Bitcoin gold import private key

bitcoin gold import private key › watch. Wallet Import Format (WIF) is a standardized method for displaying Bitcoin private keys. WIF format was standardized in order to allow all Bitcoin wallets. Secure multiple assets, including Bitcoin Gold using a Ledger Hardware Wallet. Your private keys, giving access to your assets, remain safe in a certified. XRP BTC LIVE CHART Вы окунётесь работ как всемирно известных, покидая Петербург. Широкий спектр работ как предоставим скидку так и 10 процентов современной фото. Вы окунётесь работ как всемирно известных, так и.

Good afternoon this is a question of topic and hopefully you can help me out? Thank you!! I have the same problem, the only difference is that I created the wallet in Blue wallet. Now I want to acces these funds by importing my seed in Electrum.

Does this give me acces to all coins under this seed? So on Legacy adresses, Segwit adresses and Native Segwit adresses stored under the same seed? Or do I have to export my wallet on my Coldcard and upload this in Electrum? It should import at least my actual balance but only imports old records with zero balance. You need to restore using your seed words. Great guide and support from Abdussamad! The steps I have taken so far: 1. This has provided my with keys starting with L or K.

Also setup a password. It found my default wallet and asked for the passphrase, which was accepted. Not sure what to do.. Im thinking of uninstalling and trying again, but using the Sweep feature instead next time. This site is for electrum not electron cash. However the solution to your problem is simple. Simply follow the 1st step of the guide above to create a new wallet file and then repeat the private key import process again in that wallet file.

Like I said this site is not for bitcoin cash wallets. Can you export the private key from the existing wallet to the new wallet on the same laptop? Or do they have to be on different laptops? It can be on the same machine. But you may want to restore using your seed words instead. That way you get all the private keys in your wallet.

I do have a lot of difficulty trying to use Electrum on a laptop, with an un-encrypted wallet. Why am I doing this? I get my money back, I even get the xpriv for the address and import it or edit it in. Oh well, I keep banging around as if i knew what I were doing. I figure, since he has to pay the fee every time he takes it back to another address, at least I may be irritating him, her, whoever.

You also have the patience of a saint. Oh well, back to frustrating reading. Take care! Like all private keys it is a secret and would not be found on the public blockchain. You can restore a wallet using the xpriv and get access to all the bitcoins controlled by it. He would have moved them to address under his control i. I have Electrum ZCL wallet. I open a new wallet that is standard.

Wallet opened fine with all the ZCL from Eleos but wallet say imported. I tried to transfer to main wallet which say standard. This site is only for bitcoin electrum. However in your case I suggest opening your standard electrum wallet and then using the sweep functionality to sweep your Eleos private keys:. Hello, I just imported my segwit paper wallet private key which starts with L5 into Electrum 3. Is it possible to use imported segwit wallet for receiving and sending funds with this version?

For example:. I have two bitcoin addresses with private keys year I want to create cold storage with Electrum I will create an online unsigned transaction, then I will sign this transaction offline and then I will send it online. Electrum wallet no HD creates them? And the private key of change address is in watch only wallet? Or where? And do I need to paste this change address change private key into the offline electrum wallet? Or does wallet not create a change address? Or otherwise? This site is not by ThomasV and it is not the official electrum documentation.

That is at docs. This site is my effort. First of all what you are trying to do will work. You can do offline signing with imported private keys like that. Regarding change, in the case of wallets with imported private keys change is sent back to one of the addresses where the inputs to the transaction were sent. So change goes back to the imported private keys. Obviously this is not very good for your privacy so I recommend creating an HD wallet instead. Okey, it gives sense to me: new change address is not created in this case.

On one my adress is 0. Thank you, have nice day. Regarding your recommendation, of course, this is only my first step. In I had armory, but cold storage has Win7, online comp crashed, and new armory upgrade needs Win10 …. And to create unsigned transaction on my online computer by last version 3.

The only way to know for sure is to try it. But do keep in mind that old versions have bugs that have been fixed in newer versions. There have been bug fixes related to offline signing since 2. But signing a transaction is a basic action. This action is definitely without any error from the first version. Step 1. On online computer last version 3. It will be OK. Step 2. On the offline computer the old version 2. Step 3. Last version 3.

This is a procedure of urgency. I do not have any other cold storage and in windows from is missing some dll for run electrum 3. Or have you his email, twitter? Thank you. Now I know, that version 2. Of course, I read about found vulnerability in electrum before version 3. I read released notes for every version from 2. IS there a size limitation on the dat file used? Since the wallet address begins with a 3 I prepended the private key with the code you listed.

Your private key must begin with K or L and look like the one above. Also no leading or trailing spaces. Just one private key per line. I am trying to access my bitcoin cash by using my seed and creating a new electron cash wallet when i try to create keystore from master key, it is not recognizing my private key, which starts with p2pkh:k….

Seed consists of 12 random english words. What you have there is neither the seed nor the master private key. It is the private key for a single address. So what exactly are you trying to do? BTW regarding your previous comment I recommend you seek help on a community forum. See electrum. That way we can have a back and forth to diagnose your problem.

Perdi dados de minha carteira no meu Notebook que queimou. Instalei em outro porem nao consigo movimentar. Como resolver? When import compressed keys electrum loads only the legacy addresses , and show balance zero. Love ur write ups very interesting. Hope u can help me out. I need some help here if it is possible please… For the last few weeks I ve used to sweep my private keys paper wallet btc bought from stores directly to my wallet using the long code which starts with Ky…..

I did another wallet Imported, Watching Only wallet and when I created the wallet I entered the short private key which starts with 1GB……. Now in My wallet when I click on the transaction it is showing Amount received: Private keys start with 5,K, or L so look for that and try again. That is my issue can I get the btc from that wallet address? Usually the paper wallet or keys bought from store in London UK come with two addresses to say like that….

First one is the private key which starts with Kyx…. The problem is that when I try to sweep the key is not working the sweep button is not working… but when I imported the wallet into the electrum it is showing the exact amount that I bought…. By creating a wallet with the address you are creating a read only wallet AKA watch-only wallet. You cannot spend coins in such a wallet.

In order to be able to spend those bitcoins you need to sweep or import the corresponding private key. Perhaps seek help from whatever exchange or service you used to purchase the bitcoins? Thanks for letting me know. I have tried this method and it shows 0BTC.

Hi, i mistakenly created a watch-only wallet by importing three different addresses. Can i import or sweep the private keys into the same wallet or i will have to create a different wallet? I am currently having a problem while trying to import my private key obtained in Bitcoin Core wallet to Electrum. The adress does work, but the public adress associated with is not the same as the one in Bitcoin Core. Therefore, the balance appear to be of 0 in Electrum.

I tried entering my private key on bitadress. Try the import again this time paying attention to the note in step 3 above. You have to specify the correct script type by prepending the right prefix to the private key. There is no such thing as a private address. Private keys have checksums in them that let electrum detect such mistakes.

See the example of a private key below:. Private keys begin with 5, L or K. Addresses begin with 1, 3 or bc1. Finally the guide above is for importing private keys not sweeping them. So are you trying to import it or sweep it?

Hi, is it possible to redeem a physical bitcoin using Electrum? Thanks a lot. The guide above will let you create a wallet using the private key on the coin. Did you try importing it? Once you have it in electrum just use the send tab to send the money wherever you like.

Hi, thanks for the response. I had not tried yet. Is it possible to import using Electrum? Electrum supports the mini private key? I mean, is it possible to recover the casascius using Electrum? If so, is there a tutorial on how to do this? Thanks a lot! But after some time when I tried to synchronize, the wallet not responding message is coming.

After that, i tried to do it with the below method. What can i do now. If I important private keys into Electrum will it work? Please help if you can. My private keys are on hardware wallets. I restored my multisig wallet from the xpubs but the restored wallet is watch-only and I want to be able to sign transactions with the hardware wallet devices.

How do I convince Electrum to let me sign transactions with the private keys that are on the hardware wallets? Hi pls I need help. I have uploaded a paper wallet into my blockchain imported address for a week now and nothing is showing up. Can you please help me?

I later read about it and realize I was suppose to create Mycelium bitcoin wallet and when I did and uploaded it again there, it says my account is 0. Though I believe my money would be in my main imported address but is not showing up for a week now.

I have some small BTC balance leftover in my Multibit. I dont think its HD. Will the above procedure work for Multibit Standard as well? I think seed is only for HD version. Pls guide me to the right link. I have a BIP58 paper wallet generated with bitaddres.

In watch only wallet, I see my correct balance. The private key starts with 6P. I decode the private key in offline Live Ubuntu, create a new imported wallet on work computer, but see zero balance. A month ago I performed such a procedure and it was successful. I found your recommendation that the private key should not be compressed.

According to this recommendation, I use bitaddress. I create an imported wallet with such a key, but I also see a zero balance. What could be the problem? Please, help. Best regards, Hennadiy. This paper wallet has never been used for withdrawal. A month ago I made an imported wallet with the private key of another similar paper wallet. I just imported into electrum the private key from an old multibit wallet as explained above, but the balance shows zero.

Will it take some time before the right balance will show up in my electrum wallet? Further info about this my waller was a multibit classic one, on multibit I see the correct amount. Who Owns the Most Bitcoin? How Do I Get Bitcoin? Why Is Bitcoin Volatile? Who Are the Actors in Bitcoin Markets? What Is a Bear Market? What Is a Bull Market? What Are Stablecoins? What Is Collateralized Lending? Will Deflation Hurt the Economy?

Real Bitcoin vs. Bitcoin Derivatives Brokerages vs. What Is Bitcoin Custody? Is Bitcoin Mining Profitable? Is Bitcoin Legal? Can Bitcoin Be Seized? What Is a k Plan? Roth IRA vs. What Are Bitcoin Smart Contracts? What Is the Byzantine Generals Problem? Invest in Bitcoin. Get Started. Human Support. Track Performance. Recurring Buys. Below is an example of a private key displayed as a hexadecimal number and in WIF format.

Bitcoin gold import private key blockchain technology used in bitcoin


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These digital keys are very rarely seen by the users of bitcoin. For the most part, they are stored inside the wallet file and managed by the bitcoin wallet software. In most cases, a bitcoin address is generated from and corresponds to a public key. However, not all bitcoin addresses represent public keys; they can also represent other beneficiaries such as scripts, as we will see later in this chapter. The bitcoin address is the only representation of the keys that users will routinely see, because this is the part they need to share with the world.

In this chapter we will introduce wallets, which contain cryptographic keys. We will look at how keys are generated, stored, and managed. We will review the various encoding formats used to represent private and public keys, addresses, and script addresses. Finally, we will look at special uses of keys: to sign messages, to prove ownership, and to create vanity addresses and paper wallets. Public key cryptography was invented in the s and is a mathematical foundation for computer and information security.

Since the invention of public key cryptography, several suitable mathematical functions, such as prime number exponentiation and elliptic curve multiplication, have been discovered. These mathematical functions are practically irreversible, meaning that they are easy to calculate in one direction and infeasible to calculate in the opposite direction.

Based on these mathematical functions, cryptography enables the creation of digital secrets and unforgeable digital signatures. Bitcoin uses elliptic curve multiplication as the basis for its public key cryptography. In bitcoin, we use public key cryptography to create a key pair that controls access to bitcoins. The key pair consists of a private key and—derived from it—a unique public key.

The public key is used to receive bitcoins, and the private key is used to sign transactions to spend those bitcoins. There is a mathematical relationship between the public and the private key that allows the private key to be used to generate signatures on messages. This signature can be validated against the public key without revealing the private key.

When spending bitcoins, the current bitcoin owner presents her public key and a signature different each time, but created from the same private key in a transaction to spend those bitcoins. Through the presentation of the public key and signature, everyone in the bitcoin network can verify and accept the transaction as valid, confirming that the person transferring the bitcoins owned them at the time of the transfer. In most wallet implementations, the private and public keys are stored together as a key pair for convenience.

However, the public key can be calculated from the private key, so storing only the private key is also possible. A bitcoin wallet contains a collection of key pairs, each consisting of a private key and a public key. The private key k is a number, usually picked at random. From the private key, we use elliptic curve multiplication, a one-way cryptographic function, to generate a public key K.

From the public key K , we use a one-way cryptographic hash function to generate a bitcoin address A. In this section, we will start with generating the private key, look at the elliptic curve math that is used to turn that into a public key, and finally, generate a bitcoin address from the public key. The relationship between private key, public key, and bitcoin address is shown in Figure A private key is simply a number, picked at random.

Ownership and control over the private key is the root of user control over all funds associated with the corresponding bitcoin address. The private key is used to create signatures that are required to spend bitcoins by proving ownership of funds used in a transaction. The private key must remain secret at all times, because revealing it to third parties is equivalent to giving them control over the bitcoins secured by that key.

The bitcoin private key is just a number. You can pick your private keys randomly using just a coin, pencil, and paper: toss a coin times and you have the binary digits of a random private key you can use in a bitcoin wallet. The public key can then be generated from the private key. The first and most important step in generating keys is to find a secure source of entropy, or randomness.

Usually, the OS random number generator is initialized by a human source of randomness, which is why you may be asked to wiggle your mouse around for a few seconds. For the truly paranoid, nothing beats dice, pencil, and paper. To create such a key, we randomly pick a bit number and check that it is less than n - 1.

In programming terms, this is usually achieved by feeding a larger string of random bits, collected from a cryptographically secure source of randomness, into the SHA hash algorithm that will conveniently produce a bit number. If the result is less than n - 1 , we have a suitable private key. Otherwise, we simply try again with another random number.

Study the documentation of the random number generator library you choose to make sure it is cryptographically secure. The following is a randomly generated private key k shown in hexadecimal format binary digits shown as 64 hexadecimal digits, each 4 bits :. It is approximately 10 77 in decimal. The visible universe is estimated to contain 10 80 atoms. To generate a new key with the Bitcoin Core client see Chapter 3 , use the getnewaddress command.

For security reasons it displays the public key only, not the private key. To ask bitcoind to expose the private key, use the dumpprivkey command. The dumpprivkey command shows the private key in a Base58 checksum-encoded format called the Wallet Import Format WIF , which we will examine in more detail in Private key formats. The dumpprivkey command opens the wallet and extracts the private key that was generated by the getnewaddress command.

It is not otherwise possible for bitcoind to know the private key from the public key, unless they are both stored in the wallet. The dumpprivkey command is not generating a private key from a public key, as this is impossible. The command simply reveals the private key that is already known to the wallet and which was generated by the getnewaddress command. You can also use the command-line sx tools see Libbitcoin and sx Tools to generate and display private keys with the sx command newkey :.

The public key is calculated from the private key using elliptic curve multiplication, which is irreversible: where k is the private key, G is a constant point called the generator point and K is the resulting public key. Elliptic curve cryptography is a type of asymmetric or public-key cryptography based on the discrete logarithm problem as expressed by addition and multiplication on the points of an elliptic curve.

Figure is an example of an elliptic curve, similar to that used by bitcoin. Bitcoin uses a specific elliptic curve and set of mathematical constants, as defined in a standard called secpk1 , established by the National Institute of Standards and Technology NIST. The secpk1 curve is defined by the following function, which produces an elliptic curve:.

Because this curve is defined over a finite field of prime order instead of over the real numbers, it looks like a pattern of dots scattered in two dimensions, which makes it difficult to visualize. However, the math is identical as that of an elliptic curve over the real numbers. As an example, Figure shows the same elliptic curve over a much smaller finite field of prime order 17, showing a pattern of dots on a grid.

The secpk1 bitcoin elliptic curve can be thought of as a much more complex pattern of dots on a unfathomably large grid. So, for example, the following is a point P with coordinates x,y that is a point on the secpk1 curve. You can check this yourself using Python:. Geometrically, this third point P 3 is calculated by drawing a line between P 1 and P 2. This line will intersect the elliptic curve in exactly one additional place.

This tangent will intersect the curve in exactly one new point. You can use techniques from calculus to determine the slope of the tangent line. These techniques curiously work, even though we are restricting our interest to points on the curve with two integer coordinates! In some cases i. This shows how the point at infinity plays the role of 0.

Now that we have defined addition, we can define multiplication in the standard way that extends addition. Starting with a private key in the form of a randomly generated number k , we multiply it by a predetermined point on the curve called the generator point G to produce another point somewhere else on the curve, which is the corresponding public key K.

The generator point is specified as part of the secpk1 standard and is always the same for all keys in bitcoin:. Because the generator point is always the same for all bitcoin users, a private key k multiplied with G will always result in the same public key K. The relationship between k and K is fixed, but can only be calculated in one direction, from k to K. A private key can be converted into a public key, but a public key cannot be converted back into a private key because the math only works one way.

Implementing the elliptic curve multiplication, we take the private key k generated previously and multiply it with the generator point G to find the public key K:. To visualize multiplication of a point with an integer, we will use the simpler elliptic curve over the real numbers—remember, the math is the same.

Our goal is to find the multiple kG of the generator point G. That is the same as adding G to itself, k times in a row. In elliptic curves, adding a point to itself is the equivalent of drawing a tangent line on the point and finding where it intersects the curve again, then reflecting that point on the x-axis. Figure shows the process for deriving G, 2G, 4G, as a geometric operation on the curve.

Most bitcoin implementations use the OpenSSL cryptographic library to do the elliptic curve math. A bitcoin address is a string of digits and characters that can be shared with anyone who wants to send you money. Because paper checks do not need to specify an account, but rather use an abstract name as the recipient of funds, that makes paper checks very flexible as payment instruments. Bitcoin transactions use a similar abstraction, the bitcoin address, to make them very flexible.

The bitcoin address is derived from the public key through the use of one-way cryptographic hashing. Cryptographic hash functions are used extensively in bitcoin: in bitcoin addresses, in script addresses, and in the mining proof-of-work algorithm. A bitcoin address is not the same as a public key. Bitcoin addresses are derived from a public key using a one-way function. Base58Check is also used in many other ways in bitcoin, whenever there is a need for a user to read and correctly transcribe a number, such as a bitcoin address, a private key, an encrypted key, or a script hash.

In the next section we will examine the mechanics of Base58Check encoding and decoding, and the resulting representations. Figure illustrates the conversion of a public key into a bitcoin address. In order to represent long numbers in a compact way, using fewer symbols, many computer systems use mixed-alphanumeric representations with a base or radix higher than For example, whereas the traditional decimal system uses the 10 numerals 0 through 9, the hexadecimal system uses 16, with the letters A through F as the six additional symbols.

A number represented in hexadecimal format is shorter than the equivalent decimal representation. Base is most commonly used to add binary attachments to email. Base58 is a text-based binary-encoding format developed for use in bitcoin and used in many other cryptocurrencies.

It offers a balance between compact representation, readability, and error detection and prevention. Base58 is a subset of Base64, using the upper- and lowercase letters and numbers, but omitting some characters that are frequently mistaken for one another and can appear identical when displayed in certain fonts.

Or, more simply, it is a set of lower and capital letters and numbers without the four 0, O, l, I just mentioned. To add extra security against typos or transcription errors, Base58Check is a Base58 encoding format, frequently used in bitcoin, which has a built-in error-checking code. The checksum is an additional four bytes added to the end of the data that is being encoded.

The checksum is derived from the hash of the encoded data and can therefore be used to detect and prevent transcription and typing errors. When presented with a Base58Check code, the decoding software will calculate the checksum of the data and compare it to the checksum included in the code. If the two do not match, that indicates that an error has been introduced and the Base58Check data is invalid.

For example, this prevents a mistyped bitcoin address from being accepted by the wallet software as a valid destination, an error that would otherwise result in loss of funds. For example, in the case of a bitcoin address the prefix is zero 0x00 in hex , whereas the prefix used when encoding a private key is 0x80 in hex. A list of common version prefixes is shown in Table From the resulting byte hash hash-of-a-hash , we take only the first four bytes.

These four bytes serve as the error-checking code, or checksum. The checksum is concatenated appended to the end. The result is composed of three items: a prefix, the data, and a checksum. This result is encoded using the Base58 alphabet described previously.

Figure illustrates the Base58Check encoding process. In bitcoin, most of the data presented to the user is Base58Check-encoded to make it compact, easy to read, and easy to detect errors. The version prefix in Base58Check encoding is used to create easily distinguishable formats, which when encoded in Base58 contain specific characters at the beginning of the Base58Check-encoded payload.

These characters make it easy for humans to identify the type of data that is encoded and how to use it. This is what differentiates, for example, a Base58Check-encoded bitcoin address that starts with a 1 from a Base58Check-encoded private key WIF format that starts with a 5. Some example version prefixes and the resulting Base58 characters are shown in Table The code example uses the libbitcoin library introduced in Alternative Clients, Libraries, and Toolkits for some helper functions.

The code uses a predefined private key so that it produces the same bitcoin address every time it is run, as shown in Example Both private and public keys can be represented in a number of different formats. These representations all encode the same number, even though they look different. These formats are primarily used to make it easy for people to read and transcribe keys without introducing errors. The private key can be represented in a number of different formats, all of which correspond to the same bit number.

Table shows three common formats used to represent private keys. Table shows the private key generated in these three formats. All of these representations are different ways of showing the same number, the same private key. They look different, but any one format can easily be converted to any other format. You can use sx tools to decode the Base58Check format on the command line. We use the base58check-decode command:. To encode into Base58Check the opposite of the previous command , we provide the hex private key, followed by the Wallet Import Format WIF version prefix Public keys are also presented in different ways, most importantly as either compressed or uncompressed public keys.

As we saw previously, the public key is a point on the elliptic curve consisting of a pair of coordinates x,y. It is usually presented with the prefix 04 followed by two bit numbers, one for the x coordinate of the point, the other for the y coordinate. The prefix 04 is used to distinguish uncompressed public keys from compressed public keys that begin with a 02 or a Compressed public keys were introduced to bitcoin to reduce the size of transactions and conserve disk space on nodes that store the bitcoin blockchain database.

As we saw in the section Public Keys , a public key is a point x,y on an elliptic curve. That allows us to store only the x coordinate of the public key point, omitting the y coordinate and reducing the size of the key and the space required to store it by bits. Whereas uncompressed public keys have a prefix of 04 , compressed public keys start with either a 02 or a 03 prefix.

Visually, this means that the resulting y coordinate can be above the x-axis or below the x-axis. As you can see from the graph of the elliptic curve in Figure , the curve is symmetric, meaning it is reflected like a mirror by the x-axis. So, while we can omit the y coordinate we have to store the sign of y positive or negative , or in other words, we have to remember if it was above or below the x-axis because each of those options represents a different point and a different public key.

Therefore, to distinguish between the two possible values of y, we store a compressed public key with the prefix 02 if the y is even, and 03 if it is odd, allowing the software to correctly deduce the y coordinate from the x coordinate and uncompress the public key to the full coordinates of the point. Public key compression is illustrated in Figure This compressed public key corresponds to the same private key, meaning that it is generated from the same private key. However, it looks different from the uncompressed public key.

This can be confusing, because it means that a single private key can produce a public key expressed in two different formats compressed and uncompressed that produce two different bitcoin addresses. However, the private key is identical for both bitcoin addresses. Compressed public keys are gradually becoming the default across bitcoin clients, which is having a significant impact on reducing the size of transactions and therefore the blockchain.

However, not all clients support compressed public keys yet. Newer clients that support compressed public keys have to account for transactions from older clients that do not support compressed public keys. This is especially important when a wallet application is importing private keys from another bitcoin wallet application, because the new wallet needs to scan the blockchain to find transactions corresponding to these imported keys.

Which bitcoin addresses should the bitcoin wallet scan for? The bitcoin addresses produced by uncompressed public keys, or the bitcoin addresses produced by compressed public keys? Both are valid bitcoin addresses, and can be signed for by the private key, but they are different addresses! To resolve this issue, when private keys are exported from a wallet, the Wallet Import Format that is used to represent them is implemented differently in newer bitcoin wallets, to indicate that these private keys have been used to produce compressed public keys and therefore compressed bitcoin addresses.

This allows the importing wallet to distinguish between private keys originating from older or newer wallets and search the blockchain for transactions with bitcoin addresses corresponding to the uncompressed, or the compressed, public keys, respectively. That is because it has the added 01 suffix, which signifies it comes from a newer wallet and should only be used to produce compressed public keys.

Private keys are not compressed and cannot be compressed. Remember, these formats are not used interchangeably. In a newer wallet that implements compressed public keys, the private keys will only ever be exported as WIF-compressed with a K or L prefix. If the wallet is an older implementation and does not use compressed public keys, the private keys will only ever be exported as WIF with a 5 prefix. The goal here is to signal to the wallet importing these private keys whether it must search the blockchain for compressed or uncompressed public keys and addresses.

If a bitcoin wallet is able to implement compressed public keys, it will use those in all transactions. The private keys in the wallet will be used to derive the public key points on the curve, which will be compressed. The compressed public keys will be used to produce bitcoin addresses and those will be used in transactions. When exporting private keys from a new wallet that implements compressed public keys, the Wallet Import Format is modified, with the addition of a one-byte suffix 01 to the private key.

They are not compressed; rather, the WIF-compressed format signifies that they should only be used to derive compressed public keys and their corresponding bitcoin addresses. The most comprehensive bitcoin library in Python is pybitcointools by Vitalik Buterin. Example shows the output from running this code. Example is another example, using the Python ECDSA library for the elliptic curve math and without using any specialized bitcoin libraries.

Example shows the output produced by running this script. Wallets are containers for private keys, usually implemented as structured files or simple databases. Another method for making keys is deterministic key generation. Here you derive each new private key, using a one-way hash function from a previous private key, linking them in a sequence. As long as you can re-create that sequence, you only need the first key known as a seed or master key to generate them all.

In this section we will examine the different methods of key generation and the wallet structures that are built around them. Bitcoin wallets contain keys, not coins. Each user has a wallet containing keys. Users sign transactions with the keys, thereby proving they own the transaction outputs their coins.

The coins are stored on the blockchain in the form of transaction-ouputs often noted as vout or txout. In the first bitcoin clients, wallets were simply collections of randomly generated private keys. This type of wallet is called a Type-0 nondeterministic wallet. For example, the Bitcoin Core client pregenerates random private keys when first started and generates more keys as needed, using each key only once. The disadvantage of random keys is that if you generate many of them you must keep copies of all of them, meaning that the wallet must be backed up frequently.

Each key must be backed up, or the funds it controls are irrevocably lost if the wallet becomes inaccessible. This conflicts directly with the principle of avoiding address re-use, by using each bitcoin address for only one transaction.

Address re-use reduces privacy by associating multiple transactions and addresses with each other. A Type-0 nondeterministic wallet is a poor choice of wallet, especially if you want to avoid address re-use because that means managing many keys, which creates the need for frequent backups. Although the Bitcoin Core client includes a Type-0 wallet, using this wallet is discouraged by developers of Bitcoin Core. Figure shows a nondeterministic wallet, containing a loose collection of random keys.

In a deterministic wallet, the seed is sufficient to recover all the derived keys, and therefore a single backup at creation time is sufficient. Mnemonic codes are English word sequences that represent encode a random number used as a seed to derive a deterministic wallet. The sequence of words is sufficient to re-create the seed and from there re-create the wallet and all the derived keys.

A wallet application that implements deterministic wallets with mnemonic code will show the user a sequence of 12 to 24 words when first creating a wallet. That sequence of words is the wallet backup and can be used to recover and re-create all the keys in the same or any compatible wallet application. Mnemonic code words make it easier for users to back up wallets because they are easy to read and correctly transcribe, as compared to a random sequence of numbers.

Mnemonic codes are defined in Bitcoin Improvement Proposal 39 see [bip] , currently in Draft status. Note that BIP is a draft proposal and not a standard. Specifically, there is a different standard, with a different set of words, used by the Electrum wallet and predating BIP Table shows the relationship between the size of entropy data and the length of mnemonic codes in words.

The mnemonic code represents to bits, which are used to derive a longer bit seed through the use of the key-stretching function PBKDF2. The resulting seed is used to create a deterministic wallet and all of its derived keys. Tables and show some examples of mnemonic codes and the seeds they produce. Hierarchical deterministic wallets contain keys derived in a tree structure, such that a parent key can derive a sequence of children keys, each of which can derive a sequence of grandchildren keys, and so on, to an infinite depth.

This tree structure is illustrated in Figure HD wallets offer two major advantages over random nondeterministic keys. First, the tree structure can be used to express additional organizational meaning, such as when a specific branch of subkeys is used to receive incoming payments and a different branch is used to receive change from outgoing payments.

Branches of keys can also be used in a corporate setting, allocating different branches to departments, subsidiaries, specific functions, or accounting categories. The second advantage of HD wallets is that users can create a sequence of public keys without having access to the corresponding private keys. This allows HD wallets to be used on an insecure server or in a receive-only capacity, issuing a different public key for each transaction.

HD wallets are created from a single root seed , which is a , , or bit random number. Everything else in the HD wallet is deterministically derived from this root seed, which makes it possible to re-create the entire HD wallet from that seed in any compatible HD wallet. This makes it easy to back up, restore, export, and import HD wallets containing thousands or even millions of keys by simply transferring only the root seed.

The root seed is most often represented by a mnemonic word sequence , as described in the previous section Mnemonic Code Words , to make it easier for people to transcribe and store it. The process of creating the master keys and master chain code for an HD wallet is shown in Figure The root seed is input into the HMAC-SHA algorithm and the resulting hash is used to create a master private key m and a master chain code.

The chain code is used to introduce entropy in the function that creates child keys from parent keys, as we will see in the next section. Hierarchical deterministic wallets use a child key derivation CKD function to derive children keys from parent keys. The chain code is used to introduce seemingly random data to the process, so that the index is not sufficient to derive other child keys.

Thus, having a child key does not make it possible to find its siblings, unless you also have the chain code. The initial chain code seed at the root of the tree is made from random data, while subsequent chain codes are derived from each parent chain code. The parent public key, chain code, and the index number are combined and hashed with the HMAC-SHA algorithm to produce a bit hash.

The resulting hash is split into two halves. The right-half bits of the hash output become the chain code for the child. The left-half bits of the hash and the index number are added to the parent private key to produce the child private key.

Changing the index allows us to extend the parent and create the other children in the sequence, e. Each parent key can have 2 billion children keys. Repeating the process one level down the tree, each child can in turn become a parent and create its own children, in an infinite number of generations. Child private keys are indistinguishable from nondeterministic random keys. Because the derivation function is a one-way function, the child key cannot be used to find the parent key. The child key also cannot be used to find any siblings.

Only the parent key and chain code can derive all the children. Without the child chain code, the child key cannot be used to derive any grandchildren either. You need both the child private key and the child chain code to start a new branch and derive grandchildren. So what can the child private key be used for on its own? It can be used to make a public key and a bitcoin address. Then, it can be used to sign transactions to spend anything paid to that address. A child private key, the corresponding public key, and the bitcoin address are all indistinguishable from keys and addresses created randomly.

The fact that they are part of a sequence is not visible, outside of the HD wallet function that created them. As we saw earlier, the key derivation function can be used to create children at any level of the tree, based on the three inputs: a key, a chain code, and the index of the desired child.

The two essential ingredients are the key and chain code, and combined these are called an extended key. Extended keys are stored and represented simply as the concatenation of the bit key and bit chain code into a bit sequence. There are two types of extended keys. If no errors occurs, the import is a success and Bitcoin-QT users will be able to see the new address in the GUI immediately.

If you need to import more keys, just repeat the instructions above. There is currently no command to import a batch of private keys so you will need to wait a minute or two for each key to be imported. These commands will clear the passphrase and private key from memory if you used the read technique. If you started bitcoind, you will need to stop it before Bitcoin-QT will start again:. At some point, you may wish to delete private keys from a wallet.

As of August , possibly the easiest way to import a private key is using Blockchain. User can choose to type in the private key manually or scan a QR code containing the private key using the camera. The user must wait 6 confirmations for access to the funds, and system is based on batch importation. After spending, the private key in memory is destroyed so the paper private key remains somewhat secure. Despite this, best practice is to immediately send the remaining balance to a paper wallet that was generated offline.

Use this function if you would like to import a private key so all funds are immediately available for spending. After importing this paper private key, you might consider destroying the original so it cannot be found and your funds stolen. Alternatively, you can keep it safe to be used as an offline backup. If you have Version 7 or later it is now trival.

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