Go back to main site

ION Timeline Update

Bittrex? Gravity? What’s happening?
You’re probably wondering, “Why haven’t I seen ION on Bittrex yet?” Many anxiously await the countdown to the public release of Crypto Gravity, which is scheduled to start as soon as ION hits the public exchange.

Well, here’s what’s happening. Right before the new year, we isolated a problem in the genesis block of ION that prevents us from implementing an update that’s crucial to listing on Bittrex. We need to update it before we can go live on Bittrex.

Internally, we have fixed the problem with the genesis block, but it required a creative solution. There’s some good news and bad news with this. The bad news is it will mean a slight delay. The good news is the fix not only solved several known problems, but opened the door to implement next-gen blockchain technology ahead of schedule.

Let us explain:
Currently, a memory leak causes the ION daemon to hang making it unreliable and inconvenient for a high volume exchange. Over time Bittrex could implement a workaround (a server with more RAM would do the trick), but it would be just that — a workaround. It’s important that we get the blockchain technology right from the very first block.

The fix for the memory leak requires a codebase update, but this in turn requires the fix to the genesis block.

Consequently, the minimal repair requires more than just a hard fork. It will take a full rebase of the code to generate a new blockchain — one that will have the identical crucial parameters, but — crucially — the first block will be correctly formed. All current address balances that have 1 ION or more will carry over to the new blockchain.

More good news:
Within a week, we aim to release a lightweight version of the full rebase. We’re going with an elemental version because we are committed to making the delay as short as possible, by solving just what’s needed to move forward. This basicversion will include all the essentials and everything that we have tested to our satisfaction. We will introduce the other features we’ve got in the pipeline once they’re tested, but our priority is to get the ionomy rolling.

What’s the difference between a hard fork and a rebase?
In a hard fork, you have two different sets of wallet code creating a divergence in the blockchain.
In a rebase, we are starting the blockchain from scratch, then injecting a snapshot of the original chain taken at a scheduled moment in time. This snapshot captures all the addresses and balances from the current ION chain so we start the new blockchain where the original one left off. With this method, it’s not a fork in the road: it's a whole new road!

New Steps

  • Release a forked/bootstrap version of our current mainnet to test and check for bugs.
  • Take snapshot of all addresses for the new code base.
  • Make the switch to the new code base.
  • Launch to Bittrex, and simultaneously start the seven day countdown for Gravity.
  • Launch Gravity. Apple iTunes Store and Google Play have both approved Crypto Gravity. We will schedule Gravity to launch at the end of the countdown.

What does this mean for you?
All you will need to do is import/copy your wallet.dat file into the new wallet download and your addresses and balances will carry over automatically (if address balance was higher than 1 ION).

If you choose to go this route, we recommend that you make sure you have a backup of your wallet. We also recommend that you make a secure backup of your private keys to the public addresses in your wallet.

Remember that every time you send coins from your wallet, some of them might end up in a change address — a new address that’s automatically generated within your wallet. Unless you specifically export the private key for the change address, the wallet.dat file is the only place it will exist. Check the structure of your wallet on the QT (desktop) wallet with coin control (under advanced features) or on the iond (daemon wallet) with listaddressgroupings to make sure that your coins are where you think they are.

Sound too complicated?
Don’t want to deal with the technical complexity of importing your wallet.dat file into the rebased ION? Ionomy.com offers another solution to anyone who has an ionomy account. Anyone who sends their coins to their wallet address on ionomy.com before the scheduled snapshot can just send them back out once they’ve installed the new wallet. Sending everything, including “dust” from your accounts to ionomy can be an efficient way to make sure that you keep everything you own, because addresses with less than one ION in the snapshot won’t be migrated to the new blockchain.
* What this means for the future:*
We have always planned to rebase the core ION code so that we could add side-chains and tokens. Converting Atoms and other platform assets into blockchain based assets has always been on our roadmap. Implementing the rebase now brings us even closer to achieving this goal.