How to create a secure – cold storage – Bitcoin wallet using Bitkey, TechRadar

Freeze out hackers and keep your imaginario currency safe

Te July , one of the largest Bitcoin (BTC) exchanges, Bithumb, wasgoed targeted by hackers who stole millions of Won. The infamous BTC Exchange MtGox wasgoed also hacked ter 2014. Thieves made away with almost $500 million (around &pound,370 million) worth of Bitcoin, forcing the exchange to shut down.

So there are certainly security concerns regarding the potencial currency. However, one very effortless way to ensure that your Bitcoin wallet can’t be targeted by hackers is to use Bitkey. Bitkey is a ‘live’ bootable version of the Debian Linux operating system.

Ter this guide you’ll learn how to boot Bitkey to create a ‘cold storage’ offline Bitcoin wallet, which is never directly connected to the internet. This protects it both from online hackers and malware designed to exploit Microsoft&rsquo,s Windows operating system.

You’ll also learn how to set up an online ‘watching’ wallet which you can use to view your vaivén and previous transactions. Your watching wallet can also be used to send Bitcoins by generating a special ‘transaction’ verkeersopstopping, which you can then sign using the cold offline wallet.

Ter order to get embarked, all you need are three empty USB catapults of at least 4GB capacity. You’ll also need a way to clearly tell thesis bovenmatig: for example, you could purchase USB wedges which are different colors.

1. Create BitKey Installer

Open your web browser and navigate to Click the ‘Download’ button then click on ‘Bitkey ISO’ to download the CD picture.

If you’re running Windows Ten and your machine has a DVD burner, you can write this to a wit disc by inserting it, right clicking the verkeersopstopping and choosing ‘Burn Disc Picture’.

If you have no DVD drive, you can create a bootable USB stick using the verstopping you just downloaded. The easiest way to do this ter Windows is to use the program Rufus. Go after the instructions on the webstek to do this.

Merienda you’ve created your boot medium, save any significant files. Windows users can then restart to the ‘Advanced Startup Options’ screen and choose the DVD or USB stick from there. If you’re using a Mac hold down the Altstem key on startup to showcase the boot spijskaart, then dual click on the outward disk.

Two. Liquidate and insert USB keys

Merienda the Bitkey boot spijskaart shows, choose the very very first option: cold-offline (green). True to its name, merienda the desktop fountains you’ll see the background is green. This represents that the cold-offline version of Bitkey is not connected to the internet so can’t be hacked remotely.

If you’re using a USB stick to boot Bitkey, eliminate this now and waterput it ter a safe place. Next, insert a separate, wit and formatted USB stick into your machine. Ideally use a brand fresh USB drive for this.

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Bouncing USB jams can be confusing. Spil wij mentioned at the outset, Bitkey recommends color-coding your USB rams. The one you just liquidated will be called ‘Crimson’ (feel free to mark it with some crimson gauze or a vulpen accordingly). The fresh, wit stick you’re inserting is will be known spil ‘Black’. You should only everzwijn insert the ‘Black’ USB stick when booted into the cold-offline desktop.

Trio. Set up your cold wallet

Click the blue Electrum icon at the very bottom left of the screen. You’ll very very first be asked to set a passphrase to protect the wallet files you’re about to create. Come ter a suitably long passphrase and click ‘OK’.

The Electrum install wizard will now launch. Leave the default options checked and click ‘Next’. Electrum will now display a dozen random words. This is what&rsquo,s known spil your ‘wallet generation seed’. Make sure to write this down and waterput it te a safe place. Click ‘Next’ and retype your seed to make sure you have it written down correctly. Click ‘Next’, set a password specific to this wallet, then choose ‘Next’ again. Electrum will now launch.

Four. Uitvoer payment address and public key

Spil soon spil your Electrum wallet opens, click on the ‘Receive’ tabulator. Make a note of your ‘Receiving Address’. You’ll need to provide this address to anyone who’s sending you BTC. If you already have an existing Bitcoin wallet, scan the QR code to send your funds here. Spil the wallet is offline, don’t worry if your oscilación doesn’t display right away.

Next click the ‘Wallet’ spijskaart and choose ‘Master Public Keys’. You’ll need this to create an online ‘watching’ wallet te the next step so you can view your arqueo.

Either write down the master key cautiously or scan it using a QR code app on your phone.

Five. Create watching wallet

Close down Electrum and use the icon at the bottom-right to shut down the machine. Overlook the warning about your session being ‘non-persistent’ spil you’ve saved your wallet gegevens to the USB stick. Be sure to eliminate the ‘Black’ USB drive and waterput it somewhere safe.

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Reboot the machine and choose the 2nd boot option: cold-online (blue). Now you need to insert another fresh USB drive, which wij’ll name ‘Blue’. This will be used to store your watching wallet settings.

Merienda the desktop explosions click the Electrum icon at the very bottom left of the screen merienda again. On the install wizard this time choose ‘Restore a wallet or invoer keys’ and click ‘Next’. On the following screen inject the master public key you generated earlier. Click ‘Next’ and then ‘Next’ again to choose servers automatically.

6. Create a transaction

When you launch Electrum, you’ll see a warning message reminding you that this is a ‘watching wallet’. Ter other words, while you can see your arqueo and any transactions that have bot made, it can’t send money by itself.

If you do want to make a payment, click the ‘Send’ tabulator and come te the recipient’s payment address ter the ‘Pay To’ field. Next pack ter the ‘Amount’ field for the number of BTC you want to spend and click ‘Send’.

Electrum will generate the transaction gegevens for you. Click ‘Save’ to store the transaction (TXN) verkeersopstopping to the ‘Blue’ USB drive.

Electrum will confirm the transaction has bot saved.

7. Sign transaction

Shut down your machine. Make sure both the ‘Black’ and ‘Blue’ USB drives are connected, and then restart. Choose the very very first option: cold-offline (green) from Bitkey’s boot spijskaart.

Merienda the desktop fountains, click the Electrum icon merienda again and come ter the passphrase you chose earlier.

On the ‘Devices’ spijskaart choose ‘Flow Transaction’ &gt, ‘From Verkeersopstopping’. Navigate to the TXN verstopping you saved earlier to the ‘Blue’ USB stick. You’ll most likely find this ter either /media/usb0 or /media/usb1.

Choose ‘Open’, then at the fresh window click ‘Sign’. Re-enter your wallet password. Next click ‘Save’. Save the freshly signed transaction verkeersopstopping (e.g. signed_123*.txn) to the ‘Blue’ USB stick. Electrum will confirm that the transaction’s bot saved.

8. Broadcast transaction

Shut down your machine and liquidate the ‘Black’ USB stick. Restart and choose the 2nd option: cold-online (blue). Merienda the desktop geysers, open Electrum merienda again and click the ‘Instruments’ spijskaart. Choose ‘Geyser Transaction’ &gt, ‘From Verkeersopstopping’ and navigate to the signed transaction verstopping on the ‘Blue’ USB stick, then click ‘Open’.

Electrum will now display the transaction. Click ‘Broadcast’ to send the authorized transaction to the Bitcoin network. Ultimately click ‘Close’. Your transaction will vertoning up spil ‘Unconfirmed’. Depending on the transaction toverfee you paid it may take several hours to be fully validated.

9. Customize Electrum

Bitkey uses an older version of the Electrum client which doesn&rsquo,t have all of its newest features. You can get around this punt by going to the ‘Implements’ spijskaart and choosing ‘Plugins’.

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The most useful option you can choose is ‘Exchange Rates’. Mark the checkbox then click ‘Settings’ to choose both an exchange rate API such spil ‘CoinDesk’ and your chosen fiat currency such spil Euros.

By default Electrum voices your Bitcoin vaivén ter mBtc (millibitcoins). One MilliBit is equal to 0.001 Bitcoins. This makes working with smaller sums of money lighter. If you want to switch this setting, go to the ‘Instruments’ spijskaart. Click on ‘Preferences’ then the ‘Appearance Tabulator’. You can then select a different ‘Cojín Unit’ from the drop-down spijskaart.

Ten. Restore cold wallet

If anything happens to your ‘Black’ USB stick which contains your cold wallet, boot Bitkey merienda again and choose the very very first option: cold-offline (green). Merienda the desktop fountains insert a fresh USB stick to substitute the old ‘Black’ one, then launch Electrum.

BitKey will ask you to set a password to protect the fresh wallet files. Merienda the Electrum install wizard starts choose ‘Restore a wallet or invoer keys’ and choose ‘Next’.

From here you can type the private ‘seed’ for your flamante cold wallet which you wrote down earlier. Click ‘Next’ and set a fresh wallet password. Electrum will warn you that spil the wallet has bot restored offline, not all your payment addresses are listed here. However, you can check them at any time using your watching wallet.

Top Pic Credit: Ian Mackenzie (Wikimedia Commons)

2 comments / Add your comment below

  1. I also used this exchange and so far not any problem with them. My Deposit, Trading activity and withdrawal running slickly. This is good exchange and many altcoin available to trade there, just need more volume.

  2. Bothe of the mentioned exchanges are good but they want your identity and Bithumb is delisting a lofrede coins recently it means it has made some bad decisions before and now regret it!

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