On Thursday, Ethereum’s developers settled on a March 2023 release window for the network’s next hard fork, codenamed “Shanghai.” Withdrawals of staked ether (ETH) on the Beacon Chain will be possible after this upgrade, thanks to EIP 4895.
Ethereum developers confirmed today that enabling ETH withdrawals will certainly be a significant feature to be added in the Shanghai update, which is not surprising given the almost $19 billion worth of ETH now staked with the network, according to data aggregated by Dune Analytics.
It was also decided that another major scaling improvement, proto-danksharding (also known as EIP 4844), would be addressed by a second hard fork in the fall of 2023.
Proto-danksharding is a much-anticipated precursor to danksharding, a method by which massive volumes of data on Ethereum rollup, a mechanism used to bundle several Ethereum transactions and treat them as one fast, inexpensive transactions, may one day be validated using only sets of data.
Sharding, proposed in EIP 4844, would boost Ethereum’s scalability by dividing the network into several smaller networks, or “shards,” to handle more transactions at once and reduce gas costs.
Those who have ETH locked in the Beacon Chain staking smart contract should rest easy knowing that the devs will have ample time to concentrate on every issue thanks to the two forks.
Staked Ether Withdrawal a Priority
However, developers noted that if any other upgrade contained in Shanghai hinders its ability to be deployed by March, those upgrades may have to be placed on hold to guarantee that staked ETH withdrawal functionality is pushed out as soon as feasible. As a result of this decision, other planned improvements to Ethereum may or may not be included in the upgrade.
EOF is one such feature Ethereum developers aim to incorporate in Shanghai, but may delay if needed. EOF is an upgrade to Ethereum’s Virtual Machine (EVM), which deploys smart contracts.
The EVM has not been updated in over two years; while is desperately needed. Such maintenance was avoided during the time of the merge since it would have added enormous complication to an already difficult technical event.