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Author Topic: Armory - Discussion Thread  (Read 481565 times)
bitpop
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May 26, 2014, 04:29:13 AM
 #3701

I'd like to see the name and wealth of the person I'm sending to

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May 26, 2014, 02:14:55 PM
 #3702

Armory isn't really that type of wallet. Armory's aim is to be secure and making security user friendly. I think this feature would take up space for another better use. I hope etothepi  doesn't add that.
Knowing the local fiat value of a transaction would help security. It would make mistakes more obvious.

For example, when I first used Armory as a complete Bitcoin newcomer, it offered to tip the developers with a default amount of 1 BTC. At the time I had little idea how much that was worth, and I could easily have accepted the default. If they had displayed "1 BTC ($853)" then I'd be less likely to send more than I could afford.

Elsewhere there was talk of Armory changing its display units from Bitcoins to milli-Bitcoins. A developer said one reason this wasn't a trivial change is that they wanted to be sure no-one ever sent 1000 times as many coins as they intended to, by mistake. Displaying a fiat value alongside the Bitcoin one would make it clearer whether you were sending 0.5 BTC or 0.0005 BTC. People know how much dollars are worth.

I'm less of a newbie today, but I still get confused counting the decimal places in fees. 0.0001 BTC or 0.001 or 0.00001 BTC? What's that in real money?

(This comes under the heading of "security" because user mistakes are part of the threat, and sometimes a bigger, more omnipresent danger than malicious attackers.)

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doug_armory
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May 26, 2014, 02:56:25 PM
 #3703

Armory isn't really that type of wallet. Armory's aim is to be secure and making security user friendly. I think this feature would take up space for another better use. I hope etothepi  doesn't add that.
Knowing the local fiat value of a transaction would help security. It would make mistakes more obvious.

For example, when I first used Armory as a complete Bitcoin newcomer, it offered to tip the developers with a default amount of 1 BTC. At the time I had little idea how much that was worth, and I could easily have accepted the default. If they had displayed "1 BTC ($853)" then I'd be less likely to send more than I could afford.

Elsewhere there was talk of Armory changing its display units from Bitcoins to milli-Bitcoins. A developer said one reason this wasn't a trivial change is that they wanted to be sure no-one ever sent 1000 times as many coins as they intended to, by mistake. Displaying a fiat value alongside the Bitcoin one would make it clearer whether you were sending 0.5 BTC or 0.0005 BTC. People know how much dollars are worth.

I'm less of a newbie today, but I still get confused counting the decimal places in fees. 0.0001 BTC or 0.001 or 0.00001 BTC? What's that in real money?

(This comes under the heading of "security" because user mistakes are part of the threat, and sometimes a bigger, more omnipresent danger than malicious attackers.)

Speaking as an Armory developer, I personally am not opposed to exchange rates. (Note that I can speak only for myself, and no one else on the team.) That being said, even if we were to adopt some sort of exchange rate support, several questions would have to be answered.

-Do we let users set their own exchange rates? Do we adopt some API that supplies rates? Do we do both?
-If we adopt an API, currency support may very well be a huge headache. How do we handle somebody living in, say, Equatorial Guinea? (There are a lot of American companies there extracting oil, so this isn't a far-fetched idea.) I could easily be wrong but I currently know of no automated way to get the BTC-XAF exchange rate. This is for a currency pegged to the Euro, mind you! More obscure exchange rates (e.g., BTC-NGN) could be even more problematic. Do we just adopt 3-5 currencies and leave everybody else in the cold?
-If we adopt an API, how do we handle countries (e.g., Argentina) where the official and unofficial exchange rates differ significantly? This is one example of the infamous "corner cases" developers loathe.
-If we adopt an API, there will be users demanding to know that attackers aren't somehow manipulating the data such that people buy or hold based on false data. Security-related questions are certainly fair, especially for a product like Armory. I'm just saying it wouldn't be trivial to implement. Take SSL/TLS, for example. Many users freaked out when the Heartbleed bug became public knowledge. It didn't directly affect our code at the time. If we used an external API and added a library to our code to support some aspect of the API, maybe it would've affected us.

I'm sure I could come up with more design & implementation issues. Those are just the ones that popped into my head at first. Again, I'm not trying to discourage people from asking for an exchange rate. I'm just saying that this feature isn't trivial to design or implement.

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May 26, 2014, 03:09:26 PM
 #3704

You'd also have to decide whether to show the buy rate or the sell rate. And the fiat value of BTC varies between exchanges.

Probably easiest to let the user enter their own value. Then you have the risk that they let their value get out of date.

For tax purposes we're supposed to record the exchange rate that applied for each transaction, so ideally historical data would be stored somewhere.

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May 26, 2014, 03:19:51 PM
 #3705

For tax purposes we're 300 million citizens of one out of the hundreds of the countries on the planet are supposed to record the exchange rate that applied for each transaction, only as of the most recent tax guidance, which may change in future

fixed

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May 26, 2014, 04:06:46 PM
 #3706

Let us plug in a url with a text price. We'll find a source. Limit input to digits only and 20 chars or so

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May 26, 2014, 07:54:22 PM
 #3707

Armory isn't really that type of wallet. Armory's aim is to be secure and making security user friendly. I think this feature would take up space for another better use. I hope etothepi  doesn't add that.
Knowing the local fiat value of a transaction would help security. It would make mistakes more obvious.

For example, when I first used Armory as a complete Bitcoin newcomer, it offered to tip the developers with a default amount of 1 BTC. At the time I had little idea how much that was worth, and I could easily have accepted the default. If they had displayed "1 BTC ($853)" then I'd be less likely to send more than I could afford.

Elsewhere there was talk of Armory changing its display units from Bitcoins to milli-Bitcoins. A developer said one reason this wasn't a trivial change is that they wanted to be sure no-one ever sent 1000 times as many coins as they intended to, by mistake. Displaying a fiat value alongside the Bitcoin one would make it clearer whether you were sending 0.5 BTC or 0.0005 BTC. People know how much dollars are worth.

I'm less of a newbie today, but I still get confused counting the decimal places in fees. 0.0001 BTC or 0.001 or 0.00001 BTC? What's that in real money?

(This comes under the heading of "security" because user mistakes are part of the threat, and sometimes a bigger, more omnipresent danger than malicious attackers.)

Speaking as an Armory developer, I personally am not opposed to exchange rates. (Note that I can speak only for myself, and no one else on the team.) That being said, even if we were to adopt some sort of exchange rate support, several questions would have to be answered.

-Do we let users set their own exchange rates? Do we adopt some API that supplies rates? Do we do both?
-If we adopt an API, currency support may very well be a huge headache. How do we handle somebody living in, say, Equatorial Guinea? (There are a lot of American companies there extracting oil, so this isn't a far-fetched idea.) I could easily be wrong but I currently know of no automated way to get the BTC-XAF exchange rate. This is for a currency pegged to the Euro, mind you! More obscure exchange rates (e.g., BTC-NGN) could be even more problematic. Do we just adopt 3-5 currencies and leave everybody else in the cold?
-If we adopt an API, how do we handle countries (e.g., Argentina) where the official and unofficial exchange rates differ significantly? This is one example of the infamous "corner cases" developers loathe.
-If we adopt an API, there will be users demanding to know that attackers aren't somehow manipulating the data such that people buy or hold based on false data. Security-related questions are certainly fair, especially for a product like Armory. I'm just saying it wouldn't be trivial to implement. Take SSL/TLS, for example. Many users freaked out when the Heartbleed bug became public knowledge. It didn't directly affect our code at the time. If we used an external API and added a library to our code to support some aspect of the API, maybe it would've affected us.

I'm sure I could come up with more design & implementation issues. Those are just the ones that popped into my head at first. Again, I'm not trying to discourage people from asking for an exchange rate. I'm just saying that this feature isn't trivial to design or implement.

As a swiss guy. I would be totally happy to just have the USD. I don't need my local currency the CHF. Since it's also not the major trading currency. I also trade in USD since this is the most liquid market. There are also no translations of the GUI in german. So since english is the leading-language in the business world, it's consequent to take the world leading fiat currency and this is the USD. You can't make everyone 100% happy, but maybe 80% with taking the USD.

I was also thinking about the problem from where to pull the exchange-rate data. And what if it gets manipulated. You could compare the timestamp of the exchange data with the local client time and if it's off, then just replace it with ? ? ? ? marks maybe.

Or add a User-Agreement Page. "Yes I'm aware the exchange rates could be manipulated". I don't think people are going to trade based on this information, but it will be a hint to not send someone 1BTC (580 USD) instead of like 0.001 BTC (5.8 USD)

And for the very paranoid guy it can be turned off completely.
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May 26, 2014, 08:55:06 PM
 #3708

Let us plug in a url with a text price. We'll find a source. Limit input to digits only and 20 chars or so

How will the data be encoded? "Digits only and 20 chars or so" sounds simple but this brings about its own set of problems. Which chars other than decimals will we support? (I assume support for something like "BUY:US$575.29 SELL:US$581.12" would be desirable.) Do the devs choose their own format and force users to adopt it? Do we try to support as many different encoding formats as possible? Do we put in place some sort of regex system that lets users run their own custom setup? The latter in particular would be problematic because debugging user issues would have to include developers going through regex setups and making sure the user didn't make a mistake.

Honestly, speaking solely for myself, the only solution I can think of that's reasonable is to allow the user to manually document how much they paid or were paid for Bitcoins. This requires more legwork by the user but this also lets them use any exchange they want and any currency they want. This also accounts for minor fluctuations in price when comparing any APIs to the actual transaction price. Automatic support is nice but can also quickly become a support desk nightmare.

Again, I'm not saying establishing an exchange rate or transaction documentation system is impossible. I'm just saying that it's not trivial, and there will always be people who wonder why we can't do X, Y and Z.

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May 26, 2014, 10:03:27 PM
 #3709

Let us plug in a url with a text price. We'll find a source. Limit input to digits only and 20 chars or so

How will the data be encoded? "Digits only and 20 chars or so" sounds simple but this brings about its own set of problems. Which chars other than decimals will we support? (I assume support for something like "BUY:US$575.29 SELL:US$581.12" would be desirable.) Do the devs choose their own format and force users to adopt it? Do we try to support as many different encoding formats as possible? Do we put in place some sort of regex system that lets users run their own custom setup? The latter in particular would be problematic because debugging user issues would have to include developers going through regex setups and making sure the user didn't make a mistake.

Honestly, speaking solely for myself, the only solution I can think of that's reasonable is to allow the user to manually document how much they paid or were paid for Bitcoins. This requires more legwork by the user but this also lets them use any exchange they want and any currency they want. This also accounts for minor fluctuations in price when comparing any APIs to the actual transaction price. Automatic support is nice but can also quickly become a support desk nightmare.

Again, I'm not saying establishing an exchange rate or transaction documentation system is impossible. I'm just saying that it's not trivial, and there will always be people who wonder why we can't do X, Y and Z.

This is appropriate for a plugin system, where the user opts-in if the feature meets their expectations, but not provided by default.  We hope to eventually support in Armory.  I maintain my own little price ticker in USD via a python script that queries http://coinbase.com/api/v1/prices/sell, parse the output with ast.literal_eval() and then grabbing the correct leaf node of the nested dictionary.  I have it simply print out the price and then use the "Command Applet" in my linux panel to run it every 60 sec:



It's not like this would be particularly difficult to turn into a display in the interface -- if you want coinbase sell price in USD. 

I absolutely agree that being able to automatically correlate prices with transactions, etc, would be a valuable capability, but I also agree there's not one way to do it that satisfies everyone, and thus it's appropriate to have a couple different plugins that users can pick from.  Perhaps, we will aggregate a list of URLs/APIs, and chunks of code that know how to parse the results, and then there only has to be one plugin.  But I agree with Doug that we also run the risk that these non-SSL APIs are targets for manipulation, in ways that would otherwise be noticeable a user doing it manually.

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Armory Bitcoin Wallet: Bringing cold storage to the average user!
Only use Armory software signed by the Armory Offline Signing Key (0x98832223)

Please donate to the Armory project by clicking here!    (or donate directly via 1QBDLYTDFHHZAABYSKGKPWKLSXZWCCJQBX -- yes, it's a real address!)
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May 27, 2014, 12:48:11 AM
 #3710

Just a future note, when the time comes, please have a build of armory for the mac OSX system that has no plugin capabilities as I look to armory as a fort knox for my bitcoins and a plugin system would make it very unsafe.

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May 27, 2014, 06:13:32 AM
 #3711

Just a future note, when the time comes, please have a build of armory for the mac OSX system that has no plugin capabilities as I look to armory as a fort knox for my bitcoins and a plugin system would make it very unsafe.

They don't need to create a plugin-free edition. Per default you have no-plugins. And if its "fort knox" for you, then you work with a watch only wallet anyway.

With a watch only wallet, your private key is not on the online computer, so there is no thread to it.

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May 27, 2014, 10:21:22 AM
 #3712

Good morning!

Quote
I had Armory segfault problems, it works now after a 'git pull'.
Now it says one of my wallets are corrupt, but the "repair tool" is grayed out here. Suggestions?
It is still scanning the tx history for another 15 mins, so I can't say if the balance is as I expect.

Now, after a restart(?), the wallet fix tool opens.
Somewhere it says that you don't have to enter the passphrase for wallet fixing, but then it fails to run the fix tool.
When entering the passphrase, it works, until it hangs at "18 of 107 address entries". After that, I have to forcibly end Armory.

Is this of any interest? Or shall I just grab a backup and forget about this?

Ente

Any suggestions on this?
There's no new git stuff to pull, and I'd prefer to not use a backup, as I would lose the descriptions of all tx (I guess).

Ente
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May 27, 2014, 02:37:45 PM
 #3713

Good morning!

Quote
I had Armory segfault problems, it works now after a 'git pull'.
Now it says one of my wallets are corrupt, but the "repair tool" is grayed out here. Suggestions?
It is still scanning the tx history for another 15 mins, so I can't say if the balance is as I expect.

Now, after a restart(?), the wallet fix tool opens.
Somewhere it says that you don't have to enter the passphrase for wallet fixing, but then it fails to run the fix tool.
When entering the passphrase, it works, until it hangs at "18 of 107 address entries". After that, I have to forcibly end Armory.

Is this of any interest? Or shall I just grab a backup and forget about this?

Ente

Any suggestions on this?
There's no new git stuff to pull, and I'd prefer to not use a backup, as I would lose the descriptions of all tx (I guess).

Ente

Sorry Ente,

I totally overlooked this.  The latest version (0.91.3) shouldn't freeze any more.  I think that's on the testing branch.   

Founder and CEO of Armory Technologies, Inc.
Armory Bitcoin Wallet: Bringing cold storage to the average user!
Only use Armory software signed by the Armory Offline Signing Key (0x98832223)

Please donate to the Armory project by clicking here!    (or donate directly via 1QBDLYTDFHHZAABYSKGKPWKLSXZWCCJQBX -- yes, it's a real address!)
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May 27, 2014, 02:46:54 PM
 #3714

Just a future note, when the time comes, please have a build of armory for the mac OSX system that has no plugin capabilities as I look to armory as a fort knox for my bitcoins and a plugin system would make it very unsafe.

They don't need to create a plugin-free edition. Per default you have no-plugins. And if its "fort knox" for you, then you work with a watch only wallet anyway.

With a watch only wallet, your private key is not on the online computer, so there is no thread to it.

Plugin systems bring a whole set of new problems. Armory was a secure wallet but now people like you will make it into some Facebook wallet kinda sad. Stop requesting things that compromise the secure.

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May 27, 2014, 02:48:38 PM
 #3715

Just a future note, when the time comes, please have a build of armory for the mac OSX system that has no plugin capabilities as I look to armory as a fort knox for my bitcoins and a plugin system would make it very unsafe.

They don't need to create a plugin-free edition. Per default you have no-plugins. And if its "fort knox" for you, then you work with a watch only wallet anyway.

With a watch only wallet, your private key is not on the online computer, so there is no thread to it.

Plugin systems bring a whole set of new problems. Armory was a secure wallet but now people like you will make it into some Facebook wallet kinda sad. Stop requesting things that compromise the secure.

Online is screwed no matter what, offline shouldnt matter what they add

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May 27, 2014, 02:58:05 PM
 #3716

Just a future note, when the time comes, please have a build of armory for the mac OSX system that has no plugin capabilities as I look to armory as a fort knox for my bitcoins and a plugin system would make it very unsafe.

They don't need to create a plugin-free edition. Per default you have no-plugins. And if its "fort knox" for you, then you work with a watch only wallet anyway.

With a watch only wallet, your private key is not on the online computer, so there is no thread to it.

Plugin systems bring a whole set of new problems. Armory was a secure wallet but now people like you will make it into some Facebook wallet kinda sad. Stop requesting things that compromise the secure.

Online is screwed no matter what, offline shouldnt matter what they add

Well it does matter, I keep a small amount online and large amount offline. To have them build something as good as armory is, and what it does well, to be brought down by a stupid idea of a plugin system. That is why it is open sourced, so people like that can build and add stupid features of price checkers and other ideas. That is the real plugin system, not some that that will open open bugs and holes.

Armory the company needs to focus on security, coinjoin, mutli-sig (which lockbox looks amazing) these are the features that will keep wealth around. Not these facebook users.

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May 27, 2014, 03:05:51 PM
 #3717

Just a future note, when the time comes, please have a build of armory for the mac OSX system that has no plugin capabilities as I look to armory as a fort knox for my bitcoins and a plugin system would make it very unsafe.

They don't need to create a plugin-free edition. Per default you have no-plugins. And if its "fort knox" for you, then you work with a watch only wallet anyway.

With a watch only wallet, your private key is not on the online computer, so there is no thread to it.

Plugin systems bring a whole set of new problems. Armory was a secure wallet but now people like you will make it into some Facebook wallet kinda sad. Stop requesting things that compromise the secure.

Calm down.  I still have control over this, and I wouldn't implement it in a way that would compromise its security.  The goal is to make the app extensible OPT-IN without requiring new builds all the time.  This is important for users that want things like, special export capability to read the wallet history and export in proprietary formats they need (perhaps, exporting each wallet with exchange rates and queries to other LAN resources).   But nothing would be enabled by default, and it would be very isolated.

The plan to was to allow the user to add extra python files that describe extra tabs on the main window, and those python files must be signed by ATI and/or you must sign them yourself with one of your local full wallets.  Without it, Armory will refuse to even parse the file.  There would be a way to disable these checks if you want to use "unsigned" extensions, which some people would optionally do.  But the idea is that nothing will be enabled by default, and most of the app will not be affected by the simple ability to add a new tab to main screen.  You will have to do something explicit to enable them.

In this case, the term "plugin system" is used loosely.  Usually plugin systems do have a high degree of "threading" through the app to give plugsin the ability to modify just about any part of the app (add menu options, extra functions to execute when you send transactions, etc).  Instead, this will simply be a way for users to add new tabs that enable new functionality, without having to build Armory yourself.  We consider this important especially for business users which want to be able to tie in some application-specific functionality that needs access to the wallets, bitcoin network, blockchain, etc.

Founder and CEO of Armory Technologies, Inc.
Armory Bitcoin Wallet: Bringing cold storage to the average user!
Only use Armory software signed by the Armory Offline Signing Key (0x98832223)

Please donate to the Armory project by clicking here!    (or donate directly via 1QBDLYTDFHHZAABYSKGKPWKLSXZWCCJQBX -- yes, it's a real address!)
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May 27, 2014, 03:32:36 PM
 #3718

Just a future note, when the time comes, please have a build of armory for the mac OSX system that has no plugin capabilities as I look to armory as a fort knox for my bitcoins and a plugin system would make it very unsafe.

They don't need to create a plugin-free edition. Per default you have no-plugins. And if its "fort knox" for you, then you work with a watch only wallet anyway.

With a watch only wallet, your private key is not on the online computer, so there is no thread to it.

Plugin systems bring a whole set of new problems. Armory was a secure wallet but now people like you will make it into some Facebook wallet kinda sad. Stop requesting things that compromise the secure.

Calm down.  I still have control over this, and I wouldn't implement it in a way that would compromise its security.  The goal is to make the app extensible OPT-IN without requiring new builds all the time.  This is important for users that want things like, special export capability to read the wallet history and export in proprietary formats they need (perhaps, exporting each wallet with exchange rates and queries to other LAN resources).   But nothing would be enabled by default, and it would be very isolated.

The plan to was to allow the user to add extra python files that describe extra tabs on the main window, and those python files must be signed by ATI and/or you must sign them yourself with one of your local full wallets.  Without it, Armory will refuse to even parse the file.  There would be a way to disable these checks if you want to use "unsigned" extensions, which some people would optionally do.  But the idea is that nothing will be enabled by default, and most of the app will not be affected by the simple ability to add a new tab to main screen.  You will have to do something explicit to enable them.

In this case, the term "plugin system" is used loosely.  Usually plugin systems do have a high degree of "threading" through the app to give plugsin the ability to modify just about any part of the app (add menu options, extra functions to execute when you send transactions, etc).  Instead, this will simply be a way for users to add new tabs that enable new functionality, without having to build Armory yourself.  We consider this important especially for business users which want to be able to tie in some application-specific functionality that needs access to the wallets, bitcoin network, blockchain, etc.

I like! I like a lot!
Addons, in python, and ATI/self signing, that sounds great!
I already have ideas for "addons" :-)

Ente
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May 27, 2014, 03:37:51 PM
 #3719

But nothing would be enabled by default, and it would be very isolated.

I get it, but that is why you need to create a build without a plugin system. Bitcoin is attracting more and more black hats and things like this just give them a playground, the money and motivation is there.

Also please don't say you going to isolate things, that is how a project fails. Sandboxing apps are not secure, chrome's sandboxing has been hacked a couple times and lets not talk about java applets...

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May 27, 2014, 03:41:12 PM
 #3720

Good morning!

Quote
I had Armory segfault problems, it works now after a 'git pull'.
Now it says one of my wallets are corrupt, but the "repair tool" is grayed out here. Suggestions?
It is still scanning the tx history for another 15 mins, so I can't say if the balance is as I expect.

Now, after a restart(?), the wallet fix tool opens.
Somewhere it says that you don't have to enter the passphrase for wallet fixing, but then it fails to run the fix tool.
When entering the passphrase, it works, until it hangs at "18 of 107 address entries". After that, I have to forcibly end Armory.

Is this of any interest? Or shall I just grab a backup and forget about this?

Ente

Any suggestions on this?
There's no new git stuff to pull, and I'd prefer to not use a backup, as I would lose the descriptions of all tx (I guess).

Ente

Sorry Ente,

I totally overlooked this.  The latest version (0.91.3) shouldn't freeze any more.  I think that's on the testing branch.  

Uhm, general GIT question: Is it possible to accidently commit changes to the GIT project, with no account and all?

My local copy diverged from the GIT version, and now I get confused with all that stuff.. oops


edit:
I think I didn't actually commit any garbage upstream.. oops again.
The testing version scanned through the corrupted(?) wallet, I sent you all info via the report function.

Ente
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