28 votes
Accepted

Is SegWit a blocksize increase or more efficient use of blockspace?

Yes and no. It depends on how you frame the question. It is a block size increase, because you can fit a larger number of useful transactions into a block. If you want to make a useful Bitcoin ...
  • 28.9k
21 votes
Accepted

What are the arguments for and against the increase of the block size limit?

Please note, this answer was written in Februar 2015. The debate has significantly evolved since then, but I haven't gotten around to updating this answer, yet. I'm sorry, this kinda turned out less ...
  • 65.3k
20 votes
Accepted

What's the purpose of a maximum block size?

Why is this limit present? 1. To Maintain Consensus There has to be clearly defined rules about which blocks are valid and which are not for the network to agree. Obviously no node will accept a ...
  • 13.8k
17 votes
Accepted

What is "segregated witness" and how can it improve network scalability?

It's not a silver bullet solution, but it's a really good start. As Gavin Andresen has said, Segregated Witness is a poor name. The 'segregated' part of the name is there to denote that there is ...
  • 13.8k
15 votes
Accepted

Will the size of a Bitcoin Core full node be too big to run on a normal computer?

Bitcoin has to maintain some balance to be able to retain the ability to be decentralized. As you've correctly established, this is partly down to making sure that the resource requirements of fully ...
  • 15.2k
13 votes
Accepted

What is the Lightning Network proposal? What problem is it trying to solve?

Two issues with Bitcoin's design Scalability of "everyone checks everything" Bitcoin is a gossip network: P2P nodes connect mostly randomly to each other and pass-on new information to each ...
  • 65.3k
11 votes
Accepted

How many more transactions per second will be possible with SegWit?

Best estimates on effective blocksize with SegWit are 1.6-2.0 MB. Current transactions/second possible are around 3 tx/s. Given that the effective increase is 1.6 - 2.0x, the transactions/second are ...
  • 7,639
8 votes

What is bitcoin core developers solution to the increasing number of transactions?

BIP 100: Jeff Garzik Miners vote on blocksize, constrained between 1 and 32 MB. BIP 101: Gavin Andresen Blocksize increases to 8 MB, and doubles every two years after that. (This is what XT implements....
  • 28.9k
8 votes

Why would increasing the Bitcoin block size lead to a more centralised system?

The problem arises from the uneven propagation of information in the network. While the propagation of small blocks is fast, i.e., every miner gets to know a new block approximately at the same time, ...
  • 8,834
7 votes
Accepted

What is the difference between on-chain scaling and off-chain scaling?

Note, I use scaling, capacity, and scalability as follows: Scaling: Growing the network's utility in any fashion. Capacity: The number of transactions that can be processed on the network. Scalability:...
  • 65.3k
6 votes
Accepted

Is the block size limit miners'-only thing, or should users participate?

Ultimately, the consensus rules are set by (the consensus of) those running full nodes, and not by miners. If all Bitcoin node operators decided to switch to different rules for whatever reason, ...
6 votes
Accepted

Why not decrease the difficulty to increase capacity?

One problem is that lower block times mean an increased chance of forking, which makes head of the chain, and the system, less reliable. Another problem is that it normally takes a block a few ...
  • 1,044
6 votes
Accepted

What is "Emergent Consensus" as a Mining Pool Support proposal?

Emergent consensus Emergent consensus is a protocol upgrade proposal championed by the Bitcoin Unlimited developers. The idea is for each node to broadcast its acceptable block size and to thusly ...
  • 65.3k
5 votes
Accepted

Assuming that the block size fork goes through, will the Bitcoin developers use the alert key to tell people to upgrade?

Yes, according to Gavin Andresen via Reddit. Even if they didn't to do so, Bitcoin Core already has two other mechanisms which will produce automated alerts as the hard fork approaches: one which ...
5 votes

Cryptocurrency with small block size limit or large block time

I am not aware of any cryptocurrency that has block times of greater than 10 minutes, but I am very familiar with the desire to limit growth of the block chain. Monero recently increased its block ...
5 votes

What's the purpose of a maximum block size?

I think, it is worth to mention what Satoshi said about raising the block size... It can be phased in, like: if (blocknumber > 115000) maxblocksize = largerlimit It can start being ...
5 votes
Accepted

Why is it dangerous to hard fork the Bitcoin network?

The following assumes that one understands what happens with a soft and hard fork. See all the answers here for a good explanation. Say a new change is implemented in the bitcoin protocol and it ...
  • 2,204
4 votes

If there is a block-size hard fork, will the old chain have an advantage?

If there is a block-size hard fork, will the old chain have an advantage? This is partially true, but it is not as grave a problem as the writer would have us believe. It would be much more ...
  • 13.8k
4 votes
Accepted

Why can't Bitcoin use a very large blocksize such as 1GB?

If you made the block size that large, the rate of network divergence would increase drastically as more and more miners would find blocks while still transferring a block that someone else found. (...
4 votes
Accepted

Are blocks sent only after finding nonce?

This effectively already happens on several levels, though without direct miner interaction. Both Bitcoin Core and the Bitcoin Relay Network have their own implementation of forward preparation for ...
  • 15.2k
4 votes
Accepted

How relevant is the Chinese Great Firewall in the blocksize debate?

Yes, data has shown, that GFW has effects on packet propagation, but not much. The major cause of delay is distance. As you can see here, the median propagation time is comparable for various ...
  • 450
4 votes

How thoroughly has Segregated Witness been tested?

I'd suggest starting here: https://bitcoincore.org/en/2015/12/23/capacity-increases-faq/. There's also a SegWit adoption page on the site somewhere. Finally, this article has some details on recent ...
4 votes
Accepted

Does any current SegWit or blocksize increase proposal also seek an increase in the OP_RETURN byte limit?

Currently, there are no BIPS (Bitcoin Improvement Proposals) that seek to increase the 80 byte limit as you can see here. Doing a cursory search on that repository, you can see that only a few ...
  • 7,639
4 votes
Accepted

Does Bitcoin Cash validate the fears about larger block sizes?

So have all the fears of larger block sizes come to bass with Bitcoin Cash? I think most BTC proponents would say no, the fears have not passed. It is not a black/white situation in which a ...
  • 17.5k
3 votes
Accepted

Does Blockstream have a revenue model that can only exist in a small block environment?

As far as I know, they don't have an explicit business model published anywhere. We do know that they are working on: Side chains - a two-way peg that has fixed transfers of value from bitcoin to a ...
  • 7,639
3 votes

Can a blocksize limit be a sustainable way to introduce scarcity?

Your analysis seems to assume unconfirmed transactions will sit in the queue forever. That's not the case. When someone realizes that their transaction will never confirm, they can create a double ...
3 votes
Accepted

Growth Dependent Block Size Limit

Technically, this is possible. However, it would be a hardfork, so all users would have to upgrade. In such a large ecosystem that exists around Bitcoin today, this would be rather disrupting. Such ...
3 votes
Accepted

If block sizes go up, won't sigop limits have to change too?

Yes, the maximum number of signature operations per block also need to change. It may change dynamically with the block size limit. The code currently assumes a ratio of MAX_BLOCK_SIZE to ...
  • 13.8k
3 votes

Does Blockstream have a revenue model that can only exist in a small block environment?

It is unlikely that the Blockstream business model requires small blocks. For Blockstream to succeed, Bitcoin will need to succeed independently or there will be limited demand and other devs will ...
  • 31
3 votes
Accepted

How thoroughly has Segregated Witness been tested?

Summarized from Bitcoin Core's Segregated Witness announcement: The original version of SegWit was implemented in April through June 2015 for the Elements Project. It has facilitated every ...
  • 65.3k

Only top scored, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible