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Author Topic: About the private key  (Read 329 times)
WL082746
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May 20, 2018, 01:57:34 PM
 #1

Hello, everyone! Ask a question!
I downloaded and installed bitcoin core v0.16.0 the other day. When the installation is complete, the runtime system prompts for a password and a bat backup! However, I did not find a request for a backup of 12 mnemonic words.
I want to know what I did wrong or did I have no mnemonic for this wallet? If I only backup the bat file, can my wallet still be used safely?

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pooya87
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May 20, 2018, 02:16:13 PM
 #2

there is no mnemonic words to back up in bitcoin core because although it is a Hierarchical Deterministic wallet but it doesn't support BIP39 and there is no words to back up, only your wallet file which contains a master key to generate all your private keys.

bob123
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May 20, 2018, 03:33:08 PM
 #3

As pooya87 already mentioned, core is not a BIP39-compatible wallet. You did nothing wrong.

You can still safely use your wallet. You just have to make sure your .dat file is backed up properly (in different places; also on at least 1 device which is not plugged in into a power source).
The wallet.dat file is the 'way' to access your wallet. It cointains all the relevant information.

If you insist on using a mnemonic seed to back your coins up, you have to use a BIP39-compatible wallet (e.g. https://electrum.org/#home).

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May 20, 2018, 04:29:01 PM
 #4

^
Electrum seeds are not BIP 39, even though you can restore BIP 39 seeds on it.
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May 20, 2018, 05:51:18 PM
Merited by suchmoon (5), bones261 (1), bob123 (1), Xynerise (1)
 #5

or you could dump all private keys by using dumpwallet command, and write down the "extended private masterkey"
you can save this extended private masterkey (xpriv) as a backup just like seed mnemonic
the xpriv would work on iancoleman BIP39 tool as input in BIP32 Root Key to derive your addresses

Cobalt9317
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May 27, 2018, 09:20:47 PM
Merited by pooya87 (1)
 #6

You can also hide the wallet.dat file on a picture/audio using steganography along with your xpriv and xpub why? to concealed the important information to backup your wallet.

If you are using Linux the code to install is this one.
Code:
apt-get install steghide

Source: https://null-byte.wonderhowto.com/how-to/steganography-hide-secret-data-inside-image-audio-file-seconds-0180936/
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May 28, 2018, 07:04:16 AM
 #7

Hello, everyone! Ask a question!
I downloaded and installed bitcoin core v0.16.0 the other day. When the installation is complete, the runtime system prompts for a password and a bat backup! However, I did not find a request for a backup of 12 mnemonic words.
I want to know what I did wrong or did I have no mnemonic for this wallet? If I only backup the bat file, can my wallet still be used safely?



Bitcoin-QT or BitcoinCore application doesn't have a mnemonic phase (seed) You need to Encrypt your wallet and keep your password and wallet.dat file safe.

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shaheer001
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May 28, 2018, 10:38:34 AM
 #8

Thanks to share very informative post as i was totally unaware about private key.

bob123
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May 28, 2018, 11:58:57 AM
 #9

You can also hide the wallet.dat file on a picture/audio using steganography along with your xpriv and xpub why? to concealed the important information to backup your wallet.

Security by obscurity is a bad approach.

You don't need to 'hide' anything if it is properly encrypted. So if you want to save private keys / seeds on a electronical device (not recommended) an encryption with a long-enough password is the way to go.
If you have choosen a solid algorithm and have used a proper implementation, that's bulletproof.

It would be still better to back these things up offline. Or even better: completely without electronical devices/storage.

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May 28, 2018, 12:42:52 PM
 #10

You can also hide the wallet.dat file on a picture/audio using steganography along with your xpriv and xpub why? to concealed the important information to backup your wallet.
Security by obscurity is a bad approach.

You don't need to 'hide' anything if it is properly encrypted.
You can of course combine steganography and cryptography. That way, you're protected from both online and offline attacks. If a burglar can't even see your keys, he won't search for them (or ask you about them at gun point).

bob123
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May 28, 2018, 01:38:34 PM
 #11

You can also hide the wallet.dat file on a picture/audio using steganography along with your xpriv and xpub why? to concealed the important information to backup your wallet.
Security by obscurity is a bad approach.

You don't need to 'hide' anything if it is properly encrypted.
You can of course combine steganography and cryptography. That way, you're protected from both online and offline attacks. If a burglar can't even see your keys, he won't search for them (or ask you about them at gun point).

You are right. But relying on a wallet file hidden inside another medium as the only backup would be negligent. At least one additional type of backup should exist (which is also vulnerable in such a situation).

While i think it is a good idea to encrypt a wallte file with a strong password, convert it to hex, print it out and store it 'physically' to stay safe in such situations, i think that a wallet file hidden in a picture/audio file is unefficient and unreliable.
It is way more error-prone to create/store/access such a digital backup which also seems to be kind of redundant. If you have a wallet installed the thief will know you own coins. If you don't, you don't need a digital backup.

A physical backup (e.g. wallet hex printed) will also not be recognised by a burglar, is less error-prone and serves as a physical backup which is needed anyway.


While i do agree with steganography being very useful in addition to cryptography, i do not think Cobalt9317's approach would be utilizing steganography as it should.

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May 28, 2018, 01:59:40 PM
 #12

If I lost the private key. How can I restore my BTC
bitmover
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May 28, 2018, 02:16:34 PM
 #13

If I lost the private key. How can I restore my BTC

Unless you have a seed, passphrase or something like that which could generate your privatekey, your funds are lost and there is nothing you can do.

Cobalt9317
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May 28, 2018, 06:05:08 PM
 #14

You can also hide the wallet.dat file on a picture/audio using steganography along with your xpriv and xpub why? to concealed the important information to backup your wallet.
Security by obscurity is a bad approach.

You don't need to 'hide' anything if it is properly encrypted.
You can of course combine steganography and cryptography. That way, you're protected from both online and offline attacks. If a burglar can't even see your keys, he won't search for them (or ask you about them at gun point).

You are right. But relying on a wallet file hidden inside another medium as the only backup would be negligent. At least one additional type of backup should exist (which is also vulnerable in such a situation).

While i think it is a good idea to encrypt a wallte file with a strong password, convert it to hex, print it out and store it 'physically' to stay safe in such situations, i think that a wallet file hidden in a picture/audio file is unefficient and unreliable.
It is way more error-prone to create/store/access such a digital backup which also seems to be kind of redundant. If you have a wallet installed the thief will know you own coins. If you don't, you don't need a digital backup.

A physical backup (e.g. wallet hex printed) will also not be recognised by a burglar, is less error-prone and serves as a physical backup which is needed anyway.


While i do agree with steganography being very useful in addition to cryptography, i do not think Cobalt9317's approach would be utilizing steganography as it should.
Indeed I really am using the steganography skill to hide my custom seed on txt files extension even if the digital data was stolen no humanely technical analysis nor statistics can possibly guess my password let alone guess my 5 random foreign words. and who would have thought that there's a secret data inside a plain picture.

If I lost the private key. How can I restore my BTC
It depends if you are using windows 7 or later there's a so called restore from a certain point in restoration setting of windows and if you are lucky you might be able to restore your wallet.dat along with your privatekey and publickey furthermore do not try this unless you are certain you've really lost your file.

If you are using Linux distro if you made a backup you possibly also made a backup of your electrum/bitcore file.

You only ask how to restore btc if you lose the privatekey but didn't put any specific details to further help you with this regard I guess just search it so you can have a simple idea how btc works in general.
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May 29, 2018, 06:09:02 AM
 #15

Indeed I really am using the steganography skill to hide my custom seed on txt files extension even if the digital data was stolen no humanely technical analysis nor statistics can possibly guess my password let alone guess my 5 random foreign words.

So, what is the reason to hide it inside another digital file if it can't be decrypted/cracked anyway?

Is it to obfuscate that you own coins? If you have a wallet installed, this is untenable.
If you don't have a wallet installed, then what is the reason you are storing it digitally instead of physically (printed out) ?
What are the pro's of storing it digitally in this case ?




Cobalt9317
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May 29, 2018, 04:36:01 PM
 #16

Indeed I really am using the steganography skill to hide my custom seed on txt files extension even if the digital data was stolen no humanely technical analysis nor statistics can possibly guess my password let alone guess my 5 random foreign words.

So, what is the reason to hide it inside another digital file if it can't be decrypted/cracked anyway?

Is it to obfuscate that you own coins? If you have a wallet installed, this is untenable.
If you don't have a wallet installed, then what is the reason you are storing it digitally instead of physically (printed out) ?
What are the pro's of storing it digitally in this case ?

We all know that digital file can easily be hack or steal online basically thieves are getting ingenious how to spot a printed out xpriv and there's a story about someone lost his bitcoin because the paper wallet is teared apart by a termites.

The idea is simple if the digital picture/audio is backup to all random area of your house it significantly increase the possibility of not losing your own coin.
However someone needs to remember the password for as long as you hide the picture/audio.

The pro's of storing it digitally is to hide the fact that you own a coin, but printing out xpriv is likely telling to any brilliant thieves that you are hiding something plus I feel secured that my coins are really safe and sound if I the only one know how to decrypt it whereas upon discovering a printed out xpriv it only takes a matter of minutes before sending it to another address.

pooya87
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May 30, 2018, 05:13:43 AM
 #17

but printing out xpriv is likely telling to any brilliant thieves that you are hiding something

that can be where BIP39[1] comes in. instead of having a master private key (xprv) you have a set of words that you can store. and since they are just words (can be in different languages not just English) you can do some creative stuff like choosing your favorite book and then choose different pages and underline the words corresponding with your seed, or simply write down the words in the book if you can't find them.
so instead of storing this
Code:
xprv9s21ZrQH143K2gA81bYFHqU68xz1cX2APaSq5tt6MFSLeXnCKV1RVUJt9FWNTbrrryem4ZckN8k4Ls1H6nwdvDTvnV7zEXs2HgPezuVccsq
you store this:
Code:
legal winner thank year wave sausage worth useful legal winner thank yellow

[1] https://github.com/bitcoin/bips/blob/master/bip-0039.mediawiki

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May 30, 2018, 07:05:48 AM
 #18

We all know that digital file can easily be hack or steal online basically thieves are getting ingenious how to spot a printed out xpriv

Thats why i have mentioned using steganography per se is a good thing.
I have never suggested to print the xpriv out in plaintext.



The idea is simple if the digital picture/audio is backup to all random area of your house it significantly increase the possibility of not losing your own coin.
However someone needs to remember the password for as long as you hide the picture/audio.

This does not apply to digital files only. This applies to ANY kind of backup.



The pro's of storing it digitally is to hide the fact that you own a coin, but printing out xpriv is likely telling to any brilliant thieves that you are hiding something plus I feel secured that my coins are really safe and sound if I the only one know how to decrypt it whereas upon discovering a printed out xpriv it only takes a matter of minutes before sending it to another address.

So you don't have a wallet installed? Because an installed wallet already shows that you own coins.
If you print out a randomly looking HEX string, as in my example, no thief will recognize it as a xpriv.

Encrypting a xpriv key and 'hiding it' can be done digitally AND physically.

So thats actually not a single pro argument for your storage of backups. More 'complicated' doesn't mean more secured.

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May 30, 2018, 10:20:39 AM
 #19

there is no mnemonic words to back up in bitcoin core because although it is a Hierarchical Deterministic wallet but it doesn't support BIP39 and there is no words to back up, only your wallet file which contains a master key to generate all your private keys.

Yes, we must be very careful and make safe the private key or else we will loss everything that we had in our wallet.
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May 30, 2018, 01:18:27 PM
 #20

but printing out xpriv is likely telling to any brilliant thieves that you are hiding something

that can be where BIP39[1] comes in. instead of having a master private key (xprv) you have a set of words that you can store. and since they are just words (can be in different languages not just English) you can do some creative stuff like choosing your favorite book and then choose different pages and underline the words corresponding with your seed, or simply write down the words in the book if you can't find them.
so instead of storing this
Code:
xprv9s21ZrQH143K2gA81bYFHqU68xz1cX2APaSq5tt6MFSLeXnCKV1RVUJt9FWNTbrrryem4ZckN8k4Ls1H6nwdvDTvnV7zEXs2HgPezuVccsq
you store this:
Code:
legal winner thank year wave sausage worth useful legal winner thank yellow

[1] https://github.com/bitcoin/bips/blob/master/bip-0039.mediawiki

I'm into programming and thinking about how changing of address is working so I don't really concern myself in any BIP39 tech. But it definitely hide the fact that I have an xpriv.

Also electrum have a custom seed whereas you can add different words of your choice and actually I used that option.
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