Ethereum’s Berlin upgrade is set for mid-April the company announced. In a blog post from protocol support lead Tim Beiko, he added that the first testnet to upgrade, Ropsten, will take place on March 10.
The highly-anticipated Ethereum Berlin upgrade is scheduled to be activated on the mainnet at block 12,244,000. This is expected to happen on April 14, but because block time production can vary, the exact timing might change.
This hard fork is intended to help the Ethereum network by optimizing the usage of gas fees. Additionally, it helps to mitigate against potential Denial of Service attacks.
Following the first testnet, the upgrade will go live on Goerli on March 17, and Rinkeby on March 24.
The announcement itself notes that “Ethereum node operators should upgrade their nodes prior to the fork block on the networks they want to participate in. Due to block time variability, it is recommended to update several days before the expected date.”
The Ethereum Berlin upgrade has long been expected, but has been delayed multiple times for various reasons. One such reason included centralization concerns because of “critical dependence” on the Geth client.
Ethereum Berlin is an Upgrade of Ethereum 1.0
Ethereum Berlin is an upgrade to the current Ethereum 1.0 proof-of-work blockchain and was originally scheduled for the summer of 2020. This latest upgrade follows the Istanbul and Muir Glacier upgrades launched in December 2019 and January 2020 respectively.
Over time, the upgrade saw multiple changes in the proposed EIPs. Additionally, its development also coincided with the launch of the Ethereum 2.0 beacon chain in December of 2020.
The Ethereum 2.0 upgrade will see the network migrating to a less energy-intensive proof-of-stake consensus mechanism. But before that takes place, the current blockchain will continue to see upgrades. The next upgrade, scheduled for July of 2021 is called London. That will include EIP-1559, an update aimed at overhauling the way Ethereum transaction fees work.