Cryptocurrencies have grown quite popular in the past few years, so much so that it’s now fairly easy to get into this new avenue of investment even if you don’t have prior experience with it. You only need a few things to get started: capital, a cryptocurrency wallet, and a platform where you can trade your fiat money for the cryptocurrency of your choice.
If you don’t want to shell out money to play a meaningful role in the cryptocurrency community, however, you can still do so by turning to mining. In the world of digital currencies, mining refers to the competitive process of verifying and adding new transactions to the blockchain. To be a miner, you need both appropriate hardware and software to pursue this endeavor. The good news is that there are certain coins like Monero that can be mined using consumer-grade computers, so if you have the necessary hardware at home, you only need to find the right software for the job.
There are a lot of mining programs in the market, so the most difficult task at this point is choosing the one that best suits your needs. Here are a few tips on how you can do this with ease.
1. Find the Right Wallet for Your Cryptocurrency
The software you choose will make use of a number of details, including the wallet where you will store your earnings. If you’re mining Monero, for example, you need a Monero wallet for keeping the coins and tokens that you’ll get as a reward for your mining activities. The details of the said wallet, then, will be required while you’re setting up your mining rig.
2. Decide Whether or Not You Want to Mine Solo or With a Group
Mining is an activity that you can do all on your own, but there are also certain benefits that come if you combine your efforts with a group of other miners. While mining on your own means that you don’t have to share the fruits of your labor, the amount of work and resources that you need to invest can be quite considerable if you’re mining with others, however, you’re putting your mining rigs’ computing powers together to get the work done faster and more efficiently. This gives your group a better chance of being the first to verify a transaction, earning your mining pool rewards in the process. But because you’ve shared your resources to be able to mine successfully, you also have to share the earnings that you get from this activity.
3. Research Options to Include in Your Shortlist
Take note that not all mining programs are legitimate. There are scammers that make use of bogus programs and then steal their victims’ earnings. To avoid underhanded tactics that target newbie miners, it’s best to hang out with experienced miners and get their opinions on the topic.
If you haven’t done so yet, join forums and online communities that are dedicated to the miners of the coin you are partial to. Look for the old timers’ recommendations on the best mining software to use and what makes one different from another. While it’s still a smart idea to take the advice of internet strangers with a grain of salt, you’ll find that entertaining recommendations from experienced miners can help you find viable programs with all the tools and features you need to get a head start in mining.
4. Check If Your Choice Suits Your Technical Skills
There are mining programs that are more difficult to use than others, especially if you’re not too tech-savvy yourself. There are programs that work well with all sorts of operating systems, but there are also those that are designed to only work with Mac, PC, or Linux. At the same time, there are mining programs that offer users different interfaces, some of which can be more beginner-friendly than others.
Mining programs with an intuitive graphical user interface (GUI), for one, are much easier for newbie miners to use compared to mining software with a command-line interface. As you become more adept at determining what your mining operation requires, perhaps you can move on to mining software that can provide you with more options for customization.
The Important Role Miners Play in the Cryptocurrency Community
In a way, the role that miners play in the cryptocurrency community is akin to that of an auditor. By using computing power to solve hashes, they are verifying the legitimacy of the transactions and preventing double-spending or using the same coin twice. By doing what they do, miners take on the all-important job of keeping the members of the community honest and helping ensure the continued success of the cryptocurrency community that they are a part of.
If you have a decent computer around and are thinking of becoming a cryptocurrency miner yourself, keep the tips above in mind if you’re determined to go on this route. As you become more familiar with the activity and the capabilities afforded by your chosen hardware and software, you’ll be able to refine your mining process and make the most of this activity with minimal effort and resources.