Soft Forks Vs Hard Forks
There’s been a lot of discussion of soft forks and hard forks lately. I’ve found a lot of misunderstanding between the two so I thought I’d write out the differences between the two.
What are the barriers to implementing a soft and hard fork?
- Works at the network level
- Requires 51% of mining hash power
- Does not require nodes, exchanges, or users to upgrade
- Works at the protocol level
- Hashpower is irrelevant
- Nodes, exchanges, and users must all upgrade
One of the biggest concerns is a “network split” where users cannot safely transact with each other because they are referrincing different forks.
- Will not cause a network split. Users, nodes, and exchanges can be sure they are transacting safely
- Miners may find themselves mining on the “non-forked chain” thus wasting hashpower
- Nodes, exchanges, users, and miners, who fail to fork will be split from the rest of the network
The DAO Fund Retreival
- Can lock funds in contract
- Cannot retreive funds already in attacker’s child DAO
- Can be used as bargaining chip to get attacker to return funds
- Attacker can try and bribe miners to reject the soft fork
- Can fully return funds, with our without attacker’s consent