Test Network Activated On Bitcoin with Full RBF

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The activation of Full RBF on the main network has been mired in controversy due to the fact that there is still no consensus among developers.

A new test network has been activated on Bitcoin on November 20. It aims to test the operation of Full RBF (replace by fee), a proposal that has been mired in controversy because Bitcoin developers have not reached a general consensus on its activation on the mainnet.

The person identifying himself as alicexbt, who often makes contributions to the Bitcoin code, posted the network activation on the mailing list for reading and discussion by his peers. Alicexbt invites you to add your nodes to the network for testing with Full RBF.

What is Full RBF

RBF is a feature that allows Bitcoin transactions to be replaced by others, with the same inputs and outputs, but increasing mining fees. This reduces the waiting time to confirm a transaction.

RBF is optionally used in each transaction. Full RBF is a proposal that would make all transactions in Bitcoin have the possibility of being substituted by default, as long as they have not been confirmed.

The creator of the new testnet explains that, for testing, two nodes must be connected. One of them will use the “RBF opt-in” function, i.e. each transaction must be marked with RBF individually. The other node will use the “mempoolfullrbf=1” option that allows miners to detect every transaction on the network as RBF, regardless of whether it is marked with RBF or not.

Signet or signature networks are temporary test networks. Nodes must define a script to sign (validate) blocks. The script was shared by alicexbt on the mailing list. Since they are temporary, they are intended to test a single feature at a time, in this case, the activation of full RBF.

The controversy with Full RBF

The publication of this new test network comes in the midst of a controversy among Bitcoin developers.

According to the email list that brings together these people, the activation of Full RBF in Bitcoin has not reached a general consensus. However, some of the authors of the proposal, such as programmer Peter Todd, have wanted to arbitrarily push for its activation. He even went so far as to offer to pay inflated fees to miners to activate this option.

This has caused some disagreements among programmers. Some of them say that Full RBF “causes more problems than it solves“, as is the case of John Carvalho, who has shown his clear position against this proposal.

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