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Author Topic: Getting Address Balance On BlockExplorer/BlockChain  (Read 2309 times)
jimbobway
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March 18, 2012, 03:19:57 AM
 #1

I want to get the balance of a bitcoin address but the description of the web call on blockexplorer says this:

Quote
addressbalance - shows received BTC minus sent BTC for an address. Do not use this unless you know what you are doing: it does not do what you might expect.

This is the same as subtracting /q/getsentbyaddress from /q/getreceivedbyaddress.
Using this data is almost always a very bad idea, as the amount of BTC sent
by an address is usually very different from the amount of BTC sent by the
person owning the address.
/q/addressbalance/address

Why does it say that it is a bad idea?

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Pieter Wuille
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March 18, 2012, 03:23:40 AM
 #2

Because addresses do not correspond exactly to wallets: if you do not know how change addresses work, these numbers will give you a wrong impression.

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dooglus
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March 18, 2012, 04:53:47 PM
 #3

Why does it say that it is a bad idea?

If you send 10 BTC to a new address that I generate, then I send 1 BTC back to you, block explorer will show a balance of 0 BTC on my address, not 9 BTC like you might expect.

The other 9 BTC will have been sent as 'change' to a new address in my wallet.

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March 23, 2012, 08:57:19 PM
 #4

What exactly do you need to do? Just know how much BTC was sent to it? q/getreceivedbyaddress works great.

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