DeFi 10117 September 2021

What is a Hard Fork?

Blockchain

Summary:

· A hard fork means a drastic change to the protocol

· Forks are started by crypto community members or developers

· Hard forks can be a crowdsourcing means

· All miners must agree on rules

A hard fork is a drastic change to a protocol. This change makes previously invalid transactions and blocks valid, or once valid blocks and transactions invalid. A hard fork needs all users or nodes to upgrade to the protocol software's latest version.

Forks may be started by members of a crypto community or developers who don’t like the current blockchain functionalities. They may also become a way for crowdsource funding to create new projects of crypto offerings.

With a hard fork, nodes of the latest version are no longer compatible with the older versions. When you inject a new rule into the code, it creates a fork. One path leads to the new blockchain, and the other follows the old path. After some time, those using the old course realize their blockchain version is obsolete and upgrade it to the newest version.

All miners must agree on the new rules and what a valid block is on the chain. When you need to change the rules, you have to fork it, indicating a protocol change. The developers then update the software in line with the new regulations.

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