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Author Topic: A discussion of truthHurts post about slush's pool  (Read 12406 times)
theGECK
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March 23, 2011, 10:45:50 PM
 #1

Since hijacking a pool support thread will just make everybody confused when support starts to mix with discussion, please discuss the accusations made here.

Quote from: truthHurts
This matches slush's number of blocks found in the hall of fame.  Coincidence, I think not!!!

While is was clearly noticeable to those who have watched this the last few weeks, something changed in the last 24 hours as slush's block count in the hall of fame hasn't increased from the 96 blocks it is currently sitting at, but the received balance of account 1FijBR5s3EU1JS3UokzTZbkAibgL4SXzxm has increased by 100 bitcoins.  It appears I've missed something.

After doing some digging as to what would have caused slush's block count to stop increasing while this address is still collecting bitcoins I stumbled across a post on the bitcoin forums from a user (h00ters) who accused slush of “Slush is taking BTC from the top when no one watches..... “.  The message from h00ters was posted at 2011-03-22 05:46:38 in the bitcoinpool.com thread.  Now take a closer look at the last 3 blocks found by [ 1FijBR5s3EU1JS3UokzTZbkAibgL4SXzxm ] with the time of h00ters post. 

All times are listed in UTC.

Block 114425      (2011-03-21 17:00:59)
Block 114557      (2011-03-22 17:13:51)
[h00ters post]      (2011-03-22 17:46:38)
Block 114706      (2011-03-23 17:39:59)

Slush has stated his hall of fame page is delayed by 1 hour <seen here>, which leaves him enough time to see the post from h00ters, and put a stop on his block count from going up. 

I don't know about you, but this is just too much evidence and too much of a coincidence for me to continue mining in slush's pool.  I firmly believe that he has in fact been skimming from the top, and to top off this entire day slush is now having problems with his wallet.dat file and can't pay anyone out, and has quit tracking confirmed rewards as of a few hours ago.  I believe he has realized that a bug in his code ultimately has results in two blocks revealing what it is he's been doing since 2011-02-11.  h00ters called him out, and he is now in a panic to try and undo his mistakes.  I don't know about you, but 4900 bitcoins being taken by the pool operator from his own pool is enough to make me say I've had enough of slush's pool and I will not continue to help him put more bitcoins into his personal slush fund.

You can verify this with slush's past 1000 shares at:  http://mining.bitcoin.cz/stats/?history=1000
You can also look at slush's solved block count at:  http://mining.bitcoin.cz/stats/hall-of-fame/
An archived copy of the last 1000 shares as of 03-21-2011 is at:  http://www.mediafire.com/?k3g27u2w45l235m
An archived copy of the last 1000 shares as of 03-14-2011 is at: http://www.mediafire.com/?s7fbwxwlb62uwaf

If you know what's good for you, get out of this pool.  Any other pool is probably more honest than this pool.

Hey slush, I'm out of your pool forever.

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March 23, 2011, 10:49:51 PM
 #2

theGECK, thanks, I'll respond as I'll have free time (I have to fix payments now and run tx fix on stage, so probably tomorrow). I have (of course) strong evidence that this post is completely wrong, but I have to solve problems as they are going. As I'm scamming the pool all the time, I hope that few hours more to respond does not make a difference :-).

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March 23, 2011, 10:50:48 PM
 #3

I was just about to create then saw you beat me to it.  I think it was a good idea editing out the finger as well.  Best to keep it focused more on facts not feelings.

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theGECK
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March 23, 2011, 10:57:30 PM
 #4

Plus, the finger would just add to the wall of text.

I'm unqualified to deal with this, as I keep getting confused with blockexplorer and tracking coins from one place to the next. I don't know how y'all do it, but it amazes me. I am looking forward to this though, and hoping I can learn more about how bitcoin transactions work "under the hood".

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demonofelru
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March 23, 2011, 10:59:31 PM
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Plus, the finger would just add to the wall of text.

I'm unqualified to deal with this, as I keep getting confused with blockexplorer and tracking coins from one place to the next. I don't know how y'all do it, but it amazes me. I am looking forward to this though, and hoping I can learn more about how bitcoin transactions work "under the hood".

Same here I'm REALLY trying to figure it out but am literally getting a headache.

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March 23, 2011, 11:01:55 PM
 #6

Well, slush himself at one point indicated why a block number on the stats page would be one off from the actual block number it became.  This was caused by two instances of bitcoind returning two different current block numbers, if I remember correctly.
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March 23, 2011, 11:30:53 PM
 #7

Block 114706 was found by Tycho's Pool at DeepBit.net.

On Deepbit's statistics page, it is listed as:

Time = 23.03.2011 17:40:09
Found In = 2h 09m
Shares = 104786


Edit: The simple explanation that fits Occam's Razor is that all of the "anomalies" that TheTruthHurts raises are just different instances of the same acknowledged bug (that even TheTruthHurts believes to be a bug in some of the anomalies) and that the reason for the coincidence of the "missing" blocks always going to the same Address is because they were solved by Tycho's pool which accounts for ~10%+ of the network's entire hashing strength.

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March 23, 2011, 11:42:47 PM
 #8

Block 114706 was found by Tycho's Pool at DeepBit.net.

On Deepbit's statistics page, it is listed as:

Time = 23.03.2011 17:40:09
Found In = 2h 09m
Shares = 104786


Edit: The simple explanation that fits Occam's Razor is that all of the "anomalies" that TheTruthHurts raises are just different instances of the same acknowledged bug (that even TheTruthHurts believes to be a bug in some of the anomalies) and that the reason for the coincidence of the "missing" blocks always going to the same Address is because they were solved by Tycho's pool which accounts for ~10%+ of the network's entire hashing strength.

+1

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March 23, 2011, 11:55:39 PM
 #9

Hey Slush,

I'm inclined to believe you are honest for a number of reasons, but I don't know you personally, so I have to allow for the possibility that there might be some amount of scamming going on even though it seems unlikely.

Imagine now that this payout problem will take multiple days to fix (hopefully it won't, but just imagine). At what point do you start paying out bitcoins manually to your biggest miners just to prove that you are honest?

If you don't have a date you will commit to when you would start doing that, then it begins to look much more suspicious.

Alternately, are you willing to put up a large number of BTC as collateral to a forum member that everyone trusts until the current problem is over?

Thanks for your work running the pool. I'm sure this will all be over soon and everyone will feel silly for doubting you. People just get paranoid and emotional whenever money is involved.

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March 24, 2011, 12:16:49 AM
 #10

Slush made this post earlier in the pool's thread regarding payments:

Quote from: slush
Payments are different problem, I'm working on it and they should go out in hours or two. Unfortunately there went break more things at the same time, I'm doing it one after one. The problem of TX spam and the crashed bitcoin node are both bitcoin client related, but unrelated each other.
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March 24, 2011, 12:33:56 AM
 #11

(just adding this thread to my watchlist)

(I dont always get new reply notifications, pls send a pm when you think it has happened)

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March 24, 2011, 03:19:54 AM
 #12

Well, to be honest, I don't understand all your claims clearly, which is probably problem of my poor english. I'll try to explain a bit:

Quote from: truthHurts
While is was clearly noticeable to those who have watched this the last few weeks, something changed in the last 24 hours as slush's block count in the hall of fame hasn't increased from the 96 blocks it is currently sitting at, but the received balance of account 1FijBR5s3EU1JS3UokzTZbkAibgL4SXzxm has increased by 100 bitcoins.  It appears I've missed something.

Yes, I didn't found a block for a while. Why? Because I'm probably unlucky and also I'm disconnecting my rig pretty often because of Long Polling testing.

This wallet is not mine. That explain a lot - the wallet balance is absolutely unrelated to my mining Wink. You probably found them from link to blockexplorer on pool stats page. Two comments to this:

a) I explained in the pool thread before that there is bug in block number detection in stats page. Again: It's because I'm using many bitcoind instances. When one instance found a block and I ask another instance for current block number, it can give me incorrect answer. It isn't critical and I have too much work to do before fix it.

b) Why I should point stats page to stolen blocks?

Quote
After doing some digging as to what would have caused slush's block count to stop increasing while this address is still collecting bitcoins I stumbled across a post on the bitcoin forums from a user (h00ters) who accused slush of “Slush is taking BTC from the top when no one watches..... “.  The message from h00ters was posted at 2011-03-22 05:46:38 in the bitcoinpool.com thread.  Now take a closer look at the last 3 blocks found by [ 1FijBR5s3EU1JS3UokzTZbkAibgL4SXzxm ] with the time of h00ters post. 

Lol, I remember to the h00ters post, but I took it as fun. I really didn't mentioned that somebody will take it seriously and start such investigation Wink.

Quote
Slush has stated his hall of fame page is delayed by 1 hour <seen here>, which leaves him enough time to see the post from h00ters, and put a stop on his block count from going up. 

Erm, why I should, as a scammer, stop scamming all of you when somebody just call me a scammer? as far as I remember, h00ters didn't tell any reason, maybe except it was unusually long round at the moment or whatever. This don't make a sense for me.

Quote
and to top off this entire day slush is now having problems with his wallet.dat file and can't pay anyone out, and has quit tracking confirmed rewards as of a few hours ago. 

OK, I'm sending payments again (not automatically, with some delay, but it is working). You are saying that I cannot have technical troubles, right? Join us on #bitcoin-dev or watch the logs, you'll see all details about my troubles and how I'm solving that. There is nothing magical, I'm using bleeding edge bitcoin with custom changes, it may happen. You can ask m0mchil or jgarzik, two well respected guys about specific troubles which I had with payments. Again, it did not affect mining, I didn't lost single coin. You're doing problem from something which is not related to possible scam at all.

Quote
I believe he has realized that a bug in his code ultimately has results in two blocks revealing what it is he's been doing since 2011-02-11.  h00ters called him out, and he is now in a panic to try and undo his mistakes.  I don't know about you, but 4900 bitcoins being taken by the pool operator from his own pool is enough to make me say I've had enough of slush's pool and I will not continue to help him put more bitcoins into his personal slush fund.

I many times claimed that pooled mining IS vulnerable from side of cheating operator and it IS trivial to scam. But nobody will do it in the way as you proposed, because he must be an idiot to scam like this. For example, there is no reason to collect all stealed blocks under one mining account, there is no reason to show those stealed block in stats and ABSOLUTELY no reason to make this mining account as top miner :-D. If you want, come to Prague, I'll show you my mining rigs (this is old version of the first one, I have two like this).

Quote
If you know what's good for you, get out of this pool.  Any other pool is probably more honest than this pool.

Ok, it's your opinion. Only me know the truth if I'm stealing blocks or not. So it is pointless to say anything to you; looks like you're convicted that I'm the biggest scammer around. But I hope that I explained a lot to see that IF I'm stealing blocks, I'm DEFINITELY not doing it this way.

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March 24, 2011, 04:55:33 AM
 #13

Rather than wasting all this bandwidth discussing who is cheating whom, why not try each pool for one week and see where you get the largest payout? 

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March 24, 2011, 08:44:56 AM
 #14

Rather than wasting all this bandwidth discussing who is cheating whom, why not try each pool for one week and see where you get the largest payout?  

because it wont work that way  - it all strongly depends on luck (and difficulty - which will change again in 102 blocks)
it should be similar, but there is way too many factors to decide that way

i'm using at least two different pools all the same time just to be sure that i don't have to take any immediate action when one is going off-line,
plus - that will lower the loses in case of potential scam (by pool operator) too

personally i don't think any of the pool operators is a scammer, and even if - people that have enough skills to set up successfully running pool are not retarded and not giving all that "evidence" straight to one's hands
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March 24, 2011, 09:34:36 AM
 #15

This is when the blocks were confirmed and paid out.  That is different from when the block is found. 

Block 114425      (2011-03-21 17:00:59)
Block 114557      (2011-03-22 17:13:51)
[h00ters post]      (2011-03-22 17:46:38)
Block 114706      (2011-03-23 17:39:59)
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March 24, 2011, 09:54:52 AM
 #16

This is when the blocks were confirmed and paid out.  That is different from when the block is found. 

Block 114425      (2011-03-21 17:00:59)

Not a pool block, where did you find this?

Quote
Block 114557      (2011-03-22 17:13:51)

It's pool block, but your timestamp is bad, did you recalculate it for your timezone?

Time difference between BlockExplorer and pool stats (both UTC) is 13 seconds. Keep in mind that the timestamps are not identical. Block timestamp is from time when block was created (by getwork()), but pool stats are when the block was reported.

Quote
Block 114706      (2011-03-23 17:39:59)

Not a pool block.

Sorry, maybe I totally missed your evidence, but I don't understand what exactly happen.

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March 24, 2011, 03:35:52 PM
 #17

I thought about this some last night, and I am completely convinced that slush is not stealing blocks.

Why? Because that would be an incredibly stupid way to rip off people, and he is obviously not incredibly stupid.

If he wanted to rip people off, all he has to do is give himself more shares in the pool. He could make a ton of money and it would be completely unprovable. The only way you could even detect that kind of fraud is if a large group of miners were closely watching their payout over time versus expected payout, and comparing notes. Even then, it could never arise above a strong suspicion.

If slush wants more money, he can get it easily, and we'll probably never be the wiser. All you can do is watch your payouts and make sure they seem proportional to your processing power over time.

There is NO WAY he would steal whole blocks when he can rip us off by crediting himself extra shares so easily.

If he is truly evil, he could also rip us off by just stopping payouts, claiming technical difficulty, and waiting to see how many bitcoins he makes before people give up on getting their bitcoins out of the pool. I was starting to worry yesterday that just such a scenario might be unfolding. Now that payouts have started again, I feel bad for doubting him, and I sent him a small donation which I hope will help make up for that.

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March 24, 2011, 05:02:32 PM
 #18

I just want to say one thing, people in charge of pools are providing a service and charging for it , while mining as well , they will make more many than 99% of the mining community... that is all.

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March 24, 2011, 06:01:32 PM
 #19

Here is my own theory of how slush could be cheating:

First, Slush claims that there is a spam transaction problem.
Then he announces that his pool will no longer be processing transactions that don't include a fee.
So who gets all the fees? Slush is!
Maybe it is slush who is sending all those spam transactions to encourage more fees.
As far as I know, Slush is the only pool operator who does not process free transactions, so he is the one who is profiting the most.

Now let me say that I do NOT actually believe that he is doing this. I trust Slush when he says that there is a spam problem and that his ban on free transactions is temporary. But it is something to think about....
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March 24, 2011, 06:27:09 PM
 #20

First, I am not sure it is appropriate to single out Slush in particular with these cheating accusations. The truth is that we as miners have no idea whether the pool operators cheat save comparing expected payouts and even that is subject to luck. I have personally moved away from pools because of this very thing along with the fact that when a pool goes down for whatever reason, hashrate goes to 0 with the possibility of not restarting properly. Solo mining eliminates all doubt.
The only way I could see a pool potentially working is if it were private and shared among people who actually had a real physical trust relationship.
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