Bitcoin wallet dat

bitcoin wallet

A few days ago I observed a Bitcoin wallet.dat on a Macbook from 2011. Here is how I managed to cash in on it.

bitcoin wallet

In 2011 my employer despatched me and a co-employee to the Netherlands for two weeks to work on a studies task. There, for the first time, someone instructed me approximately Bitcoin. While I discovered the thoughts charming I could not make quite a few feel of it. And honestly there was no way the way to ever both purchase some thing or switch any bitcoins to real fiat cash. Nevertheless, I established Bitcoin center v0.three.19 BETA on my MacBook Pro, and one way or the other managed to get my fingers on a fragment of a bitcoin. Today, the cost of that fraction is enough to shop for me new pc or pass on a holiday for a few days. I don’t quite don’t forget whether or not I managed to get those fractions thru mining, or whether or not one of the participants of the choices research project transferred it to my account as a small gift. Certainly, again then it did no longer have plenty of value.

bitcoin wallet

Fast ahead. I am still the use of said MacBook from 2011 to watch films once in a while as it has an in-built DVD player and in reality works extra or less flawlessly nevertheless these days. I in no way afflicted to re-layout its difficult disk, and that’s my luck. While starting the DVD player software I all at once spotted an set up of Bitcoin Core that I have absolutely managed to ignore at some point of all those years. I commenced the choices application and found an deal with. With zero bitcoins. I browsed a piece in addition and realized that there has been additionally a 2d deal with, not displayed with default settings, and that 2nd deal with claimed to comprise said fractions of a bitcoin.

I changed into thrilled. I went to the internet to test. The deal with indeed contained some fractions of a bitcoin. I searched my report machine for a wallet.dat record and got fortunate. There it became, beneath ~/Library/Application Support/Bitcoin/.

First, I made certain all my Wifi and Bluetooth connections on the choices computer had been turned off, and the choices computer changed into not related to the choices net. Better secure than sorry. Second, I created a safety copy of the choices whole directory and put it on a reminiscence stick. Third, I eliminated all get right of entry to rights from the pockets.dat file using sudo chmod a-rwx wallet.dat to ensure nobody, besides myself, could with the aid of mistake or with bad purpose study out or regulate the choices pockets.

And then the choices actual work started out. Note: I actually have in no way definitely seemed into the complete Bitcoin affair greater in-intensity. I’m truly skeptical that it’s so secure as many people agree with certainly because of the choices reality that the massive miners certainly build something kind of an oligopoly. Some argue the choices huge-scale bitcoin miners in China/Asia might not have the ability or inclined to manipulate the blockchain despite the reality there are not too lots of them left. But that’s a exceptional subject matter. What I desired become to get cash out of the choices BTCs in my wallet. How is it completed?

The first trouble I faced become that the mounted model of Bitcoin Core v0.3.19 BETA, irrespective of whether it might have labored nonetheless or not (probably not, however I did no longer even trouble to check), I did now not take into account to be steady anymore. Also my laptop did now not have any updates in years, so I did no longer bear in mind the choices computer to be stable neither.

And, to complicate matters, I changed into not even positive whether my pockets was encrypted or not, and if so, what the choices password would were. I could have been capable of bet it, however I become not certain.

I personal a new MacBook Pro, so in concept I could have hooked up a new version of Bitcoin Core there and then try to import the old pockets.dat. But the problem turned into that Bitcoin Core nowadays require at least 320 GB of disk space, and I most effective have 512 GB to be had, with kind of 1/2 of it already crammed. So, there definitely became not enough disk area to be had.

After a good deal studying I decided to put in Electrum wallet as a substitute. The difference among Bitcoin Core and Electrum is that the choices latter is a so-known as simplified charge verification (SPV) wallet. In short, the consequence is that Electrum does now not require to download the full 320 GB of blockchain history, but instead is a fully useful pockets this is nevertheless sufficiently steady for almost all of functions, although now not exactly as stable as the Bitcoin Core pockets. At least for the choices fraction of bitcoins I owned it appeared to be stable sufficient. I changed into a bit paranoid, so I even checked the choices checksum the usage of GPG Suite after downloading it to ensure it hadn’t been fiddled around with. Apparently, a while ago there had existed a faux internet site referred to as which supplied a manipulated version of Electrum, so some paranoia might truely be justified.

Next hassle turned into that I had no clue a way to import my 2011 Bitcoin pockets.dat into Electrum. I searched round and found this put up from 2017 that in the long run became out to be quite helpful yet leaving out some details. From what I understood from this site and other related cloth there was really no manner the way to import my old pockets.dat file into Electrum, they were incompatible.

…and confronted the following trouble. According to the installation commands it turned into required to pip deploy several Python 2.7 libraries that have been totally simple to install. My model of Mac OS X Catalina (10.15.7) is shipped with a Python version 2.7. However, I did now not want to fiddle around with that version to avoid overwriting a few gadget libraries with newer variations by way of mistake and probably reason a few Mac OS X methods to fail. Unfortunately, Python 2.7 does not well aid virtual environments. So, I determined to comply with the MacPorts path.

This is from pywallet’s installation commands:

You may additionally run into troubles in case you don’t have xcode installed, which I fortunately had and did not must hassle approximately that any further.

I determined now not to simply transfer the Python version with MacPorts, but virtually directly talk to the choices set up Python 2.7 model that is specific from my gadget’s pre-set up one. This new installation was to be found in /opt/neighborhood/Library/Frameworks/Python.framework/Versions/2.7/, and there was a python2 executable within the ./bin folder.

On my new laptop I had created a duplicate of my antique laptop’s entire directory with the pockets.dat document. Then I ran pywallet:

I became no longer certain this will paintings, because the choices pockets.dat could have been password protected. I decided to attempt my good fortune…

…and turned into fortunate! It labored like a allure. As it grew to become out, most wallets from Bitcoin Core from 2011 are actually no longer encrypted. Apparently, this was now not enforced back then by Bitcoin Core v0.three.19 BETA, and I changed into genuinely able to open my json file and read out its content material.

The json report contained plenty and lots of different addresses, together with their non-public and public keys. What a multitude. A traditional access looked like so:

After lots of analyzing up I finally understood that Electrum required the 51 individual string inside the “sec” discipline. This is in essence a pockets import layout (WIF) Base58 encoded non-public key. In my scenario, having nevertheless get entry to to the vintage Bitcoin Core set up from 2011 I also knew exactly which address could include the bitcoins. If I had not recognized that then I could have needed to undergo the choices pain of extracting all addresses with a script and checking all of towards some public website or service to peer which one actually contains the choices bitcoins. This is defined in just superficial information in already mentioned article. Pywallet surely consists of a command for this reason, wherein the blockchain address corresponds to the choices price of the “addr” discipline above.

Also, you may want to build in a small waiting time between requests to not get blocked by means of the choices blockchain facts issuer service.

In my case I could truely look for the corresponding entry inside the json record.

With that facts I could not begin my Electrum utility. I had set up Electrum v4.x. After beginning, I first selected create new wallet, supplied a call, and then decided on Import Bitcoin addresses or non-public keys. At a few factor inside the manner I additionally had to choose a sturdy password if I bear in mind efficaciously.

In the input field I handiest needed to enter the 51 individual long WIF Base58 encoded private key, then I should click the next button.

Now I was ready. What harassed me first turned into that Electrum does not show the addresses themselves, you need to explicitly enable those within the menu under > View > Show Addresses.

Great. No import of 320 GB statistics needed at best minimal lack of agree with. (It might be clever a good way to examine up on Electrum’s security first and which servers it connects to and what in addition options it offers you.)

Now I had to find an deal with to send my BTCs to, then change the BTCs to my nearby forex, and subsequently withdraw the choices money. The scenario has changed considerably from 2011 – but it’s nevertheless now not a painfree method.

First, I checked a few neighborhood bitcoin ATMs that I had read approximately within the press. Well, in case you are prepared to spend a few outrageous commissions of 3.five% – five.7% of the quantity of cash withdrawn PLUS extra costs for whatever PLUS accept that now and again the choices ATMs are simply empty with out notifying you PLUS accept that some of them don’t allow you to withdraw extra money than ca. a thousand CHF at a time PLUS some random errors messages, then this might be a truely notable choice for you. For me it wasn’t. I then commenced studying on trading platforms and how they paintings. A co-worker counseled me to strive out Lykke claiming they did no longer rate more prices to transfer fiat money to any financial institution account through the choices SWIFT payment gadget. I briefly also looked at who notified me at some tiers at some stage in the registration method that the choices minimum deposit be 10k CHF. Thanks, but no thanks. I also looked at however subsequently determined to installation an account on Registration process went more or much less easy, just some minor hiccups that reputedly my unfastened e mail I’ve been the usage of for years became silently not frequent without any blunders messages being displayed anywhere. This induced me to scratch my head a chunk, however in the end I settled for a gmail deal with instead and that worked. But that best led me to the very primary account with which you can do basically nothing. To be capable of exchange bitcoins to fiat money after which to withdraw I had to offer a foto of my identification card, add a few bank statement as evidence, take a selfie, provide them my fingerprints and DNA pattern and I became suitable to move. Well, the last two are an exaggeration, however you get the choices drill.

With all that done I waited for ca. four hours, then received another e-mail that my software become frequent and voilà.

The web device turned into truely easy to use. There turned into a blockchain address given to me to ship my bitcoins to, and then, with a lot trembling and praying, from my Electrum utility I sent all my bitcoins to stated blockchain cope with in my Lykke account. This cost me a small fraction of my BTCs in accordance to how the choices whole blockchain protocol for bitcoin works. (If you don’t recognise what I’m talking about here, you could want to read up on Electrum ETA. Transactions on blockchain are not loose, however they may be not too costly neither.) Maybe I must have commenced with sending only a fraction of it, I contemplated afterwards, while ready until the blockchain had standard my price. But after ca. half-hour I had enough confirmations and the bitcoins did arrive at my Lykke account. 😀

Next step was to trade them from BTCs to CHFs. Trading device was clean to use if you are used to that sort of issue. If not, I enormously recommend you get a few help. There probably is not an excessive amount of you may do wrong – apart from inadvertedly buying or selling the incorrect crypto-foreign money or the incorrect type of fiat money. The trade took ca. 30 minutes to be settled, with many partial fillings until someone bought the large rest of my marketed BTCs.

And now I had fiat cash on my Lykke account. I haven’t but attempted transfering it with SWIFT to my financial institution account, but the capability is simply clearly, and from what I’ve understood there ought to no longer rise up any additional expenses. In assessment to the choices ATMs the choices whole technique was nearly loose.