The Bitcoin protocol may soon expect few changes to happen for good. Segregated Witness, also known as SegWit, which happens to be one of the scalability solutions is finally ready for release.
The Bitcoin Core development team has reportedly fixed most of the issues related to SegWit v 0.13.1 software package. The latest version is almost ready to go live in its current state by Monday. However, it may take at least a year for it to be implemented as it still needs to garner support from 95 percent of the mining community.
The SegWit protocol is expected to increase the efficiency of the Bitcoin protocol by reducing the time taken to calculate the transaction hash for verifying transactions. It is achieved by separating malleable parts of the transactions from the transaction hash; thus, effectively reducing the number of calculations to be made by the Bitcoin network for verification. The implementation of SegWit is also expected to further strengthen the Bitcoin protocol by preventing malleability attacks.
Successful implementation of Segregated Witness will also accelerate the development and implementation of much awaited Lightning Network. The binary code for the latest version of SegWit is currently available on GitHub. Until now, the developer community have fixed over 70 issues. Even though few developers claim that the SegWit codes are ready for deployment at its current state, it may not be released until November 15, 2016, as stated by developer Pieter Wuille.
The implementation of SegWit will involve a Bitcoin soft-fork, which may not go well with certain Bitcoin community members who are inclined towards a hard fork to increase the minimum block size. Alternatives to Bitcoin Core — Bitcoin Classic and Bitcoin Unlimited are also receiving traction in the recent days.
Even though the Bitcoin Core development team has made great progress with SegWit, the delays due to internal conflicts among the Bitcoin community has delayed scaling of the Bitcoin network. If the current pace of development and deployment continues, the digital currency will soon head towards serious trouble due to increased transaction loads and processing time.
Ref: GitHub | Twitter | Main Archive |Bitcoin Core | Image: NewsBTC