How to mine Litecoin – CPU mining
Litecoin has seen some big gains lately. Within the last week of November, the price has skyrocketed for more than 400% and is now resting comfortably at around $30. If you are not familiar with Litecoin yet, it is a decentralized digital peer-to-peer currency used over internet based off the concepts of the popular Bitcoin. Litecoin runs on the network of users that employ it. Compared to Bitcoin where transaction confirmations takes 10 minutes, Litecoin has a faster confirmation time of 2.5 minutes. The number of Litecoins will reach its limit when 84 million is produced as opposed to Bitcoin’s limit of 21 million, and it’s projected that it won’t occur until 2040.
Litecoin uses a scrypt based algorithm, unlike Bitcoin’s SHA-256.The scrypt algorithm is more reliant on memory, not processing efficiency. That is the reason those specialized hardwares developed for Bitcoin mining will not work with Litecoin and making CPU mining more effective.
Litecoin mining guide – CPU mining
Before getting started, i would like to share that GPU mining would produce a much higher result than CPU mining if you are equipped with a decent GPU. You can learn more about GPU mining on our next tutorial,GPU mining guide.
Step 1 : Create a wallet
To start mining crypto-coins, you will need a wallet to store the digital currency. The client could be downloaded from the official Litecoin site. Choose and download the Litecoin client for your operating system then proceed to install it. The client will synchronize with the network to download the blockchain which contains all transactions ever performed. Remember it runs on the network of its users? It will take fairly long, so let it run while we move on.
I highly recommend that you take some measures to secure your wallet. The Litecoin client has a built in encryption which can be activated by going to Settings > Encrypt wallet. Enter the pass phrase and write it down to be kept somewhere safe. Losing your pass phrase will render the wallet useless as no one will be able to open it ever again. You can also learn more about securing your wallet from the tutorial on How to create a secure wallet.
Step 2 : Join a pool
We should look for a pool where multiple users work together to mine Litecoin and share the rewards based on work completed as it is not viable for solo mining anymore. I will be using coinotron for this tutorial. Register for an account at coinotron.com. After that, log in with the newly created account, select My Account and add a worker. Insert worker name and password. Also, remember to change Coin to LTC.
After added, you should see a screen similar to this:
Step 3 : Install a mining software
Pooler’s cpu miner is currently the fastest. You can download the version based on your operating system from here :
After the download is complete, extract the files to c:\ltcminer\
For cpu mining, you will also need to setup the mining proxy that supports the Stratum protocol. Download the windows binary from either here or here and place it at the same location where you have extracted the miner just now at c:\ltcminer\. For other platforms, the source code is available here. This should be how your c:\ltcminer\ folder look like now.
Next, start the mining proxy with the following command from cmd.exe :
c:\ltcminer\mining_proxy -pa scrypt -o coinotron.com -p 3334
Step 4 : Start mining
To start mining you have to run the following command at cmd.exe :
c:\ltcminer\minerd -a scrypt -r 1 -t 4 -s 6 -o http://127.0.0.1:8332 -O <login>:<password>
- -t is the number of threads, so set 1 for each core your cpu has.
- <login> is your username.worker which we have created at coinotron.com, for instance my login is ltcminer.worker1.
- <password> is the password for your worker, for instance my password is set as pass.
You can see the miner running with the total of 4 threads and the work being accepted. The total hashrate could also be seen as 37.87 khash/s.
To simplify things, so you do not need to memorize all the commands each time you start mining, you can create a shortcut on the desktop. Go to desktop, then right click on desktop and select New > Shortcut. Paste the command in to it and create the shortcut.
That’s about it for the tutorial on CPU mining.
Even CPU mining is still possible, GPU mining would provide more hashing power and Radeon 7950 is the most energy efficient card at the moment. Keep an eye for our next tutorial on How to mine Litecoin – GPU mining.