Solana Network Freezes Temporarily Due To Technical Issue

February 25, 2023 11:19 am Comments

On early Saturday, it was reported by users that all on-chain activity on the Solana network had froze which prevented users from making transactions or doing anything on the blockchain.

According to the report, the freeze was caused by a technical forking issue that began early in the morning which dramatically caused the transaction output to decrease to nearly zero.

As a result, there were barely any transactions on the network for a short period of time which was unusual given Solana’s reputation of being able to process thousands of transactions per second.

Usually, Solana is able to do around 5000 transactions per second, but the issue had decreased that number to under 100.

The incident indicated that blockchain still had some technical limitations and will still have some down time as with all technical systems.

CoinDesk reports:

It was a crisis reminiscent of the chain’s rocky tech incidents in 2022, when a series of halts and slowdowns prompted reforms to how Solana manages inbound traffic. Saturday’s incident had no immediate culprit, though validator operators and network engineers suspected a bug in the new version of Solana code that had come online hours before.

Without a definite bug to squash, some validators began downgrading to the previous version in hopes of reviving Solana’s throughput, said the pseudonymous SolBlaze, who runs a liquid staking pool and is active in developer circles. Later, Solana employees began advocating for the downgrade, too.

Within hours a supermajority of validators had switched back to the old software in their attempt to restore Solana’s operations. But it did little to solve the still unknown problem that was weighing down performance.

The effort then turned to a more drastic solution: restarting the chain to the point immediately prior to the forking.

With that being said, the crypto market did not have much of a reaction to the issue as Solana’s price only declined slightly due to Bitcoin’s recent decline.

After all, this was not the first time that Solana had experienced a slow down in traffic as something similar had happened in the past back in 2022.

The cause of the technical issue is still largely unknown as the fix with to downgrade to a previous version of the network and restarting the blockchain.

Solana is not the only chain that has experienced such problems and there are only a few ecosystems that have been able to avoid such issues.

At the time of writing, Solana still considered the 11th largest crypto when measured by total market cap with an estimated total cap at roughly $8.5 billion at the time of writing.

CryptoPolitan concludes:

Early on Saturday morning, the Solana network experienced a technical issue that hindered users’ ability to trade crypto, transfer assets and perform other tasks on the blockchain. This resulted in the blockchain ‘forking,’ meaning conflicting versions of its transaction history were created at around 00:53 New York time.

At this time, validators noticed increased RAM usage and a sharp decline in the chain’s transaction throughput.

This effectively halted almost all on-chain activity, with Solana Explorer data showing that at 02:00, the network was processing only 93 transactions per second compared to the near 5000 TPS rate seen around 15 minutes prior. Infrastructure operators on the network worked swiftly to restore functionality.

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