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ETC price is 1/10 that of ETH, so theoretically it could be cheaper to run an app on ETC instead of ETH. However, I don't see users switching to ETC in droves, which suggests that it might not be.

Can anyone explain to me if it is cheaper to run an app on ETC, and if it's not, explain why.

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The price of a transaction is equal to gasUsed * gasPrice. gasUsed is ultimately set by the protocol, and would be the same on different forks. gasPrice is set by the user, but miners can choose not to accept a transaction if they think that the price is too low (or for any other reason).

As such, if the price of ETH doubles, you can halve the gasPrice and pay the same fee. If the price of ETH halves, you can double the gasPrice and pay the same fee. The cost to a miner of actually executing a transaction is the same, either way.

So to answer your question, it depends on whether ETC miners are willing to mine cheaper transactions, or whether ETH miners would demand more expensive transactions. Theoretically, neither has a reason to do so, aside from doing so accidentally leaving the gasPrice they ask to the unadjusted default. (Parity, as far as I know, compensates by changing the gasPrice relative to the current price of ETH in USD.) So there shouldn't be any real price difference between running on one or the other.

  • In theory, it is clear. What happens in practice though? – dionyziz Jul 9 '18 at 18:57
  • Things have changed since I wrote this, and IIRC the default min gasPrice for geth is now 1 wei. So in times of network congestion (which probably happens more often on Ethereum than Ethereum Classic) it will be cheaper to run on the other chain. Other than that, I really don't know. – Matthew Schmidt Jul 11 '18 at 11:44

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