What is Monero, And how to get started with it on Linux!

The Monero Logo

Monero, also known as XMR, is a secure, Decentralized, fungible Cryptocurrency.

Monero is focused on privacy; and being resistant to censorship.

Unlike Bitcoin and some other mainstream cryptocurrencies that store all transactions in a public ledger that can be easily viewed by anyone, Monero transactions are untraceable and anonymous!

XMR uses Stealth Addresses*, Ring Signatures**, and RingCT*** to ensure that every transaction is hidden and secure.

*”Steath Addresses: Automatic one-time addresses for every transaction”

**”Ring Signatures: A group of cryptographic signatures with at least one real participant, but no way to tell which in the group is the real one as they all appear to be valid.”

***”RingCT: a way to hide the amount sent in a Monero transaction.”

(Source- https://www.getmonero.org/get-started/what-is-monero/ )

But, chances are if you clicked on this, you’re already relatively familiar with Crypto, and are more interested in getting set up Mining some for yourself on your Linux PC, right?

Let’s get into it than.

How do we get setup with XMR on Linux?

Mining any Crypto typically consists of a few standard steps.

-Setting up a Wallet

-Safely storing your Wallet Keys somewhere

-Choosing a pool to mine with

-Picking a Mining software

-Installing necessary Drivers for mining with your GPU

Choosing and Setting up a Wallet for the first time:

You have several wallets to choose from, here are a few that are commonly agreed to be trustworthy:

The MyMonero Wallet:

https://mymonero.com/

(Linux, OS X, Windows, Android, iOS, Web)

This is my personal Wallet of Choice, as it supports Linux, and is very easy to set up and use.

They provide an AppImage for Linux users that has a nice GUI, and is super easy to use.

I’m also able to easily check my balances through their web app if I’m not on a device with the app installed. Very convenient, though less secure.

The Edge Wallet:

https://edge.app/

(ios, Android)

The Edge Wallet is not only an XMR wallet, but a multi-currency wallet with support for Bitcoin, Etherium, XMR, and many more. They let you trade and exchange crpyto through their app, and while I haven’t personally used it, it looks to be very expansive. It’s worth noting though that any Wallet / Exchange that trades in BTC and other mainstream cryptos, almost definitely requires some form of ID to get setup, and therefore I do not recommend this if complete privacy is your goal.

Monerujo:

https://www.monerujo.io/

(Android)

Monerujo is completely Open Source, and has their code available for everyone at their GitHub:

( https://github.com/m2049r/xmrwallet )

Monerujo lets you scan a QR code to easily send payments instead of having to type out that horribly long Address string, and

uses SideShift.ai* to pay Bitcoin addresses. You can download Monerujo from their website, their GitHub, or from F-Droid.

*SideShift.ai blocks several countries from using their services for unforclosed reasons. I do not personally recommend going with Monerujo because of this; If however that doesn’t deter you, you should ensure that you’re running a VPN when accessing these services, and be aware that you will not be able to receive technical support if needed.

Cake Wallet:

https://cakewallet.com/

(iOS, Android)

Cake Wallet is an Open-Source, Multicurrency Wallet for Monero, Bitcoin, and Litecoin.

Cake Wallet has a built-in exchange where you can exchange *XMR, BTC, ADA, BCH, BND, DAI, DASH, EOS, ETH, LTC, TRX, USDT, USDT ERC20, XLM, and XRP

*(source: https://cakewallet.com/ )

It supports multiple wallets, and remote or local backups. As I noted with Edge Wallet earlier, any wallet that doubles as an exchange almost definitely requires ID to follow Government guidelines.

Store your wallet keys somewhere secure!!

When you create an XMR wallet with a service like MyMonero, you generate a mnemonic seed, a long string or random words.

While it may look like gibberish, this is actually incredibly important! So write it down and store it somewhere secure. I personally recommend that you physically write everything down in a notebook, and store it somewhere safe. I have all my keys written with a homemade crypher, so that even if it’s found, it’s unlikely anyone but me will be able to actually read it 😉.

Choosing a pool to mine with:

A Pool when it comes to crypto mining; is a large group of Miners from around the world, all working together and combining their computers processing abilities to speed up how fast a Block is found.

Everyone in the pool gets a cut when a new block is found, based on how much computing power they contributed. Almost all Pools have a minimal payout usually ranging between 1.0 xmr and 0.10 xmr, some may have payout threshholds as low as 0.004, so make sure to pay attention to this when choosing a pool! Pools also charge a minimum fee when paying-out, so also be aware of that.

Here’s some pools I can recommend:

https://supportxmr.com/

minimum payout – 0.1

https://minexmr.com/

minimum payout – 0.004

https://xmr.nanopool.org/

minimum payout – 0.11

Picking a Mining software

XMrig – https://github.com/xmrig/xmrig

CSminer – https://cryptonote.social/tools/csminer

XMRstak – https://github.com/fireice-uk/xmr-stak/releases

As with Pools, Mining software also pays a small fee (usually, you’re able to manually compile from source and remove the fee if you’re technical.) to the developer of said software, as a way of funding development, take note of this when choosing your software. These sites all have very readable documentation on how to setup, so I don’t think I need to really elaborate here.

Installing necessary Drivers for mining with your GPU

If you’re mining with an AMD GPU like I do, you really need to install the amdgpuPro drivers for maximum mining efficiency. These drivers haven’t effected anything else like gaming on my system, as a note. They’re also not open-source, worth noting.

You can download the driver from here:

https://www.amd.com/en/support

Select ‘Graphics’

Enter your GPU’s info (mine is a Radeon RX 580 Series)

Click ‘Submit’

On the page that opens, select your Linux Distro, (mine is Ubuntu 20.04.2) click ‘Download’ and save it.

AMD provides really clear documentation on installing too!

https://amdgpu-install.readthedocs.io/en/latest/

When installing, use:

./amdgpu-pro-install -- opencl=rocr,legacy -y

This will ensure that every feature of the driver relevant to Mining will be installed!

After the installation finishes, re-boot to finalize everything.

I don’t have any computers with Nvidia hardware, but from my research, it doesn’t appear that any extra steps are necisary, Readers, feel free to correct me if I’m wrong!

Let’s condense everything:

At this point, through following the instructions for the Pool you chose, The Miner you chose, and Proper Driver Installation; You should be all set to start up your mining software and get Mining!

A Note:

I personally have very little issue with Crypto-Mining when done in non-harmful ways.

Large-Scale Mining has been known to cause water and air pollution when not done safely or responsibly. Large-Scale Mining also causes spikes in computing hardware related to Mining. You should always be responsible when Mining, and not go crazy with it! Keep it Safe, Keep it Sustainable, and Keep it Clean.

Thanks for reading everyone, I hope y’all have a great day!

Published by Cara Oswin

I write about Linux Software and devices. My hobbies include writing, DnD, reading, playing videogames, and chugging energy drinks to pump out code and articles!

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