How to create a secure Bitcoin wallet
You have probably heard of Bitcoin to have found your way here. So i’m not going into the technicalities. To keep it simple, Bitcoin is a peer-to-peer open source digital currency and payment network with no central authority.
Bitcoins are stored in a Bitcoin wallet which consists of either an online wallet or offline wallet. It is fine to store your Bitcoins in an online wallet for day-to-day trading. But for your savings account, it is safer to store it in an offline wallet. We will guide you through on how to completely secure your Bitcoin wallet and stored in a thumb drive.
Guide to create a secure Bitcoin wallet
Since you will be storing your offline wallet in a thumb drive, you will need a thumb drive before getting started with this tutorial. I will recommend that you have more than one thumb drive as a backup just in case something happens to your main.
Step 1 : Ubuntu Operating System
The reason it is so secure is because we will be using Ubuntu operating system to avoid any spyware, malware and viruses. Download Ubuntu from the official site, ubuntu.com. Then you can move on to the next step. We will need the downloaded file later.
Step 2 : Universal USB Installer
Next is to make a bootable thumb drive. It is quite easy as we will use a simple program to assist us in creating the bootable thumb drive.
- Go to the Universal Installer Site to download the USB installer.
- Once the download completes, install the program.
Step 3 : Create a bootable thumb drive
Launch Universal USB Installer.
- Step 1 : select Ubuntu.
- Step 2 : select the Ubuntu file you have downloaded earlier.
- Step 3 : select your thumb drive. If it does not show up, restart the program with your thumb drive plugged in.
- We want to start with a clean thumb drive, so under Step 3, tick the tiny box to format the thumb drive.
- Click create and let it run.
Step 4 : Before restarting in Ubuntu
So you have everything ready to boot up your machine to run Ubuntu. But before you do a reboot, read on the following steps and remember our page at RumorsCity.com so that you can come back and refer, in case you need to.
Step 5 : Reboot to Ubuntu
- With the thumb drive plugged in, restart your computer.
- It should start Ubuntu automatically, if not, hit Esc or Del key while your computer is booting up.
- Important: select Run Ubuntu from USB drive from the popup. Do not install Ubuntu so that you do not keep any information on your computer and will have a fresh operating system each time you access your wallet.
Step 6 : Download Bitcoin client
Once you have successfully booted into Ubuntu operating system, the next step is to download the Bitcoin client.
- Connect to the internet.
- Download Bitcoin client from the official Bitcoin webpage. Choose the Linux version since you are not running Windows now.
- Extract the downloaded file and remember the location it’s extracted to.
Step 7 : Secure your Bitcoin wallet
You have everything ready and this is the final step where you store your Bitcoin wallet securely in a thumb drive.
- From the extracted folder, go to > Bin > 32. Launch Bitcoin client which is the file named bitcoin-qt.
- After you have launched the Bitcoin client, close it. The reason that we launch it is to create a wallet.dat file.
- Open Home folder, which is like your explorer in Windows.
- Move your mouse to the top left of the screen and you should be able to see a familiar Windows styled menu.
- Select Edit > Preferences.
- Tick on the box Show hidden and backup files. Then Close the dialog box.
- With the hidden files visible, go in to home > .bitcoin folder.
- Look for a file named wallet.dat and right click to copy it.
- Now while still in the program Home Folder, select your USB drive on the left side of the window. Right click to paste wallet.dat file to your thumb drive. You have successfully stored your Bitcoin wallet on the thumb drive, secured from malware and viruses.
Step 8 : Retrieve your wallet
In future, in order to open your secure Bitcoin wallet, boot Ubuntu from your thumb drive, then install Bitcoin client like you did in Step 6. Instead of continuing to Step 7, this time you will need to paste the wallet.dat file from your thumb drive to .bitcoin folder and you are good to go.
Important: Make sure you do not overwrite your wallet.dat file that’s stored securely on your thumb drive. To be safe, backup the same wallet.dat file on more than one thumb drive just in case something happens to the main. Then keep your thumb drive somewhere safe and you don’t have to worry about encrypting it.
You can continue using your online wallet for day-to-day trading, but only store an amount necessary for trading. And every now and then, you can transfer coins into your savings account which is your secured wallet on the bootable thumb drive. So you will have a peace of mind knowing no one can access to your savings while you were asleep and the only way for someone to steal your coins, will be to steal your physical wallet which is your thumb drive.
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