Bitcoin Mining Software – Full Guide
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Bitcoin made lots of headlines in 2017. But perhaps the biggest reason why the cryptocurrency became popular last year was that of its bullish run throughout the year. After opening 2017 at just under $1,000, Bitcoin surged up to $2,500 by June. Before the end of December, the cryptocurrency had already hit an all-time high of $19,000.
As the cryptocurrency grew in value rapidly, so did the number of Bitcoin miners. Bitcoin works in such a way that every payment must grow through a digital, decentralized public ledger known as a blockchain for verification. Bitcoin miners verify each Bitcoin transaction before it’s added permanently to the blockchain. This process is known as mining. While it may look complex, the process of verifying Bitcoin transactions is easy. With a Bitcoin mining hardware like an ASIC machine and the right Bitcoin mining software, anyone can start mining and earning Bitcoins.
What is a Bitcoin Mining Software?
When mining Bitcoins, you need a software program to connect you to the blockchain and to your Bitcoin mining pool. Most professional Bitcoin miners work in a pool to complete Bitcoin blocks fast.
The main purpose of Bitcoin mining software programs is to deliver the work done by the mining hardware to and from the blockchain. The software also monitors the input of your mining hardware in terms of speed, hash rate and temperatures and displays this data for you. Whether you want to mine Bitcoin as a hobby or as a profession, you need BTC mining software.
Are Bitcoin Mining Software programs Free?
Most Bitcoin mining software programs are available for free of charge. However, a few clients charge a percentage of your mining rewards. When looking for the best Bitcoin mining software, it’s important to prioritize its security, ease of use and features over whether it comes free of charge.
A lot of the freely available mining software programs are easily hacked. Cybercriminals often avail mining software that redirects a Bitcoin miner’s earnings from the mining pool to their wallets. Always research extensively to ensure your ideal software is legitimate, secure and easy to use before downloading it to your computer.
How Bitcoin Mining Software Works?
Mining Bitcoin software works in the same way as most programs. You start by downloading the program’s files and setting them up. Most mining software allows you to select your computer’s OS: Windows 32 bit, 64 bit, Linux, MAC, Ubuntu or other operating systems.
Once you successfully download the files, the program will self-extract or take you through the files’ extraction process. After that, you must enter your Bitcoin mining pool’s information. The program will often scan your computer for a connected Bitcoin mining rig and list important information about it.
After that, you can start mining. Some mining software programs will regularly list the profitability of your rigs since they can access the blockchain and read the mining difficulty.
Best Bitcoin Mining Software (Windows and Mac)
Bitcoin mining software programs have changed over the years. The best programs in 2018 are all compatible with ASIC mining rigs- the latest Bitcoin mining hardware. Here is a list of the top 5 programs for Windows and for MAC operating systems.
Best bitcoin mining software for windows
CGMiner is one of the most famous Bitcoin mining software for Windows. It’s one of the original mining programs launched when mining with CPU was still popular. CGMiner has an easy command line and directs you through the setup process.
Coded in C language, CGMiner connects with ASICs, GPUs, and CPUs to ensure both professional and hobbyist Bitcoin miners have access to a viable program. When you download its files, CGMiner asks for an URL to your mining pool and username before it scans for any available mining rigs. The program also comes with several special features:
- Customized for different types of mining machines.
- Has a feature for controlling the fan’s speed in your rigs.
- Detects when new blocks are added to the blockchain.
This Windows Bitcoin miner is designed in the same way as CGMiner, but it’s customized to support ASIC mining rigs alone. The program may still be connected to some GPUs, but it is best suited for ASIC miners.
Since it’s customized for ASICs, BFGMiner has more features like identifying multiple ASICs, monitoring and linking different pools and connecting with different operating systems. The program’s main features are:
- Specialized for ASIC Bitcoin mining.
- Remote interface controlling.
- Controlling fan speed.
- Features integrated overlocking.
This Windows mining program works in a slightly different way compared to CGMiner and BFGMiner. Instead of having a text-based line of command, EasyMiner uses graphics to make the setup process user-friendly and interactive.
EasyMiner also works as a front-end layer for other programs like CGMiner and CPUMiners. This way, you can use its interactive graphics to monitor your mining performance using data extracted from CGMiner. You can connect EasyMiner with Litecoin mining software as well. Main Features:
- Customized for Bitcoin and altcoin mining.
- Extremely user-friendly with intuitive graphics.
- Provides lots of helpful information about your mining activities.
This Bitcoin miner software called, very creatively, Bitcoin miner, is set up to work on either Windows 8.1 or Windows 10. Designed by GroupFebric, the program has several unique features such as the ability to minimize power wastage when mining. It’s also user-friendly and provides helpful reports about your mining statistics in a well-laid out and easy to understand manner.
This program was designed by a mining pool that uses the same name. BitMinter is not a very popular Bitcoin mining software, but it helps new miners become part of a large mining pool and complete blocks faster.
BitMinter is an easy to use program and works with several operating systems apart from Windows. Like most programs, BitMinter also shows you your mining statistics and the hash rates of your different mining rigs.
Best Bitcoin mining software for Mac OSX
Just like there is multiple Bitcoin mining software for Windows 7 64 bit computers, there are also many programs for mining on MAC computers. Here are the top five.
Most of the software programs designed to run on Windows and Linux also run on MAC OS. CGMiner is no different. Established more than five years ago and programmed in C language, this program is a genuine, trusted and one of the most reputable programs for miners. CGMiner is also compatible with GPUs and CPUs, but they may not yield meaningful profits for Bitcoin mining.
When integrating this program with your MAC laptop, you’ll get the following features:
- Integration with GPU and CPU rigs.
- Fan speed control feature.
- Remote control.
While it’s designed for GPU and CPU mining, RPC is still a popular choice among Bitcoin hobbyists. In fact, RPC Miner is among the most popular mining software programs among MAC users. Most miners use the program when mining altcoins like Litecoin, but it can still be used to mine Bitcoins.
Since BFGMiner is just an ASIC-focused version of CGMiner, it offers similar features and operates in almost a similar manner with CGMiner. Using the program is easy as it takes you through the whole set up process once you download its files.
BFGMiner is a text-based program and has unique features that allow you to monitor different statistics in your mining pool and on your mining rig. Additionally, the program also supports Field-programmable Gate Arrays (FPGA). FPGAs offer a cheaper means to set up a Bitcoin mining rig.
This Graphics User Interface program is designed for easy use by non-techy savvy users. Instead of using text-commands to set it up and access crucial information, EasyMiner accesses information from other programs such as CGMiner and displays it to users in an interactive manner using graphics.
This software program is provided to anyone willing to join the BitMinterBitcoin mining pool. As such, it’s specifically designed for the pool’s users. It’s programmed in Java and is compatible with both ASICs and GPUs.
Setting up the program is easy and using it is painless. Bitminter is designed with a simple graphical interface and has features that show you important mining statistics, including the hash rates per second you are using.
Setting up the Bitcoin Mining Software
Step 1: Set up a Bitcoin Wallet
Your Bitcoin mining software will have to be connected to a wallet before you start mining. As such, look for a great Bitcoin wallet and set it up. There are multiple types of wallets that include hardware wallets in the form of physical devices, mobile and desktop wallets. A Bitcoin wallet secures your coins and gives you control over their use with two types of keys: a public and a private key. When setting up mining software, you will be prompted to produce an address to your Bitcoin wallet. Use our Bitcoin wallet page to learn more.
Step 2: Join a Mining Pool
It’s possible to mine Bitcoins solo. But if you want to mine Bitcoins professionally, you need to join a pool of Bitcoin miners. The pool lets you bring your resources together to mine Bitcoins fast and share the rewards afterward. Different mining pools have different rules. They also share their Bitcoin mining rewards differently. Join a pool with low fees and where everyone is rewarded based on their mining efforts in a fair manner. Another good feature in a mining pool is the ability to withdraw your coins automatically. Research more about mining pools and their reputation before you can join one.
Step 3: Set up a Mining Rig
Although the Bitcoin mining software program is important, it’s the mining rigs that do the hard work. You need a great Bitcoin mining rig to earn a decent income. Nowadays, only ASIC machines are suited for mining Bitcoins professionally. ASICs come already set up, and all you have to do is to connect them to your computer and add the mining software program. A good ASIC has a high hash rate per second (the mining speed), is energy saving and can be to different mining software.
Step 4: Set up the Mining Software
Since most Bitcoin mining software programs are freely available online, you have a wide range of programs to choose from. Select one of the programs and download its files. To prevent downloading malware and viruses, download programs from GitHub or from the official company’s website. A program like CGMiner will take you through the file extraction process. It also asks for your mining pool’s username, password, and URL. The password bit is optional. Once you confirm the details, the program will scan for mining rigs and connect to it immediately.
The mining software program also links to the blockchain so that verifying Bitcoin transactions will be quick and efficient. After that, you are ready to receive Bitcoins.
In a Nutshell
A Bitcoin mining software program is an important component of the Bitcoin mining process. Most of them are available online free of charge, but this also means that some of them are just scams. Illegitimate Bitcoin mining programs introduce malware to your computer or direct your rigs’ mining power to their Bitcoin mining pools.
When you decide to start mining Bitcoins, take as much time to pick the right mining software as you will do with picking a mining pool. Look for important features like security, ease of using the program and the features available. Select a program that shows you your Bitcoin mining statistics, how your rigs are performing and the profitability of your ASIC machines.
Thank you for reading the Bitcoin mining software guide. Hopefully, you’ve learned tips to help you pick and set up the right program. If you did, welcome to our website. We publish new, informative guides and reviews regularly.