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Author Topic: Simple Safe Wallet Software  (Read 1932 times)
bitlotto
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June 19, 2011, 01:45:17 AM
 #1

I like linuxcoin but it's a little much for the newbie I think. It seems to be targeted for miners.
Using a live linux CD is great for making a safe wallet. I was hoping that we could have something that was SUPER simple and small.

It's been a while since I've shell scripted and played with Tiny Core Linux but I'm certain users who have linux skills would be able to remaster a live cd that works pretty easily

Here's kind of what I was thinking
-tiny core linux as a base -that means the TOTAL size of the download once we add bitcoin/gtk/gpg will be about a 30MB iso!
-everything removed except a file browser/disk mounter/pgp/and bitcoin of course
-One icon  "Create wallet" - this will load bitcoin and create wallet if one isn't there. If there is one there already tell the user
-One icon  "Encrypt/Backup wallet" - loads a script that reminds user to use the create wallet link first and close bitcoin first and hit enter - it then uses gpg symmetric encryption to encrypt wallet, once done the user is told to insert usb stick, script watches for usb device and mounts it and copies the encrypted file to the stick. Then tells the user that the encrypted file is now on the usb stick
-Another icon that says "Load a wallet" - script asks user to enter usb stick containing encrypted wallet, script watches for usb device and mounts it, script then asks for what the file is called and finds it, and copies it to the .bitcoin folder, if it's encrypted the user is prompted for password if pgp encrypted, perhaps even scan the usb stick for a copy of the blockchain and copy it too so the user doesn't have to re download the whole thing, once done bitcoin is started.

Just thinking out loud. Would people like something that is super simple and a small download that is just for creating wallets and loading bitcoin. It would probably be about a 30 MB download instead of 600 MB or so and all the user would have to do is burn an iso and boot, and click a few icons.

I'd try doing it myself but I haven't scripted in a LONG time!

-edit: it would actually be easy to make the cd useful for being used all the time - just copy the whole .bitcoin directory to a usb stick making sure the wallet file is encrypted. Then each time the user goes in they enter usb stick and use bitcoin safely. Reboot and there are done. Very little risk.

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sakkaku
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June 19, 2011, 06:52:28 AM
 #2

You wont be able to shrink it down to 30MB.  A bare minimum linux install is something like 100~200MB with the "mainline" distros.  You would need to replace almost all of the userspace to get down around that level and that will be without a GUI.

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bitlotto
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June 19, 2011, 07:04:07 AM
 #3

You wont be able to shrink it down to 30MB.  A bare minimum linux install is something like 100~200MB with the "mainline" distros.  You would need to replace almost all of the userspace to get down around that level and that will be without a GUI.
I downloaded Tiny Core Linux and it was 10 MB iso. Burned it, and it does have a GUI. + bitcoin/gtk/pgp would be about 30 MB

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June 19, 2011, 02:13:33 PM
 #4

If you found a way to improve the existing security of bitcoin by say never having an unencrypted version of the wallet file touch the hard drive, along with perhaps some novel circumvention around keyloggers, I think demand for something like this would be high, especially as the newb parade joins in.

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bitlotto
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June 19, 2011, 04:14:32 PM
 #5

If you found a way to improve the existing security of bitcoin by say never having an unencrypted version of the wallet file touch the hard drive, along with perhaps some novel circumvention around keyloggers, I think demand for something like this would be high, especially as the newb parade joins in.
With this CD:
-unencrypted copies of wallet don't ever touch the hard drive -it's all in RAM -unless the user figures out how and does it manually
-software keyloggers wouldn't be an issue here, just hardware ones where someone sneaks one on your computer manually
-all it does is run bitcoin. it would be able to keep blockchain on usb along with an encrypted wallet
-the only risk would be if they installed a new app to browse the internet found a linux virus and downloaded all before they ever rebooted - ever reboot makes it a clean edition as it always comes off the cd - it would take some effort to do that, a newbie wouldn't be able to figure out how to alter it and who could would probably know not to seek viruses.

-the only bad thing is that the user has to quickly reboot to make a payment BUT for the huge security it provides I think people would be ok with that

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June 19, 2011, 08:26:01 PM
 #6

I would like to see a Bitcoin client handling a encrypted walled, too. It should be possible to keep the walled only obfuscated in memory and add some keylogger protection. Sure, the Bitcoin distro would be a bit safer and an good alternative for saving huge amonunts of banked bitcoins. But for the daily business an "encrypted client" would be nice.
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June 19, 2011, 11:13:34 PM
 #7

Linux from scratch - for anybody who's thinking about doing this ... there is also a security hardened version
http://www.linuxfromscratch.org/
LiveCD
http://www.linuxfromscratch.org/livecd/

Hardened
http://www.linuxfromscratch.org/hlfs/


Aside: i'm tinkering with a bitcoin linux on a stick, ARM processor port ... kinda like a personal POS machine but for secured wallet. Transaction industry already have these hardware solutions out there, mostly for POS machines. Just strip it right back to nothing else but securing wallet and running bitcoin only when absolutely necessary in a secure fashion. For the amounts of money that is being secured it has now crossed over into a hardware problem, not so much software (dedicated, mass-produced secure hardware is cheapest solution). No one needs a bitcoin wallet machine that can browse the web, why try to make a web browsing capable machine into a POS machine? Its backwards.

http://www.maxim-ic.com/datasheet/index.mvp/id/6143
http://www.broadcom.com/products/Security/Point-of-Sale/BCM5890
http://www.atmel.com/dyn/products/devices.asp?category_id=163&family_id=605&subfamily_id=1739

badass arm-linux secure
http://www.windriver.com/announces/linux-secure/

bitlotto
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June 20, 2011, 03:44:03 AM
 #8

Linux from scratch...Hmm that would be good too.
I really think a small download live cd that ONLY does bitcoin and uses a usb stick for the encrypted data would be VERY popular! It's pretty much fool proof except for hardware keyloggers and other obscure attacks.

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Vladimir
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June 20, 2011, 03:50:36 AM
 #9

Linux from scratch - for anybody who's thinking about doing this ... there is also a security hardened version
http://www.linuxfromscratch.org/
....

Another option:

FreeBSD, minimal install + /usr/ports/*/bitcoin . Takes 5 minutes to install and rock solid security wise and can have uptime of years.

My FreeBSD servers which run many jails(VPS) inside typically have years of uptime (only reboot when I need to upgrade to the next major version). Just to give you idea of it's reliability.


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bitlotto
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June 20, 2011, 04:00:10 AM
 #10

Linux from scratch - for anybody who's thinking about doing this ... there is also a security hardened version
http://www.linuxfromscratch.org/
....

Another option:

FreeBSD, minimal install + /usr/ports/*/bitcoin . Takes 5 minutes to install and rock solid security wise and can have uptime of years.

My FreeBSD servers which run many jails(VPS) inside typically have years of uptime (only reboot when I need to upgrade to the next major version). Just to give you idea of it's reliability.
How much difference would hardware support be? I haven't researched it for a long time but wouldn't Linux run on way more computers without problem? I do agree that FreeBSD is probably more secure but if less people can run it it's not ideal.

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Vladimir
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June 20, 2011, 04:40:21 AM
 #11

I am basically proposing here to run freebsd in CLI mode i.e. no X anything. As such hardware-wise all you need is support for wired network adapter, keyboard and display (text). There might be a few exceptions but I really doubt that for these devices FreeBSD's hardware support is any worse than that of Linux.

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bitlotto
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June 20, 2011, 01:07:51 PM
 #12

I am basically proposing here to run freebsd in CLI mode i.e. no X anything. As such hardware-wise all you need is support for wired network adapter, keyboard and display (text). There might be a few exceptions but I really doubt that for these devices FreeBSD's hardware support is any worse than that of Linux.

Ah, sure that would be more secure and a smaller download but I don't think many people will like CLI mode. They need a simple GUI to be happy.

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Sandoz
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June 21, 2011, 07:38:16 AM
 #13

This is exactly the thing I was looking for. A simple but trustworthy Linux LiveCD.

I you want this to work for computer illiterates however, you need at least wifi working.

Personally I wouldn't care if it is bigger than 300 mb, as long as it fits onto a CD and can be trusted. The amnesic Linux is my current choice, it has some good stuff like tor, ram erasure as soon as you remove the boot medium and other stuff. And it is extremely simple to use. Unfortunately it lacks Bitcoin and has a lot of other unrelated software (openoffice etc)
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