Blockchain revolution has been increasing rapidly and cryptocurrencies are being used widely and wisely now. Any cryptocurrency transaction basically requires an address and a private key for sending or receiving. Let us dive deeper into the concepts of an address and private key to understand how exactly these work and learn all about paper wallets.
An address is a Base58 encoded string in case of Bitcoin and a 40 characters long Hexadecimal Base16 number in Ethereum.
Any address for a blockchain ecosystem is derived by a private key after passing it through specific mathematical operations that are standards for any hashing algorithm.
Due to this the address and private key combination can be generated locally without any internet connectivity if you follow the pattern of creation of address for a specific blockchain. The algorithms used in the hashing are developed in such a way that there is a specific mathematical relation between the private and public key later converted into address.
This relation helps the blockchain to verify if a specific private key was used to sign the transaction that originated from a specific address, since you can share the private key to the verification process. Paper wallets are the wallets that are generated using the steps that the blockchain follows to generate an address on its ledger. Paper wallets are provided by many websites that guarantee that everything is done locally and they are not sending your private key or any such sensitive data to the internet.
The websites providing paper wallet even ask you to turn off the internet when creating a paper wallet or to download the site source locally and run it on local host to develop the address so that your data is safe and you do not have to trust something from unknown origin. You can develop a paper wallet with few simple lines of code and I will be giving an example based on bitcoin address creation. Step 1 for creating a bitcoin address is to create a private key.
Now, since SHA is a standard hashing algorithm, it does not matter which coding language you prefer, you can find the libraries for SHA in all available languages. SHA is a one way hashing technique and it is impossible to reverse the hashed value. You will have to try all possible inputs and match the outputs to the produced hash to get the input values for the hashed value.
If you put the same inputs through the SHA you will always get same outputs and this is the beauty of it and the reason of its multiple use cases in blockchain.
To create a private key you either generate a random hash using the KeyGenerator libraries available in your language or you can choose a group of Words or a passphrase picked at random and pass it through the SHA function. It will be a hexadecimal number where every 2 characters represent 8 bits or a byte hence 64 characters make a total of bits where the SHA got its name from.
Next step involves the private key to be converted into bytes array and have it passed through an elliptic curve multiplication algorithm which in this case is secpk1. This again is a mathematical calculation we need not worry ourselves with, since the functions will be available in your languages security or cryptography providers libraries. This algorithm is a one way encryption and the inputs i. This will be the public key that we derived from the private key and this public key will later be used for generating the address.
Now the next bit might be a little confusing so I will try to explain it as clearly as I can. As the name suggests it is a simple hash of the public key derived and pay to meaning that this hash can be used as an address. After many soft forks i. As the name suggests the hash is not of the public key like in P2PKH but it is a script hash. Now, as you have seen that 8 written in binary is but 8 in decimal.
You understand the pattern that higher the base value for number lower are the number of digits for a value. So if we donate numbers bigger than 16 by a single character the number of characters in the address will be smaller and so will be the confusion and fear of missing out any character. So A-Z give the first 26 characters and a-z in small letters give another 26 values amounting to a total of 52 characters.
Since bitcoin or any blockchain addresses can not be used if private keys are not with you, sending funds to a wrong address may make it impossible to recover that bitcoins in your lifetime and maybe in 2 lifetimes because the chances of someone getting that address are very less.
So the addresses need to be handled carefully and to take necessary precautions Bitcoin developers reduced the Base64 to Base58 by removing some confusing characters. They removed one of the pairs to reduce confusion and finally got down to 58 distinct characters, still a good way to reduce a lengthy address. Now you have the bits of a Hash type and all you have to do is encode the address by Base58 to generate a small address that is easier to understand while the address is still holding a mathematical relation with the public key which is in fact derived from the private key.
Needless to get into details of the relation, it is established that any transaction signed by a private key can always be verified by a public key or an address. You just append a 0x00 to the Hash before encoding to Base In P2SH format the whole step is the same but before Base58 encoding you prepend 0x05 instead so that the updated nodes can still work with the older addresses and be able to identify the different addresses.
There are other forms of addresses as well for Segwit but these are the widely used address formats that we have talked about. Soneshwar Singh soneshwarsinghblog.
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Private and Public Keys
You may have heard that bitcoin is based on cryptographywhich is a branch of mathematics used extensively progrqms computer security. Cryptography can also be used to prove knowledge of a secret without revealing that secret digital signatureor prove the authenticity of data digital fingerprint. These types of cryptographic proofs are the mathematical tools critical to bitcoin and used extensively in bitcoin applications. Ironically, encryption is not an important part of bitcoin, as its communications and transaction data are not encrypted and do not need to be encrypted to protect the funds. In this chapter we will introduce some of the cryptography used in bitcoin to control ownership of funds, in the form of keys, addresses, and wallets.
Diamond Circle, an Australian startup, sent me a pair of bitcoin address and its private key. The problem is that the private whats bitcoins trade volume is bytes long. Taking into account that 64bytes keys are programa seed keys in bip32 format you might need to derive the key. I modified the code to reflect. Podcast: We chat with Major League Hacking about prvate, cup stacking, and therapy dogs.
Listen. Home Questions Tags Users Unanswered. How to import a byte long private key Ask Question. Asked 3 years, 9 months ago. Active 3 years, 6 months ago. Viewed 3k times. Has anyone seen 64bit basse64 keys before? Is it base64 encoded or hexadecimal? In base64 a private key would be around 44 characters. A private key is certainly not 32 bit, 64 bit or 64 bytes; they are bits, which can be encoded as 64 base6 in hexadecimal without compression flag.
It writes a very long private key to the console, 95 characters starting with 2H instead of 5H like in your example. I'm a bit worried that you progarms a general solution for converting private key to WIF format without regard to the special case in question bitness of the key?
In the question you mention that the key is 64 bytes, bits. Here you say it is 64 bits. Can you clarify what is your situation?. You are right I wrote the first script thinking of regular private keys. This script however should work with bip32 private keys.
And the first derivation should be the one from your address. The following python code should work. I had to convert my bit base64 to bit hex before feeding into this function. Then it produced a very long private key, 95 characters starting privatte 2H instead of 51 like in your example. Sign up or log in Sign up provate Google. Sign up using Facebook. Sign up using Email and Password. Post as a guest Name. Http://trackmyurl.biz/what-is-the-best-way-to-convert-bitcoin-to-cash-4268.html Required, but never shown.
Bitcoin Q&A: Public keys vs. addresses
SHA is a one way hashing technique and it is impossible to reverse the hashed value. After many soft forks i. The keys printed on the paper wallet are protected by a passphrase that the owner has memorized. To ask bitcoind to expose the private key, use the dumpprivkey command. A more sophisticated paper wallet storage system uses BIP encrypted private keys. Or Gopesh, the web designer paid by Bob to create a website, might have a 2-of-3 multisignature address for his business that ensures that no funds can be spent unless at least two of the business partners sign a transaction. Sign up or log in Sign up using Google. A private key is certainly not 32 bit, 64 bit or 64 bytes; they are bits, which can be encoded as 64 characters in hexadecimal without compression flag. Think of the public key as similar to a bank account number and the private key as similar to the secret PIN, or signature on a check, that provides control over the account. The checksum is an additional four bytes added to the end of the data that is being encoded. Paper wallets come in many designs and sizes, with many different features. This will be the public key that we derived from the private key and this public key will later be used for generating the address. They are not compressed; rather, WIF-compressed signifies that the keys should only be used to derive compressed public keys and their corresponding bitcoin addresses.