Before getting started with mining cryptocurrency, you should set yourself up with a few mining toys. When you have everything up and running, mining becomes rather easy because everything happens automatically. The only thing left to do is pay your electric bills at the end of each month. The list below highlights the particulars you need for mining.
- Get a crypto wallet.
- Make sure you have a strong Internet connection.
- Set up your high-end computer in a cool location. If you cannot afford one, you can always assemble a mining rig.
- Select the hardware to use based on the cryptocurrency you want to mine.
- If you want to mine solo (not recommended), download the whole cryptocurrency’s blockchain. Be prepared; for mature crypto, downloading the whole blockchain may take days.
- Get a mining software package.
- Join a mining pool.
- Make sure your expenses are not exceeding your rewards.
Mining profitability can change drastically based on cryptocurrency value, mining difficulty, electricity rates, and hardware prices at the time you are setting up your mining system. You can go to mining websites to see which are best to mine at a given time. As of September 2018, for example, the most profitable cryptocurrency to mine was Verge (XVG), while Bitcoin was, ranked number seven.
Different types of cryptocurrencies may require different types of hardware for best mining results. However, for cryptocurrencies without dedicated hardware, such as Ethereum, graphics processing units (GPUs) are good enough to process the transactions. Of course, GPUs are still slow at mining compared to mining farms.
Mining software handles the actual mining process. If you are a solo miner, the software connects your machine to the blockchain to become a mining node or a miner. If you mine with a pool, the software connects you to the mining pool. The main job of the software is to deliver the mining hardware’s work to the rest of the network and to receive completed work from the other miners on the network. It also shows statistics such as the speed of your miner and fan, your hash rate, and the temperature. Again, you must search for the best software at the time you’re ready to start. Here are some popular ones at the time of writing:
Ethminer: Ethminer is the most popular software to mine Ethereum. It supports GPU hardware such as Nvidia and AMD.
CGminer: CGminer is one of the oldest and most popular examples of Bitcoin mining software. You can use it for pools like Cryptominers to mine different altcoins. It supports ASICs and GPUs.
XMR Stak: XMR Stak can mine cryptocurrencies like Monero and Aeon. It supports CPU and GPU hardware.
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