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Author Topic: [PULL] private key and wallet export/import  (Read 35834 times)
Stardust
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July 10, 2011, 09:32:31 AM
 #61

Users should have maximum freedom, so I am all for importprivkey, dumpprivkey, and removeprivkey.
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molecular
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July 11, 2011, 12:40:41 AM
 #62

Exporting of a key has a problem, doesn't it: the key is still in the source wallet. There's no way to remove it, is there? Even if there is, it's easy to screw up and people will wonder where their money went.

I do not seet it as a problem, so what if I have the same private key in many wallets?  Actually for me that is the case, because I store my wallets in many places on the internet. Encrypted of course.

That's backup-copies. I have those, too.

But say I give a privkey to a friend as birthday present. He imports it at some point and I still have it in my wallet. Now there are two active bitcoin clients showing the balance of that key. If one of the two spends the money, it will disappear from the other client, also.

So my friend or I will wonder "where the hell my/his money went"

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July 11, 2011, 12:56:53 AM
 #63

Exporting of a key has a problem, doesn't it: the key is still in the source wallet. There's no way to remove it, is there? Even if there is, it's easy to screw up and people will wonder where their money went.

I do not seet it as a problem, so what if I have the same private key in many wallets?  Actually for me that is the case, because I store my wallets in many places on the internet. Encrypted of course.

That's backup-copies. I have those, too.

But say I give a privkey to a friend as birthday present. He imports it at some point and I still have it in my wallet. Now there are two active bitcoin clients showing the balance of that key. If one of the two spends the money, it will disappear from the other client, also.

So my friend or I will wonder "where the hell my/his money went"

That's only if you gave your friend an address generated by the bitcoin client, or an imported address.

If you generated one for him with "vanitygen" or some other bitcoin address generator, and never imported it to your own wallet, you could freely give a private key to a friend and intentionally "lose" the key yourself so that you cannot access his funds.

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July 11, 2011, 03:44:52 AM
 #64

Exporting of a key has a problem, doesn't it: the key is still in the source wallet. There's no way to remove it, is there? Even if there is, it's easy to screw up and people will wonder where their money went.

I do not seet it as a problem, so what if I have the same private key in many wallets?  Actually for me that is the case, because I store my wallets in many places on the internet. Encrypted of course.

That's backup-copies. I have those, too.

But say I give a privkey to a friend as birthday present. He imports it at some point and I still have it in my wallet. Now there are two active bitcoin clients showing the balance of that key. If one of the two spends the money, it will disappear from the other client, also.

So my friend or I will wonder "where the hell my/his money went"

That's only if you gave your friend an address generated by the bitcoin client, or an imported address.

If you generated one for him with "vanitygen" or some other bitcoin address generator, and never imported it to your own wallet, you could freely give a private key to a friend and intentionally "lose" the key yourself so that you cannot access his funds.
So you're willing to make the assumption that I'll never want to give my friend an address generated by the bitcoin client, or imported by myself?  I think that is a terrible assumption to make...

Give people the freedom to import/export as they want.  Sheesh, this is getting as bad as government.  "Well, I know what the people SHOULD have, and that's more important than what they want."
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July 11, 2011, 05:25:57 AM
 #65

Exporting of a key has a problem, doesn't it: the key is still in the source wallet. There's no way to remove it, is there? Even if there is, it's easy to screw up and people will wonder where their money went.

I do not seet it as a problem, so what if I have the same private key in many wallets?  Actually for me that is the case, because I store my wallets in many places on the internet. Encrypted of course.

That's backup-copies. I have those, too.

But say I give a privkey to a friend as birthday present. He imports it at some point and I still have it in my wallet. Now there are two active bitcoin clients showing the balance of that key. If one of the two spends the money, it will disappear from the other client, also.

So my friend or I will wonder "where the hell my/his money went"

That's only if you gave your friend an address generated by the bitcoin client, or an imported address.

If you generated one for him with "vanitygen" or some other bitcoin address generator, and never imported it to your own wallet, you could freely give a private key to a friend and intentionally "lose" the key yourself so that you cannot access his funds.
So you're willing to make the assumption that I'll never want to give my friend an address generated by the bitcoin client, or imported by myself?  I think that is a terrible assumption to make...

Give people the freedom to import/export as they want.  Sheesh, this is getting as bad as government.  "Well, I know what the people SHOULD have, and that's more important than what they want."

I was making no assumptions; I was under the impression that molecular was pondering a way to gift his friend a "pre-loaded" bitcoin address/privkey without being able to accidentally spend the coins himself. I was merely pointing out that there is a way to do this, albeit not with standard, unmodified client alone.

I'm all for freedom to import/export as people want.

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July 11, 2011, 07:00:14 AM
 #66

I may have completely missed it, but, I still can't figure out a way to fix my wallet by using dumpwallet to a JSON text file, then create a new wallet file and import that text file, minus the hung transactions, into the new wallet file, with all the keys and stuff from the damaged one.  Can you please help me do this?  Or do I have to wait until these new commands are included in the main branch, and then I download and install a newer version of the client to be able to use them?

Warning, I'm not a programmer, I don't understand C++, java, python, or anything even remotely as complex.  I understand plain HTML and BBS scripting, that's pretty much it.  So, don't just tell me to recompile this and that on my machine, I have no idea how to do that.  A step by step set of instructions, I can follow.  Just don't be vague, expecting me to already understand stuff that you do.

I'm using windows XP, and I'm not about to upgrade to windows 7 any time soon.  I also use Kubuntu, but not a whole lot, as this is my Dad's laptop, and my old laptop died a while ago.
molecular
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July 11, 2011, 07:09:41 AM
 #67


I was making no assumptions; I was under the impression that molecular was pondering a way to gift his friend a "pre-loaded" bitcoin address/privkey without being able to accidentally spend the coins himself. I was merely pointing out that there is a way to do this, albeit not with standard, unmodified client alone.

No, I was trying to make the point that we need removeprivkey as soon as we have dumpprivkey.

(I know of vanitykeygen and will definitely use that next time I give a key to a friend)

I'm all for freedom to import/export as people want.

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riush
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July 11, 2011, 09:36:39 AM
 #68

How about a setting in bitcoin.conf to allow removeprivkey? Still a barrier but very little, and it prevents completely novice users from 'trying what that does'. Another idea I had was to expect the dumped private key passed in with removeprivkey, as proof that the user really has it and didn't mix up addresses etc.

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molecular
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July 11, 2011, 09:44:42 AM
 #69

Another idea I had was to expect the dumped private key passed in with removeprivkey, as proof that the user really has it and didn't mix up addresses etc.

now that is an awesome idea!

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July 11, 2011, 05:57:02 PM
 #70

I am not sure this a suitable to be on by default. This will cause a great amount of lost bitcoins because unsophisticated users are careless.

+1

This is fine living in a separate branch.

Being able to recompile a branch is a nice
barrier of entry for the tech. clueless.
This SHOULD be included in the default client.  Reason being, it is incredibly useful for people who know how to use it, and not all of us know how to use linux or feel like spending hours on Windows attempting to compile the source with all of the dependencies.

Discluding a feature like this from anyone who doesn't know how to compile c code would be a terrible thing.

I think "I am not sure this a suitable to be on by default" was referring to the "Can i also remove a key from the wallet with this patch?" request.  Removing keys from wallets isn't "incredibly useful" if you already have the ability to dump wallets and import those dumped keys into other wallets.

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July 11, 2011, 07:48:51 PM
 #71

I am not sure this a suitable to be on by default. This will cause a great amount of lost bitcoins because unsophisticated users are careless.

+1

This is fine living in a separate branch.

Being able to recompile a branch is a nice
barrier of entry for the tech. clueless.
This SHOULD be included in the default client.  Reason being, it is incredibly useful for people who know how to use it, and not all of us know how to use linux or feel like spending hours on Windows attempting to compile the source with all of the dependencies.

Discluding a feature like this from anyone who doesn't know how to compile c code would be a terrible thing.

I think "I am not sure this a suitable to be on by default" was referring to the "Can i also remove a key from the wallet with this patch?" request.  Removing keys from wallets isn't "incredibly useful" if you already have the ability to dump wallets and import those dumped keys into other wallets.
So you're saying that every time I want to remove a private key from my wallet, it's better that I should dump all of my private keys, then create a new wallet with all the keys except the one that I wanted to remove?  Instead of just clicking a button or typing a command to remove the key?

That's absolutely ridiculous.
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July 12, 2011, 12:05:22 AM
 #72

Users should have maximum freedom, so I am all for importprivkey, dumpprivkey, and removeprivkey.

I completely agree. We should not be protecting users from themselves. Provide the tools to empower users and explain the consequences. We should not engage in obscurity.

I believe part of the issue are the metaphors used. 'Wallet' implies a static singleton entity. We should be referring to addresses as 'accounts' - it's a metaphor familiar to most users and their grandparents and is much closer to the reality.

We'd have no problem understanding export, importing or removing accounts from portfolios rather than wallets.

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July 12, 2011, 12:48:23 AM
 #73

Just dont put removekey in the gui. That will be enough to stop noobs from losing there keys.
Importkey and Dump wallet should be in the gui tho since no harm can come from them.

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July 12, 2011, 12:49:30 AM
 #74

Just dont put removekey in the gui. That will be enough to stop noobs from losing there keys.
Importkey and Dump wallet should be in the gui tho since no harm can come from them.

"Dumpwallet" should surely be renamed if it is to be included in the GUI.



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July 12, 2011, 01:25:29 AM
 #75

When you import a private key, the client has to search the block chain for transactions involving this key's address. How will importing private keys work with a partial block chain client? Such a client wouldn't have it's own full copy of the chain to search. It could fetch, scan, and discard the blockchain from the network piece-by-piece, but that seems like it will be very slow. I guess this feature could just be left out of such a client.
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July 12, 2011, 04:30:59 AM
 #76

So you're saying that every time I want to remove a private key from my wallet, it's better that I should dump all of my private keys, then create a new wallet with all the keys except the one that I wanted to remove?  Instead of just clicking a button or typing a command to remove the key?

That's absolutely ridiculous.

No, I'm saying that if you have a button that does A and a button that does B then having a button that does "A then B" isn't "incredibly useful".  It's merely convenient.

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July 12, 2011, 04:53:38 AM
 #77

So you're saying that every time I want to remove a private key from my wallet, it's better that I should dump all of my private keys, then create a new wallet with all the keys except the one that I wanted to remove?  Instead of just clicking a button or typing a command to remove the key?

That's absolutely ridiculous.

No, I'm saying that if you have a button that does A and a button that does B then having a button that does "A then B" isn't "incredibly useful".  It's merely convenient.
Roll Eyes

Alright, whatever.  I guess our ideas of incredibly useful are different.  Personally, I don't want to have to export my entire wallet, cherry-pick addresses out of it that I want to delete, then re-import the rest, just to delete a simple key.  It makes sense to create an easier process for this.
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July 12, 2011, 05:42:54 AM
 #78

This is awesome. When will it be part of the actual client?
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July 12, 2011, 08:40:58 AM
 #79

Alright, whatever.  I guess our ideas of incredibly useful are different.  Personally, I don't want to have to export my entire wallet, cherry-pick addresses out of it that I want to delete, then re-import the rest, just to delete a simple key.  It makes sense to create an easier process for this.

I agree with you, I like easy, easy is good, easy makes my head not hurt.  Uhm... I guess that's all.  When can I do dumpwallet and importwallet?  Or whatever.  I want to fix my wallet, dangit.   Cry

*sigh* I haven't run the bitcoin app in a while, and I have lost all interest in doing so, until my wallet can be fixed.  What ever shall I do?  I love bitcoin, the idea, the revolution, but... I am too frustrated with this technical issue and the total lack of a solution I can implement Right Now.  Angry
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July 13, 2011, 02:46:50 AM
 #80

Until its added:
check what Joric made: https://github.com/joric/pywallet
It makes exporting/importing keys easy without recompiling Bitcoin. It does it right to the wallet using a python script! Still new but pretty cool and easy!

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