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Author Topic: Why do all private keys generated with bitaddress have the same first character?  (Read 1057 times)
neutrinox
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October 31, 2013, 05:17:42 PM
 #1

Hi!

I noticed that all the private keys bitadress.org generates begin with the number 5. Is this normal? Why is the first character not random?
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chriswilmer
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October 31, 2013, 05:20:47 PM
 #2

I think it's similar to the way a random number between 1 and 1000 is much (much!) more likely to start with a 0 than a 1.

0000
0001
0002

...

0999
1000

etc.

However, I could be wrong. Maybe this is just related to the special Bitcoin Base58 encoding and there is a version byte or something.
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October 31, 2013, 05:23:20 PM
 #3

The last line is on the right way for the answer  Cheesy

It is explained on the Wallet Details section

Quote
Private Key WIF
51 characters base58, starts with a '5'

Private Key WIF Compressed
52 characters base58, starts with a 'K' or 'L'

It just depend on the encoding format used, the key is randomly generated  Wink

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October 31, 2013, 05:25:41 PM
 #4

I think it's similar to the way a random number between 1 and 1000 is much (much!) more likely to start with a 0 than a 1.

0000
0001
0002

...

0999
1000

etc.

However, I could be wrong. Maybe this is just related to the special Bitcoin Base58 encoding and there is a version byte or something.

You are wrong, the first character isn't random.
Afaik it shows what kind of adress this is.
All Bitcoin adresses start with 1 and all private keys start with 5 (and there are probably more).
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October 31, 2013, 05:27:14 PM
 #5

It has to do with how it is hashed and the verison bytes that are added to the front of the hash. https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Technical_background_of_Bitcoin_addresses


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October 31, 2013, 05:33:30 PM
 #6

Use armory, and enter your own private key (the random number soruce on your system could be backdoored)
get good random numbers(dice, geiger counter)

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October 31, 2013, 05:35:18 PM
 #7

Use armory, and enter your own private key (the random number soruce on your system could be backdoored)
get good random numbers(dice, geiger counter)

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October 31, 2013, 05:36:54 PM
 #8

Hi thanks!

I deleted my message because I realized it's kind of off topic to this discussion. I generated a new topic instead. Sorry!
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