Soft Fork is a type of blockchain divergence that occurs when a blockchain specification is updated.
In the case of a soft fork, the new specification after the update is compatible with the previous version.
Updates that are not compatible are called hard forks. Once a hard fork is done, there is no going back, and a completely different system will be created.
An example of a soft fork is the addition of functionality.
The addition of the SegWit feature, which can increase the volume of transactions by shrinking the transaction data.
The process of blockchain forking
Since blockchains are operated and managed by an unspecified number of nodes, there is the issue of how decisions are made when updates are made.
Soft forking is one of the means of decision making.
It occurs when two different systems, which are compatible with each other, temporarily coexist on the blockchain, and the decision is made so that the whole converges to the system that has attracted more supporters.
This means that two different compatible systems will temporarily co-exist on the blockchain, and the whole system will converge to a system that has attracted more supporters.