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Author Topic: Unable to restore balance from backed up secure wallet.dat  (Read 1966 times)
MichaelBliss
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January 09, 2013, 06:15:25 PM
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Hi, I would think this has been discussed before, though I can't find anything relevant when I search the forums so:

I'm trying to make a secure wallet (to hold my btc from my refunded bASIC orders..what a mess!).  I've had no problems up until the last step, confirming the balance.   When I loaded the secure wallet.dat back into the ./bitcoin directory and launched the program, and waited some 18hrs for the blockchain to download (using bitcoin-qt 0.72) , the balance shows as 0! I expect 0.03 that I sent to be there, as seen here: http://blockexplorer.com/address/1KLzQCkiNpjBVJyEJaLSSUzC63xrG9S6MD

What the hell am I doing wrong?  I don't care so much about the 0.03btc mystery as I do about just getting a secure wallet working.  I have a live ubuntu cd ready to go and am just as willing to try something other than https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/How_to_set_up_a_secure_offline_savings_wallet Perhaps a paper wallet would be ok, if that's easier.  Again, sorry if this is obvious and has been answered already, I couldn't find anything using the frustratingly crappy search function in these forums.
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DannyHamilton
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January 09, 2013, 06:23:05 PM
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It's not clear from what you've said, but I assume you are using the Bitcoin-Qt wallet and that the address 1KLzQCkiNpjBVJyEJaLSSUzC63xrG9S6MD shows up in the "Receive coins" tab?

If so, I'd suggest running Bitcoin-Qt from a command line with the -rescan option added to the command line.

This won't re-download the entire blockchain, so you won't have to wait the 18 hours again, but it will scan the entire blockchain that you have for any missed transactions.  This could take several minutes (I'd be surprised if it took as much as a half hour).

nethead
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January 09, 2013, 06:27:51 PM
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check if you bitcoin client is pointing elsewhere for the wallet.dat file, if thats the problem then set the datadir to where your wallet.dat file is, or copy/paste it where the datadir of your client is pointing
Hope i helped, if i did you can donate, i wont be angry :}

have a nice day/night
MichaelBliss
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January 09, 2013, 07:04:15 PM
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Thanks guys!  DannyHamilton's advice did the trick.  I guess this problem must be rare if the -rescan bit isn't in the wiki?  I believe I followed the steps exactly and still.  Glad these forums exist!
MichaelBliss
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January 09, 2013, 08:33:59 PM
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Just one small hitch I guess:  I'm trying to test the wallet on the live cd system, but I'm unable to send the unconfirmed coins (without downloading the blockchain first).   In the wiki they state that waiting for the blockchain to download in this case is optional (step 7), but I guess it is mandatory if you want to send the coins?

Is there a faster way to send money from my secure wallet in my ubuntu live cd , other than waiting for the blockchain to download?
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January 10, 2013, 01:13:46 AM
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It is only optional if the wallet.dat file already contains the transaction that you want to redeem.

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January 10, 2013, 01:23:25 AM
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Longer answer.

Sending bitcoins requires two parts, one public and one private.  The public part is the transaction that you want to redeem.  The private part is the key that corresponds to the pubkey (or hash) embedded in that transaction.  (These can all be multiple, but I'm going to try to keep using the singular words)

While your node is downloading blocks, it compares each transaction in each block against the list of keys it has in the wallet.  Matches get copied into the wallet.dat file.  It can either match because the output pubkey hash belongs to one of your keys, making that transaction a credit, and thus a spendable coin, or because an input is signed using one of your keys, making that a debit, and making it an unspendable coin (unspendable because it was already spent).  The client shows you a balance by adding these up, but the concept of a balance does not exist in the system.

If you back up your wallet, and then send money to one of the addresses in that wallet while the backup is offline, when you go to recover it, that transaction won't be in the wallet, and you'll need to wait for the chain to download.  Not necessarily the whole chain, just far enough to include the block you need.  The same thing can happen if the transaction you need gets corrupted or some other strange thing happens.

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