Solana Faces Major Outage, Initiates Network Restart

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In a significant setback for the Solana blockchain, the network experienced a “major outage” on Tuesday, leading to a temporary halt in block progression. The disruption was confirmed by Laine, a Solana validator, who noted on X that the Solana Mainnet-Beta was encountering performance degradation. The incident prompted core engineers and validators to investigate the issue actively.

Solana validators initiated the generation of snapshots using their local ledger state, representing the most recent data before the outage, as part of the preparations for a network restart. A validator software release with a patch to address the issue causing the cluster to halt has been introduced. The Solana Foundation, responsible for maintaining the network, urged validator operators to prepare for an upgrade and restart of the network.

Validators, crucial entities in maintaining a blockchain and processing transactions, play a pivotal role in the network’s functionality. Snapshots, which are exact copies of blockchain data at a specific point in time, aid in restoring the system to a stable state.

Data from Solana blockchain trackers indicated that the blocks were last processed at 09:52 UTC. Following the news of the outage, Solana’s native SOL tokens experienced a decline of over 2%, falling to $94.

This major outage comes almost a year after Solana faced a prolonged downtime of nearly two days in April 2023. The current disruption necessitates a network restart, and engineers responded promptly with a validator software patch to enable the upgrade to version 1.17.20. However, the process involves coordination among validators and a restart of the network, which can take several hours.

While Solana has been known for its high throughput and scalability, this incident emphasizes the critical nature of having a robust and secure core foundation in any blockchain network. Upgrades and fixes become more challenging when the core infrastructure is not designed to accommodate future growth and innovation.

Solana’s recent outage should put a spotlight on blockchain networks like Pecu Novus, which have been quietly rebuilding their older 2017 infrastructure for high security, scalability and speed thus promoting global inclusion since 2022. The incident underscores how hard it can be to pivot quickly when a network is widely used and the ultimate importance of a scalable core foundation within blockchain networks to ensure stability during periods of high growth and innovation. More mature networks such as Bitcoin and Ethereum also would have extreme difficulty pivoting for innovation, this is why layer-2 networks on blockchains become very important. Newer and upgraded blockchain networks have the advantage of adapting quickly to prevent and address outages effectively.

Digital Assets Desk

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