The Ropsten network has been deprecated and will be shut down in the coming weeks. Infrastructure providers have gradually stopped supporting the network and validator participation rates have been steadily declining.
Most of the remaining validator nodes will be shut down from December 15-31, 2022. After this, Ropsten will no longer receive support from client, testing, or infrastructure teams.
Please note that the next testnet to be sunset is Rinkeby. This network will be active until mid-2023, allowing users and application developers to migrate to either Goerli or Sepolia. However, Rinkeby does not support The Merge and will not support future network upgrades. It is no longer an exact replica of the Ethereum mainnet.
The deprecations of The Merge and legacy testnets have prompted the Ethereum community to reconsider its approach to test networks. Discussions on Ethereum Magicians and in community calls are addressing proposals for purpose-specific networks for stakers vs. developers and end-of-life norms for testnets, among other topics. If you have strong opinions about the future of Ethereum testnets, now is the time to voice them!
Cover image by Micael Widell