Number of bitcoin nodes hits record high

The number of full bitcoin nodes has reached a record high of 11,727. This was revealed by Bitnodes data.

On 20 January, statistics tracker Coin Dance identified 11,619 nodes on the network, which was also higher than last year’s high (11,250).

More than 5,000 nodes on the network were using the second most popular version of the Bitcoin Core client 0.20.1.

The last client update 0.21.0 was released on 14 January 2021. Only 5.9% of the network’s nodes (687 nodes) are running on this version of the software.

In 0.21.0 support for Tor Network V3 addresses, descriptor wallets was added. Schnorr signatures, Taproot and Tapscript technologies were also included in the code for increased privacy and network scalability. Subsequent implementation of BIP 340, 341 and 342 will increase interchangeability of coins.

About a quarter of all nodes running on the Tor network will face the need to migrate to a more current version of the client. By October 15, 2021, developers will disable support for V2 addresses. New V3 addresses with more secure cryptography and less disclosure will be supported in Bitcoin Core 0.21.0 and newer versions.

The host of the popular bitcoin podcast Stephan Livera recommended that users update the software.

The rise in the number of bitcoin nodes correlates with an increase in the number of Lightning Network nodes. According to BitcoinVisuals, the number of payment channels on the network is also at a record high of 8,468.

Recall that in January, startup Zap announced the launch of a cross-border transfer service based on Lightning Network.