Mining FAQ – Frequently asked questions about mining

General questions What is mining? What are the miner's Internet access requirements? How much do miners earn? How to remotely manage a farm? How to start mining in solo mode? How to set up mining on Linux? Mining in pools What is a pool? What happens if two miners enter the pool under one worker? I mine in the pool and find the block. Can I not give it to the pool and take all the BTC for myself? How can a miner check the honesty of the pool, that he gives all transactions in the task and does not ignore objectionable ones? What is pool hopping? Questions about ASIC miners (SHA256 and Scrypt) What is an ASIC miner? What is the difference between Scrypt ASIC and SHA256 ASIC? What is dual miner? What are ASIC miners? Who releases ASIC for mining? Which miners are now the most reliable and popular? How to set ASIC miner to solo mode? Is it possible to set up an ASIC miner to work in p2pool? What software is used in ASIC miners? How to “overclock” ASIC miners? What power supply to use for ASIC miners? Mining on the GPU and the archive Which video cards are suitable for mining? What cryptocurrencies can be mined on video cards? How many graphics cards can I use on one computer? What should I do if one or more of the installed video cards are not displayed in the miner? The speed has dropped after updating the driver, what should I do? On one of the video cards, the performance is significantly lower Guiminer window is not displayed, only the tray icon. How to fix? Radeon HD 7*** is not detected in miners on Windows XP, what should I do? What to do if the video card is not visible through the 1x riser? Blue screen of death and error 0x000000ea ati2dvag, what to do? I have problems with reducing the memory frequency on the video card in AfterBurner, what should I do? General questions What is mining? Mining (from English. mining) in the mining industry means the development of deposits, in our case, the extraction of “virtual gold” – Bitcoin. Miners (miner, miners) – people who are engaged in mining, or specialized devices for mining. From a technical point of view, mining is the calculation of a block header hash, which includes, among other things, the previous block header hash, the transaction set hash, and a random number. If the hash value is less than the current target (which is inversely proportional to the difficulty), a new block is formed and the miner gets 25 newly created bitcoins. If the hash is greater than the target, the random number is changed and a new hash is calculated. This is done billions of times per second by every miner. Mining can be economically profitable depending on various factors: BTC exchange rate against other currencies, current difficulty, cost of electricity, available hardware, etc.. Mining requires very large computing power, and the more there are in the network, the more complexity will increase and the less each “miner” will receive, but the more the network itself will be protected, because. in order to introduce false information and accept it by the network, such capacities will be required that the attack will become economically unprofitable. Even at a fairly early stage of its development, the total computing power of the Bitcoin network exceeded the hash rate of the world's fastest supercomputer. This is the result of the super profits that the “miners” received. For example, in June 2011. or fall 2013. buying a top video card for mining paid for itself in just a couple of weeks, if not faster. Now the payback of even the most powerful ASIC miners at normal electricity rates is about six months or even more. Read more about the basics of mining in our article. What are the miner's Internet access requirements? Mining traffic depends on the number of devices, their performance, as well as the minimum complexity of decisions that the pool takes. For one properly configured device, the traffic is no more than 10 Kb / s, that is, a Dial-Up connection is enough, the main thing is its stability. Miners without a stable wired connection often use 3G modems with the cheapest unlimited plan. If you have several tens or even hundreds of devices, you will need a thicker channel. How much do miners earn? The Bitcoin system is decentralized, it contains the principles of changing the complexity of generating coins, depending on the total power of the system. Difficulty changes every 2016 blocks so that on average six blocks are solved per hour. Thus, the change in difficulty occurs approximately every 14 days. But if the network power increases, then the complexity changes earlier (increases), and if the network power drops, then the complexity changes later (decreases). The entire history of difficulty changes can be viewed in the form of graphs at the link. See the forecast for the next difficulty change on the main page of our site. You can calculate your earnings on Bitcoin Mining Calculator. You just need to enter your speed in Mhash/s and click “Calculate”. If you do not know your speed, then you can calculate it by the name and number of devices in this table. The Bitcoin rate does not depend on the complexity, this complexity indirectly depends on the rate. Buyers of BTC don't care how difficult it was to generate those BTC. You can get acquainted with the current rate at the link where: Latest Price – the last completed transaction Bid – demand Ask – offer Also, you can follow the rate in real time on other sites, the most complete list of them can be found in the article Statistics and monitoring. How to remotely manage a farm? On operating systems of the Windows family, you cannot use Remote Desktop (RDP) to manage farms, because. it works with its virtual graphics card. Having stopped mining, you will not start it again, because. graphics cards will not be detected correctly. Use third party tools like TeamViewer, *VNC and more. Under linux (Ubuntu, XUbuntu, Debian) lightGDM does not allow getting graphics card resources in remote console. Everything works fine with GDM. Checked with cgminer, diablo. How to start mining in solo mode? Bitcoin mining in solo mode is now almost unrealistic if you do not have your own data center with several thousand modern ASIC miners. However, for some forks, solo mining is still effective. Let's describe the process using Bitcoin as an example: First, go along the path “%appdata%Bitcoin” (for example, in Windows 7: “C:UsersusernameAppDataRoamingBitcoin”). Create a text file. We enter three lines into it: server=1 rpcuser=user rpcpassword=pass (without quotes, come up with user and pass yourself). Then rename the file to “bitcoin.conf” Setting cgminer: 1. Go to the folder with cgminer 2. Create a txt file and enter into it: cgminer -u http://name:[email protected]:8332/ -k phatk DEVICE=0 VECTORS WORKSIZE=128 (we take our settings, name and password from bitcoin.conf) 3. Rename the file to “runsolo.bat” and run. For solo mining on ASIC, the above address, name and password must be entered in the miner settings. However, not all ASICs support the getwork protocol used by the wallet.. You may need to install additional software. How to set up mining on Linux? A fairly detailed article on setting up mining on Linux, in particular Ubuntu, can be found here – Bitcoin mining for Ubuntu. Mining in pools What is a pool? Currently, everyone who finds a block gets 25 BTC.. It is very difficult to do this alone if you do not have very large computing power.. To solve this problem, there are pools, there can be many of them in the network. The pool brings together miners for a common search and solution of blocks. More detailed information about joint generation pools, their modes of operation and examples of setting up miners can be found in the Pools article. What happens if two miners enter the pool under one worker? It all depends on the pool. Most pools allow multiple connections under one worker. The pool simply takes into account all solutions from multiple devices in the same way as for one. Do not forget that the worker on the pool is tied to a specific account, and all income is received by its owner.. It doesn't matter where the devices themselves are and who they belong to. I mine in the pool and find the block. Can I not give it to the pool and take all the BTC for myself? No, it won't work. Each miner in the pool searches for a block according to server tasks, from a technical point of view, this is equivalent to the fact that all devices that send solutions belong to the pool. When any of the miners connected to the pool finds a block, the reward transaction goes to the pool wallet. And only after that, the software that keeps track of the work of the miners distributes the reward between them. But if the owner of the pool is a scammer, he can appropriate all the found bitcoins for himself, and there is nothing you can do about it. The owners of most large Bitcoin pools are known, but small fork pools are often anonymous.. Therefore, when choosing a pool, be careful and withdraw what you have mined to your wallet as often as possible. How can a miner check the honesty of the pool, that he gives all transactions in the task and does not ignore objectionable ones? The miner at the time of generation cannot check what is included in the block and what is not, because. only the task for generating the block header comes to generation. The miner can learn about the bad behavior of the pool only after the fact, after receiving the finished block. What is pool hopping? Pool hopping is an intentional transition from pool to pool in order to catch a period of luck (“short” blocks) and thus earn more coins than it would be if you constantly work on one pool. In fact, this is a cheat that pools are fighting with the introduction of a delay in the output of statistics, the introduction of rating systems and other methods.. As a rule, on pools with a PPLNS accrual system, such jumps do not justify themselves, since even a short absence of a miner on the pool reduces his income for a long period of time (4-12 hours). Questions about ASIC miners (SHA256 and Scrypt) What is an ASIC miner? ASIC (abbreviation for English. Application Specific Integrated Circuit, “Special Purpose Integrated Circuit”) is a microcircuit specialized for solving a specific problem.. Unlike general-purpose integrated circuits, specialized chips are used in a specific device and perform strictly limited functions that are specific only to this device.. An example of an ASIC would be a chip designed exclusively for mobile phone control, hardware encoding/decoding chips for audio and video signals (signal processors). ASICs are used for mining because, due to a strictly defined structure, the process of manufacturing microcircuits is greatly reduced, and also because of the narrow specialization of chips, the productivity and energy efficiency of mining increase. What is the difference between Scrypt ASIC and SHA256 ASIC? The Scrypt hashing algorithm was designed specifically to counter faster devices – first graphics cards, then FPGAs and ASICs.. Therefore, it is “more complex” than SHA256 (more number, more rounds of calculation) and it requires significantly more RAM to calculate. This makes the production of such ASICs more costly. What is dual miner? This is a miner that can perform calculations simultaneously using two hashing algorithms – Scrypt and SHA256. The developers placed computing cores on one chip to calculate both algorithms, however, each type of core can only count according to its “own” algorithm. This makes such a device universal, but greatly increases the cost of production and heat dissipation, which does not have the best effect on payback.. Now only one company produces this type of ASIC – in the past Gridseed, and now SFARDS. What are ASIC miners? Mining devices are available in several form factors, based on different categories of customers – compact, home and professional. Compact miners are usually inserted into the USB connector and powered through it.. In comparison with the “big brothers” they are the smallest and weakest. This is what the first generation chips from ASICminer – one of the first ASIC manufacturers for mining – called USB Block Erupter look like. Its characteristics: 300Mh/s, 1.05V, 335MHz, 6x6mm. and 4.2 W at 1 Gh/s. Later, compact miners were produced on chips from Bitfury and Coincraft, and even Antminer of the U * series, but were not in demand, as they brought purely nominal income and eventually turned into souvenirs. Home and professional miners essentially differ only in size, case type and power consumption, all other characteristics are identical. Home devices usually have cheaper cases and weak fans, they are smaller and lighter, and an average 600-700 W PSU is enough to power them.. Typical representatives of this class are Antminer S1/S3/S5. “Professional” miners are designed to be placed in datacenters and are usually mounted in 19” server racks.. They have built-in PSUs (sometimes several) with a power higher than a kilowatt, a well-thought-out cooling system and powerful server fans, very noisy, but effective.. Typical representatives are Antminer S2/S4, Terraminer from Cointerra, Coincraft Rig from Bitmine. ASIC miners are compared according to the following characteristics: 1) The technological process of the chip 2) Performance in Gh / s (gigaheshes per second) or Tx / s (terahashes per second), where 1 Tx / s u003d 1000 Gh / s) 3) Energy consumption per 1 Gh/s – for example, 1 W/Gh/s 4) Cost of 1 Gh/s – for example, 0.5$ per Gh/s 5) Average chip operation temperature – °C (depends on the technical process, on average 40-60 °C) Who releases ASIC for mining? Own ASIC chips and ready-made devices on them are now produced (or produced) by several companies: Bitmaintech Bitfury Avalon Innosilicon (Scrypt) SFARDS (Dual miner) – no longer manufactured Spondoolies-Tech – no longer manufactured KnCminer – no longer manufactured ASICminer – no longer manufactured Zeus (Scrypt) – no longer produced Which miners are the most reliable and popular now? Miners from Bitmaintech are rightfully considered the most deserving for Bitcoin mining, as the company has never seriously let its customers down. Bitfury is also reliable but does not retail. Current model: ANTMINER S9 by Bitmain with BM1387 chips Specifications: Performance: 13 T/s ±5% Power consumption: 1300 W from wall outlet Energy efficiency: 0.1 W/GH/s from wall outlet Voltage: 12V Operating temperature: 30 °C – 90 °C Of the miners based on the Scrypt algorithm, the Terminator devices from Innosilicon are the most popular. Current model: TERMINATOR A2 90Mh/s from Innosilicon Specifications: Capacity: 90Mh/s ±5% Power consumption: 1000W or 1kW Energy efficiency: 1.1W/Mh/s Voltage: 12V Temperature: 40°C – 90°C As configure ASIC miner in solo mode? Unfortunately, due to different types of firmware for ASIC miners, a different setup method must be applied to each model.. Some miners do not work in solo mode at all. Is it possible to set up an ASIC miner to work in p2pool? Configuring an ASIC to work with P2Pool is possible, as with any other pool, but you will have to configure the P2Pool node yourself. For example, according to this instruction. The reward is distributed in the same way as on the PPLNS pool, but with some difference – the reward does not stay on the pool for some time, but goes directly to your wallet. P2pool works on the principle of “master your own”. By the way, it is p2pool that provides real decentralization – the most important reason for the success of Bitcoin. What software is used in ASIC miners? As you know, each manufacturer has its own firmware for the miner, but almost all include CGMiner or BFGminer due to the flexibility of settings and support for all methods of connecting to the pool. The firmware of most modern ASIC miners is based on Linux and has a convenient web interface that allows you to manage network settings, connect to pools, adjust frequency and voltage, view detailed miner statistics, monitor malfunctions, update firmware, and much more. Bitmain Antminer S5 interface: There are numerous custom firmware versions, each with its own features, such as extranonse.subscribe support or more customizations. How to “overclock” ASIC miners? Most miners have the ability to overclock, the potential of which depends on the manufacturer and chip technology. Antminers from factory frequencies are usually overclocked by 10-30%, while KnC chips can sometimes be overclocked almost twice. But be extremely careful with overclocking miners, power consumption rises sharply from an increase in frequency.. Chips or power circuits may not withstand overclocking, as a result, you may lose both the miner itself and other equipment. On some ASIC miners, the operating frequency is deliberately lowered to increase stability (for example, Bitmain Antminer S2 and S4). As a result of overclocking, you can get a much more productive, but less stable miner. What power supply to use for ASIC miners? In modern mining devices, 6-pin power connectors have become an unspoken standard, similar to connectors for connecting additional power to PCI-E video cards.. They were chosen for their small size and maximum compatibility with mass PSUs. In choosing the ideal power supply, the opinions of miners (people) differ. Some prefer used server PSUs due to stability, good efficiency and low price, others prefer ATX power supplies for home PCs due to the fact that depreciation (gradual reduction in price and wear) hardly affects them. When choosing a power supply for a miner, you need to look not at the total power of the PSU, but precisely on the + 12V channel. Here the choice is up to you. To run an ATX power supply without a motherboard, you need to close 2 pins as shown in the image: GPU mining and archive Which video cards are suitable for mining? The older models of Radeon HD video cards of the 5xxx, 7xxx and R9 xxx series show themselves in the best way in mining. Old NVIDIA video cards, due to their architecture, show a low level of performance in this type of computing.. But starting with the GTX 7xx series based on the Maxwell architecture, with the latest drivers, Nvidia cards are not inferior to Radeons and even often surpass them in energy efficiency. For GPU mining, AMD APP SDK / Nvidia CUDA must be installed on the computer, either as part of a driver or separately. What cryptocurrencies can be mined on video cards? Since Bitcoin, Litecoin and their direct forks using the same hashing algorithms (SHA256 and Scrypt) are already mined on specialized devices (ASIC), only those cryptocurrencies remained for video cards where ASIC development is still impossible or unprofitable. It is still possible to mine altcoins on GPU with the following algorithms: X11, X13, X15, Scrypt-N, Scrypt-jane, SHA-3 (Keccak), Quark and all the others for which GPU mining software already exists. How many graphics cards can I use on one computer? Driver limitation – maximum 8 cores, i.e. 8 graphics cards or 4 dual processor graphics cards. It is worth noting that the more cores are used, the more unstable the system behaves.. Running and managing from 6 video cards on 1 computer can already be quite problematic, and it will not work on any motherboard, OS and driver version. PSU requirements are also increasing, most often risers are required, preferably with additional power, in order to reduce consumption from the PCI-E bus of the motherboard. Also, with an increase in the number of GPUs, it is necessary to install more RAM. What should I do if one or more of the installed video cards are not displayed in the miner? There are many options. why can this happen. You can remove the video card from the devices and let it be found again. If it does not help, then check if there are any remnants of deleted or rearranged cards in the system that cause failures. There are times when the video card goes into “hidden devices”, then before deleting it is necessary to configure their display as follows: on the “My Computer” icon, right-click, select “Properties” (or Win + Break). In the system properties, go to the “Advanced” tab (for Vista, 7, 2008, etc.. in the properties of the computer, first you need to click “Advanced system settings”) and at the very bottom click the button “Environment Variables”. In the system variables, create the DEVMGR_SHOW_NONPRESENT_DEVICES variable and assign the value 1 to it. After that, open the device manager, in the “View” menu, turn on the display of hidden devices and delete the hidden video cards. The speed has dropped after updating the driver, what should I do? Starting with driver version 11.12, the problem of 100% CPU core utilization has been fixed, but the mining speed has dropped slightly compared to version 11.11 and previous. To restore the previous speed, unzip the contents of the OCL Library archive to disk in the Windows folder with replacement. If the system informs that the file is busy with the process, then close the miner program. There are two folders in the archive, for each of the bitness of the OS. On one of the video cards, the performance is significantly lower. This problem can occur on the “first” video card that displays an image on the active monitor, but the monitor is not connected to it. In this case, you need to connect a monitor or “stub” to this card.. First, insert the DVI>VGA adapter, then insert the 75 ohm resistors as in the diagram: This problem occurs quite rarely on a variety of systems and its origin may be due, for example, to outdated drivers, BIOS, or simply an unfortunate hardware combination. If you are unlucky, use the method described above. Guiminer window not showing, only tray icon. How to fix? This glitch is due to the fact that the miner window is displayed outside the visible limits of the screen. There are two ways to overcome it: 1. Highlight the Guiminer tab in the taskbar to make it active. Press the key combination Win + Left Arrow. The miner window will be displayed at the left border of the screen. 2. Close Guiminer. Open the configuration file poclbm.ini, it is located in %appdata%poclbm (for example, for Win7 it is C:UsersuserAppDataRoamingpoclbm) and change the values in the “window_position” block to the following: “window_position”: [ 546 , 353, 579, 318 ] After that, run Guiminer again, the problem should disappear Radeon HD 7*** is not detected in miners on Windows XP, what should I do? Radeon HD 7*** is not displayed in miners because. Windows XP does not support OpenCL for series 7*** and above. This is a limitation in AMD drivers and applies to all versions of Windows XP.. We can recommend using more modern operating systems, for example, Windows 7 or 8. What should I do if the video card is not visible through the 1x riser? Different motherboards and video cards have different attitudes to if instead of PCI-E 16x the connection goes through PCI-E 1x. PCI-E 1x bandwidth is enough for mining, and the PCI-E standard itself supports such a feint, but the video card connection signal can go through unused contacts, and the video card will not be able to work correctly. In this case, the easiest way is to close the hotplug signal on the connector with a wire, for this you need to make a revision by connecting the contacts in the connector in this way: Blue screen of death and error 0x000000ea ati2dvag, what should I do? You need to uninstall the drivers and reinstall them. The nuance is that after deletion, 2 ATI libraries remain in the Windows / system32 folder, which are not automatically deleted even by special utilities such as Driver Cleaner. They need to be removed manually, and then install new drivers. I have problems with reducing the memory frequency on the video card in AfterBurner, what should I do? If downclocking of RAM does not work, try setting UnofficialOverclockingMode = 2 in the configuration file. If this does not help, then you can try the following trick: section Defaults in each profile, do this: [Defaults] Format=2 PowerLimit=0 CoreClk=750000 MemClk=600000 FanMode=1 FanSpeed=25 Then set it there: [Profile5] Format=2 PowerLimit=10 CoreClk=820000 MemClk=300000 FanMode=1 FanSpeed=44 Voila, if there are 4 or more identical cards in the system, just run AB, set “synchronize settings of identical GPUs” in the settings, the default memory frequency for all will be the maximum (default), and not the one that is written in profile, but press the profile hot button and everyone is set to 300mhz.