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Author Topic: Noob question about Wallets  (Read 118 times)
loophole77
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December 08, 2017, 06:47:49 PM
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Say I make a few backup copies of my Bitcoin Core wallet and save those copies a few different places.  I then continue using the original wallet for a few moths adding new funds to it.  Will the backup copies I made earlier automatically have those new funds on them if I lose the original wallet or does the original wallet need backed up again every time new funds are added?  Thanks for any responses.
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legend018
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December 08, 2017, 07:00:29 PM
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The wallet.dat has the private keys.  It is recommended that you back it up every 100 transactions so that it's up to date with your private keys. Don't worry about the funds, that isn't specifically inside of the private keys.
DannyHamilton
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December 08, 2017, 07:00:30 PM
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Say I make a few backup copies of my Bitcoin Core wallet and save those copies a few different places.  I then continue using the original wallet for a few moths adding new funds to it.  Will the backup copies I made earlier automatically have those new funds on them if I lose the original wallet or does the original wallet need backed up again every time new funds are added?  Thanks for any responses.

That depends.

Are you using the latest version and using the default HD (Hierarchical Deterministic) functionality, or are you using an older non-HD version of the wallet?

Have you changed your password since you created the backup?

How many transactions have you sent, and how many receiving addresses have you requested from the wallet?



If you are using the HD wallet, and you have not changed your password, then the backup copies you made earlier will automatically have those new funds on them.  If you have changed the password, then they might not.



If you are using the older non-HD wallet in default configuration, and the total number of transactions sent PLUS the total number of receiving addresses requested since the backup is more than 100, then the backup copies you made earlier will probably automatically have those new funds on them.  If the sum is more than 100, then they might not.


loophole77
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December 08, 2017, 08:22:46 PM
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Thanks for the replies.  How do you tell if it's a HD wallet?  One reason I was asking this question is I wondered if I put a copy of the wallet in a safety deposit box, if that wallet would have the newest balance on it if something happened to the original and I were to use that copy at a later date.
loophole77
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December 08, 2017, 08:28:56 PM
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Thought of a new question.   Are most wallets basically the same?  If I create a wallet in Bitcoin Core, can that wallet be used in Electrum and visa versa?
DannyHamilton
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December 08, 2017, 08:34:29 PM
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Thanks for the replies.  How do you tell if it's a HD wallet? 


Notice the HD in the red circle?

DannyHamilton
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December 08, 2017, 08:38:52 PM
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Thought of a new question.   Are most wallets basically the same?  If I create a wallet in Bitcoin Core, can that wallet be used in Electrum and visa versa?

No.  Each wallet implements its own method of storing private keys, seeds, and transactions.

The private keys are generally (though not ALWAYS) the same, so you can usually export the private keys from one wallet and import them into another when necessary.

Also, MANY wallets that use mnemonic seed words are adopting the same system, so those seed words are often cross compatible to other wallets that use that system.  Furthremore, wallets such as Electrum are implementing the ability to recognize many formats from other wallets.

In other words, you will often find inter-compatibilites between various wallets, but unless you've looked into it and verified that an inter-compatibility exists between two wallets you should NOT assume that it does.

loophole77
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December 08, 2017, 08:41:20 PM
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Yep, thank you.  So a copy of an HD wallet saved in a safety deposit box, will always have the same balance as the original, no matter how many transactions and addresses are made?  and the password isn't changed.
rotengel
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December 08, 2017, 08:41:44 PM
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Thank you very much for the information, have not think of something like that, took for grantes that just for having the backup i was safe.
I'm very new to all this and since a mistake may cost you a good money inveration have to read a lot.
DannyHamilton
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December 08, 2017, 08:45:28 PM
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Yep, thank you.  So a copy of an HD wallet saved in a safety deposit box, will always have the same balance as the original, no matter how many transactions and addresses are made?  and the password isn't changed.

As long as the password hasn't changed...  Yes.

The copy will be capable of generating all the same private keys, and then can scan the blockchain to determine which bitcoins is has control over.

Of course, if you've forgotten your password you'll have difficulty spending any of it, so make sure you pick one you'll remember.

Of course, if someone else gains access to that copy and can determine your password, they'll have access to all your bitcoins even if you still have your original wallet.  So, make sure you keep that copy secure, and use a password that will be difficult for someone else to guess or brute force.

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