Prepare yourself for the next evolution of the Cardano ecosystem! The Vasil upgrade, named after the late Bulgarian mathematician and Cardano ambassador Vasil Dabov, is quickly approaching. It brings improved performance, functionality, scalability and interoperability to Cardano and is the most significant network upgrade since staking was first introduced via Shelley in 2020.
In terms of the Cardano roadmap, Vasil is part of the Basho phase which is the era of optimisation and improving the scalability and interoperability of the network. One of the big features being introduced is diffusion pipelining, an improvement to the consensus layer that facilitates faster block propagation by reducing the time it takes to validate a block across the network. This means there is more room to do further improvements such as increase the block size or execute larger scripts requiring more resources.
The second big feature is the introduction of reference scripts, that is the ability for a script to not have to include or repeat all the code in one transaction. It can just reference a script that is already on-chain which greatly reduces the size of transactions, improving throughput, and reducing script execution costs.
Additionally, there is a number of new cryptographic primitives which enables greater interoperability between other blockchains, plus script validation processes that will contribute to higher transaction processing rates. The d parameter is also going to be removed which means block production is not only fully decentralised but it prevents re-federation. The Ouroboros’ Verifiable Random Function (VRF) process has been optimised improving block validation and network syncing times.
There has been a lot of testing going on behind the scenes, and luckily so as there was a number of bugs introduced that were only detected when the release got to the public Testnet. A number of Stake Pool Operators (SPOs) upgraded their mainnet nodes early and ended up missing a large number of blocks impacting their delegators returns. With the final testing looking good, we have upgraded our nodes successfully and it won't be long until Cardano's hard-fork combinator gets triggered to initiate the upgrade.
Thanks again for your continued support!
The WIRED Team