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Author Topic: not tech-savvy investor needs suggestions re a problem  (Read 76 times)
gfalcon
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February 13, 2018, 02:05:49 PM
Merited by LoyceV (1)
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hi, im hoping some kind people might be able to enlighten me/suggest something re a btc problem im faced with ...

in 2016 i changed my main device from a desktop to a microsoft tablet, and when i transferred my core-qt wallet into the tablet (which id not used for a while) the obvious problem of syncing to the blockchain became clearly apparent, so i decided to move my btc from core-qt to an online wallet address, i had my core-qt encrypted but knew (and still know) the password, BUT -

i forgot to include the miner's fee !!!

so my xx.xxxxxxxx stash of btc left my core-qt wallet to be sent to my online address, BUT -

no doubt because i'd failed to include the miner's fee, the online wallet only received the 0.xxxxxxxx amount of my transaction ...

i then discovered, after a week or so, that the xx.00000000 amount of btc had been placed in a "strange" address, blockchain.info shows these coins, to this day, to be "unspent" - and so they are just sitting there, NOT in any wallet at all, thus I CANT USE THEM/SELL THEM

my original core-qt address now shows a 0.00000000 balance, as expected

so, i so retain the original core-qt wallet private keys (wallet.dat files), these are from 2013, and they are saved on a usb stick i have in my possession

what i want to know is - CAN i/how do i use these private keys to RESTORE my xx.00000000 btc from this strange "holding" address into a new wallet, and one which is NOT a core-qt, as my tablet would never be able to have the memory capacity to sync the blockchain

im thinking of downloading an electrum wallet (or some other, if people suggest it), and then trying to "import" my private keys, in the hope that my xx.00000000 btc will then move from this strange address and into my new electrum/something else wallet

any ideas/suggestions ??  thanks   
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LoyceV
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February 13, 2018, 02:36:53 PM
 #2

so i decided to move my btc from core-qt to an online wallet address~
i forgot to include the miner's fee !!!

so my xx.xxxxxxxx stash of btc left my core-qt wallet to be sent to my online address, BUT -

no doubt because i'd failed to include the miner's fee, the online wallet only received the 0.xxxxxxxx amount of my transaction ...
If your receiving wallet received any amount, the fee is not the problem. Unless you made more than one transaction, and only one made it through (this is my guess about what happened).

Quote
i then discovered, after a week or so, that the xx.00000000 amount of btc had been placed in a "strange" address, blockchain.info shows these coins, to this day, to be "unspent" - and so they are just sitting there, NOT in any wallet at all, thus I CANT USE THEM/SELL THEM
My guess: You didn't send your entire balance, you first sent only a small amount. The remaining amount ended up in a change address in your Bitcoin Core wallet.

Quote
my original core-qt address now shows a 0.00000000 balance, as expected

so, i so retain the original core-qt wallet private keys (wallet.dat files), these are from 2013, and they are saved on a usb stick i have in my possession
So far so good! Just to be sure: make another backup now, don't take any risks.

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what i want to know is - CAN i/how do i use these private keys to RESTORE my xx.00000000 btc from this strange "holding" address into a new wallet, and one which is NOT a core-qt, as my tablet would never be able to have the memory capacity to sync the blockchain
Yes, this is possible, assuming the change address is in your wallet.dat.

Quote
im thinking of downloading an electrum wallet (or some other, if people suggest it), and then trying to "import" my private keys, in the hope that my xx.00000000 btc will then move from this strange address and into my new electrum/something else wallet
You'll need to export the private keys before you can import them. Best solution: use an original Bitcoin Core.
If you can run that on your Microsoft tablet, you don't need to sync the entire blockchain to be able to export the private keys.
If you can spare 10 GB on your disk, you could actually let it sync 170 GB using the "-prune=550" command line option, after which you can use Bitcoin Core normally with your existing wallet.

Installing Bitcoin Core, copying your wallet.dat into it's data directory, exporting your private key (with the dumpprivkey command in Bitcoin Core's console), importing it into Electrum, and using it from there is probably the easiest solution.
The exact details depend on your exact setup, I can guide you further after you choose which option you prefer.

Three more things:
1. It's very bad practice to use an online wallet for a 2 digit amount of Bitcoins! Get a hardware wallet, that's much safer and probably the best option if you're "not tech-savvy".
2. If you're downloading Electrum, make sure to download it from the real website. Don't fall for a scam-website.
3. You'll also hold several Bitcoin Forkcoins, worth a considerable amount of money per Bitcoin. Don't throw away your wallet.dat instantly after sending your Bitcoins!

gfalcon
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February 13, 2018, 03:11:14 PM
 #3

thanks, but i did send two transactions

truth is im talking 48 btc here Sad which are mine and i dont know how to get them back under my control

could i show you some saved pages of the transactions from walletexplorer.com or something?

my wallet.dat only has three files in it (backups?) two from 2013 when i bought my coins, and one from jan 2015

but i sent these two transactions on 28 jun 2016

so, because i have no wallet.dat on my stick from 2016 does that mean im screwed ??



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February 13, 2018, 03:37:28 PM
 #4

could i show you some saved pages of the transactions from walletexplorer.com or something?
You can, but I don't think that's going to change anything.

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my wallet.dat only has three files in it (backups?) two from 2013 when i bought my coins, and one from jan 2015
Your "wallet.dat" is supposed to be a file, do you mean you have a folder ("directory") named wallet.dat, with 3 files in it? If so, what are the file names?

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so, because i have no wallet.dat on my stick from 2016 does that mean im screwed ??
Maybe, maybe not. I'm confused now, as you originally said this:
so, i so retain the original core-qt wallet private keys (wallet.dat files), these are from 2013, and they are saved on a usb stick i have in my possession
It depends on what you really have there.
Do you (by any chance) still have your old computer or hard drive?

gfalcon
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February 13, 2018, 06:41:44 PM
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all they are are three word doc files, but which are DAT files

i cant read what is on each, because i dont know which encoding to select, either windows (default), ms-dos, or other

so, all three files are like this

im guessing they are my private keys, in DAT format, but i would need to select a correct encoding before i can obtain the actual key/s

i do have the old computer with its hard drive, im no longer using it

it was going to be thrown out but i thought twice, so i still have it in the garage

i also have my original core-qt wallet on a laptop, i looked at it a short time ago and its a 211 week wait to sync to the blockchain

it has a folder with it, containing two files, one says "block" the other "chainstate"

when i look through "block" i can actually see files with the transaction date and time of when i tried to send these coins in 2016

there is a wallet.dat file, but, again, its not in a form i can read (may need to be encoded)

what i have done, though, is made a fresh backup of this core-qt, and named it todays date, but again its in this unreadable format

 
LoyceV
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February 13, 2018, 07:02:07 PM
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all they are are three word doc files, but which are DAT files

i cant read what is on each, because i dont know which encoding to select, either windows (default), ms-dos, or other

so, all three files are like this
It's still confusing, could it be you renamed the wallet.dat to somethingelse.dat ? You can't open these with MS Word, you can open these with Bitcoin Core! If that's the case, these files could be 3 copies/versions of your wallet.

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im guessing they are my private keys, in DAT format, but i would need to select a correct encoding before i can obtain the actual key/s
Did you make extra backups? Buy a few USB sticks, and copy everything a few times before touching anything!

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i do have the old computer with its hard drive, im no longer using it

it was going to be thrown out but i thought twice, so i still have it in the garage
Is that the computer you used to make the last transactions in 2016?

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i also have my original core-qt wallet on a laptop, i looked at it a short time ago and its a 211 week wait to sync to the blockchain
Backup this wallet.dat too, then just let it sync. I guess you're in no rush to get back your 450,000 dollars, so there's no need to do anything risky.

Quote
it has a folder with it, containing two files, one says "block" the other "chainstate"
Those two folders are normal.

Quote
when i look through "block" i can actually see files with the transaction date and time of when i tried to send these coins in 2016
In that case it's weird it has 211 weeks to sync, because 2016 was less than 100 weeks ago.

Quote
there is a wallet.dat file, but, again, its not in a form i can read (may need to be encoded)
You can open wallet.dat in Bitcoin Core.

Quote
what i have done, though, is made a fresh backup of this core-qt, and named it todays date, but again its in this unreadable format
The file you need to backup is probably at most a few MB in size, most likely called wallet.dat.
All the rest can be downloaded again if you lose it.

DannyHamilton
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February 13, 2018, 07:08:52 PM
Merited by Jet Cash (1)
 #7

all they are are three word doc files,

Why do you think they are Word Doc files?

If these are wallet.dat files from Bitcoin-Qt, then they are NOT Word Doc files, and you can NOT open them with Word.

If these are wallet.dat files from Bitcoin-Qt, then they ARE Bitcoin-Qt wallet files and they would have binary Bitcoin-Qt wallet data in them.

They would need to be opened with Bitcoin-Qt or Bitcoin Core.

but which are DAT files

If these are wallet.dat files, then they can't be opened with Word.  You need to open them with Bitcoin.

i cant read what is on each, because i dont know which encoding to select, either windows (default), ms-dos, or other

The encoding is probably Bitcoin wallet encoding.  They would then need to be opened with Bitcoin Core or Bitcoin-Qt.

im guessing they are my private keys, in DAT format, but i would need to select a correct encoding before i can obtain the actual key/s

I'm guessing they are Bitcoin Core wallet files in Bitcoin Core wallet.dat format. You will need to open them with Bitcoin Core to obtain the actual keys.

i do have the old computer with its hard drive, im no longer using it

it was going to be thrown out but i thought twice, so i still have it in the garage

I would check the files you have first.  Then, if you don't find the necessary keys there, you can check the old computer next.

Unfortunately you did whatever you did a long time ago, so your memory of the exact steps you took is a bit unreliable (especially since you don't have the technical knowledge to fully understand what you did.

There are a few possibilities here that seem likely:
  • 1. The address where the bitcoins are now is a "change address" from your wallet.  The wallet.dat file associated with that address is still in your possession somewhere.  (If you can find the correct file, you can recover access to the bitcoins.)
  • 2. The address where the bitcoins are now is a "change address" from your wallet.  The wallet.dat file associated with that address is no longer in your possession somewhere.  (If you can not find the correct file, you will never recover access to the bitcoins.)
  • 3. The address where the bitcoins are now was somewhere you intended to send the bitcoins.  They are still wherever you sent them. (Online wallet of some sort? Paper wallet? Account somewhere? Merchant? etc).
  • 4. Your computer had some malware on it in the past, and the bitcoins were sent somewhere that you did NOT intend to send them. (In that case, the bitcoins are lost permanently).

My guess is that you are looking at either possibility 1 or 2.

i also have my original core-qt wallet on a laptop, i looked at it a short time ago and its a 211 week wait to sync to the blockchain

it has a folder with it, containing two files, one says "block" the other "chainstate"

when i look through "block" i can actually see files with the transaction date and time of when i tried to send these coins in 2016

there is a wallet.dat file, but, again, its not in a form i can read (may need to be encoded)

The synchronization is not necessary if you just want to check to see if you have access to the proper private key in that wallet.

Under the Help menu, choose Debug Window.
In the Debug Window, choose Console.
In the Console, type the following:
Code:
validateaddress bitcoinAddressWithTheBitcoinsHere
Replacing bitcoinAddressWithTheBitcoinsHere with the actual bitcoin address where your "unspent" bitcoins are currently located.

If you see the following in the response:
Code:
"ismine": true,

Then that wallet.dat file has the private key associated with the address.

If you see the following:
Code:
"ismine": false,

Then you have the wrong wallet.dat file, and you'll need to check some of the others.

gfalcon
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February 16, 2018, 09:50:33 AM
 #8

thanks guys, i will try to follow your advice/instructions, and will let you know once i have some kind of result, thanks v much
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