Ethereum Developers Agree to Include EOF Implementation with Staked ETH Withdrawals in Shanghai Upgrade
On December 8, 2022, the Ethereum development community gathered for the 151st All Core Developers (ACD) call, a bi-weekly meeting where Ethereum developers discuss and coordinate changes to the protocol. During the call, developers agreed to include the five Ethereum Improvement Proposals (EIPs) related to Ethereum Operating System (EOF) implementation with staked ETH withdrawals in the upcoming Shanghai hard fork.
The EOF is a major code change targeting the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM), the execution environment that processes all transactions on Ethereum. Since its inception in 2015, the EVM has not undergone any major changes, but the EOF implementation will be the first. It will help make the EVM more easily upgradeable, introduce gas savings for application developers, and simplify the debugging process for smart contracts, among other things.
However, the decision to include the EOF implementation with staked ETH withdrawals in Shanghai came with a few caveats. If execution layer client teams have not implemented and tested the five EIPs by January 5th, these code changes will be dropped from the upgrade. This ensures that staked ETH withdrawals are not delayed by other code changes bundled together in Shanghai. The preference of most developers on the call was to expedite withdrawals as much as possible, and they agreed to target a cross-client test network launch in late January and possibly mainnet shadow forks for Shanghai by early February.
During the call, the main discussion revolved around the scope of the Shanghai hard fork and what other changes beyond the core EIPs, should be included. Some developers, including Péter Szilágyi, team lead at the Ethereum Foundation for the Geth client team, argued that improving Ethereum's scalability was more critical than expediting withdrawals and suggested delaying the EIP 4844 code change until a future upgrade. However, other developers disagreed, and the group ultimately agreed to continue working on EIP 4844 separately from withdrawals and aim to execute a fast turnaround for the Cancun upgrade after Shanghai.