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Author Topic: Making your bitcoins portable (Windows)  (Read 2336 times)
BCEmporium
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June 25, 2011, 10:41:21 PM
 #1

This is rather a small and fast how-to

Material:
Grab the latest bitcoin client zip format
An USB pen 1 Gb+

Format the pen, and extract the contents of the bitcoin zip there, in a way that bitcoin.exe stays on the root or if you prefer create a subfolder for it.

Create a folder and name it data

Grab a copy of the blockchain from C:Users\your username\AppData\Roaming\bitcoin (means copy everything but wallet.dat - unless you want your wallet to go along to the pen, that is) to <usb pen>:\data
[This is because updating the whole blockchain using the pen's data dir will probably be a pain]

Create a text file, name it bitcoin.bat and add those contents:

Code:
@ECHO OFF
START bitcoin.exe -datadir=".\\data\\"

Create another text file, name it autorun.inf and add those contents:

Code:
[autorun]
open=bitcoin.bat
icon=bitcoin.exe,0
label=BTC Wallet

Mark it read-only. Actually this file isn't quite needed, but taken there're some usb-pen virus which creates an autorun.inf rather have one already there.

Close any running bitcoin client, and start bicoin.bat from the pen. And that's it...
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prof7bit
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June 26, 2011, 10:07:37 AM
 #2

You can leave away the autorun stuff, there exists no windows version (and never will) that executes the autorun.inf on any removable device (that is not a CD-ROM).

Old Bitcoins recycling and disposal: 1N7ZcHoe77JncRYAg27RVqJZbrjqUQ77WE
Blockchain.info -> Multibit converter (and much more) https://github.com/prof7bit/wallet-key-tool
prof7bit
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June 26, 2011, 10:14:31 AM
 #3

and start bicoin.bat from the pen. And that's it...

did you ever measure the time it takes between starting the .bat and the bitcoin main window opening? And also the time it takes between exiting bitcoin and being able to unmount the device again?

Old Bitcoins recycling and disposal: 1N7ZcHoe77JncRYAg27RVqJZbrjqUQ77WE
Blockchain.info -> Multibit converter (and much more) https://github.com/prof7bit/wallet-key-tool
BCEmporium
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June 26, 2011, 11:33:17 AM
 #4

You can leave away the autorun stuff, there exists no windows version (and never will) that executes the autorun.inf on any removable device (that is not a CD-ROM).

Actually it does "something" icon and label is how it show of in explorer, open supposedly does nothing. But supposedly, because if you happen to have a .jpg, .doc or anything which triggers "Default action", the first option given will be what's there.
BCEmporium
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June 26, 2011, 11:34:12 AM
 #5

and start bicoin.bat from the pen. And that's it...

did you ever measure the time it takes between starting the .bat and the bitcoin main window opening? And also the time it takes between exiting bitcoin and being able to unmount the device again?

That's the issue of bitcoin client be too slow, but such applies also to hard drives. Exiting is rather fast anyway.
prof7bit
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June 27, 2011, 07:37:31 AM
 #6

did you ever measure the time it takes between starting the .bat and the bitcoin main window opening? And also the time it takes between exiting bitcoin and being able to unmount the device again?

That's the issue of bitcoin client be too slow, but such applies also to hard drives. Exiting is rather fast anyway.

I have tried it on two machines with an USB 2.0 flash drive (and write cache enabled) and on both it took 10 minutes to start and the shutdown time seemed even longer. I finally killed the process after waiting more than 10 minutes for proper shutdown because at this point I already had decided that the USB experiment was a failure.

It would be easier if the program allowed to specify the path to the wallet file separate from the other data files (which are responsible for 99% of all the disk-io) but the developers seem to have the bizarre idea that copying or moving around the wallet file or making or changing symlinks all the time is easier to manage for the end user than a simple "file->open" menu or a simple command line option. The most bizarre answer I read so far (from one of the devs!) was that somebody who cannot (or does not know how to) make a symlink on windows does not deserve(!) the right to put his wallet into a more secure place!

Old Bitcoins recycling and disposal: 1N7ZcHoe77JncRYAg27RVqJZbrjqUQ77WE
Blockchain.info -> Multibit converter (and much more) https://github.com/prof7bit/wallet-key-tool
BCEmporium
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June 27, 2011, 11:41:18 AM
 #7

Did you copy over the blockchain or was updating it with the pen?
prof7bit
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June 30, 2011, 10:53:54 AM
 #8

Did you copy over the blockchain or was updating it with the pen?

It had a complete blockchain already.

Old Bitcoins recycling and disposal: 1N7ZcHoe77JncRYAg27RVqJZbrjqUQ77WE
Blockchain.info -> Multibit converter (and much more) https://github.com/prof7bit/wallet-key-tool
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