Classification of Forks
1. Soft

It is in an upgrade to the protocol, making new rules for consensus. This will not force nodes to upgrade anything since it is backward compatible. This will often be used to add a new type of transaction so since the old rules of consensus are still in effect nodes that have not upgraded and will still be able to make a valid transaction. Only encouraging the miners to upgrade so they can validate the new transaction type.

A good example was the implementation of SegWit were no one is forced to adopt this change, not even the miners. But there was an adoption since it offered a higher rate of transactions per second.

So if you were running an old node, it would still be able to do the old way of transactions until the time when you upgrade to accommodate the new transaction. So no new coin is created.

2.

A hard fork is an upgrade or gets left behind since it is forcing a new set of rules for consensus. If a group of miners and users don’t upgrade, it will split into two chains. One chain with the old consensus rules and one with the new set of rules. This will create a new coin. But we have seen examples of hard forks that only serves to upgrade the system this is what we have seen a lot on the ethereum network. So yes and no this might create a new coin, but it is not certain.

Conclusion

We can conclude that if you need to make a new coin from an existing blockchain, you need to hard fork it. But a hard fork does not necessarily create a new currency. So when you hear a coin is getting a fork read up on what that means for the coin. It might be a good idea to hold on to a currency that is forking into two coins. But do your research before you assume how it is going to be.


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