Binance’s BNB chain will undergo two hard forks in August 2023 to reduce the possibility of malicious blockchain reorganizations and improve compatibility with other Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) blockchain networks.

After extensive testing, the Plato and Hertz upgrades are scheduled for August 10th and August 30th, respectively. The Plato upgrade that has been made introduces BEP-126. The latest evolution proposal implements a fast finalization mechanism, which is expected to preclude the ability to revert blocks.

The Plato upgrade took place on August 10 at block height 30724096. Source: BscScan

In an interview with Cointelegraph, Arno Bauer, senior solution architect at BNB Chain, revealed the specifics of the network upgrade. The fast finalization mechanism is expected to reduce the chance of chain reorganization and stabilize block production, while allowing users to immediately obtain accurate information from the latest finalized block. Ball said:

“Overall, BEP-126 aims to enhance blockchain security and efficiency on the BNB Smart Chain by introducing a fast finalization mechanism.”

Ball added that finality, a core concept in blockchain technology, refers to the point at which a transaction or block of transactions can no longer be changed or reversed. Finality remains critical to maintaining trust and preventing double spending in blockchain systems.

BEP-126 introduces fast finality through a series of steps. A validator first proposes a block to the network, which is propagated to other validators. Validators then sign the block with their private key, creating a voting message. Vote aggregation is then performed, where validator votes are collected into a pool and aggregated if the immediate parent block has enough votes.

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Validators must follow certain rules when voting for blocks, such as not being able to post two different votes for the same height. Finality rules also determine that a block is “sound” if there is a proof in the subblock’s header, and a block is final if both the block and its immediate subblocks are sound.

The fork that includes the highest plausible block is considered the longest chain even if other chain forks have a higher sum of difficulties. Production and finalization blocks also have different requirements in terms of the number of validators required.

Finally, BNB chain verifiers get rewards through voting, and verifiers who violate the voting rules will be cut, similar to Ethereum’s proof-of-stake protocol.

Scheduled for August 30th, the Hertz hard fork aims to bring the BNB chain up to date with the latest developments in the EVM blockchain. As Bauer explained, the BNB chain needs to keep its block and transaction structure and underlying EVM updated to match ethereum’s recently implemented Berlin and London forks.

“Therefore, for compatibility reasons, it is important that these EIPs are also enabled on the BSC to ensure smooth development and ecosystem growth.”

Bauer stated that the fast finalization mechanism should provide a more secure environment for decentralized applications (DApps), while faster transaction finalization should improve the responsiveness and efficiency of DApps running on the BNB chain.

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