Over the past year Litecoin has solidified its place how does proof of work function in Bitcoin? Bitcoin as a viable digital currency. If you’re brand new to Litecoin and don’t yet have a Litecoin wallet I’d suggest checking out our guide to Getting Started With Litecoin.
It provides an overview of Litecoin and a guide to setting up a wallet. If you want to get started as quickly as possible with mining then skip ahead to the Installing GUI Miner Scrypt section. Litecoin mining is the process of using your computer’s resources in order to help run the Litecoin network. Like most cryptocurrencies, Litecoin is initially distributed through block rewards, where miner’s get a certain number of Litecoins by solving a certain amount of cryptographic work.
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Originally mining could be done individually, referred to as solo mining. However, over time it became too difficult to do individually as the probability of finding a block solo mining became very low. This led groups of miners to develop what is referred to as pool mining. Today nearly all miners use pool mining, where they mine in groups resulting in steadier payouts. The original Bitcoin client included a CPU miner that beginners could use to solo mine. GPUs offered much faster speeds than CPUs.
Litecoin’s original design was intended to prevent GPU mining and did so by using the memory intensive Scrypt hashing algorithm as opposed to the SHA-256 algorithm used by Bitcoin. Eventually mining programs were developed for GPU mining Litecoin, though the difference between CPU mining and GPU mining remained smaller with Litecoin than it had been with Bitcoin. However, a recent rewrite of some of the software involved with NVIDIA mining has lessened the gap. While Radeon cards still offer higher hash rates, NVIDIA cards are generally easier to tune. If you’re looking to build a fast, high end mining rig then Radeon is still the way to go. This tutorial covers two mining programs. CUDA Miner is a command line program, meaning you have to use the command line in windows to run it.
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GUIMiner Scypt has a graphical user interface that runs CUDA Miner for you, which is easier for many people. I’ll be covering GUI Miner Scrypt first, though CUDA Miner is covered later. If you’re comfortable with the windows command line I suggest you use CUDA Miner. GUI Miner Scrypt currently does not output your hash rate, or mining speed, due to a small programming issue. Thus you’ll get more feedback, and it will be easier to debug, if you use CUDA Miner.
The latest version of CUDA Miner is also considerably faster than the latest version of GUI Miner Scrypt. You’ll need to download a couple of things in order to start mining Litecoin with your Nvidia GPU. For this portion of the tutorial we’ll be focusing on GUIMiner Scrypt, though you’ll need the same programs for CUDA Miner. In order for GUIMiner Scrypt to function correctly you’ll need to update your drivers directly from NVIDIA. If you’re looking to build CUDA Miner from source you’ll need the developer’s toolkit listed below.
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Download GUIMiner Scrypt From Mega V0. Once you’ve downloaded GUI Miner Scrypt you’ll have to set up an account at a mining pool. We’ll also be using their mining proxy program, which makes it a bit easier to setup your mining program. Make sure to record you login credentials or choose something you can easily remember. You’ll need them to manage your account and to receive the Litecoin that you mine. You can setup multiple works for multiple miners, but for this tutorial you’ll just need one.
You’ll also need to download their proxy program, which makes setup a bit easier and can make mining slightly more reliable and efficient for you. First off go ahead and double click on stratum_proxy. Once the proxy is up and running then you can open up GUI Miner Scrypt. Once you have everything setup save your settings and then click Start. Because of a small issue, GUI Miner Scrypt will just continually say Starting in the bottom right hand corner.
However, checking the proxy program should show you some activity. If you see activity similar to the below screenshot you should be good to go and hashing. 20 minutes to update and is an average over time, not exactly what speed you’re at at that moment. If you want better stats then I suggest trying out CUDA Miner from the command line, covered below. CUDA Miner is the command line program used for Litecoin mining with NVIDIA graphics cards.
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Since it is a command line program it’s not quite as beginner friendly. It works essentially the same as GUI Miner Scrypt but requires that you setup a configuration file or pass some arguments to it when it first starts. If this isn’t something you’re comfortable with then I suggest you stick to GUI Miner Scrypt. Otherwise you can download the most recent version of CUDA Miner from the link below.
You’ll need to open up a command prompt and navigate to the folder containing CUDA Miner. Once you’re up and running you should see something like the below screenshot. Mining speed is measured in number of hashes per second. Litecoin you’ll be earning based off of your hash rate. The newest version of CUDA Miner hashes considerably faster than the older version.
At the moment, the newest version of GUI Miner Scrypt uses the older version of CUDA Miner. If you’re looking to get the fastest possible speed, try out the latest version of CUDA Miner or make sure to update GUIMiner Scrypt once a new version is available. One thing we didn’t cover earlier is that using the proxy program is not mandatory. You can connect to most pools directly by using a url they provide instead of a proxy and 127. Just follow the instructions your pool provides you for worker settings. At this point you should be mining Litecoin, congratulations!
Once you get a little more comfortable with mining and cryptocurrencies in general you might take a look at Dustcoin or Coinwarz. These sites help to show which cryptocurrencies are the most profitable to mine at any given time. If you’re interested in adding GPUs you should check out the Litecoin Mining Hardware Comparison page in the Litecoin wiki. Many high end gaming laptops come with decent graphics cards that are capable of mining cryptocurrencies such as Litecoin.
However, there have been multiple cases of users burning out their CPU or melting their motherboard while trying to mine with a laptop. Laptops simply are too compact and do not have the means to dissipate all the heat created when constantly mining cryptocurrencies. Essentially the risk is not worth the reward and I’d strongly advise against mining with laptops. Questions, comments, and hash rates are always welcome in the comments! Include a LTC address and you may even get tipped for providing good advice! Anyone with an interest in bitcoin will have heard the phrase ‘cryptographic hash function’ at some time or other.
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But what exactly does it mean, and how is it connected to cryptocurrency? Hash functions are an essential part of, not only of the bitcoin protocol, but of information security as a whole. In the following article we’ll take a look at some simple examples of how they work, with a simple demonstration, too. In the abstract, a hash function is a mathematical process that takes input data of any size, performs an operation on it, and returns output data of a fixed size.
A common use of this kind of hash function is to store passwords. When you create a user account with any web service which requires a password, the password is run through a hash function, and the hash digest of the message is stored. This means that if a hacker is able to access the database containing the stored hashes, they will not be able to immediately compromise all user accounts because there is no easy way to find the password which produced any given hash. Simple hash functions in Python You can experiment with hash values using Python, a programming language installed on Mac and Linux operating systems by default. This tutorial will assume you’re using some version of either OS X or Linux, as using Python on Windows is more complicated.
First, open a terminal, type python and hit ENTER. This will put you into the Python REPL, an environment where you can try out Python commands directly as opposed to writing a programme in a separate file. And press ENTER to see the hash digest of that string. Hash functions in bitcoin In the bitcoin protocol, hash functions are part of the block hashing algorithm which is used to write new transactions into the blockchain through the mining process. In the code example above, we’ve already seen that changing a small part of the input for a hash function results in a completely different output.
It’s the need for this large amount of processing power that means new bitcoins get mined over a long period of time, not all at once. Any crypto basics you’d like explained next? How to get started with Bitcoin mining. Before we begin Before you read further, please understand that most bitcoin users don’t mine! But if you do then this Bitcoin miner is probably the best deal. Bitcoin mining for profit is very competitive and volatility in the Bitcoin price makes it difficult to realize monetary gains without also speculating on the price. If you want to get bitcoins based on a fixed amount of mining power, but you don’t want to run the actual hardware yourself, you can purchase a mining contract.
Another tool many people like to buy is a Bitcoin debit card which enables people to load a debit card with funds via bitcoins. Bitcoin mining is a lot like a giant lottery where you compete with your mining hardware with everyone on the network to earn bitcoins. For each new hash that is tried, the mining software will use a different number as the random element of the block header, this number is called the nonce. 93ef6f358fbb998c60802496863052290d4c63735b7fe5bdaac821de96a53a9a You can look at this hash as a really long number. It’s a hexadecimal number, meaning the letters A-F are the digits 10-15. To ensure that blocks are found roughly every ten minutes, there is what’s called a difficulty target.
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To create a valid block your miner has to find a hash that is below the difficulty target. 00db27957bd0ba06a5af9e6c81226d74312a7028cf9a08fa125e49f15cae4979 Because the target is such an unwieldy number with tons of digits, people generally use a simpler number to express the current target. This number is called the mining difficulty. The mining difficulty expresses how much harder the current block is to generate compared to the first block.