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Vertcoin has hard forked – downgrade your wallets!

Hello everyone,

Unfortunately I learned that Vertcoin had hard forked during the night between old (v0.10.0.*) and new (13.99.0) wallets. This has lead to old wallets on one chain and new ones on the other. Given that only around 7% of the network has switched so far to the new wallet, I ask that everyone who has upgraded, downgrade their wallet to v0.10.0.2 and those who have not yet upgraded to stay put.

On that basis, the development team will be evaluating the fork to determine its cause and if possible release a patch and retry the soft fork. Failing that, we intend to hard fork the coin, sometime in the next month.

You can find the old wallet for download here: https://github.com/vertcoin/vertcoin_old/releases

Thank you for your patience,

James

Vertcoin Wallet Update – SegWit Soft Fork

The Vertcoin team is pleased to announce the release of a new wallet update. This update implements the SegWit soft fork which will begin signalling on the 13th February 2017 and will require 75% of a thousand blocks updated in order to activate. Everyone should upgrade to the new wallet, especially mining pools. The procedure is much the same as the two hard forks we have performed previously, pools will need to update their pool software to a new version compatible with the new wallet if the community wants SegWit to activate. Old wallets (v0.10.0.*) will continue to work after the fork, but it is important that everyone upgrades. Please remember to backup your wallet.dat file before upgrading. Those using P2Pool for mining (the recommended method) will need to update their pool software too, I will post an update in a couple of days with a new P2Pool release. A new stratum-mining (for MPOS based pools and solo miners) has been provided below along with a list of already upgraded pools.

SegWit-Ready Pools

New Wallets

SegWit-Ready Pool Software

 

Development update

Hello everyone,

The Vertcoin Development team has been busy the last month working on updating our wallet to the latest Bitcoin core with Segregated Witness (segwit). If you’re not familiar with segwit you can read the benefits and purpose here ( https://bitcoincore.org/en/2016/01/26/segwit-benefits/). With that being said we are excited to announce that everything is working as it should on the test-net ,and if time permits we should have the new release ready sometime early next week, if not sooner. This should serve as a heads up to miners and pools since we will need a 75% consensus for segwit to activate. Please spread the word.

Thanks,
Eric (etang600)

New additions to the Vertcoin team

Hello everyone,

It is with great pleasure that I can announce that Vertcoin has added three new members to the team. All three have been long-term members of the community and will bring valuable skills and insight to the future development of Vertcoin. Additionally, development for version 0.10.0.2 is well underway with help from one of our new developers in fixing test net. Only documentation updates and wallet building still left to do before we can release the new version. The team hopes to bring you an updated version of P2Pool and Android wallet very soon too.

Our first new addition is jk_14, who in the past has helped us create the Vertcoin Android wallet and he authored the GNU/Linux distribution for mining called KopiemTu. He has been involved in cryptocurrency since 2013 and started MobileCash, a coin that is merge-mineable with Vertcoin.

The next is Zemrys, whose primary developing experience has been in .NET and C#, with secondary skills in various other languages. He works in the field of physics, manufacturing radiation detection instrumentation. He has been involved in Vertcoin since early 2014.

Finally, there’s Etang600 who has been a miner and an active member of the crypto community since 2013. Since discovering Vertcoin, he has been helping with Vertcoin’s social media presence and development tasks.

I hope the community will warmly welcome them all to the team,

James

Vertcoin Foundation & Roadmap

Hello everyone,

A number of community members have gathered on the new Vertcoin Slack channel, which you can join from IRC (#vertcoin on Freenode), and we have decided to use the development fund to revitalise Vertcoin’s development and economy. The development fund still contains ~$850 (see it on the blockchain), and with further contributions from both myself and various other members of the community, we intend to start a foundation to support Vertcoin’s growth. This foundation will be not-for-profit, supported by donations and investments, and have enshrined in its bylaws Vertcoin’s commitment to ASIC resistance and accessibility of mining to all. Its focusses will be to fund the technical development of the Vertcoin wallet and its associated support software and to grow Vertcoins economy through marketing, information provision, business support, various public services like block explorers, full nodes, merchant lists and also economic stimulus where possible. The exact details surrounding the formation of the foundation are not yet concrete as I need to further research the tax situation surrounding cryptocurrency and low-income non-profits among the various options, but I will report back once I know more.

Next, as you can probably tell since you are reading this on the Vertcoin website, I now have access to the website server again. I am also now an admin on the VTC Facebook page and I hope to acquire the login details for the Vertcoin Twitter account too. This will allow us to improve our online presence and make Vert more accessible. To that end, the website needs a total content overhaul since most of is outdated. The Bitcoin website is a great example in terms of the content and ease of access that we should be providing to users and I intend to deliver that. Soon, I will make another blog post enumerating the bounties I will make available for writing content for the website. The website update will coincide with an increase in our social media activities to promote the use of Vertcoin.

My recent experiences using Bitcoin as a micropayments processor have been pretty awful. Often I find myself waiting several hours for a single confirmation, even when I have included the recommended fee which now averages at $0.23 per transaction, which is a lot considering that Vertcoin’s transaction fees are essentially 0. Therefore, in the short to medium term, I think we should be positioning Vertcoin as a far cheaper and faster alternative to Bitcoin with the added advantage of a decentralised mining network, four times the capacity and privacy using Stealth Addresses.

In order to be that alternative, however, Vertcoin’s wallet needs refreshing, mining needs to be more accessible and merchants need to be more prominent. The wallet initially needs a maintenance update to fix test net, update the nodes list, copyright years, explorer URL, documentation and checkpoints. After this has been completed there is some low-hanging fruit for us to pick. Stealth addresses appear to be working but are buggy, temperamental and hard to use. Firstly, in order to detect the receipt of a stealth transaction, one has to rescan the entire blockchain which locks out the interface until this process is completed. Then, the transactions, if found, are not added to the transactions list but rather just added to the inputs list which is not obvious to the user. Finally, the scanning process is supposed to start off from its last scanned location, but this feature is broken. Below is my intended version roadmap for dealing with these issues. Tasks that have been completed have been struck off.

Wallet Roadmap

v0.10.0.2 (estimated in the next couple of weeks)

  1. Update the nodes list in the wallet
  2. Update the copyright years
  3. Update the READMEs, including build instructions for Windows, OS X and Ubuntu/Debian
  4. Add some new checkpoints
  5. Fix test net
  6. Update the explorer URL
  7. Build wallets (GUI and command line) (Do we still need to provide 32-bit binaries?)
    1. Windows
    2. OS X
    3. Ubuntu/Debian

v0.10.0.3 (estimated during Q1 2017)

  1. Make sure stealth transactions show up in the transactions panel
  2. Update stealth addresses to use the latest version of the secp256k1 library
  3. Fix stealth rescanning from the start of the blockchain every time
  4. Move stealth address search to a separate thread so it does not lock out the GUI and provide a progress bar and cancel button
  5. Ensure stealth is working properly in the daemon via the command line
  6. Update nodes, checkpoints, etc
  7. Build wallets

In terms of mining, we will be releasing an update for P2Pool soon and I intend to support the creation of a one-click miner soon. In an effort to update some of the information available regarding Vertcoin related services, I have compiled this list of active services/merchants/websites: http://vtconline.org/.

I have a number of ideas for long-term plans for VTC, the main one of which will require a complete rewrite, but I think is possible once we have more interest and funding. I will make a further blog post when my ideas are more fleshed out.

If you have any time that you are able to contribute to the project, please do not hesitate to contact me at jameslovejoy1@gmail.com, post or PM me on Reddit or join our IRC channel #vertcoin. We are particularly looking for people with programming experience, preferably C++. You can donate to the development fund using the address: VpBsRnN749jYHE9hT8dZreznHfmFMdE1yG. Any donation you can make would be greatly appreciated.

Kind regards,

James Lovejoy (jamesl22)

Hard Fork at block 347000

Vertans,

I am pleased to announce that the new version of Lyra2RE is ready. We will be hard forking to the new mining algorithm at block number 347000 (estimated to be around the 10th of August). In order for this to go ahead smoothly, everyone must update their wallet software to the latest version and miners must use the new miner software after the fork block. This update is MANDATORY; failure to upgrade could see your coins getting lost on the wrong fork. As referenced in my previous post, this update is intended to thwart the botnet mining on the network. The new algorithm provides a far greater ratio of GPU to CPU hashrate meaning that once again GPUs will become the dominant Vertcoin mining force.

Binaries for most platforms can be found here: https://github.com/vertcoin/vertcoin/releases/tag/v0.10.0.0. A 32-bit Windows variant is missing but if it has popular demand then I will get one released, otherwise I do not think one is really needed. The mining software for AMD, nVidia and CPUs are done and will follow shortly.

Kind Regards,

James

July Development Update

Vertans,

Since my last blog post, a botnet has started mining on the network and is taking up a large portion of the mining power (easily over 50%). As a result we have decided to hard fork the network to a refactored version of Lyra2RE with new parameters and different padding algorithms. Our current experimental changes have produced at least a 5x ratio of GPU to CPU hashrate. We hope with additional changes and optimisation we can further increase this ratio in order to nullify the botnet. I imagine the fork itself will occur some time in August after the wallet has been updated and new miners have been written.

The new test coin is effectively ready for release but is currently on hiatus due to our efforts in dealing with the botnet. It will be released shortly after the hard fork has occurred and the network has stabilised. It makes sense to hard fork Vertcoin first and then release the new coin so that we only have to fork one network rather than two. The coin itself will act as a testbed for future Vertcoin features and updates with more regular wallet releases. Most future changes will first be made to the new coin before being merged into Vertcoin itself once we have determined they are stable. This will allow us to be far more agile when prototyping new features without the fear of endangering the maturity and stability of the long established Vertcoin network.

I have not as of yet received any offers from people wishing to help us update the Android wallet. The bounty was originally set at 1000 VTC but I am willing to take offers from developers stating the bounty which would be required for them to complete the task. Once again, please do not hesitate to contact me at: jameslovejoy1@gmail.com.

Kind Regards,

James

Android Wallet Bounty, Merge-Mining and Website Updates

Vertans,

Before the fork to Lyra2RE there was a rather useful mobile wallet for Android. This has since become defunct and was thus removed from the Play Store. I’m sure many of you would like to see it revived so I am offering a 1000 VTC bounty for the old wallet to be updated for the new fork. Rest assured, this is not a “start from scratch” project, the old code is still available and just needs updating. You can find the code here: https://github.com/dayreiner/vertcoin-wallet. If you are interesting in completing this task, please contact me at jameslovejoy1@gmail.com. We can discuss further details there.

In other news, Darren (/u/darrenturn90) has begun work on getting our new merge-mined coin up and running. We will now be ironing out the kinks and I hope to get a release date with binary wallets announced by the end of this month. Since the fork, the Monocle blockchain has been far from secure due to low hashrate and many people have simply discarded their old coins. Therefore, the new coin will be a complete reset, under a new name and with a different distribution model. This will also give people a fair chance to get their hands on the new coins and hopefully will increase the chances that it will end up on an exchange (which is essential if we want to test elasticity there).

Finally, I have recruited some new helpers who are going over the website with a fine tooth comb in order to get it fully up to date. This should make it easier for new users to find information on mining etc.

Regards,

James

The future of Vertcoin

Vertans,

This has been an interesting week, with the price of VTC rising rapidly from less than $0.01 to peaking at $0.19 today. To many this has come as a surprise, me included, although I have always believed Vert was undervalued given its virtues. However, we are now at an impasse. We can either let this rise go unnoticed by the community and watch VTC fall back into the position it was a week ago or we can take action, and bring Vertcoin back to the limelight. On that note (and assuming everyone wants the latter option) I am calling for people to come forward and make things happen. With Adam extremely busy with his new start-up, this effectively leaves me as the only developer and I don’t want Vertcoin to be a one-man-band as it will not survive that way.

I need people to come forward who would be willing to help with any of the following:

  1. Core wallet developers. This would require you to have some knowledge of C++ but do not feel that you need to be a guru. There are things to be done at many levels which could be completed by those with less experience than one might think. Getting involved with the project is a great way to improve your skills (I know I am a lot better as a result of my efforts here) and there’s no need to worry since nothing will be released without being thoroughly tested first.
  2. Updating the website. I have done some work with this, but much of it is outdated and requires an overhaul. This would include removing any information pertaining to Scrypt-N since this just confuses newcomers to the coin. The website needs to be crystal clear and help people through the whole process from setting up the wallet to mining, buying or spending coins. Similarly, much of the wallet documentation is out of date and needs improving.
  3. Merchant Monday. Some time ago there was an initiative called “Merchant Monday” where a Reddit member compiled a complete list of all the places where Vertcoin was accepted whilst calling on Reddit users to petition for another merchant to start accepting VTC as well. This was a great initiative which saw merchant acceptance expand hugely and I would like to see it return. If someone would like to restart and lead this initiative please get in touch. To that end, you may have noticed VertVerser has been down for some time. I am working on getting this back up and running since it was a really good way of allowing people to easily spend Vertcoin wherever Bitcoin was accepted.
  4. What’s next? In the road-map we posted a few months back, we stated that elasticity was going to be the next feature we implemented. With the recent price jump I question whether this is the best course of action since it would be extremely experimental and I would not want to jeopardise this uptrend that many of us have been dreaming of for some time. Therefore, I would like to see a discussion within the community as to what new features they would like to see in Vertcoin’s future, whether that be elasticity or something else.

If you would like to get involved in any of these tasks, no matter how big or small you think your contribution might be, don’t hesitate to contact me at jameslovejoy1@gmail.com or on Reddit as /u/jamesl22.

I truly believe in Vertcoin’s mission and I think our future can be bright but only if we make it so ourselves. Otherwise, this rise will all be for nothing and I don’t want to see that happen.

Kind Regards,

James (jamesl22)