Aleph Zero Blog

Testnet update: ink! 4.0 stable release & decreasing storage fees

Mar 2, 2023

We have just released a new version of Aleph Node to push ink! 4.0 stable release to the Testnet. Moreover, the contract storage fee has been largely reduced—by a factor of 25x.

Following the stable release of ink! 4.0, we’re happy to announce that we are implementing the update on Testnet. From now on, validators can download Aleph Node 10.0 to update their nodes and enable the stable version of ink! 4.0 smart contracts on the Testnet.

Together with updating the smart contract engine, we have also revisited the topic of smart contract storage fees. After careful analysis, we have decided to reduce the base storage fee by a factor of 25 (to 0.00004 AZERO per byte). We believe that affordable on-chain storage is a crucial component for the healthy growth of the ecosystem.

What’s next? We’ll follow the usual schedule of testing this version for up to six weeks and then release this update to the Mainnet, given no major issues are found. In the meantime, we’ll also conduct another Mainnet update; you can find more information about this below.

Mainnet 9.0 and 10.0 updates

A week after today’s Testnet update, we will update the Mainnet—but this particular update won’t include smart contracts just yet. It covers all the other improvements and bug fixes that have been made between versions.

The set release schedule requires us to maintain a version gap of fewer than two versions. Since the Testnet gets updated to version 10.0 and the current version of Mainnet is 8.0, we will also update Mainnet nodes to version 9.0.

As you might be aware, the previous Testnet version has already featured smart contracts in the 4.0 beta. After consulting with several ecosystem developers, we’ve decided not to push the 4.0 beta to the Mainnet, but rather debut with ink! 4.0 stable release after the usual up to six weeks testing period. 

To summarize, here’s what happens:

1 We’re updating the Testnet to version 10.0 today;

2 Around a week from now, we’ll update the Mainnet to version 9.0;

3 After four to six weeks from today—given that no major issues are found—the Mainnet will be updated to version 10.0, including smart contracts and reduced storage fees.

The wait will be over shortly! 

It is important to note the stable release of ink! 4.0 changes much for what lies ahead for Aleph Zero. There is no further version to wait for before finally launching smart contracts on the Mainnet and enabling developers to deploy their projects on top of the network. This is the last stage before doing so.