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Author Topic: [General] Bitcoin Wallets - Which, what, why?  (Read 119979 times)
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September 29, 2016, 07:53:17 PM
Last edit: May 15, 2020, 09:03:04 AM by Lauda
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What is a General thread?
This is one of the first of (probably) many general threads that will be created in this subsection. A General thread will contain relevant information related to the question/subject of the title thus duplicate threads related to it are not allowed. Posts within a general thread will be harshly moderated and anything remotely useless will be removed. These threads are supposed to be informational, and reposting similar information multiple times is not allowed. You are free to discuss information that has been posted, but keep it short and civil (more than 5 replies is too much). Questions about information provided in this thread are not allowed either.

What are General threads for?
General threads are meant to be used as an overview of useful information and to prevent unnecessary duplicate threads within the section. After 10 pages this thread will be closed and a "[General] Bitcoin Wallets - Part n+1" will be created, which will contain an updated list of good information. This process will constantly be repeated. The reason that this approach was chosen is to prevent long threads in which people don't find what they are looking for and to provide the most up-to-date information.




Overview - Table of contents
Click the link to go to that part of the post

Types of Wallets
     Universal Wallets
     Desktop Wallets
     Mobile Wallets for Android
     Mobile Wallets for iOS
     Online Wallets (Web Wallets)
     Paper Wallets
     Hardware Wallets
     Lightning Network (LN) Wallets
Not recommended and outdated Wallets
Best practice handling Bitcoins
How to Store Bitcoins


Types of Wallets
There are many different ways to use Bitcoin and so there are many different types of wallets:
  • Online bitcoin wallets. Wallets that can be accessed on the web from any internet connected device.
  • Software wallets. Wallet applications downloaded to your phone, computer or tablet.
  • Bitcoin hardware wallets. Physical devices designed to secure bitcoins.
  • Paper wallets. Bitcoin private keys printed from an offline computer.

Here are some factors to consider when choosing a wallet:
  • On the go? If you are making payments in person and not online then a mobile wallet like breadwallet (iOS) or Edge (Android) is a must.
  • Frequency of payments: If you will need to make frequent payments then it will be best to keep your funds in wallet that is easy to use and accessible. Mobile wallets and desktop wallets are good options.
  • Amount: If you are dealing with large amounts of bitcoins you will need a secure wallet. Hardware wallets and secure offline wallets like Armory are good options.
  • Use combinations: Use a mobile wallet as your checking account, and a hardware or secure offline wallet as your savings account. Mix and match to find a combination that provides both security and accessibility.



Universal Wallets
Universal wallets are wallets that are available for Android, iOS, Mac OS X, Windows, and Linux.

Jaxx Liberty
While not designed as a wallet only for BTC, this wallet has support for many altcoins and has many useful features. Excepting an user-friendly UI, the wallet offers a built-in KYCless exchange, powered by ShapeShift. The users can exchange their coins directly from the wallet, without any registration process. Besides, the wallet offers also a real-time price of crypto market, similar to CoinMarketCap and includes also a News section where the users can read various news from crypto sector. Security wise: Jaxx is non-custodial wallet, the users are in control of their private keys and are offered a 12-words recovery phrase, stored locally. Furthermore, the users can lock the wallet's funds with a password.



Desktop Wallets
Desktop wallets are software wallets that are downloaded and installed on your computer. The desktop wallets below are available on Mac OS X, Windows, and Linux.

Bitcoin Core
Bitcoin Core is the “official” Bitcoin client and wallet, though isn’t used by many due to slow speeds and a lack of features. Bitcoin Core, however, is a full node, meaning it helps verify and transmit other Bitcoin transactions across the network and stores a copy of the entire blockchain. This offers better privacy since Core doesn’t have to rely on data from external servers or other peers on the network. Bitcoin Core routed through Tor is considered one of the best ways to use Bitcoin privately.

Wasabi
"Wasabi is an open-source, non-custodial, privacy-focused Bitcoin wallet for Desktop, that implements trustless coin shuffling with mathematically provable anonymity - Chaumian CoinJoin". This wallet uses Tor by default.

Armory
Armory is the most mature, secure and full featured Bitcoin wallet but it can be technologically intimidating for users. Whether you are an individual storing $1,000 or institution storing $1,000,000,000 this is one of the most secure options available. Users are in complete control all Bitcoin private keys and can setup a secure offline-signing process in Armory.

Electrum
Electrum may be the most popular desktop wallet, due to its speed and ease of use. Electrum can also be used as cold storage if you have an extra computer that can be used offline. Additonaly, Electrum offers other features like connecting through Tor, multisiganture wallets, integration with hardware wallets, and more.

Bitcoin Knots
Alternative to Bitcoin Core, "Bitcoin Knots is a derivative of Bitcoin Core (since 2011 December) with a collection of improvements backported from and sometimes maintained outside of the master git tree".



Mobile Wallets for Android

Samourai
This wallet is very privacy-oriented and it also implemented many privacy features that were implemented by Amir Taaki inside his Dark Wallet. It is available for Android and it has implemented an own version of Chaumian CoinJoin. Additionally, it has built-in TOR support.

Bitcoin Wallet
Bitcoin Wallet was the first Bitcoin wallet for Android. It’s simple, easy to backup, and connects directly to the Bitcoin network with SPV.

Edge
Edge (formerly Airbitz) is another Bitcoin wallet that’s great for everyday use. Edge manages accounts with usernames and passwords, but doesn’t have access to your funds. This type of account creation is easier for less technical users who may have trouble backing up or understanding HD seeds. It is open-source.

BlockStream Green
BlockStream Green is the native version of GreenAddress. It’s fast, simple, and supports hardware wallets Trezor One, Ledger Nano S, and Ledger Nano X.

Electrum (Android)
Electrum is among the most popular wallets, due to its speed and ease of use. Electrum can also be used as cold storage if you have an extra computer that can be used offline. Additonaly, Electrum offers other features like connecting through Tor, multisiganture wallets, integration with hardware wallets, and more.



Mobile Wallets for iOS

Breadwallet
Breadwallet’s combination of simplicity and security has made it the most popular iOS wallet. iPhone users in search of their first Bitcoin wallet should findBreadwallet easy to understand.

BlockStream Green
BlockStream Green is also available in the App Store.

Edge
Edge (formerly Airbitz) is also available in the App Store.



Online Bitcoin Wallets
Online Bitcoin wallets, or web wallets, store your private keys online. Wallets can only be accessed with a user-set password.

BitGo
BitGo is a high-security multi-sig wallet, which protects your bitcoin from theft and loss. You maintain full custody; BitGo cannot spend or freeze funds. BitGo wallets are easy to use and offer advanced security features such as spending limits and multi-user access

Coin.Space
Coin.Space HD Wallet is a free online bitcoin wallet, which you can use to make worldwide payments for free. It makes paying with bitcoins easy and secure available anywhere on your phone or desktop.

Xapo
Xapo combines the convenience of an everyday Bitcoin wallet with the security of an insured deep cold storage vault. Xapo Debit Card links to your Xapo Wallet and allows you to spend bitcoins at millions of merchants all around the world.




Paper Wallets
Paper wallets were the standard method of cold storage before hardware wallets were built. Paper wallets are private keys printed out on a piece of paper. If generated and printed with a secure, offline computer, paper wallets are secure cold storage.
The main problem with paper wallets is it can be inconvenient to create and print a new wallet each time you send funds to cold storage. However, it’s possible to bulk print paper wallets to save time and eliminate address reuse. Here's a cold storage guide which explains step-by-step how to create a secure paper wallet.



Hardware Wallets
Hardware wallets are small computers or smartcards built with the sole purpose of generating Bitcoin private keys offline. Hardware wallets securely sign transactions in the same offline environment.

Ledger Nano
The Ledger Nano is a smartcard based hardware wallet. Private keys are generated and signed offline in the smartcard’s secure environment. The Nano is setup using the Ledger Chrome Application. A random 24-word seed is generated upon setup and backed offline by writing it down on a piece of paper. In case of theft, damage or loss, the entire wallet can be recreated with the seed. A user selected PIN code is also assigned to the device to protect against physical theft or hacking. The Ledger Nano may be used on any computer, or Android phones with Mycelium or BlockStream Green.

Trezor
The TREZOR differs from the Ledger Nano in that it’s a very tiny computer rather than a smartcard. Private keys are still generated offline.
TREZOR also generates a 24-word seed upon setup. The TREZOR has its own built in screen where the seed is displayed and copied down during backup. Since the TREZOR is an offline device it offers extra security since the seed isn’t displayed on an online computer. An additional passphrase can be added to the 24-word seed. This provides extra protection, since anyone who finds someone else’s 24-word seed is free to access the funds. If the optional passphrase is added, an attacker still wouldn’t be able to access funds without both the seed AND the passphrase. If the passphrase is forgotten, it cannot be recovered.

OPENDIME
The first Bitcoin Bearer Bond or called a Bitcoin Stick. Opendime is a small USB stick that allows you to spend Bitcoin like a dollar bill. Pass it along multiple times. Connect to any USB to check balance. Unseal anytime to spend online. Trust no one. Acts like a read-only USB flash drive. Works with any computer, laptop, and phone. A QR Picture and Text file inside contain Bitcoin address and support. The private key is generated inside the device, and is never known to any human, not even you!

KeepKey
This hardware wallet is offered by ShapeShift, company which bought KeepKey in the past. It functions in a similar way compared to Nano and Trezor, but there are also some differences. Physically speaking, this is a very robust product. Twice as big as the Nano or Trezor, KeepKey's dimensions are 38 x 93.5 x 12.2 mm. The product is equipped with a large 256×64 3.12″ OLED screen, which is big enough for being able to display QR codes. However, due to its impressive size this wallet is not feasible to be carried out. It supports less cryptocurrencies compared to Nano / Trezor but as a plus it offers a built-in ShapeShift exchange, allowing the users to exchange their coins directly from the hardware wallet. Although KeepKey can be used on Windows, Linux and MacOS, on the official website it is stated that it is "optimized for MacOS. Not recommended for Windows".

Cobo Vault
This may be the safest wallet on the market as far as durability is concerned, being suitable for usage in extreme conditions. Literally speaking. The product meets the US military standard MIL-STD-810G regarding durability, temperature shock, salt/fog resistance, vibration, and high/low-temperatures usage and storage. It is also certified as IP68 water resistant and IK9 impact resistant. For improved security, the wallet is completely air-gapped and it works just in offline mode, as it has no connectivity (no USB / WiFi / 3G/4G / NFC / Bluetooth). Cobo Vault supports various cryptocurrencies and tokens and its enhanced security comes with an expensive price: it can be bought for 99$ / 149$ or 479$, depending on the chosen model.



Lightning Network (LN) Wallets

Eclair Mobile
Open-source, non-custodial wallet, available for Android. Eclair was coded in Scala by ACINQ and it is the first mobile Lightning Network wallet, this representing a huge advantage compared with its successors, at least in terms of usage. It can be used both as a regular Bitcoin wallet and as a Lightning Network wallet and it runs on mainnet.

Zap
A powerful tool for Lightning Network which is still in Beta stage of development. The wallet is cross-platform, being available on Windows, MacOS, Linux, Android and iOS. It has open-source code and it is non-custodial, the users having control over their private keys. The users have the option to create multiple wallets and run LN transactions in privacy, on mainnet. Future developments will include connecting to Lightning nodes over Tor and running full nodes.

Spark
Open-source, non-custodial, cross-platform LN wallet, available for desktop (Windows, Linux, Mac), Android and iOS. The wallet runs on c-lightning, which is a Lightning Network implementation in C. Users will face a simple interface and a near-zero configuration, while having their privacy enhanced: Spark installs Tor automatically. Do not confuse Spark LN wallet with IOTA Spark wallet, as the one mentioned here is a Lightning Network software developed by Nadav Ivgy, while IOTA Spark is a low-security and temporary web wallet named also a “burner wallet”, developed by IOTA Labs. The wallets are totally different and serve different purposes / cryptocurrencies (IOTA is a known scam coin).

General guidelines for LN wallets
: except the three wallets listed above, be aware that several other LN wallets are available on Internet, including, but not limited to: LND Thin Wallet, Shango, Wallet of Satoshi, Breez, Blue Wallet, Bitcoin Lightning Wallet, Peach Wallet etc. However, we can only test and recommend so many. Use them only after performing a due diligence and also have in mind that not all of them are final products - some run on testnet and others on the mainnet.



Not recommended or outdated Wallets
These wallets are either not-recommended for some reason or outdated. You should not use them! Please note that here we only list wallets that were previously on the list, or were suggested to be included by others. This does not include ALL wallets that exist and are not recommended. Wallets that are strongly not recommended:
  • Copay, Bitpay, Blockchain.info, BTC.com — untrustworthy, misleading customers, high fees, lacking implementation.
  • Mycelium — iOS app has been abandoned. Mycelium team was involved in various unethical scandals, e.g. raising money from ICOs, partying with the collected money and more.
  • Multibit — This wallet is discontinued: https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=2293714.0.
  • Coinbase, Freewallet — Custodial wallets. Freewallet has also many scam accusations against it.
  • Ledger HW.1, Ledger Unplugged — Discontinued hardware wallets.
  • Bitfi - John McAffee's "unhackable" hardware wallet, named also as “the world’s first unhackable device”. Besides McAffee's notorious lack of ethics and besides the admitted vulnerabilities of this product, McAffee offered in 2018 a 100.000$ bounty (raised afterwards to 250.000$) to anyone able to hack the hardware wallet. One week later, a 15 years old teen cracked the wallet and launched Doom on it, but he never received a dime from McAffee.
  • Coinomi — Initially open source, then changed again to closed source. Had controversial situations in the past. More information can be found here.
  • Trust Wallet — Mislead users that it was open source (only iOS app was). Later both versions of the wallet became closed source. They have not provided a reasonable explanation for this. More information can be found here, and here.
  • Exodus — high fees (not customizable), security flaws, sync problems.



Best Practices
Bitcoin lets you control your money, meaning you are responsible for both your money’s security and your financial privacy. Here are some steps you can take to ensure your privacy and security:

Control your private keys
Services like Coinbase and Circle offer “Bitcoin wallets”, but in reality control your private keys. It’s best to use a wallet where you control your private keys. This is the only way to have full control of your funds and not have to rely on third parties for security.

Protect your privacy
Each time you request blockchain data from a wallet, the server may be able to view your IP address and connect this to the address data requested. Each wallet handles data requests differently. If privacy is important to you, use a wallet that downloads the whole blockchain like Bitcoin Core or Armory. Tor can be used with other wallets to shield your IP address, but this doesn’t prevent a server from tying a group of addresses to one identity. For more information, check out the Open Bitcoin Privacy Project for wallet rankings based on privacy.

Don’t reuse addresses
Most Bitcoin wallets today automatically create a new address for each transaction. Since all Bitcoin transactions are public, address reuse makes it easy for others to group transactions and understand which payments are connected to one identity.

Use different wallets for different sums of money
Just like you don’t walk around with your savings account as cash, there are different Bitcoin wallets that should be used depending on how much money is being stored or transferred. Secure wallets like paper wallets or hardware wallets can be used as “savings” wallets, while mobile, web, and desktop wallets should be treated like your spending wallet.

Create multiple secure backups
Users should create multiple backups of their wallets. Backups should be kept in separate physical locations in the case of fire or water damage. Paper wallets can be laminated or written in metal for extra protection.

General guidelines
Web wallets, custodial wallets and wallets requiring KYC should be avoided. Wallets with a shady reputation or whose name doesn't tell you anything should also be avoided, at least until you do your due dilligence. Also, discontinued products should never be used. Additionally, be careful when using misleading services which make you believe you control crypto, but in fact you have CFDs (eToro, Revolut etc.).



How to Store Bitcoins
Earlier it was mentioned that there are four types of Bitcoin wallets: online wallets, hardware wallets, software wallets, and paper wallets. These four categories can be broken down further into different kinds of storage and security:

Hot Wallets
Hot wallets refer to Bitcoin wallets used on internet connected devices like phones, computers, or tablets. Because hot wallets run on internet connected devices there is always a risk of theft. Think of hot wallets like your wallet today. You shouldn’t store any significant amount of bitcoins in a hot wallet, just as you would not walk around with your savings account as cash.
If only used with small amounts, hot wallets should be used for your everyday Bitcoin needs. One may, for example, want to keep $200 worth of bitcoins in a hot wallet for spending, with $10,000 locked away in cold storage.

Custodial Services
Although often called Bitcoin wallets, services like Coinbase and Circle aren’t true Bitcoin wallets. Customers private keys are held by these third party services, meaning users don’t really have control of their money. As Bitcoiners often say: “if you don’t control the keys, you don’t control the coins”. Mt. Gox is an extreme example, but one that illustrates the importance of holding private keys. Gox was the first and largest Bitcoin exchange up until 2013. Thousands of users stored more than 800,000 bitcoins in their Gox accounts.

At the time, one may have claimed to have 1,000 bitcoins in a Gox account. While true at the time, as soon as Mt. Gox claimed to have been victim of theft users with bitcoins in their accounts were left empty handed. Services like Coinbase and Circle may in fact use good security practices and there’s a chance your bitcoins are safe. But by storing bitcoins with a third party you are always taking on additional risk.

Cold Storage
Cold storage is achieved when Bitcoin private keys are created and stored offline. Private keys stored offline are more secure since there is no risk that a hacker or malware could steal your coins.
There are three ways to create cold storage: paper wallets, hardware wallets, and software wallets run on offline computers. Think of cold storage as your savings account. Use it to securely store bitcoins that you don’t plan to spend.

Multisignature Wallets
Multisignature wallets like Electrum make it easier to share control of bitcoins between multiple parties. If created offline, multisig can also make cold storage more secure.
Multisignature wallets require multiple parties to sign transactions in order for funds to be spend. In a 2-2 wallet, for example, both parties must sign a transaction. In a 2-3 multisig wallet, two of the three co-signers must sign each transaction.

Armory Multisig
Armory offers a Lockbox feature that requires any amount of up to seven co-signers to approve shared transactions. A Lockbox is created by one party who adds additional public keys as co-signers. This solution provides a mix of flexibility and security for personal use or organizations.
Armory’s fragmented backups is another useful feature. Instead of requiring multiple signatures for each transaction, fragmented backups require multiple signatures only for backups. A fragmented backup splits up your Armory backup into multiple pieces, which decreases the risk of physical theft of your wallet. Without a fragmented backup, discovery of your backup would allow for immediate theft. With fragmented backup, multiple backup locations would need to be compromised in order to obtain the full backup.
Here's a look at some everyday use cases for multisig:

2-2 Wallet
Two business partners work together at a startup. They create a 2-2 multisig wallet so that no funds can be spent without the permission of both founders. If one tries to create a transaction, the other partner will be required to sign off on the transaction before money can be moved.

2-3 Wallet
A 2-3 multisig wallet could be used to create secure offline storage with paper wallets or hardware wallets. Users should already backup their offline Bitcoin holdings in multiple locations, and multisig helps add another level of security. A user, for example, may keep a backup of a paper wallet in three separate physical locations. If any single location is compromised the user’s funds can be stolen. Multisignature wallets improve upon this by requiring instead any two of the three backups to spend funds--in the case of a 2-3 multisig wallet. The same setup can be created with any number of signatures. A 5-9 wallet would require any five of the nine signatures in order to spend funds.





Credits: A huge shoutout to WeUseCoins for making an extremely detailed list which was used during the creation of this thread.
Additionally a huge shoutout to everyone who privately or publicly contributed to this thread.

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October 19, 2016, 05:39:32 PM
Last edit: May 04, 2020, 06:19:20 AM by Lauda
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Collection of Questions and Answers



However, I was once told that to get a paper wallet I must buy it but with the information provided at the OP nothing of such was mention.
No, you don't have to buy anything besides paper obviously. A paper wallet is literally a wallet on a piece of paper (it could be any kind of paper, e.g. the one you use in your printer).

My question, is the paper waller for free and is it secure if I follow all the necessary procedure provided by the OP?
Thanks
While I personally can not guarantee safety, as the guide was not written by me, it does look good enough (especially for newbies). Just make sure that you don't generate online, and that the machine is fresh/clean.

If I understand you correctly. In other to get a safe wallet code I will have to generate the code using an offline computer?
Correct. You should download the software and generate the keys on a offline machine.

Meanwhile,you're lengend here and you should know which of this wallet is safe and secure.
Firstly, the 'legendary' rank does not imply any kind of knowledge. Ranks are based on activity, ergo you will find plenty of Hero and Legendary members with limited or flawed knowledge.
Secondly, I'm fully aware of the security implications of the wallets. What I'm saying is that, I have not written this myself and can not guarantee anything (there are ways that you can fuck up).



if I have bitcoins in my desktop wallet and I'm needing format the hard disk from my computer, I'll lost the bitcoins after format the HD?
If you don't have a backup of your wallet, then you will most likely lose your coins.

If yes is the answer, how no lose the bitcoins with formatting?
This depends on the type of wallet that you're using. For Bitcoin Core, you need to find and backup your 'wallet.dat' file which is usually located in your datadir



I have a question. When verifying the address. When you use bitcoin core, you will be given a lot of addresses for receiving. What address should I use to sign? Or what should I use to receive payments then how to sign it. If you need to move this post, it's okay. Smiley
That's solely up to you. Usually people keep one address on their profile, and/or stake it somewhere on the forum for identification purposes. They do most/all signing with this address in cases when needed (e.g. account recovery after being locked out/hacked).
Okay then so i pick 1 then stake it here so at least they would know it's mine?
Thanks for replying!
Correct. This is the primary thread used for address staking at this time: https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=996318.0
Thank you for that. Last question. If I have a software wallet in an offline computer or laptop, how will it be updated about the transactions? i'm sorry, I'm really new in bitcoin
If you're talking about creating transactions: Your transaction will be broadcast as soon as you connect to the internet or you could let someone else broadcast it (e.g. use a service to do so).
If you're talking about receiving transactions: Depending on the wallet, it will synchronize as soon as you open the wallet with an active internet connection and any transactions should show. You can obviously receive payments even if your wallet is offline (easily verifiable via any blockchain explorer).
So you would always connect it the internet IF ONLY you plan to spend it or resend some funds? (Cold storages)
Correct. You don't need to connect to receive (even though your offline wallet wouldn't show that you've received anything). Experienced users can also mitigate connecting to the internet for sending by creating transactions on offline machines and pushing them via online ones (although I don't recommend attempting this considering your current knowledge). Hopefully this answers your questions. You can PM me directly if you have more questions.



Does there really need to be this much analysis tho? I feel you can just choose the mos tpopular one and you'll be fine

I'm a beginner though too :/
There are many options and wallet types to choose from depending on your needs. That's why we tried to cover as much as possible. It comes down to security and privacy. If you go with e.g. Electrum, you should be fine.


Hi. I would just like to know if you have heard of cases where people's money have been stolen from their wallet. If so how can you avoid this?
The only way to steal money is if they compromise the target machine/network. To avoid this you need to look into general security advice for computers and network. Read this thread: Beware of Malware: Think Before Acting!. What you could do is:
1) Keep the majority of your coins on an offline machine and only boot it when you need to use them.
2) Split the coins across several different devices (e.g. desktop wallet, mobile wallets) and make sure to use 2FA and encryption where available.
Another way to keep your coins from being stolen is to use a cold storage wallet.  While they are not a convenient solution for spending bitcoins, they are a great way to keep your coins safe.  With the cold storage keys being generated offline, there is no way for a hacker to get said keys.  But when you want to spend the coins on the cold wallet, you have to upload all the coins in the address as the private key is now possibly compromised.
If you want to save coins for the long term, a cold storage wallet is definitely the solution to go with.
While that is most likely going to be the case with the average user, it does not necessarily have to be the case. Depending on the user expertise, it is possibly to create the transaction(s) offline and broadcast them to the network from an online machine. One could say that this is almost a *fool proof* way of using them. Someone could attempt to write a guide for this, however I'd advise that average users do not use it depending on how TXs are crafted.



Oh it's ok. I'm a newbie and didn't know all of this wallet before. Roll Eyes But I found out a wallet called "Coinbase" I'm kinda nervous why coinbase isn't recommend in this post? Is coinbase is good or bad?  Huh  I'm using it..  Smiley
Coinbase is a web wallet. Web wallets are discouraged as you the user are not in control of your Bitcoin, the wallet service is. If the service shuts down or they lock you out of your account, you cannot access your Bitcoin. If the service decides to scam and steals all of the Bitcoin entrusted to them, you have lost your Bitcoin. In general, web wallets, including Coinbase, are not considered good wallets.
Also, Coinbase is known to have shut down accounts that they suspect are being used for gambling. Your money is at their mercy.



Couple questions maybe I find answers here
Annual income every month is 0.7-1 BTC, I'm using Coinbase and Xapo as my main wallets, sometimes local wallet provided by emoney.ge where I can sell my BTC to GEL and cashout. In this case everything is fine and I feel secured.
I was wondering what is the best way of storing big amounts of BTC ? I understand that in this case hardware wallet may be the best solution, or maybe I'm wrong ?
Significant amounts[1] should not be kept with online wallets. Hardware wallets[2] are specific devices designed to hold your private keys, like e.g. a trezor[3] or keepkey[4]. Other options would be to use general hardware (like an old laptop) with a software wallet, but to keep it offline at all time (after setup). The idea is to keep private keys on systems that can not be attacked from the internet or only with significantly advanced malware that is most likely not used for attacks on wallets (think stuxnet[5]).

And if I'm not what is the right way to maintain a hardware wallet ? I mean hardware side, where you need backups RAIDs and etc. Is there any ultimate guide or something ?
Most hardware wallets use a HD[6] scheme which means you have to do a single backup upon setup and thats it. Keep in mind that this backup must be kept secure as well.

[1] how much that exactly is depends on your personal circumstances.
[2] https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Hardware_wallet
[3] https://bitcointrezor.com/
[4] https://www.keepkey.com/
[5] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stuxnet
[6] https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Deterministic_wallet



Very interesting thread. I've been using Bitcoins more often lately to conduct transactions and as somewhat of a newbie, I wasn't sure which was best. At first I tried Bitcoin Core but it was very slow and that made it unappealing for me. Then I went to Circle, which ended, and now I am at Coinbase. After doing some reading in this thread, I decided to migrate away from Coinbase and I'm looking at some hardware wallets to store the majority of my bitcoins. I think I am leaning toward the KeepKey right now, but they have seemingly went out of stock on Amazon. Do you think it's worth the wait or should I just get the Trezor instead?

Circle and Coinbase are definitely two services that everyone should avoid as they don't give you control over your private keys. If they don't have stock on Amazon , try to use order from their official website[1]. If I had to choose a hardware wallet personally , I'd go with Ledger Nano S[2] without thinking twice and It can also manage multiple coins. I made a thread about hardware wallets[3] , I suggest checking it out as It could help you choose.

[1] https://www.keepkey.com/
[2] https://www.ledgerwallet.com/products/12-ledger-nano-s
[3] https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=1710607.0;topicseen



Do you recommend Electrum wallet for beginners and what are advantages and disadvantages of Electrum ?
even as a beginner you need to know a certain things such as how to secure your wallet, how certain things work such as fee,...but yes i recommend Electrum for a beginner.
advantage of Electrum is that it is a SPV wallet which means you don't have to download much data from internet (~30 MB) and syncing is easy and fast.
but it is a SPV wallet and has SPV disadvantages, such as not having the privacy of a full node (need to download 100+ GB and sync takes a long time) and also trusting a server to tell you about transaction status (not that this is happening but) the server can tell you a transaction is confirmed while it is not and risk double spend.



I read everything and I'm quite confused.. I'm a newbie and I'm looking for a wallet to start, I see that blockchain.info is quite good but it has fees to pay for each btc transfer.
No. Blockchain.info is not a good wallet. The use of web wallets is not recommended.

I would like to use an online wallet with possibly no fees.
There is no such thing. Bitcoin transactions require fees to proceed. Whilst you can send a TX without a fee or with a very low fee, it is highly likely that it will never confirm. Therefore, it makes no sense to even attempt that.
As a noob, I'm pushed to think that an online wallet is more safe than one installed in your pc, since your pc could get viruses in various way while an online wallet MUST grant you that your money are safe, it's their work. Probably I'm thinking like real moneys and banks: it's better to give your money to the bank instead of keeping them under the mattress since a burglar could break into your home and steal them. Why it is not the same with btc?
Wrong. A web wallet is not a bank. There is no gurantee that you will be compensated in the case that it gets hacked. AFAIK the biggest web wallet hack that has occurred was the one with Inputs.io.

Read: https://www.wired.com/2013/11/inputs/

Then, is it sufficient a commercial antivirus as Kaspersky to protect my btc? What if I need to format my pc?
Nothing can make your system 100% fool proof. Using Windows is a risk on its own. You should frequently backup your wallet to an external device.
Really thanks, so the best for beginners is Electrum?
If you don't want to download the whole blockchain, i.e. use a fully verifying wallet, then yes.

Could be a good idea storing it on a virtual machine? Maybe using Linux and using this VM only for that purpose.
Yes, but I don't see the point of doing this. If your host machine is compromised, your virtual machine will also be compromised.



what happens if the Electrum service disappears? Will it still be possible to recover the coins with the private key?
Yes.
You can test this: turn off your internet, and click Wallet > Private keys > Export.



1. Can a hardware wallet accept except of bitcoin altcoins as well,
So that in a single wallet to have multiple accounts of different coins, Monero, zcash, Bitcoin and more
Not unless the wallet explicitly says that they offer an altcoin wallet as well.

2. If you have created an account in an online wallet can this account be used from another wallet, a hardware wallet for example? And visa versa.
Or you have to have multiple wallet accounts and transfer your funds from one to another?
Depends on the used service. If they allow you to import/export private keys, then you can do that (e.g. from online to desktop). This is not common though.



But, my question is about Electrum BTC Wallet, to ask how may I use sweep to get BTC that were stolen? If this is possible with sweep, than why hasn't the wallet creator able to optimized this to be used as a safe-guard from scamming / steeling others BTC? I'm not a programmer, so I'm unable to understand how it does it.
You can't get back Bitcoin that was stolen and is already confirmed by using a wallet. It looks like you don't understand how Bitcoin works at all. Unless you are trying to ask something else, in which case I did not understand the question.



In my case, I have a bread wallet which has some mBTC but I would like to change it. In the new wallet will I use my first private key or create a new one from scratch?Will the mBTC be transferred?
Just create a new wallet and transfer the Bitcoins by yourself: make a payment of your entire balance to an address from your new wallet.

Then I installed Electrum. It created 12 words, 1 password and private keys of 10-15 addresses.
Is it possible to change those 12 words, 1 password and private keys regularly?
The only way to "change" those 12 words, is by creating a new wallet. It is possible, but - as long as you keep the 12 words secure - not needed.
Every time you use a new address to receive Bitcoins, your wallet uses a new private key. So there too: nothing to do.
You can change the password.

Quote
If yes, changing those 3 types of password-like things will be enough to keep Electrum wallet secure.
It's still a hot wallet, meaning it's used on a computer connected to the internet. If your computer is not secure, your wallet isn't secure either.



Would you say that Bitcoin Core works fine for a first wallet? I like it because of the security (that it's software installed on my computer, and that the password is not held by a third party). But, I wonder because I hear reports that it is slow or unreliable at times. This guide reaffirms that.
It is neither slow nor unreliable. Bitcoin Core requires you to download and validate the whole blockchain (~120 GB at the time of writing). The initial block download takes a long of time, especially if you have mediocre hardware. However, once you have syncronized it, you could use it as your daily wallet without problems assuming you open it once every or every second day (so it synchronizes the new parts of the chain).



With mobile wallets, are they backed up online?
I will be speaking about Mycelium when I say It's not the case but there is some centralization as they are the one controlling the full nodes the wallet is connected to, they don't take data like your private keys etc.. but your addresses should be known for them. I believe that people use it because It has more features and nice GUI otherwise you can check GreenBits or breadwallet.

With mobile wallets, are they backed up online?
I've used two: Mycelium and Bitcoin Wallet. Both don't keep online backups. I wouldn't recommend using a wallet that keeps backups online anyway.
Mycelium asks you to write down random words for its seed. Bitcoin Wallet lets you create a backup, which you can for instance email to yourself.
For both wallets, or even in general, I can recommend to test the backup system at least once. Take an old smartphone, install the same wallet on it, and restore your backup. If it checks out, you should end up with two wallets that are exactly the same.



Hi, thanks for the info.
I'm new here so this might be a stupid question but, I've personally been using Coinomi on my Android as a mobile wallet.
Would you say this one is ok, or is it better to stick with what's been written up in the OP?
Coinomi wasn't listed because It's new compared to the others and less known. I however see no reason on why you shouldn't use it as from the look of it, Its open source, you control your private keys, easy to recover using BIP44 passphrase. So Its really up to you.
https://bitcoin.org/en/choose-your-wallet gives a possible reason:
Quote
This wallet relies on a centralized service by default. This means a third party must be trusted to not hide or simulate payments.
I'm not sure how serious this concern is though.



Hi guys, I'd like to a have a clarification about Electrum: what do I exactly need to restore a wallet, besides the seed? Because some people say I only need the seed, other people say also a backup and the private key...  Huh
A lot of options could work:

1. The seed: the whole wallet will get regenerated from the 12 words seed including your addresses, private keys associated to them etc.
2. The wallet file (.dat) + password: You simply place it on the AppData and Electrum should read it, you will need to know the password though and keep the file with you all the time.
3. The private keys: You will have to export the private keys in plain text and keep them safely or print them.

I recommend the first method (seed). Taking a wallet .dat file with you the whole time could get it compromised or the USB where the file is stored could get corrupt, not to mention that someone could get his hands on them and try brute force the wallet. The private keys method is also not recommended, In bitcoin, Its suggested to use a new receiving address each time you receive funds, If you follow that, It will leave you with multiple private keys and that's a little bit chaotic. So go for the seed!

3. The private keys: You will have to export the private keys in plain text and keep them safely or print them.
Thanks a lot for the answer Omega! Now I have another question for each point  Grin

1) I chose the 2FA installation option, if I try to restore the wallet on a different computer besides the seed is it gonna ask me also for the 2FA the first time or not?

2) Wallet file (.dat) + password, is it basically like a copy-paste of the whole wallet? Where is this file located on a Mac?

3) I don't get one thing, what's exactly the private keys and where are they?

Thanks again!
1. The wallet will keep asking you for the 2FA unless you restore it using the seed IIRC.
2. http://docs.electrum.org/en/latest/faq.html#where-is-my-wallet-file-located (Paths for Windows, Linux & Mac)
3. The private keys are clearly "private". Its what allows you to spend the funds from an address, each address is related to a private key. You should never give your private keys to anyone, private keys start with (5, L or K). Its somehow useless to take private key backup If your address is multi-signature (address start with 3 instead of 1) as you won't be controlling all private keys in that case so again, seed is the ideal.



Long time ago I used multibit and I had single address, new multibit has worse design (imo), any way to use old multibit and 1 address? Thanks!
Multibit Classic (the old one) is no longer being updated and anyone using it is having a lot of issues (most of them are with the slow transactions and low fees). I really wouldn't suggest using it.
If you only want to use one address then this can be done using Multibit HD, even If the wallet generate a new address each time, you could use one over and over. (just save it in a .txt file and keep giving it to people when you want to receive).



who guarantees, that wallets like Copay do not steal my bitcoins?
No one guarantees anything but I believe that Copay is open source for both the client and server side, they also claim that you are controlling your funds without having any third party interfering.
Is Exodus 100% open source or not?
Exodus.io is also not open source but this might change in the future. It was also explained by the developer: https://www.reddit.com/r/Bitcoin/comments/4z5uw4/exodusio_multi_asset_wallet_100_trustworthy/ddi16a0/



Hello. I just want to ask about the Electrum wallet. There are three options for Windows to download: The standalone, windows installer and the portable version. What are the differences of these and which would be best to download?
The standalone: don't require any installation, data will probably be stored somewhere (AppData folder most likely).
Windows Installer: require an installation and the data will also be stored in the AppData folder.
Portable version: Its an executable that will store the data inside itself (the exe) so you can move it around.

ThomasV (the developer of Electrum) made a warning about Portable version at some point: https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=154451.0
I personally wouldn't go with the Windows Installer or Standalone option.



Hi, i have just joined the forum so please forgive my ignorance, I'm trying to understand all the differences with the all the coins/tokens etc and wallets available, i've read quite a lot but some of the reading may already be "old news", I've decided Poloniex for my exchange, what is the consensus for which/what wallet i should have/use? All advice greatly received, thanks.
A real wallet is a wallet that give you control over your private keys, those keys are what allow you spend the bitcoins from your addresses. Poloniex or other exchanges don't give you those keys, they generate an address for you and they control the key. If they ever get hacked, decided to suspend withdrawal, or even try to steal your money, there will be nothing you can do.
So I suggest using a wallet like Electrum for PC, Mycelium for Android, there is nothing wrong on using an exchange but once you are finished trading, withdraw your coins from your Poloniex to your wallet (Electrum,Mycelium, or whatever)



I´m looking for wallet that allow multible payments at same time (i have app that pay once per week to users). I use now blockchain but it takes many days to get bitcoins to user.
What are solutions? 5 hours delay is ok but 24 hours not. Small fee is great thing also. I send usually 100k satoshi per user.
If you mean sending funds to multiple users in one TXID then Electrum allow doing so and It also has dynamic fees so you could change them as you wish to, low fees and fast transactions don't go along though so at least make sure you are using the recommended fees: bitcoinfees.21.co.

I´m looking for wallet that allow multible payments at same time (i have app that pay once per week to users). I use now blockchain but it takes many days to get bitcoins to user.
What are solutions? 5 hours delay is ok but 24 hours not. Small fee is great thing also. I send usually 100k satoshi per user.
If your user wants to use his 100k satoshi, he'll spend half of it on fees. It's better if you pay once per month, you'll pay less fees, and your users get to use a larger share of their earnings.
Bitcoin fees are so high now that 50k satoshi (0.0005 BTC) is almost more or less considered dust.



So, before I found this blog, I created some wallets at bitaddress.org.  I have two questions. First, I unplugged my network cable from the internet before generating paper wallets.  Is that considered offline and a safe method for paper?  Second, there were several options from "single wallet" to "paper wallet" to "brain wallet", etc.  there is no explanation of the differences. How do I find that out?  BTW, thank you for your post, great info.
You did good by unplugging your network cable but It would've been better If you ran Ubuntu on LiveCD + download the source code of Bitaddress and running it locally (I assume you did that last part) as well.
The single wallet is simply the private key + address generated, where paper wallet is the same thing as single wallet but with a design (not printed as plaintext) + ability to encrypt private keys+ generate multiple wallets and print them as once. A brainwallet refers to the concept of storing Bitcoins in one's own mind by memorizing a mnemonic recovery seed. (from Bitcoin wiki)



Some wallet experienced people here? What is the best wallet for bitcoin, just want to store some coins (so easy to use)? Is there some kind of wallet where you can store and send several coins from, so you don't have 10 different wallets to keeping update? Thanks in advance!  Grin
Electrum (bitcoin only) is the way to go If you want have full control of your wallet. Multi coin wallets like Jaxx and Exodus are also good but they are not open source, so It's up to you If you want to use them or not.

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June 06, 2017, 04:48:58 PM
Last edit: May 06, 2020, 06:53:06 AM by Lauda
 #3

Collection of Questions and Answers 2



Im really interested in brain wallets if anyone could explain how they work.
Brain wallets are a type of wallet where the private key is derived from a passphrase and salt that you remember. The important details are stored in your brain, hence brain wallet. However, brain wallets are highly insecure because the human mind is horrible at generating secure enough passphrases. Humans simply cannot provide enough randomness in order to make a private key securely.



Noob question here: is such a thing like multi-coin desktop wallet is technically possible?
Yes we have a couple of them, I'd suggest going with Exodus.io . It's currently supporting a decent amounts of coins and there are plans to add others as well, in addition to the hardware wallets support. I also made a topic about them on the service discussion section so If you have any questions, feel free to post there.



In advance, im sorry if this isnt the right place to post my question or if it needs to be moved i please mods do so
 Im new to bitcoin and trying to get the ball rolling on a wallet. Can anyone recommend a wallet that works well with US banks? ive tried a few and cant get my account to verify over a few weeks now. i tried bitfinex and it doenst have validation for US id's nor will it take my phone #? am i missing something?? is bitcoin not allowed in US? Ive tried several searches on the forum and i havent found any help. thanks in advance!
I believe you mean 'exchanges' more then 'wallets'. A lot of exchanges are based on the U.S, I suggest trying Coinbase, Gemini, Kraken. After buying, I suggest withdrawing your funds to an actual wallet like Electrum because If you keep them on the exchanges, they will be the one controlling your funds technically and not you.



Another newbie question ...
I have just installed Electrum in order to transfer my BTC from Coinbase to my wallet and hold the private keys.
I'm looking for the simplest, but secure method, but not sure if I should create a standard wallet or a wallet with two-factor authentication.
I am also still trying to understand, in what part of the process of moving my BTC from Coinbase to my Electrum wallet do private keys get generated or are available to me to either store as a paper wallet, or store on my Trezor, once it arrives on July 28th.
I'm missing a clear understanding of how private keys are moved to my Electrum wallet when I go to transfer my BTC from Coinbase to my wallet.
Also, how to I create a paper wallet, once my BTC are transferred from Coinbase to my Electrum wallet.
(I hope I am asking these questions in the right are of the forum)
thanks
regards
Each address has a private key that allow you to spend the funds from that specific address. If we take Coinbase case, It's the company who control these keys so they actually control the bitcoins in your account. Once you send the money to your Electrum wallet, you have a full control on them and you could even export them If you want to (no need to do that though).

A standard wallet is safe really as long as the PC is clean, If you have reasons to believe that your PC is infected or something then wait until your Trezor comes and send them there. As for the paper wallet you want to create, there is no reason to use Electrum for that, use this Bitaddress.org and send your funds there directly from Electrum, make sure to download the site source code and run it locally, never trust something online.

Thanks for the great feedback, that helps a lot.

I would wait for my Trezor to come (it should arrive by July 28th), and just transfer my BTC from Coinbase to my Trezor, but I am worried that with the recommendations to make sure to get 30 confirmations (vs 6 confirmations), that may take a while and if I wait for my Trezor, I may not have enough window of time before Aug. 31st to get my BTC out of Coinbase.
You will get enough confirmations, It could take a few hours but definitely not more then a day assuming that Coinbase algorithm for paying the fees is good enough.

Additional question.
If create a standard Electrum wallet and go ahead and transfer my BTC from Coinbase. I can still transfer my BTC to my Trezor when it comes, correct, as I understand that Electrum supports Trezor, right ?
You can interact with your Trezor device either from Electrum or using their official application/extension: https://wallet.trezor.io/#/
Just to clear things, If you are going to transfer funds from Coinbase to Trezor, the funds will actually be on the trezor device even If you use Electrum as an intermediary to interact with your Trezor.

I am still a bit confused about paper wallets. It was mentioned I don't have to use Electrum for that, I can use Bitaddress.org and send my BTC there directly from Electrum, but not to use the online site, to download the source code and run it locally.
If I did that, the paper wallet would contain the private keys, which I would store in a secure location(s), safe and/or safe deposit box.
Would that mean that my BTC are no longer in my Electrum wallet and to spend my BTC or transfer to poloniex or back to Coinbase to either sell or trade later on, once the "All Clear" signal has been given that the BIP-148 and/or UAHF is all over, would I have to transfer my BTC from my paper wallet back to my Electrum wallet, and how would I do that ?
A reminder: You need the private keys in order to spend the funds.

If you generated the address and private keys using Bitaddress.org and printed them and you sent from Electrum to that printed address, the funds will disappear from Electrum and you won't be able to spend them from Electrum anymore.

If you didn't use Bitaddress.org however, exported the private keys from Electrum (check the menu), copied and pasted them on a text file and printed them, then you will have your funds both in the paper and in Electrum.

The second option clearly defeats the whole purpose from having a paper wallet which is having your funds offline, the PC where electrum is installed is connected to the internet and that's less secure and If someone get access to your PC and your wallet, then the funds on that paper will disappear as well.

Paper wallets are meant for long term storage and not for using them on a daily basis. If you want to use funds from it at some point, then import them into a wallet like Bitcoin Core, Electrum or Mycelium (Android).

If your funds are on your Trezor, It doesn't really matter even If your computer have malwares because funds can't move from the wallet unless there is a physical interaction with the trezor device (you click the button). I believe you want to be using bitcoins on a regular basis, so go with Trezor instead of paper wallets.



hi thank you for the complete information just what i really needed as a beginner, just wanna ask if all of the wallets mentioned above are applicable to any country?  thank you
A wallet should work everywhere as this is the whole point from bitcoin, an exchange however could have some restrictions where Its either illegal to use it or an ID verification is needed.
Hi!
I´m totally new to this and just installed Electrum. Afterwards I got a little concerned about the two-factor authentication that I did not choose.
It´s supposed to protect us from malware and now I only have the standard wallet.
Tried to reinstall it but didn´t succeed with that one..

Should I be concerned or just go with the standard wallet as a beginner? Smiley

If you are holding large amounts of bitcoin, just go with a hardware wallet otherwise a desktop (standard one) is just fine even without the 2FA. If you still want to setup one, go to File -> New/Restore (CTRL+N is the shortcut) and follow the instructions[1].

[1] http://docs.electrum.org/en/latest/2fa.html



My question is, can I turn link those words to a Passphrase I can remember? ... In other words, can I run a readily available program, preferably on-line or on my phone, that will take my Passphrase and turn it into my 24 word seed?  I can remember my complicated Passphrase, but I can't remember the 24 words.
I am not aware of any program that does this, so the answer to your question is no.

Sort of like a Brain Wallet?  
Brain wallets are inherently unsafe due to the lack of entropy. Do not use them.

My goal is to be able to throw away my 24 word list for security purposes, but be able to recreate my HD wallet because I know my personal Passphrase.
Write them down somewhere.



Does a non-miner full node (Bitcoin Core) really help the BTC community in general - in term of keeping it more decentralized and having more privacy for yourself
It does.

but at the same time more prone to hacker attack?
No. It is quite the opposite. With Bitcoin Core, and its superior code, you are less prone to be compromised. Then again, you could compromise your system via other methods thus the wallet that you're using is entirely irrelevant.



if I have bitcoins in my desktop wallet and I'm needing format the hd, I'll lost the bitcoins after format the HD?
You won't lose it in three cases:

1. If you are using a wallet that give you a 12 words passphrase (e.g Electrum) and you write them down somewhere safe, even If you format your hard drive, you can restore the wallet afterwards with that passphrase.
2. If you exported the private keys for the addresses that contains funds and printed them (or simply kept them safe on a USB stick), you can then import them back later.
3. You have the backup of wallet.dat and you know the password (If its encrypted)



I'm consindering buying a new low-price laptop and printer to create offline paper wallets.
Why don't you use a Linux LIVE CD/DVD? Say Knoppix, or Ubuntu?
You can even order it pre-made from https://bitcoinpaperwallet.com/ for 0.007 BTC, but you can download it for free by yourself too.
Quote
Do you think there is any security risk in selling the laptop and printer after I have created the paper wallets? Can the new owner get access to the created and printed paper wallets? Or am I just paranoid?
This depends on what you do with the laptop, and how smart the printer is.
Personally, I wouldn't go online with that laptop after making paper wallets, before completely wiping the hard drive.



I read it micyleum?
Mycelium.

Is electrum application also a good choice?
Electrum is pretty decent for Android, and pretty great as a SPV wallet for desktops.

For a new user what would be the user friendly.
One of those two should do.

Heard some bad review about Blockchain.info. Any comment?
You should not be using any kind of web wallets.



- can I use Electrum in an offline laptop?
Depends on what you mean with the word 'use'. Can you receive coins? Absolutely. Will you be able to see the updated balance from that machine? No. However, you can create a watch-only wallet on an online machine.

If so, the key or the coins that I receive in it will be secure (we can call it paper-wallet, but it can be a hot-wallet if used online?)
That's not a paper wallet. The coins should be secure as long as the system itself isn't compromised.

- can I also receive other crypto-currencies in Electrum?
No.

- since my plan is to keep bitcoin and other currencies that I buy for long-term. Should I just receive them in my electrum wallet and sleep on it or should I keep on checking it at regular intervals? Kindly explain....

You don't need to check up on it at all. As long as the: 1) Machine is properly set up and working. 2) You've made at least 1 backup of your recovery seed. 3) You know/you have the list of addresses from your wallet. You can check the current balance with any blockchain explorer. thus not have to turn on the laptop with the wallet at all.

1. What I meant was that can the software Electrum be run(used) without an internet connection. I guess it can be.
Most wallets, which give you complete control of your coins (and I emphasize this), do work without an internet connection. However, you won't see any transaction/balance changes since the last time that you've synchronized.

2. If I plan to exchange some more USD to bitcoin, can I receive it in my paper-wallet? I think its yes, or do I need to create a new wallet with Electrum?
You can receive it on the paper wallet.

3. When I want to use the coins, the bar-code from the paper wallet can be scanned and used, rite?
Correct. Just make sure to double check the address just in case.

4. is there any other reliable desktop application that can be used to receive other crypto-currencies? I think it would be better to store all of them in one place instead of several location to easily keep track of them all. What do you think?
Try Jaxx or Exodus wallet.

How dangerous are cold wallets with bluetooth connection (not a wired USB)?
Absolutely not recommended. There are several ways to attack Bluetooth connections.



I'm currently looking for cold storage options for some of my alt coin.
Ledger Nano S.

I only started getting more serious about Bitcoin and alt coins when I started blogging on Steemit
Step 1) Do not use Steemit.

and the majority of my connections have complained about Coinbase.
Step 2) Do not use Coinbase.

-snip-
Step 3) Get some elementary education. Anyone who uses Coinbase, or any other exchange or online service as a wallet is an idiot. Those are not meant to be wallets, and you are not in control of "your" coins (unless in cases where they give you private keys but that is not usual for either one).

I've heard of Ledger Nano S. Will definitely look into it. Thanks!
Here: https://www.ledgerwallet.com/products/ledger-nano-s. You should order right now due to them having a backlog of orders (ATM takes 3-4 weeks to get it delivered).

Alas, it's too late. I've been blogging there for over a year and I love it. LOL
I guess, if you like supporting shitcoins and earning a couple of bucks it ain't that bad.

And where exchanges are concerned, I've gotten away from Poloniex too.
Very shady. Use Gemini (US) or Bitstamp for EU.

I ordered a $30 book: Mastering Bitcoin. Unfortunately I have a community mailbox and someone else needed it more than me. GRRR. I'm learning something new every day. Kind of wish I paid attention to the Bitcoin geeks about 7 years ago. Yes, I'm an idiot.
You do not need no book. The internet has sufficient information for you to become quite experience and familiar with the matter.

Dang...shipping is almost as much as the wallet, but I digress, the heart wants what the heart wants and it seems like a MUST-HAVE if I want to safely store my coins offline.
Not even close if you are in the EU. If not, you could look for a local bitcoin shop of some sorts. They may have such a wallet.

I really can't complain. They've survived their first year despite Dan Larimer leaving, and my work on Steemit has paid for my glasses, a computer for my son, and an Airbnb rental. I'm gettin' while the gettin's good.
Good for you I guess.

Good gravy! I need to get more organized. So many exchanges...so little coins! LOL
There are a lot of them, but you don't need to be touching any of them TBH.

You're probably right about the book but there's so much crap on the internet that is hard to sort the legit informational sites from the SPAMMY, join-my-email-list-and-get-your-free-download bullshit.
Bitcoin.org and the Bitcoin Wiki are very good places.

We have begun to sidetrack too much. Please do not respond in this thread anymore about this stuff. If you want to discuss Steemit, exchanges, or have other questions that are not wallet related please open a new thread.



Jaxx and Exodus only support limited no. of altcoins.  Is there no wallet which supports more Cryptos?

You have Coinomi but they currently only support Android, iOS and Desktop are coming soon or you have Eden (which is made by Exodus) It support much more coins but It may not be that stable as Its the test wallet.



does electrum support all of these coins?
No.

If not can you tell me what software should i use for each coins?
To everyone1: Stop asking altcoin questions in this thread and questions that the first Google Search can easily answer, like "Monero Wallet".

I just the safest possible..
Anyone who is asking any questions in this thread will not be able to have a setup that even remotely resembles "safest possible". "Safest possible" does not involve with you asking basic questions. In order to have such a setup, extensive experience and knowledge is require. Time to get some education on cryptocurrencies, no?

Plus,if my offline computer crashes.. what are my options to recover my coins?
Backup the wallet files or seeds depending on the type of wallet on multiple machines/locations.

[1] Answers to such will be swiftly deleted.



Hello there! I'm a little new to the btc topic, and have been researching and reading a lot.
Want to make a question here though.
what do you think about having a virtual machine not connected to the internet for saving the priv key, and the main machine for trading, exchange, buying, selling, etc?  Huh
What do you mean by a virtual machine? running VMWare for example in your PC? If yes, then how you plug the internet off that virtual machine only? I believe you can't and If that is the case then anyone who get access to your PC, will get access to your machine as well so I don't see the point of using a VM here and for trading, It really doesn't matter, all you need is a browser, just make sure to not store large amounts their, use strong password and 2FA and you should be fine.

Thanks for responding, what I meant is if it would be a good idea to have cold wallet or back up on a VM. And yes, you can actually turn off the internet on the VM. You can even restrict the use of certain hardware on the VM to prevent use of wifi for example. So I got this idea in order to have hot storage and cold storage on the same machine (I only have one PC)

Anyways if it's not possible or not a good idea I guess I could use the 2FA system
FYI, that setup is absolutely useless if your host machine is compromised and based on your writing, it is likely that you'd run it on a machine that is frequently used/has access to the internet. People seem to think that a VM container is safe, even if the host itself gets compromised (which is nonsense). Actually, there are (or were) ways of a compromised virtual machine compromising the host.

Recommended practice: Hardware wallet or a laptop/PC that was/will never be used for anything else (post fresh format).

Lauda is absolutely right!
Stumbled about an article where someone wrote a short powershell script to get all the wallet.dat files of all VMs on a compromised host.
Even if you use encrypted VMs the security gain is small.
A VM is useless if the host is compromised since the host has access to all files anyways, yes.

What about ledger nano s. Do You think is safe to storie btx?
Yes. The ledger nano S is a fine hardware option for storing Bitcoin. Make sure to backup the seed.





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November 03, 2017, 11:04:56 PM
Last edit: May 06, 2020, 07:50:14 AM by Lauda
 #4

Collection of Questions and Answers 3



i am really confused about the gadget wallet. if it broke, touched by water or technically unfunctionalized there would not be any way to save the coins in the gadget wallet. but on the other hand online wallets also might have many safety quastions. gadget wallets or online wallet? has  quastion marks for me:/

If you're referring to hardware wallet then while you are creating and installing the firmware for the first time, the wallet will give you a list of words that you should keep safe. If the hardware gets broken for some reason, you can recover your wallet using the list of words that was first given to you.
Having a couple of these https://cryptosteel.com might be a good idea. More than one and in different locations.
Having several backups increases the risk your seed gets compromised. It's a trade-off between the risk of losing the seed, and the risk of someone getting his hands on it.



Please, let me ask a newbie question: do I have to do some kind of backup if I had a ledger nano S?
Excuse me, I am starting in crypto  Roll Eyes
Once you start the wallet, you're given a list of words that will help you recover your wallet in case it stop working/stolen etc. just make sure you store them safely (offline).



And is it 100% safe even when I plug it in an infected computer? Ledger says that even when a computer has walwares it will not risk the private key, but I have my doubts... because you will to expose your private key to confirm your transaction by pressing the 2 buttons... I do not know...
That's the whole point from creating the hardware wallets in the first place, the private keys never leave the device so yes, It's safe to use it on an infected computer.

Forgive me if this is a stupid question, but I'm new to cryptocurrency.  I've been reading about Bitcoin for a while now and have finally decided to buy some.  I also created an online wallet with Blockchain because I read in Forbes it was very secure.  I'm assuming that if I'm buying BTC on an exchange, like Coinbase, I then want to send it over to the Blockchain wallet to keep it secure for the long run, correct?  Then if I decide at some point to sell some I just send it back to Coinbase?  Again, not trying to sound like a tard, because I'm guessing this is very elementary, but I'm new to this and want to make sure I'm understanding what I'm doing.

Thanks.

Yes, everything you mentioned is correct. It's better to store your bitcoins in personal wallets instead of the exchanges themselves because they are a target of hacks. Your wallet choice is not that good though, It's better to go with Electrum for Desktop, Mycelium for Android or hardware wallet (Trezor or Ledger nano S) If you have big amounts. Blockchain.info is not suggested.



I have a question about Electrum. Can't understand one thing. After every transaction, Electrum generates new receiving address. What if I use the same address? And the second question: when I hit send, it only offers me to fill in the amount I want to send but I don't see where it says from which address I want to send it. How can I choose from which address do I want to spend by BTC?

It's for privacy reasons so someone can't link multiple transactions to you. You are free to use the same address over and over. As from sending from specific address then you should head to your receiving addresses, Right click the address and choose "Spend from".





Thanks. And if I don't choose it specifically, Electrum determines address from which to spend randomly?
It's not random. If you go to Preferences => Transactions => Coin Selection, you will see that you have two options (Priority and Privacy). By default, It's "Priority".



So, Bitaddress . org is only for bitcoin?
It's clearly written on the site "Bitcoin Wallet Generator". Bitaddress is used for making paper wallets most of the time (for long term storage). If you want to spend on a regular basis, use something like Electrum (yes, for BTC only).



Will there be problems if I use several bitcoins of wallets?
If you're using a different software for each one then not really as each wallet create its own folder in AppData (e.g Multibit, Electrum etc.) so it won't overwrite the old wallet.dat you already had from another software and as for creating multiple wallets using the same software (e.g Electrum) then the answer is no too as It will ask you to name the wallet so you should just name it differently.



This is a fantastic thread!  I really wish that I had taken more time as newbie on this site to learn the basics.  I've lost BTC in to the "abyss", and I still don't know exactly what I did wrong because at the time..I had no clue what I was doing!  


Couple wallet tips that really need to be driven home-

Exchanges /Hot-wallet sites/apps .. ARE NOT OUR FRIENDS HERE.  They don't care about you they care about your BTC!  Keeping BTC on a hot wallet goes against what BTC stands for (decentralization)  and in all reality makes your coins more so theirs than yours (you don't own a private key).   Move to cold storage! Listen to Lauda and staff here trying to help you.  They don't have ulterior motives.   They are here to truly help you.  I didn't understand that when I first arrived.  Use paper-wallets and set them up correctly. Take your time!
  
Cold storage hardware- BUY FROM MANUFACTURER ONLY!  This is HUGE.  There are now reports of Ledger Hardware wallets having been compromised and people loosing all of their coins out of no where seeminly.  If you think about it..A Chinese factory that fakes everything (and they do damn good jobs of it) can easily buy up a bunch of wallets, take them out , hack them somehow and put them back in and seal them up perfectly and you'd never know.  Or simply make their own that is 100% identical looking.  Then off to Ebay, Amazon etc.  You would never know the difference.  

https://www.ledger.fr/2018/02/05/man-middle-attack-risk/



Hey, i'm new to this and i was wondering wether getting a hardware account would affect flexibility of access to funds?
It won't. Unlike paper wallets, HWs are pretty easy to use and spend from without having any risk and you can also access from both your computer and phone. I suggest going with Ledger nano S (more convenient for accessing funds on phone) or Trezor.



Hi everyone. I'd like to get your opinion on Jaxx. I've read about minor lagging but it seems to be not crucial. Is it true?
Don't use that wallet. It's neither transparent/open source nor secure.

If you're holding more than 500$, I suggest buying a hardware wallet otherwise stick to MEW (ETH and ERC20) and Electrum (BTC/DASH/LTC) and that should cover most of you're holdings in Jaxx.

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February 18, 2018, 09:47:47 AM
 #5

This is a fantastic thread!  I really wish that I had taken more time as newbie on this site to learn the basics.  I've lost BTC in to the "abyss", and I still don't know exactly what I did wrong because at the time..I had no clue what I was doing!  


Couple wallet tips that really need to be driven home-

Exchanges /Hot-wallet sites/apps .. ARE NOT OUR FRIENDS HERE.  They don't care about you they care about your BTC!  Keeping BTC on a hot wallet goes against what BTC stands for (decentralization)  and in all reality makes your coins more so theirs than yours (you don't own a private key).   Move to cold storage! Listen to Lauda and staff here trying to help you.  They don't have ulterior motives.   They are here to truly help you.  I didn't understand that when I first arrived.  Use paper-wallets and set them up correctly. Take your time!
  
Cold storage hardware- BUY FROM MANUFACTURER ONLY!  This is HUGE.  There are now reports of Ledger Hardware wallets having been compromised and people loosing all of their coins out of no where seeminly.  If you think about it..A Chinese factory that fakes everything (and they do damn good jobs of it) can easily buy up a bunch of wallets, take them out , hack them somehow and put them back in and seal them up perfectly and you'd never know.  Or simply make their own that is 100% identical looking.  Then off to Ebay, Amazon etc.  You would never know the difference.  

https://www.ledger.fr/2018/02/05/man-middle-attack-risk/


This is a way to verify the security of the Ledger Nano S. "For advanced hardware savvy users only"

https://support.ledgerwallet.com/hc/en-us/articles/115005321449-How-to-verify-the-security-integrity-of-my-Nano-S-
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April 28, 2019, 12:28:30 PM
 #6

Hi there! I am a total newbie and I'm trying to choose a wallet now.
Have a question about one of the wallets from the list on the first page, Airbitz.
Did anyone use it? I bought some BTC last week and I am searching for a secure and simple app for mobile.


Edge just like most of the multicurrency wallets are very basic and don't have so many features. If your goal is to simply send and receive then sure, you can go with it.

Even though you're a newbie and you may not be interested in other features like adjustable fees, showing address path, signing messages, etc. I would still suggest looking at Mycelium.

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May 16, 2019, 12:20:46 AM
 #7

Hi there! I am a total newbie and I'm trying to choose a wallet now.
Have a question about one of the wallets from the list on the first page, Airbitz.
Did anyone use it? I bought some BTC last week and I am searching for a secure and simple app for mobile.
I have been using imToken for quite a long time as a bitcoin wallet (supporting for SegWit and Legacy Address).

   

[IMO] The application is simple and secure.

 

For advanced security, you can combine with the imKey.

https://imkey.im/?ref=imtokenweb&locale=en

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June 04, 2019, 12:40:07 PM
 #8

hi i am a newbie as u can see,excuse my question but are offline wallets advantageous?in term of security
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June 04, 2019, 01:03:44 PM
 #9

hi i am a newbie as u can see,excuse my question but are offline wallets advantageous?in term of security


They are. If you're willing to put some money into it, go with a hardware wallet like Ledger or Trezor otherwise, a paper wallet is fine but it's not that convenient for spending, it's mostly for long term storage.

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June 05, 2019, 09:52:50 AM
 #10

Thanks for the superb informations.
I'm totally a newbie and my question is this " Does one need different wallet to fit in to every currency brand, or one single wallet is enough to work on the digital market.

Multi assets wallets like Jaxx, Exodus, Coinomi, Atomic wallet, etc. tend to be closed source and not transparent, I wouldn't suggest them.

So unless you're using a hardware wallet like Trezor or Ledger, for example, It's better to get a wallet for each coin (If they are ERC20 tokens, you should be fine with one wallet).


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June 06, 2019, 10:59:52 PM
Merited by xandry (2)
 #11

-snip-
thanks i will search for that,security is the most important thing with this cryptocoins
Here are some references if you want to use an offline wallet:
- How to Create and Use an Offline Bitcoin Wallet aka Cold Storage with Electrum - Mario Dian
- Using MEW Offline (Cold Storage)

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June 13, 2019, 01:18:18 AM
Last edit: July 05, 2019, 07:06:15 AM by masulum
Merited by Halab (2), LoyceV (1), Husna QA (1)
 #12


thanks i will search for that,security is the most important thing with this cryptocoins


I create an infographic about some idea to keep your wallet secure  Cool


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OmegaStarScream
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June 19, 2019, 01:03:38 PM
Last edit: June 19, 2019, 03:43:06 PM by OmegaStarScream
Merited by dbshck (2), xandry (1)
 #13

Hey, I'm pretty new at this and I was thinking to get a nordvpn to secure my wallet. Although I would like to get your opinion about this. Is it usefull, is it worth it, or maybe you could suggest something else?

Thank you.

A VPN, transactions over Tor, and using mixers will only make you hard to track and find. If you're concerned about the safety of your funds that much, a hardware wallet is the best solution.

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June 19, 2019, 03:05:28 PM
 #14

Hey, I'm pretty new at this and I was thinking to get a nordvpn to secure my wallet. Although I would like to get your opinion about this. Is it usefull, is it worth it, or maybe you could suggest something else?

Thank you.

You should use VPN if you have privacy concern.

If you have concern of wallet security, you should use hardware wallet. Take note you should buy it from official website & verify whether it's tampered/not before you use it. Few people become victim of tampered wallet where it's seed already configured.
If you can't or don't want to buy one, make sure your device is clean & encrypt your wallet with strong password.

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June 20, 2019, 05:30:50 PM
 #15

Currently using coinbase wallet and I think the fees are high.

Coinbase is more like an exchange. Try to use Electrum, you can change the fees if you want to, but remember that it depends on a lot of things, such as your input, the network status and so on. But in general, using Electrum (plus segwit) could give you a boost instead of using an exchange wallet.

Still, you need to move your Bitcoin from Coinbase to another wallet & you'll back to the first problem.

Don't forget Coinbase is custodial wallet and AFAIK there's no export seed/private key option.

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June 26, 2019, 04:59:35 AM
 #16

But I read their note, that if the fees are very low. the transaction may never be confirmed? Has this happened to anyone before? And why does this happen? I thought the more the fees, faster it get's confirmed, but less fees = may not get confirmed at all? And there's no way getting a refund for BTC, so you'd lose the money forever?

That's possible. The reason is that your tx might never enter the mempool because the network is busy and never get free. To put it simply, your transaction might never get processed at all because the average fees are always higher than your TX fees. So, you'll never be able to send your things with $1 when the average fees are $5, and that continues forever.

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June 26, 2019, 09:09:23 AM
 #17

What about securing the crypto wallet? I found this article https://tipsfromgeeks.com/guides/crypto-wallet-security/ about it, although I'd like to get some personal experience.

An anti-virus won't do much as viruses are getting more sophisticated. If you want to be safe, just stop visiting shady websites and downloading random files off the internet.

For backups, don't do put anything online/on the cloud. Store them in USB drives or piece of paper (seed words/ private key).

It seems like they are referring to online wallets and exchanges when suggesting 2FA. You shouldn't even use these services to start with, stick to wallets like Electrum instead.


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September 24, 2019, 11:45:35 PM
 #18

Another way to keep your coins from being stolen is to use a cold storage wallet.  While they are not a convenient solution for spending bitcoins, they are a great way to keep your coins safe. -snip-
-snip- In that screen he kept his private key. -snip-
So please don't get know anyone about your private key.
Except for the heirs?
I think to protect the private key is better to use a hardware wallet. Hardware wallets are also more resistant to viruses, malware, etc.

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September 28, 2019, 12:18:09 AM
 #19

Except for the heirs?
I think to protect the private key is better to use a hardware wallet. Hardware wallets are also more resistant to viruses, malware, etc.

I think for heirs a good option would be not to give them the private keys, but to tell them how to find.
Or maybe you could even split. 12 words to one, and 12 words to another. Or a passphrase with one, and the seed with another.

About hardware wallets... I can't understand how does anyone still hold more than 500 usd in any wallet that is not a hardware wallet.

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October 03, 2019, 05:45:27 AM
Merited by xandry (1)
 #20

-snip-, what kind of wallet do I need to buy selling bitcoins, for real currency and other cryptocurrencies?
You can use the "temporary" wallet provided by the exchanger to buy or sell bitcoin and trade it to real currency.
But after that, I recommend you save the bitcoin to the desktop/smartphone wallet or hardware wallet which the private key of the wallet is entirely yours.

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