Beginner’s guide to Ethereum Classic

Beginner’s Guide / 07.03.2020

Ethereum Classic (ETC) is an open-source blockchain network that is embedded with smart contract technology.  It operates on the turing-complete virtual machine of Ethereum and it is known as the real Ethereum following the hardfork that took place some years back to yield the new Ethereum which we popularly know.

Ethereum Classic in a Nutshell

  • It is the original Ethereum which kept its blockchain distributed ledger intact following the hack of funds deposited in the DAO smart contract. 
  • It has a total supply of 210 million unlike Ethereum which has no total supply.
  • It also creates a decentralized platform which allows developers to build their decentralized applications on it by paying with ETC. 
  • You can mine ETC or purchase them on exchanges and over-the-counter platforms.

The History behind Ethereum Classic

The shortfalls of Bitcoin after its launch in 2009 became so obvious that the average Joe in crypto could tell for a fact that bitcoin was slow, not scalable enough and also had a very robust protocol making it difficult to add unto it any other use cases. Vitalik Buterin who was then part of the Bitcoin community was aware of these short falls hence proposed the idea of Ethereum. He realized that the blockchain technology could be used in several other instances other than just serving as a validator and security over a network which was then that off bitcoin. Many crypto enthusiasts bought into this idea and the first Initial Coin Offering was conducted within the period of July and August 2014.

Ethereum was launched on 30th July 2015 with about 60 millions coins of Ethereum minted and distributed to investors of the ICO. After two years of launch the team behind Ethereum decided to integrate a project called Decentralized Autonomous Organization (DAO). The DAO will serve as a decentralized substrate for the development of decentralized blockchain startups. Just as its name goes, this platform would control its affairs with the intervention of any Central body or organization. In view of this vision, a crowd token sale was organized to support the creation of the DAO in May 2016 and a whopping $150 million was raised. Along the line, it was brought to the entire Ethereum community about some security vulnerabilities that the DAO is likely to suffer in the near future. Peter Vessenes was one of the developers who made this announcement yet was ignored by Stephan Tual that funds stored in DAO was still safe despite the disclosed vulnerabilities.

Unfortunately, on the 17th of June 2016, 3.6 million Ether worth about $50 million was stolen from DAO accounts. This incident took a great toll on  the price of Ethereum on the market as investors were not sure about the future of the project hence causing panic selling. This unfortunate situation brought the developers of Ethereum to a crossroad to pick one of the path listed below:

  1. Eating the humble pie that, the hack has already occurred and there is nothing they can do about it since they cannot alter the blockchain distributed ledger if they are maintaining its immutability.
  2.  Putting in place mechanisms like a soft fork to regulate transactions across the network.
  3. Initiating a hardfork which would in the long run reverse the transaction.

The Ethereum community debated on several issues regarding this hack until some members thought settling on a hardfork between 28 June-15 July 2016 which was announced by members of the Ethereum Foundation and Slock.it Some strong crypto enthusiasts of the crypto community did not agree to this hardfork as they felt this decision would be going against one of the core features of blockchain technology which they advocate which is immutability. These miners stayed with the old chain which is now called Ethereum Classic and the members who moved on with the new chain after the fork is now Ethereum.

How to mine Ethereum Classic

To all those interested in mining Ethereum Classic, the good news is that it is easier to mine ETC than ETH comparing the computation energy required. You can mine Ethereum Classic with GPUs instead of spending huge sums of money with Application Specific Integrated Circuits as the hash rate at the time of writing was at 84.0 Mh/s. Etash mining algorithm is the same algorithm that is used in mining Ethereum Classic. The hardware specifications required for mining ETC could be any advanced GPU machine but specifically Nvidia graphics of 1080 and 1080i are great choices. Choose any computer which has at least 8gb RAM and combining many computers together as a mining rig increases your chances of mining blocks across the network.

On the other hand, the software programmes suitable for mining Ethereum Classic are Ethminer and Claymore Dual Ethereum among the lot that you can come across the cryptosphere. You can decide to set up your own mining rig which might be quite expensive and less profitable other than joining some credible mining pool which increases your chances of mining blocks to get rewarded. Nanopool.org is one of the mining pools that have been in the industry for a very long time with good records void of any attempts of scamming its users. A 1% mining pool fee is deducted to support the platform and keep it running and this is paid by everyone in the mining pool.

Where to buy Ethereum Classic

If Ethereum Classic looks a good asset to invest into then you can head over the following exchanges and purchase it. It’s likely to get pairs of ETH and BTC hence it’s safer depositing unto the exchanges of these. Binance, Kucoin, Bittrex. Crypto noobs are advised to use Over-the-Counter platforms like Coinbase to purchase theirs.

How to Store Ethereum Classic

Don’t be deceived, Ethereum Classic is different from Ethereum hence don’t make the mistake of sending ETC to any ERC-20 wallet or else you will lose your funds and would not be able to recover it again. You can choose to store your ETC on software wallets like that of Atomic wallet, Coinomi wallet and any of the hardware wallets but I highly recommend using any of the series of Nano, Trezor, Ellipal and Keepkey.

How much is Ethereum Classic worth?

The price of ETC per the time writing is $7.82 as it had declined about 6.17 percent due to the recent dump of bitcoin. Most major altcoins just like ETC all fall under the dominance of Bitcoin. Unlike Ethereum which has not capped its supply, Ethereum Classic has a total supply of 210 M and currently over 116M are in circulation. This has yielded it a market cap of $910,120,323 USD. The 24-hour volume of ETC is over 2 Million USD and this shows the growing community of this coin.

The Benefits of using Ethereum Classic

Ethereum Classic offers faster transaction speed as its sister network Ethereum. It also hosts several decentralized applications on its network. Aside using ETC on its platform and decentralized marketplace there are not many places that you can spend this cryptocurrency but if you are looking to pay someone as soon as possible then it’s one of the coins you should go for instead of Bitcoin.

The Risks of using Ethereum Classic

This cryptocurrency is susceptible to the security issues facing any other cryptocurrency in this industry and these are Volatility and breach of security. So if you are looking to invest into it then be ready to have the heart the heart to see your cryptocurrency fall and rise in value from time to time. This is not regulated as the price is generally determined by the market which falls prey to release of news, updates and other economical news in the world. Unfortunately, Ethereum Classic has been hacked once and can be hacked again though lead developers claim the network is secured after all the updates the network has undergone.

Final Thoughts

Ethereum Classic upheld the integrity of blockchain technology by keeping the original blockchain distributed ledger unaltered while its sister chain forked away. It has undergone several updates ever since this hack making the network secured and safe to use. A smart contract deployable network as well as a hub for decentralized applications, Ethereum Classic can boast of a vibrant and growing community.

Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock. 

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Holds a degree in BSc. Nursing from the University of Cape Coast, Ghana yet an addict to the blockchain technology and the cryptosphere. He combines the promotion of crypto projects and also the making of professional contents all to get innovative projects to the real world. He is a passionate Community manager and a Marketing Advisor for blockchain startups.