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Solana Suffers Major Network Outage, Sending SOL Plunging 4%

The price of SOL fell 4% on Tuesday as the blockchain suffered an outage on its mainnet, which caused block production to halt.

“Solana Mainnet-Beta is experiencing a performance degradation; block progression is currently halted, core engineers & validators are actively investigating,” Solana validator Laine posited in an X post.

The Solana network’s system status page, operated by the Solana Foundation, confirmed the “major outage” on the mainnet. Members of the crypto community first noticed that the blockchain hadn’t produced a block in more than 25 minutes, which is a significantly long duration given that blocks on Solana normally confirm in 400 milliseconds.

At the moment, core engineers and validators across the Solana ecosystem are investigating the root cause of the outage. Solana validator Laine revealed that the developers are building a release that contains a remediation, and further instructions will be sent to validators once this has been built and tested. Laine also reported that validators are generating snapshots using their local ledger state in preparation for a restart while core engineers prepare the release.

The outage has already affected digital asset exchange operations as Upbit announced it will temporarily pause deposits and withdrawals of Solana-based tokens, including SOL, GMT, RAY, and ACS.

Validators are currently producing the snapshots for the last optimistic slot 246464040 and making sure there is consistency on the bank hash at this slot, Laine noted. He added:

“Validators will be restarting the Mainnet-Beta cluster using version 1.17.20, jito-solana release is also available. There are no inconsistencies in state found. We are awaiting final confirmation from core engineers to proceed.”

First Network Outage Since Early 2023

The young proof of history, proof of stake Solana network has suffered a handful of outages in recent years since its launch in March 2020. The latest downtime in block production for the popular blockchain is the 11th time in the last two years.

Today’s shutdown is the first since February 2023. Notably, the quick resolution last year and subsequent months of no downtime had started restoring investors’ confidence in the network’s resilience.

Coingecko’s data shows that the value of SOL, the native token for the Solana blockchain, dropped slightly by circa 4.4% to trade for $94.08 at press time following the outage. The fifth-largest cryptocurrency is trading 63.4% lower since its all-time high of $259.96 in November 2021.

The halt today comes as Solana is currently the number three proof-of-stake blockchain by market cap behind Ethereum and Cardano. Dubbed “Ethereum killer”, Solana is popularly used for minting non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and decentralized applications. 

But if Solana is going to continue to mature, and compete with Ethereum, it will need to find a long-term fix for its outage issue. 

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