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Author Topic: why it doesn't show from what address bitcoins came?  (Read 3891 times)
miernik
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December 14, 2010, 07:20:06 PM
 #1

I received some bitcoins (well, in fact I sent them to myself from an account on MyBitcoin.com):

Status: 902 confirmations
Date: 12/09/2010 10:27
From: unknown
To: 1GAP9vs4WxToXHe2btEWf2jb1u21dfzH9X (yours, label: second)
Credit: 0.01
Net amount: +0.01

and I wonder why does it say "From: unknown"? Is that normal?

Is it not possible to see from what address bitcoins came?

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theymos
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December 14, 2010, 07:23:10 PM
 #2

You're not able to automatically tell in all cases, and in many cases transactions are from dozens of different addresses (when coins are combined). Bitcoin doesn't even try to figure it out. "Unknown" is the wrong word to use, though.

The coins came from 1A6hiTQC6NRXaoMsYKyvHxpPMz9Grog66Y.
http://blockexplorer.com/address/1GAP9vs4WxToXHe2btEWf2jb1u21dfzH9X

1NXYoJ5xU91Jp83XfVMHwwTUyZFK64BoAD
Mahkul
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December 14, 2010, 07:51:06 PM
 #3

I think the best way to keep account of where your payments come from is creating a new, different address for each person and putting labels on them as you create them. This way when you receive money with a certain account number you will know that it came from this particular person (because no-one else knows this particular address).

That is why Bitcoin tells you which address you received the payment WITH, not FROM.

Bitalo.com coming soon!

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MoonShadow
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December 14, 2010, 08:18:35 PM
 #4


and I wonder why does it say "From: unknown"? Is that normal?

Is it not possible to see from what address bitcoins came?

Yes it's possible, but the current client is not able to do many things yet that the protocol permits.  Part of it is that more than one address can input into a single transaction, totaling up to the amount requested, and the current client does nothing about displaying those addresses.

If you are talking about sending to a Mybitcoin.com account from another, this would be a different issue, as there would not often even be a bitcoin transaction in that case, as such internal transfers are usually handled internally by Mybitcoin's modified client servers. 

"The powers of financial capitalism had another far-reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements arrived at in frequent meetings and conferences. The apex of the systems was to be the Bank for International Settlements in Basel, Switzerland, a private bank owned and controlled by the world's central banks which were themselves private corporations. Each central bank...sought to dominate its government by its ability to control Treasury loans, to manipulate foreign exchanges, to influence the level of economic activity in the country, and to influence cooperative politicians by subsequent economic rewards in the business world."

- Carroll Quigley, CFR member, mentor to Bill Clinton, from 'Tragedy And Hope'
Cdecker
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December 14, 2010, 08:40:26 PM
 #5

I think the best way to keep account of where your payments come from is creating a new, different address for each person and putting labels on them as you create them. This way when you receive money with a certain account number you will know that it came from this particular person (because no-one else knows this particular address).

That is why Bitcoin tells you which address you received the payment WITH, not FROM.
I would like to change that: http://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=2183
I guess a new address/account is good for sites keeping balances for their users but a reference id would be nicer, wouldn't you agree?

Want to see what developers are chatting about? http://bitcoinstats.com/irc/bitcoin-dev/logs/
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Mahkul
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December 14, 2010, 08:53:36 PM
 #6

I think the best way to keep account of where your payments come from is creating a new, different address for each person and putting labels on them as you create them. This way when you receive money with a certain account number you will know that it came from this particular person (because no-one else knows this particular address).

That is why Bitcoin tells you which address you received the payment WITH, not FROM.
I would like to change that: http://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=2183
I guess a new address/account is good for sites keeping balances for their users but a reference id would be nicer, wouldn't you agree?

Yes, it would be nicer.

Bitalo.com coming soon!

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kwukduck
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December 22, 2010, 09:28:12 PM
 #7

It would be very nice if bitcoin would show the addresses a transaction came from, maybe not by default in the mainwindow, but by doubleclicking a transaction to see it's properties for example.

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December 23, 2010, 01:26:12 AM
 #8

I would like to change that: http://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=2183
I guess a new address/account is good for sites keeping balances for their users but a reference id would be nicer, wouldn't you agree?

I would vote with my CPU for a miner that allows non-standard transactions including fixed-size arbitrary data for free.
As far as I understand, since recently the standard client won't mine blocks including such transactions but will nonetheless recognize as valid blocks that include them (hence the vote for a particular modified miner)

Mahkul
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December 30, 2010, 03:04:04 AM
 #9

It would be very nice if bitcoin would show the addresses a transaction came from, maybe not by default in the mainwindow, but by doubleclicking a transaction to see it's properties for example.

Could someone tell me how difficult this would be to achieve? This feature would just be natural; if it is possible to find out where the bitconis came from, why don't make it easy on everyone and just implement it in the client (double click on the transaction and you see the sender's address instead of: unknown). It's bad enough that we can't attach messages along with the coins we send.

Bitalo.com coming soon!

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Gavin Andresen
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December 30, 2010, 04:31:20 AM
 #10

There really is no "from" -- there is just 'where the coins were sent last time they were sent somewhere.'

If that 'somewhere' was a shared wallet (like a mybitcoin account) where all the incoming transactions get mixed up, knowing what address they were sent to previously is worse than useless information.  You might decide it is a good idea to try to refund bitcoins to that address and end up sending them to some random mybitcoin user, and NOT your customer.

Adding possibly-worse-than-useless features to the bitcoin GUI is a bad idea.  Am I missing some other reason for wanting to see the last addresses to which the coins you received were sent?

How often do you get the chance to work on a potentially world-changing project?
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December 30, 2010, 11:37:15 AM
 #11

Adding possibly-worse-than-useless features to the bitcoin GUI is a bad idea. 
+1

This will just confuse the average user.
If you want to do an excercise in forensics you can always use the block explorer.

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Cdecker
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December 30, 2010, 12:49:04 PM
 #12

Would be nice through to add it in the details view Cheesy

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Mahkul
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December 30, 2010, 10:14:22 PM
 #13

There really is no "from" -- there is just 'where the coins were sent last time they were sent somewhere.'

If that 'somewhere' was a shared wallet (like a mybitcoin account) where all the incoming transactions get mixed up, knowing what address they were sent to previously is worse than useless information.  You might decide it is a good idea to try to refund bitcoins to that address and end up sending them to some random mybitcoin user, and NOT your customer.

Adding possibly-worse-than-useless features to the bitcoin GUI is a bad idea.  Am I missing some other reason for wanting to see the last addresses to which the coins you received were sent?

I wouldn't call that feature useless - it is very natural to know who sends you the money. I know you can give out different account numbers and put labels on them, but what if:

- you have one, fixed address published on your website for donations - what if you want to know who donated how much? of course, you can send an email following the donation, but it costs the guy who donated more time and hassle
- what if you have one customer paying for a few items separately? Okay, you've given him his own account address to use, but how do you keep track of which payment is for which item? Don't tell me you go back and check prices - if you have plenty of customers you don't have time for that
- what if you want to send bitcoins to somebody as a gift - and would like to add comment (happy birthday or whatever)? OK, you can send an email, but that won't be instant and again - hassle and you don't know when that person is going check their email.

These are only a few examples that come to me at this moment, didn't even think of them too hard.

Maybe these seems silly to you guys, but I am getting plenty of inquiries from my friends and people on different forums.

Bitalo.com coming soon!

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Gavin Andresen
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December 30, 2010, 11:55:12 PM
 #14

I agree it is natural to want to know who sends you the money.  That would be a nice feature to add to Bitcoin.

Showing a 'from' address in bitcoin as it is now won't give you that feature, it will give you something that kind-of, sort-of, maybe-most-of-the-time works like that feature.

And it's not obvious how to implement a "where did these bitcoins come from?" feature.

How often do you get the chance to work on a potentially world-changing project?
Mahkul
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December 31, 2010, 02:05:14 AM
 #15

I agree it is natural to want to know who sends you the money.  That would be a nice feature to add to Bitcoin.

Showing a 'from' address in bitcoin as it is now won't give you that feature, it will give you something that kind-of, sort-of, maybe-most-of-the-time works like that feature.

And it's not obvious how to implement a "where did these bitcoins come from?" feature.


I understand, doesn't make sense to implement something that doesn't do the job, as you said. Just keep that in mind if a possibility of somehow adding this arises. I would even be willing to donate some BTC for it (I know that's not the case, but still).

I actually just realized that the reasons I gave for this feature were more for being able to send a message with payment... that would even be nicer than being able to see the from-address. I know it was discussed already and there was no way to encrypt the messages, but perhaps in the future some possibility arises. It would be awesome.

Bitalo.com coming soon!

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MoonShadow
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December 31, 2010, 02:20:22 AM
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I agree it is natural to want to know who sends you the money.  That would be a nice feature to add to Bitcoin.

Showing a 'from' address in bitcoin as it is now won't give you that feature, it will give you something that kind-of, sort-of, maybe-most-of-the-time works like that feature.

And it's not obvious how to implement a "where did these bitcoins come from?" feature.


I understand, doesn't make sense to implement something that doesn't do the job, as you said. Just keep that in mind if a possibility of somehow adding this arises. I would even be willing to donate some BTC for it (I know that's not the case, but still).

I actually just realized that the reasons I gave for this feature were more for being able to send a message with payment... that would even be nicer than being able to see the from-address. I know it was discussed already and there was no way to encrypt the messages, but perhaps in the future some possibility arises. It would be awesome.

There is a way to encrypt the messages external to any bitcoin function.  If a bitcoin hyperlink for a vendor included a GPG public key, the message could be encrypted to that public key before insertion into the transaction.

"The powers of financial capitalism had another far-reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements arrived at in frequent meetings and conferences. The apex of the systems was to be the Bank for International Settlements in Basel, Switzerland, a private bank owned and controlled by the world's central banks which were themselves private corporations. Each central bank...sought to dominate its government by its ability to control Treasury loans, to manipulate foreign exchanges, to influence the level of economic activity in the country, and to influence cooperative politicians by subsequent economic rewards in the business world."

- Carroll Quigley, CFR member, mentor to Bill Clinton, from 'Tragedy And Hope'
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December 31, 2010, 11:38:57 AM
 #17


I wouldn't call that feature useless - it is very natural to know who sends you the money. I know you can give out different account numbers and put labels on them, but what if:

- you have one, fixed address published on your website for donations - what if you want to know who donated how much? of course, you can send an email following the donation, but it costs the guy who donated more time and hassle
- what if you have one customer paying for a few items separately? Okay, you've given him his own account address to use, but how do you keep track of which payment is for which item? Don't tell me you go back and check prices - if you have plenty of customers you don't have time for that
- what if you want to send bitcoins to somebody as a gift - and would like to add comment (happy birthday or whatever)? OK, you can send an email, but that won't be instant and again - hassle and you don't know when that person is going check their email.
 

These are all problems that can be solved in many ways. Choosing a solution isn't in bitcoin's domain imo. 

There is no space on the dollar for a message either. Messages are a different thing and should be dealt with separately. 

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December 31, 2010, 12:36:37 PM
 #18


I wouldn't call that feature useless - it is very natural to know who sends you the money. I know you can give out different account numbers and put labels on them, but what if:

- you have one, fixed address published on your website for donations - what if you want to know who donated how much? of course, you can send an email following the donation, but it costs the guy who donated more time and hassle
- what if you have one customer paying for a few items separately? Okay, you've given him his own account address to use, but how do you keep track of which payment is for which item? Don't tell me you go back and check prices - if you have plenty of customers you don't have time for that
- what if you want to send bitcoins to somebody as a gift - and would like to add comment (happy birthday or whatever)? OK, you can send an email, but that won't be instant and again - hassle and you don't know when that person is going check their email.
 

These are all problems that can be solved in many ways. Choosing a solution isn't in bitcoin's domain imo. 

There is no space on the dollar for a message either. Messages are a different thing and should be dealt with separately. 

Then it would be cool if someone developed an enveloping system for Bitcoin. Smiley

Bitalo.com coming soon!

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June 03, 2011, 07:55:12 PM
 #19

I agree it is natural to want to know who sends you the money.  That would be a nice feature to add to Bitcoin.
Showing a 'from' address in bitcoin as it is now won't give you that feature, it will give you something that kind-of, sort-of, maybe-most-of-the-time works like that feature.
And it's not obvious how to implement a "where did these bitcoins come from?" feature.

I recommend you remove the "From:" field, if it is never used in the detail screen. But it would be nice if you can print the identifying information (like the transaction id or the block number) if that is known. Because it will speed up finding it in the blockexplorer. Maybe even make it a configurable URL with that information. (and default the template to blockexplorer.com).

Greetings
Bernd
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