Lesson 11


Bitcoin Clients

VIDEO: Bitcoin Wallet - Download, Encrypt, Backup, & Use

Standard Bitcoin Client (bitcoin-qt)

General Information:

Bitcoins are stored in digital keys and digital signatures. Every specific private key gives access to your bitcoins. These keys can be stored anywhere. On a piece of paper, in your brain or be graved in stone. However, most commonly people store their keys in a special computer program called Bitcoin Client. The key files are stored within the client software in the "bitcoin wallet".

The private keys are stored within the Bitcoin wallet of the client software and allow the user to sign transactions and provide proof of ownership of the bitcoins included in the particular transaction.

Remember that everyone that has access to your private keys can access your bitcoins. It is therefore important to run the bitcoin client on a secure computer.

 

Bitcoin Core

Bitcoin Core is a full Bitcoin client and builds the backbone of the network. A full client means, that it stores the entire history of bitcoin transactions and manages the user's wallets. A full client can initiate transactions direclty on the bitcoin network. It does not require any additional software or third party services and is completely independent. The private keys are never communicated further and are stored locally on the machine where the full client is running. This however means, that when your computer is accessible by third parties like hackers, family members or colleagues, they keys in the client can potentially be stolen. Running a local Bitcoin client has increased personal responsibility and requires a high level of security. Even encrypted private keys can be stolen with the use of malicious software, such as keyloggers.


Installation steps

1) Download the client
Download the client from here (and only from here):
https://bitcoin.org/en/download

2) Follow the installation steps here:
https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Getting_started_installing_bitcoin-qt

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