Marathon Digital’s Experiment Results To Invalid BTC Block

Marathon Digital's Experiment Results To Invalid BTC Block

Marathon Digital, a notable Bitcoin (BTC) miner, has confirmed the mining of an invalid block on the Bitcoin network. The invalid block occurred on September 26 at 9:42 pm UTC at block height 809478. According to the firm, the invalid block was mined as a result of an experiment on optimization.

According to Marathon Digital, the error emerged from an unforeseen bug within their internal development environment. This glitch was unrelated to Marathon’s principal Bitcoin production pool or Bitcoin Core, the leading software associated with the Bitcoin network.

Research groups and Bitcoin researchers including BitMEX Research, and “0xB10C”, an anonymous core developer, classified the error as a “transaction ordering issue,” which was then confirmed independently by Jameson Lopp, CasaHODL founder. BitMEX Research then noted that two transactions were ordered incorrectly and thus resulted in the invalid block. According Bitcoin developer “mononaut” the transactions were reordered based on ascending absolute fees, leading to the misalignment.

Despite the setback, Marathon Digital was swift in addressing the issue. They stressed that a minimal portion of their hash rate was allocated for such experimental purposes. However, industry analysts, including Dylan LeClair, recommended that future tests of this nature should be initially executed on a testnet, safeguarding the main Bitcoin network from potential errors.

Reflecting on the incident, Marathon emphasized the resilience of the Bitcoin network, stating that it “functioned exactly as designed” by recognizing and rectifying the invalid block.

In this case, invalid blocks are immediately rejected by any nodes that the miner attempts to upload to. The onus then falls on the miner to try and fix bugs or vulnerabilities that gave way to the invalid block in the first place. All of these is part of the robust consensus algorithm and security that Bitcoin’s blockchain offers.

Marathon Digital, established in the cryptocurrency arena since 2021, holds a significant position as the second-largest holder of Bitcoin among public entities, next to Microstrategy (NASDAQ: MSTR). Marathon Digital’s (NASDAQ: MARA) share price decline by roughly 2.91% as markets closed by 20:00 EDT on September 27. The firm currently holds 11,466 BTC in its balance sheets with stock price at $8.01 holding a market cap of $1.4 billion.

Disclaimer: This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not intended as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.


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