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Announcing an upcoming Rootstock PowPeg composition change

Published on: 20 January, 2023

Update Jan 25th, 2023: The Rootstock network’s PowPeg composition change was successfully activated on block #4,998,799.


Summary: The Rootstock network will undergo a PowPeg change on block 4,998,799. Since the Bitcoin deposit address will change, it is strongly recommended that users verify the address before initiating any conversions from BTC to RBTC on the network. No further action is required from users.


As part of the plan to restore normal operation of the Rootstock peg-out service, the platform’s pegnatories have completed an on-chain voting process to modify the composition of the current PowPeg (the 2-way peg protocol used by Rootstock).

This change aims to activate a new peg-out transaction redeem script that will be recognized as standard by Bitcoin Core nodes. This is a crucial step in the process of resuming peg-outs, as outlined in the Peg-Out Service Outage Incident Report.

The Powpeg composition change will not involve the addition of any new members or the removal of existing members. To increase the security of the network, two pegnatories (Collider and IOVlabs) have upgraded their Hardware Security Module (HSM) setups to the latest public version of the powHSM firmware, which includes support for public firmware attestations during installation. This upgrade required the reset of the HSM devices and, as a consequence, new public/private keypairs were generated for the two pegnatories. The attestation information will become publicly available shortly after the PowPeg change coming into effect, enabling anyone to verify that these pegnatories’ PowPeg keys are securely stored on authentic hardware devices running a known firmware version.

Due to the one-week consensus-enforced delay built into the Rootstock protocol, the new redeem script will become effective at block number 4,998,799. Based on the current state of the network, this is expected to occur on January 25th, 2023.

Rootstock users and node operators are encouraged to follow and verify the migration process, which is automatic and commanded by the Bridge smart contract, but they are not required to take any additional actions. It is important to note that the Rootstock PowPeg Bitcoin address, which is used to convert BTC to RBTC, will change once the new PowPeg is activated. To prevent the possibility of losing funds, it is recommended that users manually performing peg-ins, or using their own tools and libraries, always check the deposit address before sending funds, as outlined in this guide. The 2WP Web App will automatically adjust its operation to use the appropriate PowPeg Bitcoin address for BTC to RBTC transactions.