Solana (SOL) has become one of the most popular networks in a short time. The competitor for Ethereum (ETH) however, has run into a lot of hurdles lately. Unfortunately, the problems are not over yet. An accidental fork on Saturday made sure of that the network virtually froze.
Solana is having trouble with transactions
That writes CoinDesk, who talked to developers. At 6:53 a.m. Dutch time, forks began to occur inadvertently, according to Solana’s Discord server. In this case, “fork” means that validators started producing different transaction histories.
Soon after, the validators suddenly began to demand a lot more memory and the bulk of on-chain activity suddenly collapsed. By 9 AM, transaction throughput had dropped from nearly 5,000 transactions per second to just 93 in just 15 minutes. According to developer SolBlaze, the speed dropped to just 16 TPS at one point.
Solana is not down right now.
There is a large forking event on mainnet-beta, causing validators to slow down while trying to resolve forks.
Network is slowly confirming blocks at ~16 TPS.
Validator operators and Solana engineers are working on identifying the root cause.
— SolBlaze.org | Stake with us! 🔥💃 (@solblaze_org) February 25, 2023
Validators were then forced to run older versions of the software to keep the network operational. Unfortunately, these parties all have to decide individually whether to use the software downgrade. Experts told CoinDesk that this could take hours.
Around 15:40 Dutch time was up Solana’s own explorer to see that the network was again processing at 5,000 transactions per second, but shortly afterwards the speed dipped back to a few dozen. For now, no permanent solution has been found.
Not the first problem for Solana
Recently there have been regular problems with Solana and related projects in one way or another. For example, a hacker managed to steal the contents of thousands of wallets. However, it turned out that this was not the fault of the blockchain itself, but of a wallet provider.
When FTX went bankrupt, assets on Solana also suffered. Alameda Research, which is related to FTX, was an important market maker on Solana, but when this company also went bankrupt, several Decentralized Finance (DeFi) platforms went bankrupt. As a result, assets were tied to the blockchain, allowing them to be acquired for a rock-bottom price.
In many cases, it later turned out that the problem was not with the Solana blockchain at all, but with a third party using the network. Still, transaction volume on Solana has declined more than on many other popular chains.