Mining Monero – Comprehensive Beginners Guide ( is it Worth it)

Mining Monero - Comprehensive Beginners Guide ( is it Worth it)

When Thinking About Mining Monero this is the best guide you will ever read (beginner-friendly). Monero (XMR)  is a popular cryptocurrency with the highest level of anonymity, which is consistently included in the top ten rankings of digital assets. The coin appeared in April 2014 as a result of a hard fork and the subsequent separation of the Bytecoin network. XMR mining is carried out using video cards or central processors.

Mining Monero cryptocurrency ( XMR / USD ) is as easy as Zcash and ether ( ETH / USD ). Great news: central processors are quite successful in this, so you can even use old laptops.

In this guide, we will take a closer look at the installation process for Minergate and Claymore miners (its version for the CPU called CryptoNote).

For AMD card owners, the most profitable mining is mining, but Monero stands out for a number of unique characteristics – first of all, the level of privacy. She has a lot of fans and periodically there are strong price increases.

The whole process of downloading, installing and configuring the miner program takes less than 20 minutes. Here are a few reasons to go mining Monero:

  • Mining allows you to earn money on the purchase of a new top-end graphic card (or several).
  • Monero is easy to exchange for bitcoins ( Bitcoin ). This is a cheap way to gradually increase your position in the first, most expensive and popular cryptocurrency.
  • Bitcoins are easy to exchange for classic money. Thus, Monero mining allows you to replenish your bank account. In addition, some large exchanges exchange Monero immediately for dollars.
  • An experienced and / or successful player can make good money on fluctuations in quotes, especially given periodic sharp collapses.
  • Since Monero gained recognition in the darknet in 2016, it has remained one of the most expensive crypto assets on the market.
  • The mining of Monero, based on the CryptoNote algorithm, is associated with lower energy consumption than mining coins based on Ethash / Dagger Hashimoto (ether, Ethereum Classic, UBQ) and coins based on Equihash (Zcash, Zencash, Hush). This allows you to reduce the temperature of the equipment and extend its service life.

Finally, creating a large Monero position through mining allows you to take advantage of the cryptocurrency price increase in the future – with less risk than with a regular purchase.

Cryptocurrency mining and storage are similar to the well-known proverb “Buy low – sell high”. The only problem: most buyers do not

they understand technical analysis and do it at the most inopportune time (in other words, they buy after price hikes and sell at the peak of corrections as part of a normal uptrend).

Cryptocurrency mining turns computer equipment into a profit-generating asset. In addition, its value in the secondary market is kept at a high level and is even growing. Graphic cards purchased for mining in 2015 and 2016 were often sold at higher prices in 2017 due to high demand in the market.

In other words, you can make good money by mining cryptocurrencies on your equipment and selling it as it becomes obsolete. In this case, the sale on the secondary market allows you to compensate for the initial cost, and the extracted coins act as a pleasant bonus.

What is the difference between the Monero blockchain and the Bitcoin blockchain

Monero uses a different hash algorithm, which is not compatible with specialized chips (ASICs) designed for bitcoin mining. The Monero algorithm is called CryptoNight. It is demanding on the amount of RAM, which prevents the use of ASIC chips.

Monero is intentionally designed to be optimal for mining on central processing units and graphics cards. The main feature of Monero is the use of a protocol based on ring signatures, designed to make it the leading anonymous cryptocurrency (among other alternatives – Dash and Zcash). Blocks on the Monero network are generated approximately every 2 minutes, as opposed to 10 minutes for bitcoin.

Hash rate, complexity, and price

Since the launch in the fourth quarter of 2016, the total hash rate of the Monero network has been growing rapidly:

If the processing power in the Monero network is constantly growing, why does the block calculation time not decrease, but remain equal to 2 minutes? The increasing complexity is to blame. The Monero blockchain automatically adjusts it to the power of the network so that the blocks are generated at intervals of about 2 minutes. Complexity inextricably follows network capacity. This year she is also experiencing exponential growth:

The obvious question is: why hashing speed and complexity grow at such a pace? The answer is simple: price!

The fact is that the computing power of the network follows the price surge, which resulted in a boom in altcoins that erupted in the summer of 2017. In addition, in September, Monero quotes jumped another 350%. Cryptocurrency has shown amazing growth. In just a few months, its cost increased from $ 40 to $ 160.

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Monero profitability calculation

Now that we have got some idea of ​​the blockchain and the main features of Monero, it’s time to do some economic calculations.

Monero Growing over the years

The latest data on the current price, block calculation time and network hash rate is available on whattomine.com.

Select the models of your video cards, enter their number and click the “Calculate” button. The site will display the current hash speed and profitability (for Monero, select the CryptoNight algorithm).

Over time, these numbers will change, but suppose that one video card per day brings $ 1 profit, depending on the model and configuration.

Equipment selection

Experiments with various options of the GPU will allow you to find a card with the best price/performance/ power ratio (in megahashes per unit cost). AMD cards tend to outperform NVIDIA models when broadcasting with the EthashAlgo client. In the case of Equihash and the EWBF Miner miner, AMD cards perform on an equal footing with NVIDIA. For mining Monero cards of both brands are suitable.

The advantage of the CryptoNight algorithm in the possibility of mining on central processors. A powerful processor from the Intel i5 or i7 family will allow anyone who wants to participate in cryptocurrency mining.

Check out the following GPUs: the AMD RX 470/480, RX 570/580, R9, or HD 7990/7950 family. In the secondary market, try to purchase cards from gamers, not from miners, and preferably under warranty. Carefully compare the performance, power consumption, availability, and cost of different GPUs.

As a good budget solution, you can recommend the AMD RX 570 card with 4 GB of RAM.

Monero mining on a Windows PC

We will look at Monero mining on Windows 10, but mining can also be done on Windows 7, 8, Linux, and Mac OS.

1. Install the latest graphics card drivers

AMD Graphics Cards

Go to amd.com, select the “Drivers and Support” section, enter the type of video card and start the download.

 Install the latest graphics card drivers

You can also download previous drivers that are most suitable for mining:

  • R9 and earlier: version 15.12
  • RX 4XX family: 16.9.2 or 16.10.3
  • RX 5XX family: since these are completely new cards, it is recommended that you use the latest driver.

NVIDIA Graphics Cards

Drivers for GeForce graphics cards are available on a special site. Enter information about your model and click “Start Search”.

Install the drivers and restart the computer. If there are no warning signs in front of the video card in the Device Manager, then the driver has been installed correctly.

video card in the Device Manager

Some miners install several cards at once and then configure the drivers. Others plugin one card, install drivers, turn off the computer, and add the rest of the GPU. After turning on the computer, Windows automatically detects the installed equipment (at this time the screen may blink or go out).

If there is a problem with one of the methods, uninstall the drivers and try another.

The next part of this guide assumes the use of the MinerGate program for cryptocurrency mining. Some users have previously complained about the software company, so use it at your own risk. If you do not want to contact MinerGate, go directly to step 4.

2. Register at Minergate

To conduct mining in parallel on all computers (including laptops) and graphics cards, you must register on the Minergate website. Click on the “Register” button in the upper right corner of the page and enter your email and password.

3. Download the Minergate program

The next step is to download the software. Click on the “Download” button, and the site will offer a suitable version of the client (for Mac, Windows or Linux). Download and install Minergate. After the installation is complete, run the program, enter the email address and password specified during registration on the site, and click on “Start Mining” (“Start Mining”).

Then click on “Start Smart Mining” – the program will independently select the most profitable cryptocurrency for mining and begin mining. That’s all (with this program it is really very simple).

The picture above shows mining on an old laptop with an Intel processor model i7 2630 and integrated graphics. The picture below shows production on a computer with an Intel Celeron 1840 processor and four AMD RX 470 graphics accelerators. Ultimately, the results will depend on the characteristics of the particular equipment.

The ability to mine cryptocurrency with a click of the mouse is very pleasing since it allows you to avoid deep computer configuration and work with bat-files. Just click the button and you make money …

Further, we will tell you how to maximize Monero production and increase equipment productivity by almost 2.5 times.

4. Advanced Level: Fine-Tuning Monero Mining Equipment

NVIDIA

On systems with NVIDIA cards, you should use the EWBF miner program, but if you have a powerful processor (Intel i5, i7 or an analog from AMD), you can mine on it using Minergate. The Minergate platform does not conflict with the EWBF or Claymore miners, so you can conduct parallel mining of several cryptocurrencies.

AMD

On systems with video cards from AMD, you can take Monero mining to the next level using the Claymore miner, specially optimized for working with the CryptoNight algorithm on company cards.

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To install it, return to the Minergate download page, scroll down and click on the Alternative Miners link.

Download the bat file for XMR by clicking on the download button on the right. Go back up and follow the link to the bitcointalk forum (reminder: download miners only from the original branches on the bitcointalk forum). Download the miner and extract it to your desktop.

Copy the bat file you downloaded earlier to the folder with Claymore CryptoNote on your desktop. It should be in the same directory as the executable file of the program.

5. Configure Windows

Before you start mining, you need to change some system settings. First, turn off sleep mode, as it will interrupt the program. Go to the “Configuring the power plan” section and set the switch “Put the computer into sleep mode” to the “Never” position.

Then change the page file size to 16384 MB (16 GB). To minimize disruptions to the miner and system interference in the settings, you should disable the Windows update system. You can leave it active, just keep in mind that the system will download updates on its own, install them and sometimes reboot, interrupting the miner.

If you use Windows Defender or any other anti-virus program, add an exception so that it does not mistake the miner for a virus and block it.

6. Run the miner

After completing the configuration of Windows, run the miner program by double-clicking on the bat-file created earlier. If the Windows Firewall will “swear”, confirm your choice. Claymore CryptoNote boots up and starts mining Monero.

In our example, when using the Minergate platform, four RX 470 cards calculated approximately 1000 hashes per second, however, under Claymore, the performance of the same system increased to 2400 x / s. This is almost 2.5 times more! The Claymore client has proven itself in working with AMD cards.

In addition, Claymore configured in this way works under the Minergate account, so you can simultaneously run the Minergate miner to mine cryptocurrencies on the central processor.

7. Follow the results

The user panel on the Minergate website allows you to track the activity of miners and overall results. Click on the “Withdraw” button to transfer the mined Monero to another wallet or exchange account.

Mining Monero Features

Mining Monero Features

The Monero platform operates in accordance with the PoW algorithm (proof of work), CryptoNight mining protocol using obfuscation (the function of obfuscating the source code of the program – bringing it to a form that preserves functionality, but makes it difficult to understand the algorithm of work, analysis and modification during decompilation).

Monero’s issue volume is not limited, but after the number of coins reaches 18 million, the amount of payments to miners for confirming the block will decrease to 0.6 XMR.

The difficulty of mining Monero, as well as other cryptocurrencies, is constantly increasing. The network complexity adjustment mechanism works as follows:

  • every 2 minutes a new XMR coin is mined;
  • when connecting new monero miners (computing power), block confirmation is faster;
  • with increasing network complexity, the production interval returns to its original value (2 minutes);
  • with an increase in the confirmation time of a new block, the reverse situation occurs.

In early April of this year, the mining difficulty in the Monero network reached a record level of 129.6 Gh \ sec. At this point, special adjustments were made to the network protocol to deal with asic miners issued by Bitmine. When the goal was achieved and the production of Monero on the new equipment became unprofitable, the complexity of the network returned to 32 Gh \ sec, and after a while it stabilized at 50-60 Gh \ sec.

Possible xmr mining options

Ultra-expensive equipment is not needed for mining xmr. To start earning, just get a graphics card or processor.

Monero mining on nVidia and AMD video cards

Mining on video cards is  quite productive, but at the same time energy-consuming. Thanks to the technical innovations introduced by the Monero network developers, including the new CryptoNightV-7 algorithm, the best results today are shown by AMD video cards. To get started, in addition to the video card itself, you will need ClayMore GPU-miner software.

Miner program for nvidia monero

Those who opted for equipment from nVidia need to download the CUDA-miner program. To maximize your productivity, it is recommended that you download drivers for the latest GPU model.

Note that solo mining on video cards has long been unprofitable. A single miner can spend months or even years, but never get a single XMR. Today it is more expedient to mine Monero coins in collective pools, combining the capacities of your equipment with the capacities of other “prospectors”. With this form of work, the generation of blocks is accelerated, and the reward is distributed in proportion to the invested power and time.

There are many pools on the network that support Monero mining, let’s name the most popular of them:

The profitability of monero mining depends on the quality of the video card and the cost of electricity. In order not to make a mistake with the choice of equipment, it is recommended to calculate the probable income in advance using an online calculator, for example, at https://whattomine.com/ . The automatic calculation system will ask you to specify the following data:

  • name and model of the video card;
  • current electricity tariffs;
  • mining algorithm.
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After entering the information, the calculator will provide information on estimated income in a matter of seconds. So, for the model AMD Radeon RX 580 with 8 GB of RAM, the calculator gives the following calculations:

  • Hash rate – 860 N / sec .;
  • electricity consumption – 0.12 kW \ hour;
  • daily profit at a rate of $ 0.04 – $ 1.11 (0.0015 MTC).

An nVidia card with a similar capacity has a lower yield: $ 0.75 (0.0001 BTC0.

CPU Monero mining

The processor consumes less power, but its performance is correspondingly lower. To get started, you will need:

  • processor with 4+ cores and a large cache;
  • BIOS settings for high performance;
  • driver update;
  • Install Yam-CPUminer or Wolfs-CPUminer.

The software allows you to configure the optimal mode of consumption of computing power to eliminate equipment overheating, freezes, fast charge consumption.

As with video cards, single mining on the processor is no longer relevant. The best option is to join trusted pools:

Asic: a new generation monero-miner that turned out to be unclaimed

Asiks are specialized computing devices with high performance and low energy consumption, designed exclusively for mining.

After the release of the ASIC running on the CryptoNightV-7 algorithm, Monero executives suspected that in this way, the world’s largest manufacturer of mining equipment Bitmine wants to concentrate the lion’s share of XMR production in their hands and thereby gain control of the network.

After the April update of the protocol (we wrote about this above), the complexity of the Monero network decreased three times. This became, albeit indirect, but proof that Bitmine was engaged in industrial mining of XMR on its own ASICs and at the time of modernization controlled about 2/3 of the market. So Monero managed to maintain the decentralization of its network.

XMR Cloud Mining

Cloud mining (renting capacities from large companies that own equipment and data centers) is a good option for those who are just discovering the world of cryptocurrencies. To start making money, you don’t need to buy and set up equipment, study the principle of its operation, just enter into an agreement and pay the rent. In turn, the company ensures uninterrupted operation, maintenance, repair of the involved video cards and processors, pays for electricity.

Popular Monero Cloud Mining Services:

  •  Genesis Mining is a service created back in 2014. It offers two-year contracts for 1 thousand, 3 thousand and 9 thousand H / s. There is no service charge. Cost respectively $ 830, $ 2 460 and $ 7 200. At the moment, the pool does not have free capacity for rent.
  • MinerGate is a popular mining pool for working with various cryptocurrencies. Provides services at a price of $ 6.5 for 10 H / s. Recently, negative reviews about this service have appeared on the network (customers complain about delays in accruing and paying earnings). 
  •  MiningPoolHub – a service with a hash rate of 13.5 mhs / s. Its participants spend about 40 minutes on the extraction of one XMR block. Advantages of the pool: low fees for withdrawing funds (0.9% + 0.015 XMR) and stability, which is very rare for cloud platforms. 
  •  Cryptopool  is a large service with two thousand active users, providing 10% of the hashrate of the Monero network. More suitable for large investors, since the minimum withdrawal threshold here is 0.3 XMR.
MinerGate - mining pool

Cloud mining profitability can also be calculated using the online calculator. True, you will get approximately the same result for all pools. The payback period of invested funds when working with cloud services is from 1 year to 14 months. With the growth of the XMR exchange rate, revenues increase, and the payback period decreases.

Monero Browser Mining

There is XMR mining software through a browser written in the JavaScript programming language, which is actively used by website developers for the so-called. black (hidden) mining – mining cryptocurrencies at the capacities of visitors to their resources without their knowledge.

It should be recognized that most of the scandals related to illegal mining on other people’s computers are connected with the Monero coin. In this regard, the creators of antiviruses began to introduce tools for calculating such sites. If you want to mine Monero via a browser, you will first need to disable script blocking in the antivirus program.

Install Monero Wallet

Monero-wallet installation site

You can store small amounts, for example, at mymonreo.com . To do this, you will need to create an account and enter a passphrase in case you lose your password or, for example, reinstall the OS. The commission for withdrawing funds on the service is 0.01 XMR ($ 1.1 at the current rate).

To store large amounts, it is recommended to install a local wallet, which is considered more reliable. It is also important that the fee here is much lower (0.003 XMR). To do this, go to https://getmonero.org/downloads/ , select the OS, download and install the program.


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