A new version of Ethereum's Geth node software has been released. In addition to a series of performance enhancements, the update includes support for "Byzantium".
According to the developers, the update, named Megara, is the first incarnation focusing on laying the groundwork for the upcoming Metropolis hard forks (Byzantium and Constantinople), consisting of 125+ code contributions for various parts of the project.
As reported, the release has been reformatted to include all improvements developed for Byzantium, which forms the first of two parts in the wider "Metropolis" update. Megara also includes a formal block number for the launch of Byzantium on Ropsten, the Ethereum testnet. The block number is now officially 1,700,000, which seems to be reached in about seven days.
The 1.7 release series of Geth is also aimed to focus primarily on performance improvements. Among the performance enhancements are steps to cut the amount of data storage required by a node from 26.3GB to 14.9GB – making ethereum significantly lighter to run. Updated nodes will also be able to process contracts faster, with filtering times reduced from minutes to under a second.
The team has introduced support for the Ledger hardware wallet. Due to popular demand, it has been expanded on hardware wallet support to include the Trezor. The Geth console can be used to unlock the Trezor, which will request the user to enter the shuffled PIN code and send that over to the Trezor for verification.
According to the team, Geth 1.7.0 journals all locally created transactions to disk and loads them back up on a node restart. This ensures that even if the originating node goes offline, cheap transactions still have a chance to be included when the node comes back. The transaction journal can be an enormous help for node operators during software upgrades by not having to worry about local transactions going missing. Furthermore, the journal also acts as a resiliency mechanism against node crashes, ensuring that no transaction data is lost, as the company details.
As reported, there have been a lot of fine-tuning of Puppeth and Rinkeby over the course of this release, such as better ethstats logging to detect malicious reporters and IP address blacklisting to deny access for them.