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Author Topic: Easier wallet backup, printing keys  (Read 688 times)
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June 19, 2011, 03:00:15 PM

Hello, apologies if these are in development or have been requested already... But here are three suggestions.

I believe they are really important for usability and mass adoption.

- "backup keys" menu option
This is the ability to export whatever crypto keys are necessary to a file. So, much the same as copying the wallet, but much more user friendly if it can be done from the client. Ideally the file would be as small as possible too, no unnecessary information, so it's easily compatible with any other future bitcoin clients. Could also be encrypted, but it should IMO default to unencrypted. (average newbie is *not* going to remember a secure password). There should be a note to the user to keep this file safe e.g. on an external disk and not where others can access it.

- "print keys"
Some way of printing to paper all necessary crypto keys to act as a backup. Even real computer newbies can manage to print stuff, while they might not be confident backing up to USB disks and things like that. I don't know enough to know if this is feasible though, whether the keys are short enough to even fit on paper.

[of course, returning the keys to a digital form might be time consuming, but presumably still manageable if necessary. Maybe some OCR, or in the distant future some kind of barcode system...]

- ability to have separate savings wallets (I've seen this suggested before)
Similar to "backup keys" function, in that the user creates a new file on disk that they must keep safe. Optional encryption.
It should be recommended to the user to make multiple backups of the wallet *before* they actually send coins to it. Could also give the "backup keys" and "print backup" option here (for the new wallet). An address for the new savings wallet can be added to the client's address book.

[ note: I've seen a request for this wallet backup where some amount of coins go straight to the new wallet. This is obviously inadvisable since at that point the wallet may only exist in one location ]

I guess we also need a way to import coins from a savings wallet back again ("Import from other wallet"). Could be as described here:
Also option for importing backed up keys (e.g. from a new, clean install of the client).

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