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What is Ethereum Mainnet?

Ethereum mainnet refers to the live version of the Ethereum blockchain network, which is used to carry out real transactions and execute smart contracts. It is the main network where developers, businesses, and individuals can interact with the Ethereum ecosystem by creating, deploying, and running decentralized applications (dApps) and digital assets. The Ethereum mainnet is a decentralized platform that offers programmable blockchain technology, allowing developers to build new decentralized applications and services on top of it. It supports Ether (ETH) as its native cryptocurrency and is maintained by a distributed network of nodes globally.

The Basics of Ethereum

Ethereum is a decentralized blockchain platform that enables the creation of smart contracts and decentralized applications (dApps). It was created by Vitalik Buterin in 2013 and launched in 2015. Ethereum is designed to be a more flexible, programmable blockchain than Bitcoin, which is primarily used for currency transactions.

Smart Contracts

Smart contracts are self-executing contracts with the terms of the agreement between buyer and seller being directly written into lines of code. The code and the agreements contained therein exist on the blockchain network.

Decentralized Applications (dApps)

Decentralized applications, or dApps, are applications that run on a decentralized network, rather than being controlled by a centralized authority. dApps are designed to be transparent, secure, and censorship-resistant.

What is Mainnet?

The Ethereum Mainnet is the primary network where Ethereum transactions occur. It is the live blockchain that is used by the majority of Ethereum users and dApps. The Mainnet is also known as the production network, as opposed to Testnets, which are used for testing and development purposes. The Mainnet is supported by a global network of nodes, which are run by individuals and organizations around the world.

Key takeaway: The Ethereum Mainnet is the primary network where Ethereum transactions occur, and it supports the execution of smart contracts and decentralized applications. Gas is the fee paid by users to execute transactions and contracts on the network, and the network is supported by a global network of nodes. The Mainnet has undergone several major upgrades to improve its scalability, security, and functionality, with Serenity being the upcoming major upgrade that will introduce a switch to a Proof-of-Stake consensus algorithm to improve network efficiency and sustainability.


Nodes are the backbone of the Ethereum network. They are responsible for validating transactions, executing smart contracts, and maintaining the integrity of the blockchain. Nodes can be run by anyone, and there are different types of nodes, including full nodes, light nodes, and archive nodes.


Gas is the fee paid by users to execute transactions and smart contracts on the Ethereum network. Gas is paid in Ether, the native cryptocurrency of the Ethereum blockchain. The cost of gas varies depending on the complexity of the transaction and the current demand for network resources.

The Evolution of Ethereum Mainnet

Since its launch in 2015, the Ethereum Mainnet has undergone several major upgrades and changes. These upgrades have been designed to improve the scalability, security, and functionality of the network.


Homestead was the first major upgrade to the Ethereum Mainnet, which was released in March 2016. Homestead introduced several improvements, including better gas pricing, support for more programming languages, and enhanced security features.


Metropolis was a two-part upgrade to the Ethereum Mainnet, which was released in 2017 and 2018, respectively. The first part of Metropolis, called Byzantium, introduced several new features, including zk-SNARKs, which enable anonymous transactions, and improved smart contract functionality. The second part of Metropolis, called Constantinople, introduced further improvements, including reduced gas costs and increased network efficiency.


Serenity is the upcoming major upgrade to the Ethereum Mainnet, which is currently in development. Serenity will introduce several significant changes to the network, including a switch to a Proof-of-Stake consensus algorithm, which will replace the current Proof-of-Work algorithm. This change is expected to improve the scalability and energy efficiency of the Ethereum network.

FAQs – What is Ethereum Mainnet?

The Ethereum Mainnet is the main blockchain network for the Ethereum ecosystem. It is the primary network on which all Ethereum-based applications and smart contracts run. The Ethereum Mainnet is a decentralized platform that is designed to enable the creation and execution of smart contracts and decentralized applications.

How does Ethereum Mainnet differ from other Ethereum networks?

There are several Ethereum networks, including the Ethereum Testnet, Rinkeby, Kovan, and Görli. These networks are often used for testing applications and smart contracts before deploying them to the Ethereum Mainnet. Ethereum Mainnet, on the other hand, is the live, operational blockchain network. Transactions on the Mainnet involve real Ethereum currency (ETH) and can have real-world implications.

What is a smart contract on Ethereum Mainnet?

A smart contract is a self-executing contract that runs on the Ethereum Mainnet. It is a piece of code that is stored on the blockchain network and automatically executes when certain conditions are met. Smart contracts on the Ethereum Mainnet have a wide range of use cases, such as enabling decentralized finance (DeFi) applications, digital identity management, and online voting systems.

What are some examples of applications that run on Ethereum Mainnet?

Some of the most well-known applications that run on the Ethereum Mainnet include Uniswap, MakerDAO, and Compound. These applications are all part of the DeFi ecosystem, which allows individuals to participate in financial activities without relying on traditional financial institutions. Other applications on Ethereum Mainnet include games, non-fungible token (NFT) marketplaces, and prediction markets.

How can I interact with the Ethereum Mainnet?

To interact with the Ethereum Mainnet, you need an Ethereum wallet and a way to connect to the network. This can be done through a web-based application, such as MetaMask or MyEtherWallet, or a hardware wallet, such as Ledger or Trezor. You can interact with the Ethereum Mainnet by sending and receiving ETH or interacting with smart contracts on the network.

Updated: 1 July, 2023 — 3:24 PM

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