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Author Topic: Alert: chain fork caused by pre-0.8 clients dealing badly with large blocks  (Read 85915 times)
whitenight639
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March 12, 2013, 02:50:30 AM
 #121

So let me get this right,

IF we'd all upgrade to .08 then the blocksize restriction would have been lifted, but because not many did we now have a fork and because the 0.7 blockchain is longer we should revert to that until a proper upgrade path to 0.8 is made available?

so is 0.8 inherently flawed, I thought there was a consensus that the blocksize should be lifted? I think this is very poor

 A simple retards guide summing up key points for and against blocksize restriction or lifting should have been stickied in the forum for some time and a poll taken by everybody not just miners, devs and long time posters.

An upgrade should have been built and tested on an isolated blockchain if that is possible,

A announcement about the upcoming availability of the upgrade should have been stickied referring to the poll results and post aforementioned,

A target date and block number should have been specified and downloads of the new client should have been made available along with an "alert£"

Some time before the specified date / block another last chance alert should hav been issued, anyone not upgrading after the date / block should have been left in the dust.



0.8 did not lift the blocksize. The block being big is just a specific problem, it could have been a block too small or too strange (the problem was, however, that the block was very big—but not "too big"). The problem was 0.7 and below rejecting a block that should have been accepted.

0.8 is not flawed. The flaw lied in 0.7 and below. If an upgrade was hastened, the problem would not have been a problem at all.


So why are we being told to downgrade if there is an issue with 0.7 accepting / producing (the rare) malformed block, has this issue been addressed in 0.8?

If this is like a zero day issue then everyone rushing to back to the 0.7 that still has the issue is strange, especially if the 0.8 client can integrate the blocks / blockchain produced from 0.7 clients.


It's like finding a vulnarability in XP and then asking Vista users to downgrade to it.  

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March 12, 2013, 02:50:49 AM
 #122

0.8 is not flawed. The flaw lied in 0.7 and below. If an upgrade was hastened, the problem would not have been a problem at all.
Sadly, 0.8 is flawed— its "one job" was to faithfully follow the behavior of 0.7, "bugs" and all. It did not. Had we known about this behavior in 0.7 or had testing turned it up we would have made sure 0.8 behaved the same way.

This is the nature of a distributed consensus system.  The primary definition of right and wrong is "consistent" and if you aren't consistent you aren't right, no matter what.
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March 12, 2013, 02:51:10 AM
 #123

Let no one say that pooled mining is bad for bitcoin now, given how quickly the pool operators corrected this potential disaster and coordinated its recovery... It would have taken a lot longer for thousands of solo miners to have corrected it.

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March 12, 2013, 02:51:58 AM
 #124

Is there a plan to safely upgrade the network so that blocks like this can be accepted in the future?  Or is it undesirable to have accepted this block?
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March 12, 2013, 02:52:29 AM
 #125

0.8 is not flawed. The flaw lied in 0.7 and below. If an upgrade was hastened, the problem would not have been a problem at all.
Sadly, 0.8 is flawed— its "one job" was to faithfully follow the behavior of 0.7, "bugs" and all. It did not. Had we known about this behavior in 0.7 or had testing turned it up we would have made sure 0.8 behaved the same way.

This is the nature of a distributed consensus system.  The primary definition of right and wrong is "consistent" and if you aren't consistent you aren't right, no matter what.


The testing should have happened with the older version of Bitcoin. I don't see how testing 0.8 would fix this issue, given that 0.8 fixes the bug.

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March 12, 2013, 02:52:51 AM
 #126

The original post lacked info for "regular users".  Here it is:

(1) If you are a "regular user" (not a miner), the best thing is to do nothing and wait a couple hours.
(2) If you are a "regular user",  Upgrading, downgrading, whining, FUD, etc, will make no difference.  Only miners have an incentive to do anything.
(3) Regardless of who you are, your transactions are not dead, your coins are not lost.  They will just temporarily be held up.  If you sent a transaction within the last few hours, it may take a few more hours before it's sorted out.
(4) If you insist on processing transactions right now it's probably best to wait 30+ confirmations.  It's just due diligence though ... an attacker would still need a tremendous amount of mining power, quick thinking, and a victim willing to part with a lot of BTC.
(5) By tomorrow this will be in the past and everything will appear to be normal again.  If you slept through this, you'd never know that anything happend (except for the price drop).

Let me reiterate, your coins are not at risk, your transactions are not lost.  It'll just take some time for the network to "iron itself out."  Everything will be okay.

Very good info.
+1

The testing should have happened with the older version of Bitcoin. I don't see how testing 0.8 would fix this issue, given that 0.8 fixes the bug.
It depends on your point of view to which client has the "bug".  The problem was an inconsistency with the clients, so you could say since 0.7 was already out 0.8 was the inconsistent client.

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March 12, 2013, 02:53:23 AM
 #127

Let no one say that pooled mining is bad for bitcoin now, given how quickly the pool operators corrected this potential disaster and coordinated its recovery... It would have taken a lot longer for thousands of solo miners to have corrected it.

If mining were less centralized, the 0.8 chain would have become the default, and the instructions would instead be "everyone upgrade now".
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March 12, 2013, 02:53:30 AM
 #128

Let no one say that pooled mining is bad for bitcoin now, given how quickly the pool operators corrected this potential disaster and coordinated its recovery... It would have taken a lot longer for thousands of solo miners to have corrected it.
It's not that simple. If everyone was solo mining about equivalent, it wouldn't have been as troublesome!

Side note: p2pool is broken by this. Keep up with forrestv's updates if you use it.

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March 12, 2013, 02:56:31 AM
 #129

Apology: I did not read the whole thread before replying. But I agree it needs explanation.

I think what everyone wants to know is, are my coins safe? or am I holding useless 0.8 forked chain coins?

This needs to be answered please.

1) There will be no official announcement, because there is no authority for Bitcoin.

2) Nothing mayor has happened, your Bitcoins has been and are safe. All transactions already have been reprocessed on new fork. In fact the very first few blocks on new branch should contain all transactions in old branch. The main difference is who will get fees for these transactions and 25BTC mining profit. Otherwise the whole event has no impact. The threat of double spending is theoretical, because when fork occurred there were miners working on both branches.

3) The ramifications are and will be purely psychological. The main one is loss of confidence in the brand name. This may cause lowering of exchange rates and this in turn may trigger stop loss orders. The end result is panic on exchanges. We have seen something like this over year ago and Bitcoin is still kicking.

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March 12, 2013, 03:01:46 AM
 #130

Apology: I did not read the whole thread before replying. But I agree it needs explanation.

I think what everyone wants to know is, are my coins safe? or am I holding useless 0.8 forked chain coins?

This needs to be answered please.

1) There will be no official announcement, because there is no authority for Bitcoin.

2) Nothing mayor has happened, your Bitcoins has been and are safe. All transactions already have been reprocessed on new fork. In fact the very first few blocks on new branch should contain all transactions in old branch. The main difference is who will get fees for these transactions and 25BTC mining profit. Otherwise the whole event has no impact. The threat of double spending is theoretical, because when fork occurred there were miners working on both branches.

3) The ramifications are and will be purely psychological. The main one is loss of confidence in the brand name. This may cause lowering of exchange rates and this in turn may trigger stop loss orders. The end result is panic on exchanges. We have seen something like this over year ago and Bitcoin is still kicking.

Very well said.  That's exactly it--I'm about to go to bed for the night and I'm sure tomorrow morning, the price will be the only indicator that anything even happened.  I'm sure there are going to be a TON of bitcoin users who won't have any clue as to what went on here.
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March 12, 2013, 03:03:37 AM
 #131

Does anyone have an idea when the next bitcoin version will be announced, so that this can all be behind us?
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March 12, 2013, 03:03:46 AM
 #132

Very well said.  That's exactly it--I'm about to go to bed for the night and I'm sure tomorrow morning, the price will be the only indicator that anything even happened.  I'm sure there are going to be a TON of bitcoin users who won't have any clue as to what went on here.

I think the exchange rate isn't going to go too nuts, becuase there's plenty of people who realize how much of a non-issue this is and are buying cheap coins as fast as the people freaking out are selling them.  The price will drop, but not to $5.  

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March 12, 2013, 03:05:07 AM
 #133

...
It's like finding a vulnarability in XP and then asking Vista users to downgrade to it.  

Most users I know of would have been delighted to do so.  Sorry for the OT.

---

Bringing things back on-topic, I personally am surprised and delighted that we move in this direction (back to the universal fork as trunk) rather than force an upgrade.  I've a sense that it will spur a correction which will ease into an upward trending block size though, and since I don't agree with this I find it unfortunate.

---

Although at least one person has probably already pointed this out, it bears repeating that Bitcoin is still and experimental system, and has only just started to begin the climb to where it could end up.  Nobody should be totally shocked at this type of glitch, and everyone who understands systems of this nature should expect more where this one came from.  Hopefully none of them will represent a terminal event for the solution, but it is certainly possible.


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March 12, 2013, 03:07:26 AM
 #134

I'm @ 225441 29 coin unconfirmed still catching up.Started @ around 225436 been a few hours.No green bar, but its spinning..Looks  it dropped $10 in less then a day.I think its good as its moving just taking a longer time..
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March 12, 2013, 03:11:49 AM
 #135

Let no one say that pooled mining is bad for bitcoin now, given how quickly the pool operators corrected this potential disaster and coordinated its recovery... It would have taken a lot longer for thousands of solo miners to have corrected it.

I think the bigger problem is setting a precedent of coordinated action.  That cannot be relied on!  What really would have happened if the chips fell where they may?
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March 12, 2013, 03:11:51 AM
 #136

The sequence of blocks on blockchain.info currently reads 225449, 225450, 225451, 225441, 225452.
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March 12, 2013, 03:13:11 AM
 #137

why the hell is Deepbit only on 0.3.21 and Luke on 0.6.0?
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March 12, 2013, 03:13:34 AM
 #138

This is being dealt with right now. Tomorrow it will be yet another example of the capability of an OS/P2P network to deal with and solve problems. We will walk out of this being stronger than before and we will have another story to tell our grandkids about the exciting times back then when Bitcoin became big. Priceless Smiley.

See it as a stress-test that no bank would survive.

If you don't see it like that and want to get rid of your coins at a low price please feel free to pm me and make me an offer, I will be online another 15 minutes before I go to bed and have a deep sleep even as an 'all-in-person' Wink.

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March 12, 2013, 03:15:00 AM
 #139

So has a majority hashrate-share of the mining pools finished downgrading yet?  I.e., are we definitely now on the path to adopting the 0.7 blockchain?

If all the sovereign non-cryptocurrencies will eventually collapse from hyperinflation, you can't afford *not* to invest in Bitcoin...  See my blog at http://minetopics.blogspot.com/ .

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March 12, 2013, 03:15:20 AM
 #140

The sequence of blocks on blockchain.info currently reads 225449, 225450, 225451, 225441, 225452.

no
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