Execoin – Scrypt ASIC Resistant
Execoinis a new altcoin with a promising future. To appreciate the role and value of Execoin, we need to understand the significant changes that are about to sweep the scrypt altcoin domain.
Execoin represents a move away from the generic scrypt altcoin formula – and for good reason. The developers have taken care to analyze existing trends in scrypt mining and, in response, have implemented a progressive variation of the scrypt algorithm to ensure Execoin’s longevity and value. Their work is a significant departure from the standard scrypt implementation and distinguishes this coin from its peers.
Execoin is scrypt ASIC resistant and has built-in multipool resistance. These features secure Execoin’s network and protect its value. It is expected that Execoin’s value will increase as a wave of generic scrypt ASICs sweeps the altcoin market and forces GPU miners to migrate to a few ASIC resistant cryptocoins. Execoin has a clean altcoin design with several innovative features and is ideally positioned for the coming changes in the altcoin market.
The scrypt algorithm, introduced to the altcoin domain by Litecoin, protected Litecoin from the hashing onslaught of ASICs.
The rise of Application-Specific Integrated Circuits (ASICs) was inevitable as special purpose devices were developed to progress FGPU and GPU hashing to the logical next step. This, especially, made sense for Bitcoin, which had by then, achieved a hash rate of 160 TH/s and a massive difficulty target, necessitating entire datacentres dedicated to it’s mining.
Hence, a major design objective of Litecoin was to cater to those miners, whom, despite their significant investment in hardware, were left high-and-dry by the hashing leap imposed by ASICs. By introducing scrypt, Litecoin was able to give GPU mining rigs a new lease on life. The proliferation of Litecoin clones – scrypt altcoins – could be directly attributed to that historical dynamic.
How many GPU rigs are mining Bitcoin? It’s an ASIC-only zone now. – Execoin developer
A year later, it’s apparent that a new breed of scrypt-capable ASIC is rising and that it threatens scrypt mining in the same way that ASIC had changed Bitcoin mining in 2013. The Execoin team have smartly anticipated the coming scrypt ASIC boom and their design implementation of Execoin can both take advantage of the coming scrypt hashing leap, as well as make Execoin resistant to the new breed of ASICs.
By basing Execoin on a scrypt innovation, called Progressive-N Scrypt, the coin developers effectively cause Execoin to set its scrypt memory requirement higher than the current ASIC operational level. This means that when more powerful scrypt ASICs are released they will be unable to mine Execoin.
Additional ASIC resistance is implemented via customized binaries of the most popular mining applications, such as cgminer and CUDAminer. These combined innovations ensure that Execoin can only ever be mined via GPU devices and with compatible GPU mining software. The ASIC resistance is total and pervasive.
In the case of Bitcoin, once ASICs came on the scene, their adoption increased the network hash rate and ramped up difficulty as the Bitcoin protocol adapted to the higher rate at which blocks were being found. Most GPU miners found themselves unable to compete at the higher hash rate imposed by ASICs and hence their mining was either unprofitable or pointless. As we saw, Litecoin came to fill the gap by introducing the scrypt algorithm which, at the time, was resistant to that generation of ASICs.
Litecoin’s sourcecode is the basis of most altcoins out in the wild. This includes Dogecoin, Auroracoin, Worldcoin, and so forth. The generic scrypt algorithm is, therefore, what has protected the most popular altcoins from first generation ASIC mining. However, when the new generation of scrypt ASICs is made commercially available, the uptake of these devices can be expected to skyrocket. Manufacturers will drive down prices in an effort to compete for their share of the sizeable scrypt mining market. We say “sizeable”, because the purchasing power of this market is evident from the fact that it stripped the retail sector of AMD R9 series GPUs in 2013, and almost derailed AMD’s Gaming card marketing strategy, thereby temporarily giving Nvidia a lead in the gaming GPU race.
As happened with Bitcoin before, the ASIC ramp-up will once again leave GPU miners in a void, as their ASIC’ed fellow miners take most of today’s popular altcoins to new dizzy hash rates and levels of difficulty. It is in this scenario that Execoin is positioning itself by implementing the newer generation ASIC resistance early and ensuring that it will present a value proposition to GPU miners, going forward. I asked the Execoin team for their thoughts about developments in the GPU domain:
CCN: What does the Execoin team think about developments in High Bandwidth Memory and what are your expectations for Nvidia and AMD’s GPU race?
Execoin: AMD and Nvidia… both players are interested in the growing cryptocoin market and especially in GPU mining to stay profitable. So the ASIC threat is a problem for them too. High Bandwidth Memory is a significant technological improvement that will impact mining speeds. Technologies will go forward and the race will keep going to give us more powerful and sophisticated GPUs. However, even the most powerful, sophisticated and advanced GPUs won’t threaten the decentralized nature of crypto currencies’ networks as much as ASICs do, so GPU mining will stay our safe zone in the future.
Execoin’s designers also made provision for the “multipool mining” phenomenon, whereby groups of powerful miners focus their efforts on a few, select altcoin pools, mine large volumes of coins; and then dump these in the market. The result for the target coin is often a drastic reduction in market value as well as detrimental effects on the hash rate and difficulty, often rendering the mining pool useless. From the Execoin communique:
In addition, when a powerful multipool switches to another coin it leaves the previous coin’s network with higher difficulty and lower actual hash rate and this negatively impacts reliability and security of the network.
When a large and powerful multipool cartel of miners moves in, there is also the major risk of a 51% attack on the specific altcoin’s network. Execoin has implicit protocol protection which resists multipool attacks, and this renders the coin more secure and better able to sustain its market value. I asked the Execoin developers about their specific strategies to deal with multipool mining.
CCN: Multipool mining has been an unpleasant, yet, unavoidable part of scrypt-based altcoins since their inception. Can you talk some more about the multipool resistance you have
implemented in Execoin… do you, for example, use Kimoto Gravity Well?
Devs: In fact, we understand the importance of KGW, espeсially for a coin which is not backed by huge mining power yet. That’s why we are already in the final stage of its testing and KGW will be implemented in Execoin in the next few days. Benefits of KGW go far beyond the multipool resistance and KGW does not provide absolute immunity to multipools, since any ordinary scrypt coin with KGW still can be multipool-mined. For example, in standard KGW implementations, the minimum number of last blocks which contribute to the evaluation of the new per-block difficulty is 144 blocks, so a standard scrypt coin with KGW is suitable for very short cycles of mining on a not-so-large multipool.
The whole idea of multipool implies that the same miner, with the same parameters on the miner’s side, can mine any scrypt-based coin. Multipool switches currencies and this process is completely transparent and requires no interaction on the miner’s side. However, Execoin requires custom miners with custom parameters and those miners are not compatible with multipools. Therefore, unlike other coins with KGW, Execoin’s approach is not to mitigate consequences of multipooling, but to make multipool mining impossible with Execoin at all.
Execoin will be coming into its own during the rest of 2014. The stronger the ASIC onslaught, the better for Execoin. This makes it a strategic coin for both mining and investment. The Execoin team discussed this in some detail:
CCN: Execoin is one of a new breed of coins that are positioning for the coming scrypt ASIC invasion. The Execoin team have clearly analyzed current market trends and what you see has led you to make a value proposition for the event horizon when many keen and dedicated GPU-based rigs will be pushed out of their comfort zone. Do you see it this way? And which other coins do you see as your competitors (so to speak) in this new market reality?
Execoin: Well, it’s obvious that the newer ASICs for scrypt coins will significantly change the cryptocoin market and this process has already begun. How many GPU rigs are now mining Bitcoin? It’s an ASIC-only zone now. We’re constantly seeing new announcements of more and more powerful scrypt ASICs and we expect a massive invasion starting by this fall. En Masse migration of GPU mining operators to Execoin and other ASIC-proof coins will start this summer/fall and will keep going with each new release of ASICs. This process cannot be stopped since millions of dollars have already been invested into scrypt ASICs, so scrypt coin mining will be completely occupied by them – it’s just a matter of time. Regarding other coins that could share the new market we can name Vertcoin, of course!
CCN: Given your market positioning, your defensive strategy of resistance, and the high probability that the market will play into your hand in the coming months and years,
can you summarize why you believe Execoin will thrive?
Execoin: Execoin is one of the very few ASIC-resistant coins, it’s fast, reliable, solid-coded, has dedicated development team and we’re doing our best to let people know about it and about the future of the crypto market ahead of the new ASIC invasion. Execoin is likely to be successful as one of the first coins offering an alternative to the all-ASIC world. We would like to focus our further development on real-world applications for Execoin, so that it would be accepted in many places as a method of payment.
Execoin has a clean altcoin design with several innovative features and is ideally positioned for the coming changes in the altcoin market. Execoin is a recommended Buy-and-Hold for altcoin investors and we advise miners to download custom binaries for their favourite miner from the project website and to point their rig at p2pool here or configure their own p2pool node with Execoin configuration settings
Wallets: wallet applications for Windows, Mac and Linux ready for download.
Source Code: Execoin source code is hosted at GitHub
Mining: pools are listed on the Execoin website and here are step-by-step p2pool setup instructions.
- Coined Up
- Algorithm: Scrypt-Progressive-N with optimized schedule (scientific name: scrypt Salsa20/8(N, 1, 1), PBKDF2(SHA2))
- Symbol: EXE
- Max Coins: 84 million
- Block time: 45 seconds
- Subsidy: halves every 840,000 blocks (~437 days)
- Difficulty Re-Target Time: Every 1920 blocks (~24 hours)
- Block Rewards: 50 coins per block
- Premine: No premine
Execoin website: http://www.execoin.net/
Contact e-mail: [email protected]