thedigi321
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bitcoin mining on a pi?(advice on the device i am getting)

Wed Jul 29, 2015 3:53 am

i have a rpi2 and i was thinking of a bitcoin mining machine and using my rpi2 has a machine that runs for a while but i don't know the limitations of the rpi2 i mean i know it has quad core, 1 gb ram, and ARMv6/7 for its architecture base...but can it run the device over long periods of time? the device has its own power connection, and connects to a computer with serial-over-USB but needs an application to run it(like macminer for mac, or bfgminer). it is .butter fly labs miner.

mikey32094
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Re: bitcoin mining on a pi?(advice on the device i am gettin

Wed Jul 29, 2015 4:42 am

Last I remember, bitcoin was already at a point that even a big fast computer with a great GPU would still burn through almost more electricity than the money it generated. I think this plan is several years too late, unfortunately :-\

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panik
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Re: bitcoin mining on a pi?(advice on the device i am gettin

Thu Jul 30, 2015 12:15 pm

Technically it will work. Have a look at bfgminer, cfgminer, or minepeon for example. They can all run on the Pi.

It's fun to build and watch it work, but do NOT expect to earn your money back. Not even when you're lucky in your pool.
Microcontroller addon boards and software for Raspberry Pi A+/B+/Pi2:
- ARMinARM: ARM Cortex-M3 (STM32)
- AVRPi: ATmega32U4 & ATmega328 ("Arduino")
http://www.onandoffables.com

thedigi321
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Re: bitcoin mining on a pi?(advice on the device i am gettin

Thu Jul 30, 2015 1:38 pm

panik wrote:Technically it will work. Have a look at bfgminer, cfgminer, or minepeon for example. They can all run on the Pi.

It's fun to build and watch it work, but do NOT expect to earn your money back. Not even when you're lucky in your pool.
ok...is it a matter of price of the device? because i looked into it more and found one for roughly 50 dollars with 63 Gh/s(its a ANTMINER U3 machine but i highly doubt ill get 63 Gh/s) thank you both for the replies

BMS Doug
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Re: bitcoin mining on a pi?(advice on the device i am gettin

Thu Jul 30, 2015 1:54 pm

thedigi321 wrote: ok...is it a matter of price of the device? because i looked into it more and found one for roughly 50 dollars with 63 Gh/s(its a ANTMINER U3 machine but i highly doubt ill get 63 Gh/s) thank you both for the replies
Its not a device price issue, Bitcoin mining has become so popular that the price of a Bitcoin has dropped drastically.

A Bitcoin now costs so little that even the most efficient Bitcoin miners barely make a profit over the cost of the energy cost of producing the Bitcoin, this leaves no room to gain back the cost of your Bitcoin mining device.
mikey32094 wrote:Last I remember, bitcoin was already at a point that even a big fast computer with a great GPU would still burn through almost more electricity than the money it generated. I think this plan is several years too late, unfortunately :-\
Doug.
Building Management Systems Engineer.

jdb
Raspberry Pi Engineer & Forum Moderator
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Re: bitcoin mining on a pi?(advice on the device i am gettin

Thu Jul 30, 2015 2:00 pm

BMS Doug wrote: A Bitcoin now costs so little that even the most efficient Bitcoin miners barely make a profit over the cost of the energy cost of producing the Bitcoin.
As an interested aside, the value created for miners is in capturing a wedge of the ever-shrinking "new" bitcoin market. It's been quite enlightening to see the effects surrounding the emergence of something parallel to currency that can be used as currency.

There are a finite number of Bitcoins. The rate of return on successfully finding a hash drops off as the inverse of however many hashes are left, but if you do it with the intention of having majority control of the blockchain (which would allow you to out-vote whoever said that transaction X happened) then you could dictate history to everyone else that owned bitcoins.

/tinfoil hat off
Rockets are loud.
https://astro-pi.org

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panik
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Re: bitcoin mining on a pi?(advice on the device i am gettin

Thu Jul 30, 2015 3:04 pm

thedigi321 wrote:ok...is it a matter of price of the device? because i looked into it more and found one for roughly 50 dollars with 63 Gh/s(its a ANTMINER U3 machine but i highly doubt ill get 63 Gh/s) thank you both for the replies
If you don't need the $50 for food or rent, by all means go ahead. It's a fun project.

Just manage your expectations, that's all. Another thing; it's probably really noisy, so you'll not want it near where you work, live or sleep.
Microcontroller addon boards and software for Raspberry Pi A+/B+/Pi2:
- ARMinARM: ARM Cortex-M3 (STM32)
- AVRPi: ATmega32U4 & ATmega328 ("Arduino")
http://www.onandoffables.com

thedigi321
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Re: bitcoin mining on a pi?(advice on the device i am gettin

Thu Jul 30, 2015 5:42 pm

panik wrote: If you don't need the $50 for food or rent, by all means go ahead. It's a fun project.

Just manage your expectations, that's all. Another thing; it's probably really noisy, so you'll not want it near where you work, live or sleep.
so put it in the next town over? XD

markatlnk
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Re: bitcoin mining on a pi?(advice on the device i am gettin

Fri Jul 31, 2015 2:48 pm

I run some mining stuff, just for the fun of it. I have 4 of the Antminer U2 units and 3 of the Gridseed miners on an older pi. After about a year, I think it has returned a bit less than $50. Just for the fun of it, I am running cpuminer version 2.3.3 on a pi2 with 3 threads. It is mining Mooncoins. I did it to figure out how all this stuff works, not to make money.

I think you can get the Antminer U2 for about $10-$15 on eBay, they are for Bitcoins. The Gridseed units do Litecoins.

It is always fun to try stuff.

Mark

Pithagoros
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Re: bitcoin mining on a pi?(advice on the device i am gettin

Sat Aug 01, 2015 2:31 pm

The price of a Bitcoin is actually a bit higher lately. Although 1 btc was over $400 dollars a year ago, the Bitcoin spent a long time at about $200, currently it is around $280 at the time I am writing this email.

It's not true that you can't make money on it, if you get your ASIC devices reasonably cheaply, and find a source of cheap energy then like the thousands of people involved there is a bit of pocket money to be made. But the real interest is not in the current price, but speculatively what may happen to the price in the future. It had been over $1000, and it's not beyond imagination that events might take the price well beyond $1000 or it may just collapse to nothing. That's speculation for you, could as easily happen with company share stock.

Start in a shared pool, you are guaranteed to earn some money, there are several reputable ones to choose from.

Of course, the Pi is hopeless at a crypto processor for Bitcoin mining, but it is absolutely ideal, with its low power overhead, as a controller for ASICs running software like CGMiner for example.

W. H. Heydt
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Re: bitcoin mining on a pi?(advice on the device i am gettin

Sat Aug 01, 2015 8:24 pm

Probably the best way to make money from Bitcoin mining is to sell mining hardware to other people.

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ab1jx
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Re: bitcoin mining on a pi?(advice on the device i am gettin

Mon Apr 17, 2017 4:33 pm

The best way to make money on Bitcoin with a Pi is by trading it. Buy when it's low, sell when it's high. It's gone from $6 to $1200 in 5 years but there are ups and downs. Look at https://bitcoinwisdom.com/ and click on one of the exchange names in the top line to go from a table to a graph. You can also change the time interval to get more or less history. But all of these keep getting harder and harder to produce/mine (more CPU time).

Look at Litecoin, it's worth about 1/100 of a bitcoin (purely by coincidence). Bfgminer can do it, I'm doing it on an Android phone. Look into joining a mining pool like https://www.litecoinpool.org too.

Heater
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Re: bitcoin mining on a pi?(advice on the device i am gettin

Mon Apr 17, 2017 5:10 pm

The best way to make money on Bitcoin with a Pi is by trading it.
Brilliant advice. Applies to any other currencies, stocks and commodities. Which has bankrupted many over the centuries.
Buy when it's low, sell when it's high.
Sounds so simple. Anyone could do it.

What could possibly go wrong ?

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ab1jx
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Re: bitcoin mining on a pi?(advice on the device i am gettin

Tue Apr 18, 2017 2:26 pm

OK, for trading, see the 5 part article here: https://cookinvestmentfirm.com/tag/andrew-cook/ I've only really used bitcoin as a way to move money around (which it's terrible at). But recently I lucked out to a tiny degree. I use Coinbase as a wallet and they take a week to process a wire transfer from a bank. However they do honor the rate in effect when you start the buy. So I got $125 worth of bitcoin for $100, turned it back into dollars and I'm waiting for the price to drop so it's profitable to reinvest. Buying or selling incurs fees, don't forget those. Unless you feel like trying to write a bot to profit from the tiny fluctuations think long term, changes of hundreds of dollars/BTC. It always goes low and high, you aren't staking money on one company that can go bankrupt. It's more like buying government bonds.
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Go to https://www.litecoinpool.org and look around. There's even a profitability calculator based on how fast you can do work and how much electricity costs to run your hardware. Yes, people do use solar. For CPU mining cpuminer is what they recommend. https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=55038.0 There's no binary for the Pi but you just need mostly libcurl then it's the standard configure and make. Don't bother with cgminer or bfgminer in the Raspbian debs, cgminer doesn't do litecoin anymore and bfgminer doesn't mine with a CPU as configured.

And buying an ASIC isn't a huge investment necessarily, look on eBay. You can spend $30-$2000 or more. Cute little $30 ones are controlled over USB and run on like 15 watts. A Pi with bfgminer controlling one (or a few) of those would work fine. But an ASIC is dedicated hardware, a bitcoin ASIC can't do litecoin, you have to make up your mind before you invest. A little playing around at CPU mining could help you decide. Bitcoin uses SHA256, litecoin uses scrypt, cpuminer can do both, and parts were written in assembly language. Usage info from minerd (cpuminer)

Code: Select all

Usage: minerd [OPTIONS]
Options:
  -a, --algo=ALGO       specify the algorithm to use
                          scrypt    scrypt(1024, 1, 1) (default)
                          scrypt:N  scrypt(N, 1, 1)
                          sha256d   SHA-256d
  -o, --url=URL         URL of mining server
  -O, --userpass=U:P    username:password pair for mining server
  -u, --user=USERNAME   username for mining server
  -p, --pass=PASSWORD   password for mining server
      --cert=FILE       certificate for mining server using SSL
  -x, --proxy=[PROTOCOL://]HOST[:PORT]  connect through a proxy
  -t, --threads=N       number of miner threads (default: number of processors)
  -r, --retries=N       number of times to retry if a network call fails
                          (default: retry indefinitely)
  -R, --retry-pause=N   time to pause between retries, in seconds (default: 30)
  -T, --timeout=N       timeout for long polling, in seconds (default: none)
  -s, --scantime=N      upper bound on time spent scanning current work when
                          long polling is unavailable, in seconds (default: 5)
      --coinbase-addr=ADDR  payout address for solo mining
      --coinbase-sig=TEXT  data to insert in the coinbase when possible
      --no-longpoll     disable long polling support
      --no-getwork      disable getwork support
      --no-gbt          disable getblocktemplate support
      --no-stratum      disable X-Stratum support
      --no-redirect     ignore requests to change the URL of the mining server
  -q, --quiet           disable per-thread hashmeter output
  -D, --debug           enable debug output
  -P, --protocol-dump   verbose dump of protocol-level activities
  -S, --syslog          use system log for output messages
  -B, --background      run the miner in the background
      --benchmark       run in offline benchmark mode
  -c, --config=FILE     load a JSON-format configuration file
  -V, --version         display version information and exit
  -h, --help            display this help text and exit
You don't remember all the options of course, you start it from a script like:
#!/bin/bash
./minerd -o stratum+tcp://us.litecoinpool.org:3333 -O ab1jx.3:3
And one of the first things you learn is how futile it is. I worked for several days to get 5 machines online running cpuminer and realized if I ran them for 20 years I might make one litecoin worth $12. Something like solar powered ASICs are about the only thing feasible. If it were easy it wouldn't be a currency. Mining difficulty, by design, increases with the number of coins mined. Energy costs increase. Technology costs decrease but a multi-ASIC mining rig isn't something in much demand so nobody puts much money into improving them. Look at megahashes per second per watt. When you get much over 0.3 Mh/sec you need forced air cooling and it goes downhill from there. Without that though you might spend a lifetime making one coin.

On the other hand "Energy can neither be created nor destroyed" so if it's winter and you'd consider heating with electricity anyway do some mining. The heat from your computer or ASIC goes into heating your house, it's not a waste of energy in that case.

Mining on small energy-efficient devices like a pi makes sense. Try "Pocket miner" on your Android phone too. I wonder if something like cpuminer could be forked to be running on the CPU and GPU at the same time. The GPU is a physically different chip, stick heat sinks on both of them and go to town. https://rpiplayground.wordpress.com/201 ... ofit-pt-1/ I'm running cpuminer on 4 machines, I like that you can select a number of threads. I limit it to 1 or 2 threads if I want the machine responsive for doing something else, turn it up overnight. "Pocket miner" can do that too, on a quad core phone it makes sense. Eats battery fast though.

I did invest $60 in an ASIC on Aliexpress which can outdo the 6 machines I'm CPU mining on by a factor of 1000. But bitcoin mining no, litecoin is what I'm into. In 2 months it's become 3 times more valuable. Just remember that economics is only a behavioral science. Pi s are frequently used to control ASICs, here's a comparison of some bitcoin ASICs. Some of the discontinued stuff might still be available used, just be careful. https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Mining_hardware_comparison

Got my $60 Gridseed ASIC, it's been running for over 24 hours now. Litecoinpool.org says I've averaged 4,382 kH/s. In the first hour it did more than 6 computers cpu mining did in a week. But I'm still looking at 50 days to make 1 litecoin. I'll probably invest in another one in a couple weeks when I get paid again. But a Pi controlling it, sure. I'm running cgminer in an ssh window, a Pi will work fine for that. You could probably run 50 of them at once. Or if you spend $5000 and up for a Bitcoin ASIC you could control that probably. I seriously doubt you could cpu mine 1 Bitcoin in a lifetime.

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ab1jx
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Re: bitcoin mining on a pi?(advice on the device i am gettin

Sun Apr 30, 2017 9:24 pm

I thought the OP wanted to do CPU mining. Another thread maybe. Oh well, here's an Avalon Nano 3 they claim is 3.6 GH/s for $10.26, cute little stick miner, comes in colors http://www.bitmainminer.com/11-avalon-n ... miner.html

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ab1jx
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Re: bitcoin mining on a pi?(advice on the device i am gettin

Fri May 05, 2017 12:24 pm

And for a few days I've been trying to get up to speed on Sidehack's forums. He's been making 1 and 2 chip ASIC USB miners with some salvaged chips from commercial stuff. He's got a deal now with Bitfury where they're selling him current generation 16 nm chips. The 2-chip version with the old chips gives something in the range of 16 GH. He builds everything so it can stand being overclocked, you will need cooling and beefed-up hubs for power. There's some of his stuff for sale on Amazon now, he's trying to grow this into a fulltime business. https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=1764803.0 Search for the name Gekko Science.

As of March 21 2017 the 16 nm stuff wasn't available yet, I bought one of these 2pacs. This isn't a suggestion that you can get a useful amount of power from a Pi's USB ports but they do use Pis extensively. They run faster if you've got like 2 amps per port so you can turn up the clock speed. He's talked about making a line of high powered USB hubs.
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Pithagoros
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Re: bitcoin mining on a pi?(advice on the device i am gettin

Fri May 05, 2017 2:17 pm

16 gh/s isn't going to do much for you, I retired all my stuff that did under 100 last year.

With Bitcoin currently sitting at $1549 I'm wobbling on whether to cash out, or see if it goes further.

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ab1jx
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Re: bitcoin mining on a pi?(advice on the device i am gettin

Fri May 05, 2017 3:44 pm

One of his projects is that he's working on retrofit boards to fit like Antminer S1/S3/S5 miners. You keep the case, power supply, heat sinks. Unscrew the boards and pop in one of his replacements. So you're instantly up to 16 nm technology with faster hash rates. Apparently it's a common form factor, it's like changing motherboards in a desktop computer.

Also a stand-alone board with 12 or so chips, user provides heat sink and power supply. And a single or 2-chip version USB stick miner. I don't think any of the new 16 nm stuff is out yet. The sticks are a way to get started. They're 1000s of times faster than CPU mining. I started by buying a 4 year old Gridseed that's made 1/8 of a Litecoin in about 2 weeks. And even that did in 1 hour what 2 weeks of CPU mining on 6 computers had done. The difficulty factor in the coins keeps going up, the hardware gets better. Even the sticks with the old chips you can clock up to about 300 MHz and they draw about 3 amps. The old ones are 1 or 2 chips out of a $2000 1500 watt beast that's beyond what most people are willing to get into. Lots of people are buying several.
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I don't remember projected hash rates, 160 GH sticks in my mind but I don't remember what it's on.

Dolio
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Re: bitcoin mining on a pi?(advice on the device i am gettin

Sat Jul 08, 2017 10:24 am

I am have been running 5 of the U2+ on a RasPi since 2014, Mostly for kicks, not for profit. This is the closest web hits I found to USB RasPi asic mining and talk of faster than U2 micro rigs.

* The AntMiner U2+ was 2GH at 2 Watts USB asic ( Maybe CP210x chip? )
* The Latest S9 runs say 14000GH / 189*BM1387 16nm chips = ~74GH @~6.88 Watts per each asic
Anyone have the skills to transplant BM1387 to usb sticks? Granted 2.5w(500mA) usb2 power spec limit may need to be able to underclock them or detect a powered hub "charging port" that can deliver 7w(1.4A, 1.5A Limit) if it also carries data that is?

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ab1jx
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Re: bitcoin mining on a pi?(advice on the device i am gettin

Sat Jul 08, 2017 2:24 pm

I asked Sidehack about 1387 chips once I think. The problem is getting them. Unless you cannibalize S9/T9 miners they're not available. Bitmain won't sell just the chips. That's why there's the Gekko Science (Sidehack's company) Compac and now 2Pac using BM1384 chips salvaged from S3/S5 boards. They're OK I guess, I've had a 2Pac for maybe 2 months, it's still coming up on $1 worth mined. Those are both plug miners. You can find them on Amazon.

Keep an eye on this thread https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=1651958.0 and there's another specifically about pod miners I can't find fast linked from it. Another company, Bitfury, is willing to sell 16nm chips, and somewhere amongst his projects Sidehack is working on putting about 70 watts worth of them on a little board. For whatever reason it seems to be way down on his priority list, but it's the most interesting thing he's working on as far as I know.

Older chips like the BM1384 can almost make a profit maybe under the right conditions. But there's a difficulty factor designed into bitcoin mining that's constantly rising. New chips designed with 16nm technology can make a profit (for at least a year or so), that's all I'm interested in. I spent about a week reading various topics on bitcointalk.org to catch up when I first discovered it.

A couple of 2Pacs plugged into a hub
Image Mine's running 16-20 Gh/s by Slushpool's scoring. I'm only running it at 150 MHz because there's a tiny pot you need to adjust to go much higher. And if you crank up the speed the power consumption rises along with it. So 16 nm stuff is the place to be, for now. Sidehack's pod thread is called something like "anybody like pod miners?" I had it bookmarked, on my SD card that died.

If you're just looking to make money mining, look into some of the other coins that don't have such a high difficulty factor yet. About a week before I got my 2Pac I bought a used Gridseed 80-chip Scrypt ASIC for mostly Litecoin used on Aliexpress for $62 delivered. It's up to $27.969202990 mined so far. I mostly run it at 800 MHz though, it's in the 100 watt category. Running on a Zero BTW.

This is the other thread ("Who likes pod miners") I had in mind: https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=1845307.0 Finding things on that board is hell, I spent several hours finding that. It's almost worth writing something that would scrape it and index it. I've made at least one post to each thread I'm interested in, so now I can use the "show new replies to your posts" in the upper left corner of each page to see what's new. Nothing's new in bf16 pods and that thread maybe wasn't worth searching for but it's where I'd expect news about them to appear. Sidehack by his own admission doesn't put things on a web page, everything is buried in these threads. A couple things I copied out of my looking:
Depending on the efficiency of your power source, and how much power is
eaten by fans, 0.08J/GH should be attainable.

The expected hash/power of a 2-chip BF16 Compac is from approximately 30GH
at 2.5W up to approximately 130GH at 15W.
Last I'd heard he's dropped the 2-chip BF16 Compac idea though, isn't planning to make them. Just the BF16 pods, and maybe boards to retrofit old Antminers like the S1/S3/S5.

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