What is SegWit?

What is SegWit?

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Segregated Witness (SegWit) is a proposal for a soft fork change to the Bitcoin protocol that was activated in August 2017. SegWit was designed to address several issues with the Bitcoin blockchain, including transaction malleability and block size limitations.

One of the main issues with the Bitcoin blockchain is that transactions can be modified before they are confirmed in a block. This is known as transaction malleability, which can be used to create multiple versions of the same transaction, each with a different transaction ID. This can be a problem for certain types of transactions, such as those that involve multi-signature addresses.

SegWit addresses this issue by separating the witness (or signature) data from the transaction data and storing it in a separate structure called a “witness.” This allows the transaction data to be hashed separately from the witness data, eliminating the problem of transaction malleability.

Another issue with the Bitcoin blockchain is that the block size is limited to 1 megabyte. This means there is a limit on the number of transactions that can be included in a block, and as the number of transactions on the network increases, the network can become congested.

SegWit addresses this issue by changing the way the block size is calculated. Instead of counting the total size of a block, SegWit only counts the size of the witness data when calculating the block size. This means that more transactions can fit into a block, and the network can process more transactions per second.

What is SegWitx2?

SegWitX2, also known as SegWit2x, is a proposal for a hard fork of the Bitcoin protocol. The proposal was intended to increase the block size limit from 1 megabyte to 2 megabytes and was planned to activate in November 2017. However, the hard fork did not go as planned and ultimately was abandoned by the developers working on it.

The idea behind SegWit2x was to increase the block size limit to improve the scalability of the Bitcoin network. With a larger block size, the network could process more transactions per second, which would help reduce transaction fees and increase the overall speed of the network.

The proposed hard fork was controversial and faced significant opposition within the Bitcoin community. Some argued that increasing the block size would centralize the network and make it more vulnerable to attack. In contrast, others felt there were better solutions for addressing scalability issues on the Bitcoin network.

Ultimately, the developers behind SegWit2x abandoned the hard fork after it failed to gain enough support from the community, and no block larger than 1 MB has been mined on the Bitcoin network. However, the Bitcoin network continues to evolve, has new solutions in the pipeline, and is being developed to improve the network’s scalability while keeping the network’s decentralized and secure properties.

In Summary

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SegWit is a soft fork change to the bitcoin protocol, which primarily aims to increase the network’s capacity by decreasing the size of transaction data that needs to be hashed and stored on the blockchain; this increase in capacity also makes it more secure by eliminating transaction malleability.

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