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Solana Resumes Operations After Major Outage: Report

On Friday and in the early hours of Saturday, the Solana network experienced yet another outage, frustrating thousands of Solana users. The recent event is the second major downtime the network has suffered since January this year when it experienced a slew of partial outages. It took some hours for the network devs to resolve the issue which notably caused the network’s native token to slip 6%. 

Solana Validators Restart the Network Mainnet

Solana first called attention to the outage on the Solana Status Twitter page at around 0:45 UTC. 

The Solana network is experiencing an outage and not processing transactions.” the team stated

They continued to provide updates afterward noting their progress as they resolved the problem. The team shared a document detailing instructions for a cluster restart. After 80% of Solana’s Mainnet Beta validators joined in, they were finally able to bring the network back online.

Why Did the Network Go Offline?

Validator operator “Stakewiz.com” posted a thread on Twitter explaining the situation. According to their report, a single validator had propagated an invalid block. The post noted this wasn’t a big deal, as it was something the network should have handled.

However, the validator was running a duplicate instance and producing a block from each instance. This created a partition or fork in the network. Thus when other validators encountered either block, they couldn’t decide which was valid.

According to Stakewiz, the misconfigured node resulted in an unrecoverable network partition. Validators who had veered off the main code path were stuck on the wrong fork and unable to return. This apparently caused the outage as the network stopped processing transactions. 

The network devs have described the misconfiguration as an accident: “probably a failed node failover setup.” Once the team realized the source of the problem they agreed to initiate the cluster restart. Validators identified the last confirmed slot, 153139220, and began the mitigation process.

Solana’s Outage “Curse”

As stated earlier, this particular outage is far from an isolated incident. Solana has suffered at least 7 outages since its 2020 launch, with up to 5 occurring this year alone. Notably, this comes roughly one year after the “Ethereum killer” suffered nearly 18 hours of downtime in September 2021. 

Solana founder Anatoly Yakovenko described outages as the network’s “curse” in a recent interview. The Solana community members were quite vocal about their dissatisfaction with the said curse following the latest one. Users have complained about the frequency of Solana’s downtime. 

Interestingly, Cardano founder Charles Hoskinson poked fun at the rival network after it went offline. Hoskinson reposted the Solana announcement on Twitter, sharing a meme alongside it. 

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