But if you do then this Bitcoin miner is probably the best deal. Bitcoin mining for profit is very competitive and volatility in the Bitcoin price makes it difficult to realize monetary gains without also speculating on the price. Mining makes sense if you plan to do it for fun, to learn or to support the security of Bitcoin and do not care if you make a profit.
If you have access to large amounts of cheap electricity and the ability to manage a large installation and business, you can mine for a profit. If you want to get bitcoins based on a fixed amount of mining power, but you don’t want to run the actual hardware yourself, you can purchase a mining contract.
Another tool many people like to buy is a Bitcoin debit card which enables people to load a debit card with funds via bitcoins. What is Bitcoin mining? Bitcoin mining is a lot like a giant lottery where you compete with your mining hardware with everyone on the network to earn bitcoins.
Faster Bitcoin mining hardware is able to attempt more tries per second to win this lottery while the Bitcoin network itself adjusts roughly every two weeks to keep the rate of finding a winning block hash to every ten minutes. In the big picture, Bitcoin mining secures transactions that are recorded in Bitcon’s public ledger, the block chain.
By conducting a random lottery where electricity and specialized equipment are the price of admission, the cost to disrupt the Bitcoin network scales with the amount of hashing power that is being spent by all mining participants.
Technical Background During mining, your Bitcoin mining hardware runs a cryptographic hashing function two rounds of SHA on what is called a block header. For each new hash that is tried, the mining software will use a different number as the random element of the block header, this number is called the nonce.
Depending on the nonce and what else is in the block the hashing function will yield a hash which looks something like this: It’s a hexadecimal number, meaning the letters A-F are the digits To ensure that blocks are found roughly every ten minutes, there is what’s called a difficulty target.
To create a valid block your miner has to find a hash that is below the difficulty target. So if for example the difficulty target is any number that starts with a zero would be below the target, e. This number is called the mining difficulty. The mining difficulty expresses how much harder the current block is to generate compared to the first block. So a difficulty of means to generate the current block you have to do times more work than Satoshi Nakamoto had to do generating the first block.
To be fair, back then mining hardware and algorithms were a lot slower and less optimized. To keep blocks coming roughly every 10 minutes, the difficulty is adjusted using a shared formula every blocks.
The network tries to change it such that blocks at the current global network processing power take about 14 days. That’s why, when the network power rises, the difficulty rises as well. In the quest to further secure the network and earn more bitcoins, miners innovated on many fronts and for years now, CPU mining has been relatively futile.