Ethereum miners and the threat of mining domination


#1

As Tim Olson had previously pointed out (and with the new Zcash sponsored bounty for a GPU miner) if any large ethereum miners switch to Zcash it may destroy the dream of CPU mining for this coin. I would like to have a discussion of whether this claim could be true.

With Tim's test we saw a large speed up in efficiency for GPU's and I know many ETH miners have 1000's of cards due to Ethereum's memory hardness resistance. Would having a single one of them switch over create complete centralization? Why or why not?


#2

Viable CPU mining (and hence greater mining decentralization) is a core value proposition of Zcash. If there is a way to tweak the mining algorithm to reduce the GPU performance multiplier, then I encourage (and beg) the Zcash team to make those changes prior to launch.


#3

I would be interested to hear what Daira or other core developers think of the GPU miners. I know it is close to launch so they are squeezed on time if they want to change any last minute parameters.


#4

Fairly certain that their support of the open source GPU miner project means that they would like to solve the issue by a communal GPU mining software release rather than code changes in the Zcash project. @daira ?


#5

Note that the Zcash Open Source Miner Contest isn't specifically for GPU miners. I don't know how the bounty will be distributed if there are good entrants for both GPU and CPU miners; I would suggest asking about that on the #mining Slack channel.

The schedule for the mining contest is such that the winner won't have been chosen by the Zcash launch, although some of the first round miners may be available.

It is very unlikely that the Equihash parameters will be changed at this point before launch; for a while we thought there might be a need to do that, but it now seems unnecessary.