What is Bitcoin Segwit2x ? Bitcoin Upcoming Hard Fork in November - All you need to know about it.
You may have noticed the increase in Segwit2x news, opinion, posts, rants, and memes circulating throughout various media sources. You may have seen some of this media and been completely lost, as if you were reading a different language.
The entire debate can get pretty technical and you may be wondering if you should be concerned by the increasing number of rants you see on r/Bitcoin regarding the fork.
Not everybody was happy with just implementing SegWit, and preferred to increase the maximum size of Bitcoin’s blocks as well. This would give the network some more room for growth while lightning network was being deployed. Bitcoin’s Core developers do not want to increase the block size, primarily because that involves a hard fork, which is potentially dangerous. A hard fork happens when computers running new versions of the software are no longer compatible with computers that run the old (legacy) version. If done incorrectly, this can cause really bad things to happen.
On May 23rd, 2017, the Digital Currency Group published the New York Agreement (NYA). The New York Agreement was signed by a large number of Bitcoin companies and by miners representing over 80% of Bitcoin’s hashpower. The signatories of the agreement accepted a compromise called SegWit2x. This plan would call for the near-immediate activation of SegWit, and would follow that with a hard fork in November to double the block size.
SegWit2x is a hard fork that will occur around November 16, 2017, and as a result of the hardfork there will be two chains, one will be Bitcoin Core (legacy Bitcoin) and the other will be the SegWit2x version of Bitcoin. If the fork continues to be supported by the overwhelming majority of miners, there will be serious confusion over which chain is the “real” Bitcoin.
Although people in the crypto community love to freak out and rant on medium.com, reddit.com, and twitter.com, there is really no reason to be worried about this upcoming fork. Remember, there will only ever be 21 million Bitcoin in existence--Bitcoin is a finite resource--a deflationary currency. Once the dust settles, everything should be fine.
However, for safety reasons, it is always best to hold your own private key. This safety precaution should be heeded particularly during a hard fork. If you hold your funds on a wallet hosted online, such as an exchange like Coinbase, it is never certain what will happen with your funds if things go wrong on their servers--and we all know that things sometimes go wrong there.