ASIC resistance in Equihash algorithm
Update 9th May
A robust, decentralized, accessible Zclassic network.
— That is our goal.
Zclassic is a fork of Zcash without slow start and 20% founder’s tax removed, and always will be. It uses the ASIC-resistant Equihash timestamping algorithm and uses exactly the same defining parameters as Zcash.
Bitmain’s dedicated Equihash Miner, the Antminer Z9 mini, has caused quite a stir in all cryptocurrency using the Equihash algorithm, with a legitimate fear that powerful miners will lead to centralization of mining pools towards larger and larger operations squeezing out small players and hobbyists because Bitmain has monopoly over this mining power.
There is an ongoing discussion to modify the Equihash algorithm to make it even more ASIC-resistant and mitigate ASIC centralization, but more research is needed and an actual Antminer Z9 mini may be necessary to test the suggested changes to Equihash algo. This scenario has been foreseen by Zcash (https://github.com/zcash/zcash/issues/1211) and link to active discussions are here (https://forum.z.cash/t/let-s-talk-about-asic-mining/27353/640) and here (https://github.com/ZencashOfficial/zen/issues/142).
The actual branch where upgrade to Equihash can be tested is here: (prototype based on Zcash v1.1.0-RC1 https://github.com/bitcartel/zcash/tree/equihash_upgrade_parameters).
We at Zclassic Community Edition have been discussing this and we will likely follow Zcash decision for a network upgrade as soon as testing is done on actual ASICs like Antminer z9 mini to resist ASIC centralization.
Taking into account that even more powerful ASICs will be developed in the future, we will be closely watching and participating in any long term solution. This is the Official Statement of The Zcash Foundation on the coming ASICs and other centralizing forces: https://z.cash.foundation/blog/statement-on-asics/
Committed to decentralization, we are also confident that we can present a solution for the Zclassic Community earlier than Zcash can integrate changes to the Equihash algorithm since we are not as committed as they are to the scheduled Sapling Network Upgrade. We are likely to schedule Equihash parameter upgrade to coincide with the OverWinter Upgrade provisionally, and we shall continue to engage the Zclassic Community to gauge how urgent they think it is to change the algorithm now.
As soon as a solution is found and tested on real hardware, we can publish it for the community to adopt and, as it will be a REQUIRED community network upgrade, we will need the cooperation of all ZCL stakeholders, miners and exchanges moving forward: