Taproot, the update that promises to increase the long-term privacy and scalability of Bitcoin transactions, will go live in approximately two weeks, when block 709.632 is mined. It is estimated that this will occur on November 14.
Within days of the long-awaited activation, less than half of the Bitcoin nodes are up-to-date to support Taproot . This is shown by the website of developer Luke Dashjr (also known as “Luke-Jr”), which tracks the status of nodes in real time.
A total of 30,000 nodes (49.79%) are up to date, while 30,177 nodes (50.08%) have not yet done so.
And what happens if this situation remains like this? Is Bitcoin or the Taproot implementation at risk for this reason? In June of this year, Cryptoreportage published an article in which this question was answered, and which is still valid.
There it is explained that it is essential to update all the nodes, so that Taproot can work correctly. The benefit in terms of the privacy of the transactions will only be seen if the adoption of this improvement proposal is massive. Taproot will do so much that single signature transactions and multi-signatures look similar. That way they will be indistinguishable in a blockchain analysis.
On the other hand, in the aforementioned article, it is also clarified that updating the nodes is important due to a security issue of the Bitcoin network. The specialist Rusty Russell had explained that it is necessary both the update of the nodes and 50% of the mining power (not only by signaling but with an update of the nodes). Otherwise, a miner could intentionally mine an invalid Taproot transaction and thus split the network.
How to update Bitcoin Core to be compatible with Taproot?
If you run a Bitcoin node and use the Bitcoin Core client for that, you should know that its latest version (22.0) is compatible with Taproot. All you have to do is update the software.
The procedure to update the version of Bitcoin Core is simple. If you are running an older version, disable it. Once it has been completely disabled – which may take a few minutes – you have to run the installer, if you use Windows. In case you use Mac, copy: «/Applications/Bitcoin-Qt» or if you have any Linux distribution, write «bitcoind/bitcoin-qt».
This medium has detailed that the new version of Bitcoin Core will not only give you support for Taproot but also add other improvements, for example, support for hardware wallets from the user interface and privacy improvements with I2P networks (Invisible Internet Project).