Welcome to the beginner’s guide to getting started mining. I am making this to have a running document of everything that I have learned since I started mining. This is meant to be a long read with tons of information but also, an always updated notebook.
Up & Running
First, as you are getting started mining the most important thing is to just get up and running as fast as possible and as cheap as possible. This is because mining inherently has a steep learning curve and you likely don’t have all day to read articles about how to mine. As I discuss cryptocurrency with people I am often asked about the best guide to show you how to build a cheap or the cheapest mining rig. Being that cryptocurrency is so new many assume that building a PC for mining is some elusive thing that requires some specialized hardware or a lot of know-how to get going. But honestly, this couldn’t be farther from the truth and often ends up being WAY cheaper than building a gaming PC.
For the listing of the parts that I used in my build, you can check out this article and video where is cover my entire build list and construction. The CPU I grab an Intel Celeron because they are about $40 in the US a bunch of Nvidia GPU cards, a $65 PSU from Bestbuy, a Gigabyte H110+ BTC Board, a bunch of PCI Express Riser Cards, some DDR 4GB memory. My rig also is running SMOS on a USB stick (no need for an SSD) more on that later.
Watch the below video to get a machine up and running for cheap:
Pick A Team
Next, How do you know if you should join Team Red (AMD Radeon) or Team Green (Nvidia GTX), to answer this question I give many suggestions. The first of which do you already have a video (GPU) from this generation? This question allows me to help people who want to get started the cheapest way. As long as the card that you have is a Team Red (400 or 500 series) or Team Green (1000 series) card then you should have what you need to get started. Remember when building a system for mining there are fewer requirements fewer bottlenecks and thankfully cheaper parts are needed to get your system going. Really just use what you have provided it was designed within the last 7-10 years and has 4 gigs of ram. Once you decide you are ready then you can move to a full six card mining rig complete with risers and the like.
Choose Your Coin
What coin would you like to mine? Here is the research phase this is where you hit up http://whattomine.com and use the calculator to ESTIMATE numbers you need to hit what profit margins you will receive. This is also the location that you will use to decide the team you will be joining if you haven’t already done so. When I started I choose the Team Red but over time I realized that was the wrong decision for me. I will explain why below. On the http://whattomine.com website to pick your coin put how many of the available card type you have then list your power cost and hit calculate. Whatever coin is in the top 5 based on your hardware speed and type, take that coin and do a test mine.
Do Some Testing!
Head over to MiningRigRentals.com (MRR) to test out the data that you have calculated. MRR is used to rent mining machines from other people. This is important because if your fist change at testing the numbers your calculated. On MRR your can rent machines with Bitcoin, Litecoin, and Ethereum and with the closest match to what you are trying to build. Once you rent a miner, you then point that miner to a pool of your choice.
What is a Pool?
When it comes to cryptocurrency there are limiters built into the system limit how many coins can be mined at a time, this is called the “Difficulty”. The difficulty increases as more miners join into the game. Since people with deep pockets joined into mining and drove up the difficulty. This made profitability in mining almost non-existent. So then came the ability to pool together everyone’s systems in a sort of botnet machine then allowing everyone to work together while the profits get split among everyone based on the amount of work delivered to the pool. Nowadays you must find the largest pool available for the coin that you want to mine if you want any chance of making any money.
Creating A Wallet
Now that you know your system, coin and pool you must create a wallet address. This wallet will be used to send and receive money. My recommendation on a beginner and useful trading wallet is Coinomi (Android APP). This will allow you to create one account to hold multiple different wallets. BTW, I only use this wallet for mining, donations and trading/selling. It is also important to create a Coinbase wallet to cash out your trades and a PC hardware wallet for bigger money safekeeping.
Get The Mining Software
We are just about there and ready for you to start mining. You will need to choose your software. But, first, you need to know if your system is going to be dedicated hardware meaning that it will only be for mining or secondary when you are not using your main PC.
If you choose the dedicated option watch this video:
If you choose the secondary option watch this video: