Once everything is in place, you can finally launch your miner. A lot of the miners have sample configurations for popular pools that you can edit, and the pool itself will have configuration details on how to connect. So as an example, launching T-rex mining with Ethermine looks like this:. That tells the miner what algorithm to use ethash , the pool server to connect to Ethermine , the wallet address put your own address in!
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Most modern miners accept a similar syntax, so tweaking the mining command isn't too complicated. Here's the catch: NiceHashMiner has a bunch of extra features to allow remote monitoring, notifications if a miner goes offline, ability to run a script if something appears wrong, etc. Doing all of that with pool mining requires more time and effort, which is why a lot of people are willing to take a bit less in the way of coins.
No, seriously, it's not worth the hassle and you almost certainly won't actually get any coins — at least not with Ethereum or Bitcoin. Statistically, your chances of solving a block are equal to your percentage of the total hash rate of the network. Mathematically, Ethereum averages around blocks per day, so you could potentially solve a block every 6. With a single RTX , it would take on average days at current rates. In practice, the mining pools have a much higher chance of solving and getting credited with a block. How much is a single block worth? There's a static block reward of 2 ETH right now, plus transaction fees that currently average around 2 ETH, plus some 'uncle' rewards that are relatively small by comparison.
Basically, 4 ETH, plus or minus a few percent. For all but the most dedicated of mining operations, the steady payouts that come from joining a mining pool are a far safer approach. But let's say you still want to try solo mining. What do you need to do? First, you have to set up an Ethereum wallet and download the Ethereum blockchain. Even after pruning a bunch of extra data that you don't need, it's still typically around GB in size, and downloading can take a while.
Once your wallet is synced up, you can point your own mining rigs at your local node, which is mostly the same as configuring miners for a mining pool except now you're using your own pool. You're now flying solo. Plus, there are other factors that come into play e. The benefit to solo mining is that you get the whole block reward plus fees, with no percentage going to the pool. The downside is that without a large farm, you'll most likely end up getting nothing.
There are mining pools that operate on a 'solo' mining approach. Basically, the whole pool works together to find a block solution, which means it's more likely to get incorporated as the 'winning' block, but only the participant mining address with the highest contributions to date since the last credited block gets the reward. This is much easier to use than pure solo mining, but without a decent amount of hashing power it will take quite some time to reach the point where you get the rewards from mining a block.
That covers how to get started, but we're far from done. With the above information, you can now fire up your PC and begin mining. That's the good news. The bad news is that actual profitability is far less clear cut than what you might read elsewhere. The real difficulty is predicting where cryptocurrency will go next.
Some say it's continuing to gain momentum, while others call it a ponzi scheme or a bubble. Who's right? Depending on when you look, you'll find ample data-driven support for just about any opinion. The most important thing to keep in mind is that cryptocurrencies are volatile. It doesn't matter if you're treating them like a commodity and day trading, or mining, or running a mining pool. Things are in a constant state of flux. Just look at the price of Ethereum since it launched back in We've got the linear chart, which includes an amazing spike at the right edge where we are now.
That spike looks very similar to the one that occurred in , naturally, and we should maybe just ignore the equally dramatic crash in — or that's what the optimistic miners seem to think.
The logarithmic chart doesn't look nearly as impressive, and it's clear the real winners with Ethereum are the people who got in back in , or even About two thirds of all Ethereum was actually part of a 'pre-mine' that went to investors before mining was even possible. Everyone joining the bandwagon now might have missed the best part of the ride. Alternatively, there's plenty of room left for future growth and spikes, but that's just speculation. And that's just looking at Ethereum pricing since its conception. Let's take a look at mining difficulty as well.
What has Nvidia done?
This chart is particularly interesting since it shows the clear drops in mining difficulty that have been incorporated into Ethereum updates. There's a whole lengthy discussion we could have, but in short Ethereum was designed to increase in difficulty over time to eventually phase out proof of work heavy computational stuff mining. Except, that still hasn't happened, as the developers and Ethereum consortium keep resetting the clock. But it could happen if the main backers of Ethereum ever decide it's the best path forward, at which point mining profits from Ethereum would evaporate.
Beyond that, the jump in mining difficulty as a trailing indicator of profitability should be immediately obvious. It would have spiked even more if it weren't for the GPU and component shortages, but there's not much that can be done about that.
So far, things aren't too bad, but let's combine price, difficulty, and mining rewards to get daily profitability. Hopefully that starts to illustrate the situation a bit better. The bigger concern is all those troughs in between the spikes. Call us pessimistic, but we think it will go back there. There's also this look at Ethereum mining. In , you would have accrued and additional Ether — twice the time mined, a bit more than half the rewards. From up until today, mining is far less compelling, and it's becoming increasingly so.
Someone who started on Jan 1, , meanwhile, would only have about 3.
Best mining rigs and mining PCs for Bitcoin, Ethereum and more | TechRadar
You'd now have 1. The point is that you either got in early and made big gains, or you're hoping that things will continue to go up. Do a quick search for the optimal mining settings on a particular GPU and you're sure to find a bunch of diverging opinions. Some will throw caution to the wind and look to maximize hash rates in pursuit of short-term gains.
Let's be clear: These people are very likely to end up with failed hardware.
How to Mine Ethereum: NiceHash, Mining Pools, Optimal Settings
AMD and Nvidia GPUs are tuned somewhat conservatively, with the intent to allow for many hours of gaming, every day, for several years. Striking a balance between raw performance, efficiency, and profits is key. The difficulty is that what works well on one GPU, and even on one particular card using a specific GPU, may not work everywhere. We have a whole article about tuning GPUs for optimal Ethereum mining performance , but even that doesn't cover every possibility.
Let's discuss things in a bit more detail here, as presumably some of the people reading this are new to mining and GPUs in general and may be led astray by claims made on mining forums. Our advice: Be more cautious and don't chase every last megahash. First, you need to know what GPU you're using. We use code names a lot, so here's the quick rundown. Each family has different features. Temperatures — for all components, not just the GPU core — and fan speeds are a good indicator of what's safe for long-term use, so let's start there. AMD's Vega cards prefer even lower fan speeds, because no one wants a horribly loud leaf blower while gaming.
With gaming GPUs, the expectation is that cards are only used at most maybe 12 hours per day. A really high-quality fan might last years or more; we've had fans in the past burn out in less than six months. Rather than cranking up graphics card fan speeds, an alternate solution is to just get a big and cheap box fan and aim it at your PC.
If you want a reasonable estimate of where a card should run its fans, turn off the overclock and run a game at p ultra settings and just let it run for 15—20 minutes, and then check temperatures, fan speeds, clocks, etc. Alternatively, use FurMark's x stress test, though be warned that sometimes FurMark will heavily throttle the GPU clocks to keep temperatures and fan speeds in check, so sometimes it's actually less demanding than running a game.
Anything above that and you're more likely to have the fans at least fail. Next, temperatures. Most modern GPUs will have pretty reasonable temperatures on the actual graphics chip, particularly if you follow the advice in our Ethereum optimization guide , but that's not the only critical factor. That makes it a bit trickier to determine what's 'safe' and what might cause premature component failure.
We'll get into the clocks and speeds momentarily, but we think your best long-term bet is to let GPU temperatures hit at most 70C, preferably less. VRM temperatures should be kept to a maximum of 90C again, preferably less , and we definitely wouldn't run with GDDR6X temperatures of more than C and expect a card to remain viable for much longer than a year. Maybe that's pessimistic, but we've had graphics cards fail far faster than that in the past, so better safe than sorry is our motto.