Bitcoin Mining: A Beginner’s Guide
One of the biggest problems that newcomers run into is finding advice online that is directed toward the beginner and not the advanced user. Luckily, this article aims to help solve the problem. Here, we’re going to take a look at bitcoin mining in simple terms.
1. You Need a Bitcoin Mining Rig
To start mining bitcoin, you need to have a bitcoin mining rig. There are tons of options to choose from and each will set you back a different amount. A good idea here is to use a bitcoin calculator and work out how long it will take you to break even on your purchase. If you have a spare $2,000, the Antminer S9 is an especially popular choice. If you think this sounds like too high a figure, though, you could also look into cloud mining where the cost is lower, but so are the returns.
2. Have Your Wallet Ready
You store your bitcoins in a bitcoin wallet. You’ll need to have this ready so you have somewhere to store any bitcoins that you mine. In order to do this, you need your wallet’s address. This will be a string of letters and numbers. If you are using a self-hosted wallet, you’ll also want to ensure you either save it to a thumb drive or print it off. The reason for this is that if your computer crashes while mining, you will lose everything.
3. Find a Mining Pool
So long as you’re not going down the cloud mining route, your next step is to find a mining pool. This is a group of miners who pool their resources in order to mine. You can go it alone, but unless you’re extremely lucky, it’s unlikely you will be successful. When mining in a group, you have a better chance of receiving a return on your investment, and you’ll find it much easier too.
Before joining any old group, though, make sure to find out the fee, the reward method, how frequently the rewards will be, how easy is it to withdraw your profit, and how stable the pool is. Only with these answers can you choose which pool to join.
4. Get a Mining Program
The last step in the process is to set up a mining program on your computer. This way, you will be able to monitor and control your mining rig. Most mining pools have their own software for you to install, but if they don’t you can check out this list of mining software here. 50Miner and BFGMiner seem to be the most popular choices for PC users, while MacMiner is a popular option for Apple.
5. Start Mining
Finally, you are ready to start mining. All you need to do now is plug your miner in, connect it to your computer, and open your mining software. Enter your username and password and your computer will automatically start mining for bitcoins. That’s basically all there is too it.