The software clients supporting Bitcoin’s Lightning Network continue to evolve. A recent update to c-lightning introduces some prominent changes. It is one of the few clients effectively making Bitcoin’s mainnet the default network.
Bitcoin Mainnet LN Support
The biggest update this new c-lightning client provides is which network it defaults to. In previous iterations, it lets users connect to a LN testnet, albeit they can manually switch to Bitcoin’s main network as well. This situation has now been reversed. The developers deem it time to make the bitcoin mainnet the default network for Lightning Network transactions.
How the community will respond to these changes, is difficult to predict. It is a good way to make Lightning Network payments more accessible and appealing to more users. However, many feel that LN is not ready to be sued in a real environment yet, unless one has the necessary coding knowledge and understanding of the technology.
Other big c-lightning Changes
Another big change for c-lightning users is the support for receiving multi-part payments. In terms of creating a unified experience that is a big step forward. Users can now bundle their payment channel capacities and worry less about which peers they should interact with. Sending multi-part payments is not possible yet, but that situation will be revised in a future version.
Developers have some new tools to play around with as well. The createonion and sendonion RPC calls allow for building custom protocol extensions. It is a bit unclear what kind of protocols one can expect to be built on top of c-lightning, but it will allow for some interesting innovation regardless.
All of these changes go to show how c-lightning continues to evolve. With over 300 commits since the previous client update, there are plenty of passionate coders who want to see Lightning Network adoption grow. Rest assured there will be more changes in future iterations, as there is still a lot of work to be done.