On Wednesday, Solana suffered an outage prompting developers to shut down the network’s mainnet beta after it failed to reach consensus for roughly four hours. Today, Solana status announced that validator operators had “successfully completed a cluster restart of the mainnet beta” asking network operators to begin restoring client services.
According to Austin Federa, head of communications at Solana labs, the outage was caused by a bug relating to “durable nonce transactions.” In cryptography, a nonce refers to a random number that can only be used once to validate transactions.
The nonce transactions which are mainly designed for offline use cases on the Solana network were attacked by a bug that “triggered a majority of validators leading to a block hash mismatch and validators stalling,” Laine from Stakewiz, a software, and blockchain company tweeted. The network thus resumed only after validators disabled the so-called “durable nonce transactions.”
Even though the Solana network is designed to support nonce transactions, it seldom conducts any as they very few. “This was actually a known bug that was being fixed and hadn’t been triggered in this form previously,” Laine wrote. Several Solana users as well as crypto exchanges including Coinbase and Binance also reported problems with Solana deposits and withdrawals.
Following the outage, SOL, the native token for the Solana network dived over 15%. On Thursday, the selloff continued with the coin slumping a further 11.55% to $39.93 as of writing. The tokens value is now roughly 84% down from its all-time high of $260 according to CoinMarketCap.
The latest outage is the eighth this year with the most recent one throwing the network into darkness for about 7 hours in late April. Criticism from SOL users has been mounting upon the network’s developers who only seem to patch nodes to temperate the heat of the moment.
“My problem is that we were mocked relentlessly by the Solana and Luna community for trying to do things the right way with peer review and formal methods to avoid these issues.” Said, Charles Hoskinson, Cardano’s co-founder following Solana’s latest outage.
That said, Solana’s degraded network performance has had a toll on the network’s growth. Apart from the price dropping sharply, its market cap has slumped from about $78 billion in the third quarter of 2021 to $13.6 billion today according to data from Messari. Average transaction fees on the network also dropped by 44% from the last quarter mounting pressure on the network’s revenue.
That said, despite, the financial performance declining Solana’s network’s usage continues to stay elevated.