Solana’s NFT minting tool, the ‘Candy Machine’, experienced a number of DDoS attacks on Saturday, April 30th. NFT minting bots sent requests for more than 4 million transactions per second, causing the network to crash. The resulting outage on Solana started on Saturday at 4:30 PM, and lasted until 11:00 PM EST.
Cause of the Crash Still Being Investigated
The enormous flood of transactions is mostly to be blamed on bots raiding the Candy Machine. However, Metaplex, the company behind Solana’s NFT solution, explained that the botting of the Candy Machine was only a partial reason for the crash. The underlying reasons are yet to be investigated, but a botting penalty for the application is set to be deployed soon.
In spite of the clarifications, Solana’s developers are still unsure how the bot attack managed to overcome the network’s active safeguards and obstruct consensus. Experts claim that bot attacks are easier to carry out on Solana because it has lower transaction fees than BTC and ETH.
Solana’s Consensus Criticized in the Wake of Repeated Outages
Solana had already received criticism following last September’s 17-hour outage, which led to important changes, such as new and improved code circulating between the validators. However, the network’s latest crash didn’t see any improvements implemented—it simply continued from where it had left off 7 hours prior. A successful cluster restart was announced later on Saturday night.
Validator operators successfully completed a cluster restart of Mainnet Beta at 3:00 AM UTC, following a roughly 7 hour outage after the network failed to reach consensus.— Solana Status (@SolanaStatus) May 1, 2022
Network operators an dapps will continue to restore client services over the next several hours. https://t.co/ezqEYQYKWl
SOL regains Most of Its Crash-Related Deficit
The outage resulted in a rapid fall to SOL markets on Saturday. Solana’s native token dropped in value to $83.13 halfway into the system crash, but later recovered to $88.95, resulting in a decrease in price of only 0.3% over the last 24 hours. Nonetheless, Solana (SOL) still experienced a 7% loss for the week.