Avalanche Is Sunsetting SnowTrace: Big Upgrade For Developers?

Avalanche, a platform claiming to have solved the blockchain trilemma of scalability, security, and decentralization, is retiring SnowTrace, a Contract Chain (C-Chain) explorer run by Etherscan, by the end of November. According to Emin Gun Sirer, the founder of Ava Labs, the team developing Avalanche, the new explorer, will be developed in-house and boast more capabilities, potentially enhancing user experience.

Avalanche Phasing Out SnowTrace

The transition set for roughly within a month means the current SnowTrace website will instead be re-routed to a new website. Therein, users seeking to explore the entire Avalanche blockchain, including the three chains, will be free to do so. 

With the team retiring the Etherscan-led SnowTrace for their version, Avalanche assured users that operations will remain as it is. Notably, the team said there would be no service disruption; instead, only the back end would be switched. What’s extended is that all Avalanche users will not only search the C-Chain but are free to explore all the sub-nets. 

SnowTrace was only used to search the C-Chain, a wing of Avalanche compatible with the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM). Out of the C-Chain, users are free to deploy protocols compatible with Ethereum. By transitioning to a new explorer, the developer team hopes to once and for all remove the limitations of the SnowTrace explorer. 

Since the platform can scale horizontally, the network relies on subnets. A subnet is a customized blockchain that serves the needs of a specific decentralized application (dapp), such as those of businesses or even high-intensive gaming or social media platforms. They are autonomous, meaning while the mainnet secures them, operators can establish their rules, issue their tokens, and even have unique validator requirements. 

All subnet operators must stake AVAX to launch. The amount of AVAX staked varies depending on the specifications of each chain. Every subnet is independent and linked to the mainnet via the Platform Chain (P-Chain), which runs validator registration and consensus.

Announcement Came Too Soon? AVAX Up 30% From Q4 Lows

While the team said the move is expected to be smooth, one developer and founder complained on X that the one-month notice period is short. Instead, Ava Labs should have announced the transition months in advance for businesses and developers reliant on SnowTrace for on-chain data to prepare before the explorer is phased out.

Related Reading: VanEck Goes Back To The Drawing Board: Unveils Revised Spot Bitcoin ETF Filing

Avalanche price on October 30| Source: AVAXUSDT on Binance, TradingView
Avalanche price on October 30| Source: AVAXUSDT on Binance, TradingView

AVAX prices remain steady at spot rates, edging higher. As of writing, the coin is trading at around October highs, adding roughly 30% from Q4 2023 lows.

Feature image from Canva, chart from TradingView


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