A final series of testnets has been activated for the Beacon Chain stage of Ethereum’s Serenity roadmap, but one called ‘Spadina’ has been a failure. This has set the stage for the next testnet called ‘Zinken.’
Spadina Failed on Finality
The three-day Spadina testnet was one of the final dress rehearsals for the real thing, according to developer Danny Ryan. Unfortunately, the test proved to be problematic with several errors reported with configuration, bootnodes, and calculations;
Today we launched, Spadina, a dress rehearsal for eth2 genesis.
Although the eth2 clients have generally become quite robust, the long wait for finality today highlighted issues closer to the edge of the stack — cli options, testnet config, bootnodes, genesis calculation bugs
— dannyryan (@dannyryan) September 29, 2020
Ryan added that low participation was expected on this short-lived testnet, which resulted in escalating errors in the client release process.
In a document highlighting the test failure, he added that Prysm, the most popular Ethereum client on the testnet, was not updated to properly support Spadina. Additionally, it stated that there were low values for chain participation, with only 3,400 active validators, according to spadina.beaconcha.in, and many of them being offline at the launch of the test.
“The issue with finality was not a critical bug nor a consensus error, but rather something due to configuration parameters which can be fixed with a release,”
Prysmatic Labs developer Raul Jordan did not see the ‘failure’ of Spadina as a setback but more of a learning experience.
Bring on Zinken
The next testnet called Zinken will be launched on Monday, Oct.12, according to this Reddit post. The Zinken testnet will support Prysm, Lighthouse, Teku, Nimbus, and Lodestar clients. When asked how many more testnets there will be, the announcement on the r/ethstaker channel added;
“As many as it takes to make sure everything is working exactly as expected. We think there’s an excellent chance that this is the final testnet.”
Ryan added that he personally will not consider low participation on Zinken a failure, but is looking for a ‘clean client release process and minimal headaches for users.’
The #Ethereum 2.0 Testnet ‘Zinken’ will launch on Monday, October 12, 2020 at 1200 UTC!
We already set up 👇https://t.co/8qRTf5TL0u
— Bitfly (@etherchain_org) September 30, 2020
The Medalla testnet is also still running and has accumulated over 2 million simulated ETH, or Göerli testnet Ethereum, staked on the blockchain, according to beaconcha.in. There are now almost 65,000 validators with the U.S. and Germany, accounting for 57% of them. In terms of client dominance, Prysm accounts for 98% of the testing.