Network Upgrades

What's a network upgrade ?

A network upgrade is a change or group of changes to the protocol consensus rules, which are activated at a defined block number.

What to consider when introducing a consensus rule change in the code

Every consensus rule change needs to be associated with a specific RSKIP (RSK improvement proposal) in the RSKIPs github repository.

Consensus rules changes are introduced as part of a group of changes called Network Upgrade. Network upgrades are released to the general public as part of a specific RSK node version (defined by a release code name and version number. e.g.: RSK Wasabi 1.0.0), and the consensus rule changes introduced are selected by the community.

How to add a new consensus rule?

  1. Set the release version (if not yet defined in the code). Define the new tag in NetworkUpgrade enum file.

    public enum NetworkUpgrade {
  2. Set the network upgrade block activation height in [main||testnet||regtest||devnet].conf files

    # IE for main.conf
    blockchain.config {
        name = main
        hardforkActivationHeights = {
            wasabi100 = 1591000,

    For local development you should ONLY need to edit regtest.conf.

    [main||testnet||devnet].conf will only need to be edited before a NetworkUpgrade deploy, when the block activation height is already known.

  3. Define the consensus rule RSKIP in ConsensusRule enum file.

    public enum ConsensusRule {
  4. Associate the previous RSKIP with a specific Network Upgrade version in reference.conf file.

    blockchain = {
        config = {
            consensusRules = {
                rskip106 = wasabi100,

Coding a consensus rule change for an RSK Network Upgrade

When implementing a network upgrade you'll need to check if that change is active:

if (activations.isActive(ConsensusRule.RSKIP106) && address.equals(HD_WALLET_UTILS_ADDR_DW)) {
    return new HDWalletUtils(config.getActivationConfig(), HD_WALLET_UTILS_ADDR);


To run tests with specific consensus rules changes, you'll need to combine previously described methods at ActivationConfigTest.BASE_CONFIG

public class ActivationConfigTest {
    private static final Config BASE_CONFIG = ConfigFactory
            "hardforkActivationHeights: {",
            "    wasabi100: 0",
            "consensusRules: {",
            "    rskip106: wasabi100,",

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