Why Classic?
Start here to get the lowdown on Etherum Classic's reason for being and unique value proposition
Further reading on the foundations that underpin ETC
Practical tutorials and walkthroughs for interacting with the network in a number of ways
A collection of videos and podcasts to keep you informed on ETC concepts and happenings

The Basics

Ethereum Classic is a decentralized blockchain platform that lets anyone build and use decentralized applications that run on blockchain technology. Like Bitcoin, no one controls or owns Ethereum Classic; it is an open-source project built by people all over the world. Unlike Bitcoin, Ethereum Classic was designed to make it easy to create and deploy Smart Contracts, which allows developers to deploy unstoppable applications with ease.

In 2014, Ethereum founders began work on a next-generation blockchain that had the ambitions to implement a general, fully trustless smart contract platform.

In 2016, after a controversial hard fork, a new version of Ethereum was launched, spawning a new network with new consensus rules. Ethereum Classic continued following the original network rules and has maintained the Original Ethereum Vision of "Build Unstoppable Applications" ever since.

ETC 101

Ethereum Classic is a secure, censorship resistant, reliable, public, trustless and decentralized platform for running applications. Ethereum Classic is the continuation of the original Ethereum technology stack launched in 2015.

Ethereum Classic is an open source, blockchain-based distributed computing platform featuring smart contract (scripting) functionality. It supports a modified version of Nakamoto consensus via transaction-based state transitions executed on a public Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM). The Ethereum Classic network consists of developers, miners, businesses, and end user.

What is a blockchain?

A blockchain is a special type of distributed database. The most significant attribute of blockchains is that no one controls them! There is no one everybody needs to trust to manage it. That is why they are referred to as being trustless. Users submit tasks in transactions that are grouped into blocks that are linked together to form chains.

What is ether?

Ether is Ethereum Classic's native token is a cryptocurrency traded on digital currency exchanges under the ticker symbol ETC. Ether is created as a reward to network nodes for a process known as mining, which validates computations performed on Ethereum Classic's EVM.

Ether and ETC denote the native cryptocurrency used to pay for tasks such as installing new smart contracts. What is Ether and Ethereum?

What is gas?

Gas is internal transaction pricing mechanism, is used to mitigate spam and allocate resources on the network. It is a unit used to denote the amount of resources required to do tasks such as installing new smart contracts.

To understand the relationship it is important to know the history. It is especially important to be familiar with the DAO attack and how the Ethereum Foundation responded to it.

Also, it is important to be familiar with the strong objections described in the Ethereum Classic Declaration Of Independence.

Bitcoin was the first blockchain application. Ethereum Classic is a general blockchain platform to run many more types of applications than Bitcoin can.

On 11 December 2017, the total supply of Ether (ETC) on Ethereum Classic was hard capped at 210,700,000 ETC via the Gotham hard fork upgrade. This added a Bitcoin inspired deflationary emission schedule that is documented in Ethereum Classic Improvement Proposal (ECIP) 1017. The emission schedule, also known as 5M20, reduces the block reward by 20% every 5,000,000 blocks. Socially, this block reward reduction event has taken the moniker of "The Fifthening."

Date5M20 EraBlockBlock RewardTotal Era Emission
2015-07-30Era 115 ETC25,000,000 ETC
2017-12-11Era 25,000,0014 ETC20,000,000 ETC
2020-03-17Era 310,000,0013.2 ETC16,000,000 ETC
2022-04-15Era 415,000,0012.56 ETC12,800,000 ETC
2024-05-07Era 520,000,0012.048 ETC10,240,000 ETC


What is a smart contract?

Smart contracts are applications that manage assets such as automatic teller machines and the Bitcoin system. Ethereum Classic is able to run many types of smart contracts thanks to it's accounts system and the turing complete Ethereum Virtual Machine.

What is a dapp?

A dapp is a decentralized application, usually consisting of smart contracts and a frontend user interface to interact with those contracts.

How do I create a dapp?

Programming Smart Contracts on Ethereum Classic is identical to how it is done on ETH, as ETC maintains compatibility with the Ethereum EVM. Any contract written for Ethereum can be deployed to ETC.

To create a dapp for Ethereum Classic you must program one in a smart contract programming language. Then, you must compile that dapp and install it on the blockchain from a funded account.

What smart contract programming languages are there?

Solidity is similar to Javascript, is by far the most popular choice, and has the best developer experience. Serpent is similar to Python and also available. LLL is yet another choice that is similar to Lisp. There are other smart contract languages being developed as well.

How do I get ETC?

Purchase ETC

The easiest way to get ETC is to buy some. There are many cryptocurrency exchanges that will allow you to buy ETC, but the one you should use will depend on where you live and how you want to pay.

For more information on where to buy ETC check this non-exhaustive list of exchanges.

If you want to trustlessly verify the ownership of your ETC, you can run one of the Ethereum Classic clients.

Earn ETC

You can also exchange goods or services for ETC. One way of earning ETC is to become a developer and build your very own Ethereum Classic applications.

Mine ETC

More technically advanced users may acquire ETC by allocating computer resources to support the Ethereum Classic network. This method is commonly referred to as "mining" for block rewards. Mining is competitive and requires advanced knowledge that we will not cover here, but here is a list of mining resources.


Mining is a computational task involved in adding blocks of transactions to the blockchain. Computers on the Ethereum Classic network that voluntarily perform these tasks get a reward of ether. For security reasons, miners compete to complete these tasks first and win these rewards. This effort is referred to as mining.

What is proof of work information?

Mining involves doing computational tasks whose sole purpose is to intentionally make mining difficult! This difficulty is required to secure the network against certain attacks. These tasks involve finding certain numbers related to each block. These numbers are referred to as proof of work information.

What is a coinbase?

A coinbase is a special transaction, in every block, that creates new ether added to an account selected by the miner of that block. It can also refer to the primary account of a user.

What is an uncle?

Several miners compete to submit blocks to the blockchain. Inevitably some miners will lose the competition. The blockchain references the losing blocks to make the blockchain more secure. These losing blocks that contribute to the security of the blockchain are referred to as uncles. The term comes from the fact that blocks have preceding parent blocks. The losing blocks are not parents but are still related to the parents. Hence they are like uncles.

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