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Author Topic: Bitcoin "limitations" (and high CPU usage for Mac client!)  (Read 2573 times)
pf
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May 19, 2011, 05:03:40 PM
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I've been using Bitcoin for two weeks now, and I've ran across some serious limiations:

1) Someone sends me money. It takes me 10 minutes to see it in my client, and even longer for it to get confirmed, since it has to wait for the next block.
2) I cannot see who sent me money, in case I ask multiple persons to send me money to the same address.
3) It took me MANY HOURS to download all the blocks.
4) The Bitcoin Mac client takes 100% of my CPU (rather, one of my two cores) when doing nothing. I do NOT have generation turned on.

These are the limitations I can think of at the moment. As such, how can Bitcoin possibly compete with other online banking solutions that are

1) Instant.
2) You can see who sent you money.
3) You don't have to download hundreds of megabytes of data.
4) No app takes 100% of your CPU.

Given this: Why would any normal end-user move to Bitcoin? I know Bitcoin has many other advantages, but can we please stick to the issues I raised? Maybe my issues aren't issues, and merely current client limitations? What are your thoughts on these issues?
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May 19, 2011, 05:06:47 PM
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1) Someone sends me money. It takes me 10 minutes to see it in my client, and even longer for it to get confirmed, since it has to wait for the next block.

Transactions usually appear instantly.

Quote
2) I cannot see who sent me money, in case I ask multiple persons to send me money to the same address.

Don't do that. You're supposed to create an address per person.

Quote
3) It took me MANY HOURS to download all the blocks.

This will be solved soon.

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May 19, 2011, 05:11:15 PM
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There isn't any way to see who sent you money because that is how bitcoin works. Creating a new address for each person and labeling it helps with this.

The rest of the things you listed are client issues. An unconfirmed tx is as good as done for small amounts, and large amounts get confirmed much faster anyway.

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May 19, 2011, 05:17:41 PM
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2) I cannot see who sent me money, in case I ask multiple persons to send me money to the same address.

You should be creating new addresses per transaction and label the addresses.  I label them with the name of the sender and what it was for.

Quote
4) The Bitcoin Mac client takes 100% of my CPU (rather, one of my two cores) when doing nothing. I do NOT have generation turned on.

I run the bitcoin client on my 13" 2.0Ghz C2D Macbook and unless I'm doing something (e.g. generating new addresses) it uses ~1%.  Something isn't right on your end.
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May 19, 2011, 05:24:13 PM
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4) The Bitcoin Mac client takes 100% of my CPU (rather, one of my two cores) when doing nothing. I do NOT have generation turned on.

hi, welcome to the forum.
where do you check the 100 % cpu consumption on mac, please?
i got mine a few weeks ago and still don't know many basic things

1) as for the sending money, your client should infom you instantly as 0/unconfirmed that a transaction crediting your address entered the network. what we wait for is the block being mined that would save the sending confirmation permanently in the block chain (our shared transaction history)

2) you can see from which address the payment comes. what you don't know is who controls that address.
it's a good practice to use new address for each expected income. unless you publish a tipping jar for donations
where you don't care.

3) well, this software is still beta. you have no choice yet if to download the whole transaction history or only the lightweight (headers only) blockchain. this needs more time

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pf
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May 19, 2011, 05:26:44 PM
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where do you check the 100 % cpu consumption on mac, please?
i got mine a few weeks ago and still don't know many basic things
Thanks for the reply. I check my CPU usage in Applications -> Utilities -> Activity Monitor. Does your client also have such high CPU usage?
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May 19, 2011, 05:26:55 PM
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3) It took me MANY HOURS to download all the blocks.

Once you have the block chain you don't have to redownload it. It's a one time thing. Every time you'll open your client it'll only download the newest blocks that you are missing.

Quote
1) Instant.


You're not considering the cost you incur for that instant payment. Also you can use an escrow/3rd party for instant payments.

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pf
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May 19, 2011, 05:28:11 PM
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I run the bitcoin client on my 13" 2.0Ghz C2D Macbook and unless I'm doing something (e.g. generating new addresses) it uses ~1%.  Something isn't right on your end.
Yeah, something definitely isn't right. I have an Intel Core Duo (first-gen Intel iMac). And I have downloaded all blocks. Still, I can hear the client constantly accessing my hard drive (I have no idea what for), and the CPU is hovering around 100%. Very strange!
MsEve
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May 19, 2011, 09:29:24 PM
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I agree pf… I'm working on an iMac 27" dual core also and it's rather shocking how much CPU the Mac Bitcoin client uses. The constant clicks from my hard drive caused me to turn it off today.

I usually only get random clicks when I'm doing something intensive in Photoshop, opening a program or saving a large file but with Bitcoin it's rather continuous. Hope the kinks get worked out soon.
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May 19, 2011, 09:46:07 PM
 #10

... check CPU usage in Applications -> Utilities -> Activity Monitor.
Does your client also have such high CPU usage?

not at all. it shows values between .8 - 1 %
while closing bitcoin.app, it jumped to 5 %
i will give it a try tomorrow, while validating a bunch of freshly downloaded blocks, if that's the 100 % cpu task but you say that your client already has all the blocks so this most probably not the case.

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chickenado
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May 20, 2011, 02:02:46 PM
 #11

Given this: Why would any normal end-user move to Bitcoin? I know Bitcoin has many other advantages, but can we please stick to the issues I raised? Maybe my issues aren't issues, and merely current client limitations? What are your thoughts on these issues?

Perhaps a normal end-user won't use the original Bitcoin client, but rather a lightweight client or a web interface such as mybitcoin.com.

Remember that Bitcoin is not just a software but also a protocol. Other, more user friendly clients that adhere to the Bitcoin protocol are likely to be developed in future.

A web interface solves all the problems you're talking about but is less secure. I guess for small amounts that doesn't matter.
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