Stellar Development Foundation Delays Smart Contract Upgrade Due to Bug Discovery

In an unexpected turn of events, the Stellar Development Foundation (SDF) has decided to postpone the anticipated smart contract upgrade following the unearthing of a critical bug within the upgrade process.

In an official announcement released recently, the Stellar Development Foundation revealed that the scheduled Protocol 20 upgrade, initially set for launch on January 30, has been delayed due to the identification of a bug. This decision was made after consultations with contributors to the Stellar ecosystem.

The bug, first brought to the community’s attention on January 25, was associated with the Stellar Core v20.1.0 software. The glitch specifically posed potential challenges for applications and services utilizing fee bumps in Soroban transactions, particularly if the Mainnet upgraded to Protocol 20.

A GitHub post detailed the bug, explaining, “When a Soroban transaction that will result in a refund is Fee-bumped, the refund is sent back to the inner Soroban transactions source account. The refund should be sent to the Fee-bumps source account instead.”

Initially assessing the bug’s risk as low, the SDF had planned to move forward with the upgrade. However, feedback from Stellar contract developers, wallet developers, validators, and tools builders prompted a reevaluation of the upgrade schedule. Ultimately, the SDF chose to reconsider the launch in light of the potential impact on the Stellar ecosystem.

In the aftermath of this decision, the fate of Protocol 20 now lies in the hands of other validators in the network. These validators can either vote in favor of Protocol 20, enabling the upgrade upon reaching a quorum, or opt to maintain the existing Protocol 19 by disarming.

The SDF is actively working to address the identified bug and is planning to coordinate a future vote date after releasing a bug fix, anticipated within the next two weeks. This development underscores the collaborative decision-making process inherent in decentralized blockchain networks, emphasizing the importance of community input in shaping the evolution of the Stellar network.

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