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samuel-sd
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October 03, 2019, 09:53:01 PM
Merited by DireWolfM14 (1)
 #1

A few days ago I ran my wallet app (3.2.2 linux) and noticed that it did not show that it was connected to the network. I'm not sure if it was able to download all transactions (related to my wallet) from the servers or just showed me what it had downloaded before. After updating the app, everything started working properly.
As far as I got it, old versions of the app don't work with current network software. So, do I need to keep my app updated to be able to use a wallet?

Could anybody tell me what the server (network) part of the app is? Who controls and supports it? What would happen if it sudenly stopped working?
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October 03, 2019, 10:03:14 PM
 #2

The server software is called electrumx. Old versions of electrum were stopped from. Being able to connect via an update to the servers thst were voluntarily downloaded by the people running it.

If the servers all went offline and no one had a reliable backup, then you'd have to take your seed or your private keys and import them into another wallet. The chancss of this happening are extremely low.

There was a phishing problem with the old versions of electrum.

If you'd like a copy of the source code you can go here: https://github.com/kyuupichan/electrumx or there is electrum-server avaliable here: github.com/spesmilo/electrum-server

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October 03, 2019, 10:42:56 PM
 #3

A few days ago I ran my wallet app (3.2.2 linux) and noticed that it did not show that it was connected to the network.
It is impossible to connect to servers with versions older than 3.3

do I need to keep my app updated to be able to use a wallet?
It is advised to always update all your apps not only Electrum as updates mainly serve to fix bugs or add new features.

Who controls and supports it? What would happen if it sudenly stopped working?
- Anyone can run an Electrum server.
- You can run your own server too or export your seed even when you are not connected to any server.

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October 03, 2019, 11:25:21 PM
 #4

If the servers all went offline and no one had a reliable backup, then you'd have to take your seed or your private keys and import them into another wallet.
The problem is with Electrum seeds, they are not compatible with BIP39 seed mnemonic. It means if electrum project ceases to exist, a user needs to replicate a whole electrum infrastructure to be able to use their wallet.

Quote
The chancss of this happening are extremely low.
Why? Developers may stop working on it for one reason or another. Sooner or later, people, who run server software, will shut it down.

export your seed even when you are not connected to any server.
Do you know wallets, which support electum native seeds?
What about electrum multi-signature wallets, can I export them to any other wallet?
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October 04, 2019, 01:24:15 AM
 #5

The problem is with Electrum seeds, they are not compatible with BIP39 seed mnemonic. It means if electrum project ceases to exist, a user needs to replicate a whole electrum infrastructure to be able to use their wallet.

That wouldn't matter.  What jackg is saying is that all you need to do is install the latest version of Electrum and extract your private keys, which can then be swept into whatever wallet you would be using at the time.  The Electrum client doesn't need to connect to a server to be able to extract your private keys.  The seed may or may not be useless but again, that doesn't matter.


What about electrum multi-signature wallets, can I export them to any other wallet?

That would be the only sticky situation I can imagine.  If Electrum just stopped working overnight, then the holders of a multi-sig wallet would need to trust one another to export the private keys.  Of course if Electrum developers stop supporting the software, the likelihood of all the servers disappearing overnight is slim.  I would imagine there would be ample warning, and that would give multi-sig wallet holders time to make alternate arrangements.  
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October 04, 2019, 02:11:53 AM
 #6

The problem is with Electrum seeds, they are not compatible with BIP39 seed mnemonic. It means if electrum project ceases to exist, a user needs to replicate a whole electrum infrastructure to be able to use their wallet.

That wouldn't matter.  What jackg is saying is that all you need to do is install the latest version of Electrum and extract your private keys, which can then be swept into whatever wallet you would be using at the time.  The Electrum client doesn't need to connect to a server to be able to extract your private keys.  The seed may or may not be useless but again, that doesn't matter.  
What if I don't have an actual wallet, I have just a seed, which was generated on some version of electrum. What's the plan to get my money.
1. Find and install the latest version of electrum on the Internet.
2. Restore a wallet with the seed I have.
3. Extract private keys from the wallet.
4. Import the private keys to another software wallet.

Will it work 100% smoothly in the future?
DireWolfM14
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October 04, 2019, 02:14:10 AM
 #7

The problem is with Electrum seeds, they are not compatible with BIP39 seed mnemonic. It means if electrum project ceases to exist, a user needs to replicate a whole electrum infrastructure to be able to use their wallet.

That wouldn't matter.  What jackg is saying is that all you need to do is install the latest version of Electrum and extract your private keys, which can then be swept into whatever wallet you would be using at the time.  The Electrum client doesn't need to connect to a server to be able to extract your private keys.  The seed may or may not be useless but again, that doesn't matter.  
What if I don't have an actual wallet, I have just a seed, which was generated on some version of electrum. What's the plan to get my money.
1. Find and install the latest version of electrum on the Internet.
2. Restore a wallet with the seed I have.
3. Extract private keys from the wallet.
4. Import the private keys to another software wallet.

Will it work 100% smoothly in the future?

Yes.  Private keys are ubiquitous to all bitcoin wallet software.  It's an easy test to verify my words, fund an Electrum wallet, extract the private key, and use another wallet software to sweep that key.  Don't trust, verify.
samuel-sd
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October 04, 2019, 02:49:06 AM
 #8

Yes.  Private keys are ubiquitous to all bitcoin wallet software.  It's an easy test to verify my words, fund an Electrum wallet, extract the private key, and use another wallet software to sweep that key.  Don't trust, verify.

1. You could export all the private keys of addresses that have already been generated by the wallet. Wallet menu > private key >export will do that. But as you use your wallet it'll derive new addresses from the seed so your backup will quickly go stale.

Could you tell me what that means? I do not understand what kind of private keys exist. A wallet has its private key (just one) and each address in it has its own private key as well, right?

It's so confusing Sad
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October 04, 2019, 03:41:20 AM
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1. You could export all the private keys of addresses that have already been generated by the wallet. Wallet menu > private key >export will do that. But as you use your wallet it'll derive new addresses from the seed so your backup will quickly go stale.

[1] Could you tell me what that means? I do not understand what kind of private keys exist. [2] A wallet has its private key (just one) and [3] each address in it has its own private key as well, right?

It's so confusing Sad
Not in particular order... just because.

[2] No, that's the master private key derived from the SEED, it starts with xprv/yprv/zprv where all your addresses' prv keys were derived.
[3] Each addresses have their own private keys that starts with 5, K or L.
[1] If you just backup the existing prv keys, kept on using the wallet until it generated new addresses;
then, deleted the wallet file and didn't backup the seed, you won't be able to spend from the new addresses since you didn't have their private key pairs.

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October 04, 2019, 03:44:03 AM
 #10

Yes.  Private keys are ubiquitous to all bitcoin wallet software.  It's an easy test to verify my words, fund an Electrum wallet, extract the private key, and use another wallet software to sweep that key.  Don't trust, verify.

1. You could export all the private keys of addresses that have already been generated by the wallet. Wallet menu > private key >export will do that. But as you use your wallet it'll derive new addresses from the seed so your backup will quickly go stale.

Could you tell me what that means? I do not understand what kind of private keys exist. A wallet has its private key (just one) and each address in it has its own private key as well, right?

It's so confusing Sad

No, an Electrum wallet generates many private keys, not just one.  That's how a hierarchical deterministic wallet functions.  One seed phrase back's up many private keys, nearly an infinite amount.  Each public key is associated with it's own unique private key.  If you are using Electrum you can click on the "Coins" tab and see all the public keys and change addresses that are holding funds.  (If the "Coins" tab isn't visible you can activate it under the "View" menu.)  You will need to extract all the private keys associated with each of those funded public keys to retrieve your coins.

I'm not sure what the last line of that statement means about the seed going stale.  I'm sure someone will come along and shed some light.

Going back to what I said about multi-sig wallets; theoretically one of the multi-sig wallet holders could set up a node, and Electrumx (server) and all the signatories could connect to that server to sign transactions that move the coins to another wallet.  Just something that occurred to me and I needed to correct myself, because I'm weird like that.
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October 04, 2019, 03:54:39 AM
 #11

all address specific private keys are derived from the seed. so to restore your wallet you need a) the seed b) a copy of electrum. b. is only required if your super paranoid about electrum disappearing from the face of the earth.

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October 04, 2019, 04:21:17 AM
 #12

If the servers all went offline and no one had a reliable backup, then you'd have to take your seed or your private keys and import them into another wallet.
The problem is with Electrum seeds, they are not compatible with BIP39 seed mnemonic. It means if electrum project ceases to exist, a user needs to replicate a whole electrum infrastructure to be able to use their wallet.

Quote
The chancss of this happening are extremely low.
Why? Developers may stop working on it for one reason or another. Sooner or later, people, who run server software, will shut it down.

export your seed even when you are not connected to any server.
Do you know wallets, which support electum native seeds?
What about electrum multi-signature wallets, can I export them to any other wallet?

all your questions can be answered with a simple fact: Electrum is open source.

the thing about open source software is that they don't have an owner. there is no one developer to stop working on it. if one stops, someone else could pick it up and continue contributing and there are more than one active contributor to Electrum project right now.
this also means that we already know how Electrum does everything. so even if it stopped being updated, servers stopped being available,... you could always write a simple code to convert your Electrum seed to an extended private key (xprv) which is universally accepted in other software. not to mention that you could always export keys individually from an offline wallet.

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October 09, 2019, 11:35:05 PM
Merited by NeuroticFish (1)
 #13

There are also 3rd party projects like this one: https://github.com/FarCanary/ElectrumSeedTester

It is based on Ian Coleman's BIP39 Mnemonic Code Converter, but works with Electrum seed mnemonicss (which are NOT BIP39 compatible). I've tested this one and it works.

I had previously even created my own here: https://github.com/HardCorePawn/electrumBIP39 ... but mine was wayyyyyy less polished, and is more of a "hack" (I basically just edited Ian's code to ignore the checksum errors and changed the "passphrase prefix" from 'mnemonic' to 'electrum' Tongue)

The odds of ALL of this information disappearing at the same time is essentially zero... you will be able to recover your funds should Electrum stop working tomorrow Wink

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