The Ethereum Classic (ETC) Phoenix hardfork went live at block 10,500,839 on May 31, 2020, ten days earlier than had been previously announced.
Third hardfork within one year
The Ethereum Classic (ETC) network has finalized its series of hardforks that targeted the interoperability with the main Ethereum (ETH) blockchain. After the Atlanta and Agharta updates, this is the third update of this process.
According to the announcement from Ethereum Classic (ETC) technical coordinator Stevan Lohja, this hardfork has brought all ETC and Ethereum (ETH) Istanbul features onboard along with use cases and tools for absolute technical compatibility. Nonetheless, each chain has retained its own differences.
At press time, OpenEthereum, Coregeth and Multigeth clients are live on the post-Agharta network, while the Besu client is syncing. However, the latter isn't used by on-boarded services, so its lack of synchronization doesn't affect the blockchain.
Also, the Parity Ethereum client is no longer being maintained and has been moved to the Open Ethereum community driven project.
The Ethereum Classic (ETC) team believes that this upgrade will fuel new innovations and research.
The motivation behind the hardfork was to enhance every Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) capability by adding some new opcodes (functions) to the Ethereum Classic (ETC) protocol.
Moreover, it enabled compatibility between the testnet environments of both blockchains: Ropsten and Mordor, Goerli and Kotti.
However, new opcodes can't affect the existing smart contracts on the Ethereum Classic (ETC) network. The overall functionality of the network will increase significantly.