Posts Tagged ‘Ethereum

ethereum-datadir-check-for-backup

Just like with Bitcoin’s wallet.dat file that contains your wallet address and keys and that you need to backup for safety reasons, Ethereum also has a similar wallet file that you should have a spare copy of. With Ethereum the wallet file has a bit weird name and is not just called wallet.dat, but it has essentially the same purpose and the file works essentially the same way as the wallet.dat with Bitcoin and many other alternative crypto coins. Ethereum’s wallet file is stored in the data directory used by the client to store the blockchain and other files, the default locations for the datadir on different operating systems are listed below.

Default datadir locations:
– Mac: ~/Library/Ethereum
– Linux: ~/.ethereum
– Windows: %USERPROFILE%\AppData\Roaming\Ethereum

To get the full path of the data directory on your specific system you can run the geth console and type admin.datadir and you will see a result like on the screenshot above with the full path. Note that the wallet file is not stored in the main datadir folder, but is instead placed in a separate folder under it called keystore. Inside that folder you should see a file with a long name starting with UTC--2015..., this is the wallet file you need to backup. Do note that aside from the wallet file itself you will also need to remember the password (or also back it up along the wallet) that you set when creating your account, without the password needed to unlock it the wallet file won’t be of much use.

If you are moving your Ethereum installation over to a different computer or want to have a copy on another system for solo mining for example, aside from a copy of the wallet file you may also want to make a copy of the blockchain, so that the geth client will not need to download the whole thing again from the network. For the moment the Ethereum blockchain is not that big, but as it continues to grow it can become a very time consuming task to wait for the blockchain to download over the network like it already is with bitcoin for example. So here is how you can also export and then import the Ethereum blockchain should you need to do so.

Export and Import the Ethereum Blockchain:
– Run: geth export blockchain_backup
– Copy the blockchain_backup file to the new system (a bit over 60 MB for the moment)
– On the new system run: geth import blockchain_backup

You can also export and import the blockchain data from a geth console mode, however it seems that when ran inside the console it is doing it much slower than the above method. The commands for the Javascript console are admin.exportChain('blockchain_backup') and admin.importChain('blockchain_backup'), so you can try with them as well, but the first example should be faster.

Download geth and ethminer compiled for Windows and ready to be used…

ethpool-no-new-users-accepted

Mining for Ethereum’s Ether (ETH) coins is turning out to be a problem as it is still in its very early stages, it is still hard for non-advanced users to get started with it. Evven when you follow a guide like our guide on How to Mine Ethereum on Windows yuo can get to another challenge like the mining pool refusing your connections. This has happened today with the ethpool stopping to accept new miners resulting in connections for users trying to use new wallet addresses getting refused while all older miners can still continue to use the pool. The problem here is that ethpool is still the only Ethereum mining pool, so now the only alternative for new users is to solo mine – we have prepared a guide on getting started with Solo GPU Mining Ethereum on Windows. With solo mining however the risks are higher, but the rewards can also be higher if you turn up lucky, there is however no point in solo mining with CPU as the hashrate will be pretty low and you will need a lot of luck to hit a block.

We have updated our mining package that includes the geth client for generating a local Ethereum wallet and also needed for solo mining to the latest version, it is compiled for 64-bit Windows. The package also includes two versions of ethminer (also 64-bit only), the standard one with CPU and OpenCL mining as a part of cpp-ethereum and a second one forked to support CUDA as well. Note that the CUDA version can be used to mine with the CPU, OpenCL and CUDA and you should be are able to use OpenCL on Nvidia GPU’s as well. The CUDA miner should work on GPUs with Compute 2.0 or later, but if you are having trouble running the CUDA miner you can try with the OpenCL one, the resulting hashrate should not be much different between the two implementations. Also we have discovered that adding the parameter “–gpu-batch-size 20” (without the quotes) to the CUDA version of ethminer (works with the OpenCL setting of that miner as well) can increase a bit the performance you get, so we have added it by default to the example bat files for the CUDA version. The hashrate improvement is actually pretty small on Nvidia GPU’s, but on AMD cards using OpenCL it can give better results. We got up from about 24.4 MHS on Radeon R9 280X to about 26.5 MHS by adding the parameter, be aware however that this parameter is only available in the CUDA fork of ethminer.

Another interesting tip regarding issues with low hashrate, either local or reported by the pool, is to try deleting the DAG files that are being generated the first time you run ethminer. Sometimes when you are playing with different settings for the miner it seems that the DAG files may not work that well, so deleting them and having the miner generate them again with the latest settings can bring back the usual performance. So if the locally reported hashrate by the miner suddenly drops or the pool reports only a small fraction of what your total hashrate should normally be you can try deleting the DAG files and having them generated again. On Windows you can find them located in the AppData / Local / Ethash folder under your computer’s Username in the Users folder (example: C:/Users/myPC/AppData/Local/ Ethash). You may need to enable the showing of hidden system files first in order to see the needed folders in Windows Explorer if you have not enabled it already.

Download the latest geth and ethminer compiled for Windows and ready to be used…

ethereum-solo-mining

AS requested here comes a simple guide on how to solo mine Ethereum Ether coins on a local system or within a network with multiple mining rigs. Note that at this point it is already pointless to try local solo mining with CPU only, and if you do not have enough GPU power available and you end up with some bad luck you may not be able to solve a block in a long time. Also our experience shows that geth may lockup at times when solo mining not sending new work from the current block, so do monitor your mining rigs carefully should you decide to try it. If you want to mine in a pool, then you might want to check out our other Quick Guide on How to Mine Ethereum on Windows. Before you get started you need to download the geth and ethminer Windows binaries from the link below, then just follow the instructions below:

Generating wallet address:
– Open the geth folder and run geth-console.bat to start Ethereum in console mode
– The software will need to download the blockchain data, it can take some time
– In the console type: personal.newAccount("password")
– Instead of password in the quotes above write your own password and remember it well
– In the console type: eth.accounts
– This will list your Ethereum wallet address
– To check your account balance you can type: web3.fromWei(eth.getBalance(eth.coinbase), "ether")

Sending Ether to another wallet:
– First you need to unlock your account by typing in the console the following (replace password with your password): personal.unlockAccount(eth.accounts[0], "password")
– In the console type: eth.sendTransaction({from: 'your_address', to: 'recipient_address', value: web3.toWei(1, "ether")})
– In the above code replace your_address and recipient_address with the respective addresses, the example is for sending 1 Ether, but you can change the value depending on your needs

Starting geth for solo mining:
– To listen for connections only on the local system type: geth --rpc --rpcaddr "localhost" --rpcport 8545
– To be accessible on the local network type: geth --rpc --rpcaddr "192.168.0.123" --rpcport 8545
– Make sure that for local LAN accessibility you replace the rpcaddr IP address to the one that of the machine geth is running on, the 192.168.0.123 is just an example
– To be accessible on the Internet type: geth --rpc --rpcaddr "x.x.x.x" --rpcport 8545
– Make sure that for Internet accessibility you replace the rpcaddr IP address to the one that of the machine geth is running on, the x.x.x.x in the example will not work, also make sure that the 8545 port (or another one you decide to use) is forwarded

Starting ethminer for solo mining:
– For local system mining with ethminer on the same PC that geth is running on use: ethminer -G
– For mining on a system in the Local LAN where geth is installed and running use: ethminer -G -F http://192.168.0.123:8545
– Make sure that for local LAN mining the IP address of the system geth is running on is set correctly on the miner, the 192.168.0.123 is just an example, also make sure that there is no Firewall blocking connections
– For using mining rig to mine over the Internet on a PC with geth running in your local LAN use: ethminer -G -F http://x.x.x.x:8545
– For Internet access make sure that instead of the x.x.x.x in the example you set your external IP address and that the 8545 port is properly forwarded between the external IP and the system running geth

It seems that ethpool has just stopped accepting new users due to high load on their server, they have posted the following message: “Due too the high hashrate the pool currently does not accept new miners!”. So if you still haven’t started mining there, existing users can continue using the service, so now may just be the right time to try out solo mining.

Download geth and ethminer compiled for Windows and ready to be used…


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