How to mine Bitcoin

    Welcome to the multi-billion-dollar industry of cryptocurrency mining! Bitcoin was the first decentralized cryptocurrency and has an unprecedented reputation that has spawned numerous copies and innovations. It remains the largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization to this day. It singlehandedly created the blockchain industry and has had a profound influence since its creation.

    Founded in 2013, f2pool was one of the earliest Bitcoin mining pools. Use this comprehensive mining guide to kickstart your mining career and help secure the largest decentralized network with us!

    What is Bitcoin mining?

    General overview

    On October 31, 2008, a programmer using the pseudonym of Satoshi Nakamoto released a document called “Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System”—the Bitcoin whitepaper.

    On January 3, 2009, Bitcoin’s genesis block was mined. This marked the birth of cryptocurrency, a trustless form of currency with no centralized governing body.

    Bitcoin uses a distributed ledger to maintain the balances of every user. Each transaction is recorded and propagated to the network, where all block-producing network participants must confirm it.

    This is where the miners come into play. Miners enable the fundamental security of the network by providing computer power, or hashrate, to validate these transactions and blocks of data. They are compensated with newly minted bitcoin and transaction fees.

    Basic information

    Items Details
    Website Bitcoin.org
    Block explorer Blockchain.com
    Total supply 21 million BTC
    Algorithm SHA256d
    Consensus Proof of Work
    Block time 10 minutes
    Current block rewards 6.25 BTC
    Mining device ASIC miner
    Mining channel Bitcointalk thread
    f2pool mining community Reddit group
    f2pool address f2pool servers

    The economics of mining

    There are some basic economics miners should be aware of to gain a clear understanding of the network and its revenue potential.

    Bitcoin is a deflationary currency: Only 21 million bitcoin will ever be mined. Currently, more that 88% of Bitcoin’s total supply has been mined. Every ten minutes, another 6.25 BTC will be generated. Block rewards are halved every 210,000 blocks, or roughly four years.

    Today, hashrate contributed by miners is usually measured in Thash/s as the basic unit. The more hashrate in the network, the more difficult it becomes to mine a block. Network difficulty adjusts itself about every 14 days to fit the ten-minute block time.

    Connecting your mining machines to a mining pool can help you simplify your participation in the network and achieve more stable returns.

    What hardware do I need to mine Bitcoin?

    ✅ Bitcoin can be efficiently mined with SHA-256 ASIC mining machines

    ❌ Bitcoin cannot be efficiently mined with GPU cards

    💡 Some models will fluctuate between profitability and unprofitability due to changes in the bitcoin price

    Hardware requirements

    Today, after years of intense hashrate competition, only ASIC (application-specific integrated circuit) mining machines are effective for Bitcoin mining.

    Basically, ASICs with unit power (calculated as total power consumption divided by total hashrate) less than 60 W/T (watts per terahash) are the mainstream rigs.

    Typically, machines are operated in mining farms in parts of North America, Russia, China, and other regions that can offer low electricity prices. Lower electricity prices mean lower operating costs and better profit margins. Many mining farms provide plug-and-play solutions, including device purchasing, hosting, transportation, deployment, maintenance, and so on. Refer to our Mining Farm page for more information.

    If it is not easy for you to purchase a mining machine or spend time maintaining the hardware, there are platforms that allow you to rent hashrate. Learn how to use popular hashrate rental platform NiceHash to mine with f2pool here.

    Mine more efficiently

    The lower the unit power consumption compared to the hashrate, the higher the mining efficiency.

    The latest ASIC models can reach unit power of about 30-40 W/T and achieve electricity cost rates of less than 50%.

    For some old-gen rigs, miners sometimes have to temporarily turn their devices off or flush the firmware to underclock them for lower power consumption when the bitcoin price makes them unprofitable to run under normal conditions.

    Check out the f2pool Popular Miners page for detailed information such as hashrate and power consumption for Bitcoin mining machines.

    Bitcoin ASICs can also be used to mine other cryptocurrencies that use the same mining algorithm as Bitcoin. Our profit-switching service provided for the different SHA256d coins that we support can maximize your mining revenue by automatically switching to mining the most profitable coin at any given time.

    How do I set up the software and create an account?

    Step 1: Create a wallet address

    Creating a wallet address is always the first step when diving into a new blockchain network. You’ll need a wallet address to check and receive payouts to mine Bitcoin with f2pool.

    You can choose to run a full node as a wallet or use another wallet solution. An extensive list of wallet options is available on the Bitcoin.org website. You can also choose an exchange address. Note: You should always do your own due diligence when choosing a wallet provider or exchange.

    Step 2: Create an f2pool account

    You’ll need to create an f2pool account before mining Bitcoin. If you don’t have one yet, please click here to register.

    Set an account_name. This will be required for configuration. You are free to create multiple subaccounts to monitor your workers/miners.

    Now add your Bitcoin wallet address created in Step 1 and add enter it in your Payout Settings. You can set a payout threshold and check hashrate changes and your rewards once you start contributing mining power.

    You can add or change your payout address in your Payout Settings. f2pool distributes mining revenues on a daily basis to every user who reaches the payout threshold.

    Step 3: Configuration

    Now that you have a wallet and an f2pool account name, you can proceed to configure your mining device.

    ASIC miners are the easiest mining devices to use compared to GPUs and CPUs, which are no longer profitable for mining bitcoin. No mining software is required to be run on your computer. All you need is the proper electricity set-up to meet the power consumption requirements and a reliable internet connection.

    Please note that your ASICs should have a wired connection to your local network and that your computer and your ASICs should be on the same network.

    Use any modern browser that accesses the IP address of your machine, then connect to an f2pool server. You’ll need to enter the following information into your mining device:

    URL: stratum+tcp://btc-na.f2pool.com:3333

    Username: account_name.worker_name

    Password: Your choice

    Please note

    1. Ports 1314, 3333, and 25 can be used as alternative ports for the server.

    2. Your account_name is provided in your Account Settings.

    3. worker_name is optional, but we recommend labeling each of your mining devices with a separate worker_name for more efficient monitoring.

    Example configuration

    A miner with the mining account username oceanminer and a worker named bigfish1 who wants to connect to our pool server would configure his device as follows:

    URL: stratum+tcp://btc-na.f2pool.com:3333

    Username: oceanminer.bigfish1

    Password: 123456

    ASICs take just a few steps to configure. Once you’ve configured your device and saved your settings, you’re ready to start mining and earning rewards. You are not locked into f2pool and can enter and exit the pool freely at any time. However, you will only earn mining rewards from f2pool while connected to an f2pool server.

    How do I check my rewards?

    Now that you’ve started mining, you can calculate the revenue your devices are generating. We’ll also give you an overview of how fees and payouts work with f2pool.

    Check the block reward on-chain

    Visit the Bitcoin block explorer to get a better understanding of the decentralized world you’re powering with your hashrate. Input your wallet and transaction details to find on-chain information, such as payouts from f2pool.

    Calculate what you can earn

    Measure your revenue

    The number of coins you can earn is primarily based on how much hashrate you have. You can measure estimated daily revenues by using your Thash/s to calculate the number of coins you can mine and multiplying this number by the current exchange rate for your target currency (e.g. USD or EUR). You can use this hashrate conversion tool if you prefer other units than Thash/s.

    Factors affecting profits

    At a given bitcoin price, the biggest factor influencing your profits is your costs, which are highly dependent on your mining machines. In turn, electricity and the overall cost of your hardware are the main factors that influence your costs.

    Mining difficulty, payout schemes, and fees can also affect your profits.

    f2pool calculator tool

    You can use our calculator tool to easily estimate your potential revenue from popular mining machines.

    Verify your payouts from f2pool

    Once your device has started mining and submitting data to the pool, you can access real-time reward records from f2pool.

    View your records

    As long as your miner is submitting your hashrate successfully, you will receive payouts from f2pool.

    To view your real-time Bitcoin mining payout records, visit the f2pool website and sign in to view your records.

    The f2pool app is also a convenient option for checking your rewards.

    How f2pool calculates rewards

    f2pool calculates rewards using PPS+ (Pay Per Share+) and charges 2.5% from your rewards as commission. When the coins in your account reach the minimum threshold of 0.005 BTC, you will receive a payout within 24 hours.

    Details about our payout method and fees can be found here.

    Increase your earnings

    We want to introduce two ways to help you get the most out of your mining activities.

    Merged mining

    Merged mining is “The act of using work done on one blockchain on more than one chain.” In other words, merged mining enables you to receive mining rewards for multiple coins without adding any extra hashrate or diminishing your rewards for the primary coin you are interested in mining (such as bitcoin).

    When you mine Bitcoin with f2pool, you can receive payouts from several different merged mining coins.

    For example, to receive free Hathor (HTR), from mining Bitcoin, you will need to obtain an HTR wallet address from the official page or KuCoin. The reward ratio is 240 HTR for each BTC mined.

    To receive free VCASH from mining Bitcoin, you will need to obtain a VCASH wallet address from BigONE. The reward ratio for each bitcoin mined is updated on a daily basis, with a payout threshold of 0.01 VCASH.

    Bitcoin miners can get more kinds of merged mining coins after setup your wallet address in account settings.

    Note: VCASH payouts can only be made when your balance is above the threshold and can only be claimed manually. Payouts for other merged mining coins will be made automatically.

    There are also other merged mining coins you can add to your account. Go to your Payout Settings to set up your payout addresses for merged mining coins.

    There are two more steps for enabling these rewards: 1. Verifying via SMS or two-factor authentication, and 2. Activating a link sent to the email address linked to your f2pool account.

    Profit switching pool

    This service provided for all SHA256d coins can maximize mining revenue by automatically switching to mining the most profitable SHA256d coin at any given time.

    To join the profit switching pool:

    1. Create a new f2pool account or subaccount.

    2. Set separate wallet addresses for BTC, BCH, and BSV.

    3. Configure your mining device with the URL stratum+tcp://sha256d.f2pool.com:6100.

    And you’re ready to go!

    Previously, miners received any BCH and BSV they mined within 24 hours. Now, if you choose to receive your mining rewards in BTC, any BCH or BSV you mine using the profit switching pool will be automatically converted to BTC within 10 minutes and you will receive it together with the BTC you mine.

    If you have multiple mining machines, you can compare revenues by splitting your machines into 2 different accounts or subaccounts, one for a single SHA256d coin, and one with the SHA256d profit switching option. You will likely find that the profit switching pool will earn you slightly higher revenues because f2pool automatically takes these profitability calculations into account for you and keeps your mining as profitable as possible.

    Start mining today!

    Now that you have all the info you need, it’s time to start securing the network!

    If you run into any problems mining Bitcoin, please feel free to reach out to our customer service team at support@f2pool.com, open a support ticket, or start a conversation on reddit.

    To stay updated with the latest Proof of Work news and developments, follow us on Twitter.

    Happy mining!