Wednesday marks the beginning of the phase-out of Ethereum’s Ropsten and Rinkeby test networks (testnets), as blockchain explorer Etherscan discontinues infrastructure support for them. Developers should, therefore, transition their testing operations as soon as possible to the Sepolia and Goerli testnets.
Sepolia was the second of three open testnets that were run through the Merge in July prior to the long-awaited switch of the Ethereum blockchain from proof-of-work to proof-of-stake. Following the merger of Sepolia, Goerli, the final of three open testnets, was the last to perform a “dress rehearsal” of the Merge.
Before releasing new software on Ethereum’s main network, or mainnet, developers can test it on testnets provided by the platform. Test networks, which are effectively exact replicas of the Ethereum mainnet, enable programmers to test any modifications to their apps in a low-risk setting before implementing them.
Goerli offers a sizable decentralised application ecosystem and enables users to join the validator set in order to test their staking configurations, according to Parithosh Jayanthi, a DevOps Engineer at the Ethereum Foundation. Sepolia is a testnet that is still in its infancy and has a small state size, making it simple to test with it.
Ropsten will be “deprecated” in the fourth quarter of 2022, according to the Ethereum Foundation, and Rinkeby will be phased away in the first half of 2023. However, infrastructure providers have the option to stop supporting the networks earlier. One of the most popular block explorers and analytics platforms for the Ethereum blockchain is Etherscan. The first of the three testnets was Ropstein.
On June 8, 2022, Ropsten underwent a test Merge (transitioning from proof-of-work to proof-of-stake), whereas Rinkeby did not. The Sepolia or Goerli testnets will replace these testnets for users.