Arbitrum for Ethereum is a layer-2 of the next generation. Layer-2 supports Ethereum scaling by facilitating transactions via off-chain means, before bundling them and submitting them as one transaction to the base layer. This means transactions on layer-1 Ethereum won’t be hampered by large numbers of transaction requests. Roll-ups quickly became the preferred method of scaling Ethereum on layer-2 because they can run smart contracts off-chain and then bundle together to settle on the mainchain.
Solutions to scale Ethereum
Existing layer-2 solutions
There are a few layer-2 options, such as Optimistic Ethereum by Optimism, zkSync and more. These smart contracts are not side-chains such as Binance Smart Chain and Polygon. Instead, they provide layer 1 security, where layer one smart contract acts as an escrow to a counterparty. The existing layer-1 scaling solutions, such as Harmony and Polygon, will continue to be available until Eth 2.0 becomes fully live on the main net.
Off-chain Labs is the team behind Arbitrum, an international team of engineers and enthusiasts. It’s a set of Ethereum scaling solutions that enables trustless security and high-throughput smart contracts at a low cost.
There are three types of arbitrum:
- AnyTrust Channels
- AnyTrust Sidechains
- Arbitrum Rollup
Arbitrum is an Optimistic Rollup solution. This means that state changes can be published quickly by allowing a validator to post a rollup block that is correct and then giving others a chance for criticism. The blocks are then rolled up and added to the main Ethereum blockchain.
If fraudulent transactions are made, the bad actors will be punished and the state will be reformed.
Arbitrum has a unique combination of benefits:
- Trustless security: – security rooted in Ethereum with any party able to guarantee correct Layer 2 results
- Ethereum compatibility: – ability to run unmodified EVM transactions and unmodified Ethereum transactions
- Scalability: Moving contracts’ computations and storage of the main Ethereum chain allows for much greater throughput
- Low cost: Designed and engineered to reduce the system’s L1 gas footprint while minimizing the per-transaction costs.
Arbitrum claims that it is the only scaling solution offering the same combination at the lowest price and that Arbitrum supports porting Ethereum contracts to the bytecode level with no code modifications.
Arbitrum One Public Mainnet
Arbitrum One is the name for the public mainnet of Arbitrum. Arbitrum One is online since September 2021, where Off-chain Labs maintains the ability to perform feature and performance upgrades or pause the system if needed. Although the team has lifted restrictions on the number of people who can transact with it, they will still have a whitelist for validating tokens and adding new tokens to their bridge. Arbitrum fees will be charged on ETH layer-2 with a 50x reduction in fees compared to the Ethereum mainnet.
Transaction fees are cheaper on Arbitrum
To use Arbitrum One, users must first use the Arbitrum Bridge to transfer Ethereum to their L2 wallet.
Use the Arbitrum Bridge for bridge tokens to Arbitrum One
Arbitrum can trustlessly transfer assets from Ethereum to Arbitrum One, including ERC-20 tokens, and ERC-721 tokens. The Arbitrum bridge is a pair contract for ERC-20 tokens. A token can be deposited in an L1 bridge contract and the token will be escrowed to L1. Minting the same amount at the L2 token contract can also occur. To get started, head over to the Arbitrum bridge.
Connecting to Arbitrum via Metamask
These Metamask (click to learn How to Setup a Crypto Wallet: MetaMask) settings will allow you to connect to the Arbitum One mainnet.
- Network Name: Arbitrum One
- New RPC URL: https://arb1.arbitrum.io/rpc
- Chain ID: 42161
- Symbol: AETH
- Block Explorer URL: https://arbiscan.io
Arbitrum Block Explorer — Arbiscan
The Arbitrum block explorer was a basic but comprehensive block explorer that included data points like transaction type, layer-1 gas used, date and time, and other common fields in a block-explorer. However, Arbiscan, an Etherscan-based block explorer to Arbitrum, has been launched and provides a similar interface. Arbitrum’s goal will be to serve as the default layer-2 rollup to Ethereum developers and users. We at Stakingbits are excited about Ethereum scaling solutions.
More Arbitrum Resources
- Guide to Arbitrum and setting up Metamask for Arbitrum
- Hop Protocol Overview — transfer tokens between Ethereum and Arbitrum, Optimism, xDAI and Polygon