New XRP Ledger upgrade is Gamechanger according to Schwartz

  • According to Ripple CTO David Schwartz, the new XRPL upgrade is a gamechanger that further expands the decentralization of the network.
  • For now the upgrade is only available in the test network Rippled 1.6.0 and is still being checked for bugs.

According to Ripple‘s CTO, David Schwartz, the latest XRPL update is an absolute gamechanger. He explains that every server in the XRPL has a so-called “Unique Node List” (UNL) that contains all participating validators.

The update mainly affects validators that are offline or malfunctioning due to external circumstances such as hardware maintenance, Internet problems or attacks:

The ‘Negative UNL’ is a list of trusted validators which are believed to be offline or malfunctioning, as declared by a consensus of the remaining validators. Validators in the Negative UNL are ignored for determining if a new ledger version has attained a consensus.

According to Schwartz, the update is currently still being checked for further errors in the test network Rippled 1.6.0 and is not yet available live. The update makes it easy to find validators based on a complex list of selection criteria and to connect them to the network:

When choosing a validator, performance is not the only criterion. Jurisdiction, institutional commitment, network redundancy, commitment to the network, and many other factors have to go into that.

The biggest advantage of the negative UNL proposal is that it will make it much easier to say ‘yes’ to more diverse validators, even if they are running on a single residential connection with a tiny machine in someone’s living room.

In addition, the risk of integrating new validators with the network can be drastically reduced. If more than 20% of trusted validators go offline or can no longer communicate with the rest of the network, the network stops validating new ledgers because it cannot reach a quorum.

In special cases, when validators go offline once or twice, the remaining validators can use the UNL to incrementally adjust their effective UNLs so that the network only needs 80% of online validators to achieve a quorum. However, to avoid fragmentation of the network, the quorum has a minimum of 60% of all validators participating in the network.

The new feature can be tested as follows:

Negative UNL functionality is currently available for testing on Devnet. You can test the Negative UNL feature by adding or modifying a [features]stanza in your rippled.cfg file, as described in Connect Your rippled to a Parallel Network.

The new upgrade will also improve decentralization without sacrificing XRP Ledger performance, Schwartz said. More information is available on the official website.

Ripple joins Civic Alliance

As we reported yesterday, Ripple has joined the Civic Alliance. The body works to promote democracy and fair elections in the United States of America by encouraging impartial voter participation. The consortium includes other tech giants like Microsoft, Amazon, PayPal and Reddit.