The Constantinople and St. Petersburg upgrades to the ethereum blockchain are finally set to happen this week, according to an official blog.
The blog says: “The Ethereum network will be undergoing a scheduled upgrade at block number 7,280,000, which is predicted to occur on Thursday, February 28, 2019. The exact date is subject to change depending on block times between now and then and could be activated 1–2 days before or after. A countdown timer can be seen at https://amberdata.io/blocks/7280000. You can monitor the network upgrade in real time at http://forkmon.ethdevops.io/.”
If you are confused as to why the upgrade has two names, ethereum explains: “The reason that this network upgrade has two names is because the original Constantinople network upgrade was postponed and two protocol upgrades will need to occur on the same block number in order to fix issues on various Ethereum test networks, such as Ropsten.”
As an ETH owner, what do you need to do?
Basically, you don’t need to do much. The offical blog explains: “If you use an exchange (such as Coinbase, Kraken, or Binance), a web wallet service (such as Metamask, MyCrypto, or MyEtherWallet), a mobile wallet service (such as Coinbase Wallet, Status.im, or Trust Wallet), or a hardware wallet (such as Ledger, Trezor, or KeepKey) you do not need to do anything unless you are informed to take additional steps by your exchange or wallet service.”
Constantinople will bring the platform multiple efficiency improvements, as well as the delay of the so-called “difficulty bomb” and the decrease of ethereum’s block reward. The difficulty bomb is a feature meant to prevent miners from continuing their activity on the chain after ethereum’s switch to a Proof-of-Stake consensus algorithm. The Constantinople upgrade is thus set to delay the difficulty bomb — also referred to as the “ice age” — for approximately 12 months.