XRP Ledger upgrade is “awesome news”, says Ripple CTO David Schwartz

Rick Steves

“This is awesome news. This change reduces the ledger’s vulnerability to halting without any sacrifice in decentralization.”

Ripple has upgraded its XRP Ledger with the Negative UNL amendment, which provides resilience for the network when multiple validators are offline.

The blockchain specialist’s Chief Technology Officer David Schwartz turned to Twitter to celebrate: “This is awesome news. This change reduces the ledger’s vulnerability to halting without any sacrifice in decentralization.”

Negative UNL amendment took one year to activate

The Negative UNL is a feature of the XRP Ledger consensus protocol that improves liveness, the network’s ability to make forward progress during a partial outage, according to XRP.org. “Using the Negative UNL, servers adjust their effective UNLs based on which validators are currently online and operational so that a new ledger version can be declared validated even if several trusted validators are offline.”

In November 2020, CTO David Schwartz commented on the news that the NegativeUNL amendment would go forward: “By the way, this feature will be a huge game changer for XRPL’s UNL evolution”.

The “Negative UNL” is a list of trusted validators which are believed to be offline or malfunctioning, as declared by a consensus of the remaining validators, XRP.org explains. Validators in the Negative UNL are ignored for determining if a new ledger version has attained a consensus.

The Negative UNL has no impact on how the network processes transactions or what transactions’ outcomes are, except that it improves the network’s ability to declare outcomes final during some types of partial outages.

Validators can go offline temporarily for a number of reasons, including updates, hardware maintenance, or connectivity. This amendment allows elasticity in the quorum for validations in that period.

SEC v. Ripple lingers but has no impact on expansion of XRP network

The amendment comes in good time as Ripple is accelerating its expansion across the globe, with CEO Brad Garlinghouse planning to hire a few hundreds in 2022.

The SEC v. Ripple has put Ripple under the radar for both investors and prospective clients, it seems. The lawsuit is no longer causing hesitation among clients as they look to join the network, gain access to XRP-powered liquidity, or develop their own national digital currency.

This is the case with the Republic of Palau, which has decided to partner with Ripple as the country looks into developing its own central bank digital currency (CBDC).

Ripple announced the partnership yesterday, which will focus on strategies for cross-border payments and a USD-backed digital currency for Palau.

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