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Can I just make up a value for rpcuser/rpcpassword in bitcoin.conf? Or do I have to set one up somewhere?

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You can set any values you want for rpcuser and rpcpassword in bitcoin.conf. Those values will be your username and password when you will be connecting to your bitcoind through HTTP JSON RPC. Also be sure to set other important values in .conf file, like server, rpcallowip and a few others to ensure your server is running correctly and securely.

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What kind of values should server and rpcallowip have? My IP? Or other IPs? Sorry for these questions, I feel like it should be obvious but I can't find this anywhere. – Charlie Nov 6 '12 at 17:01
@Charlie have you followed my link to "Running Bitcoin" wiki page to sample values and their explanations? Server should be set to 1, and rpcallowip to any ips you want to access bitcoind from - set it to something if you want to run it from other computers. If you need further explanations or help with your endeavour, you can drop me a line. – ThePiachu Nov 6 '12 at 19:28

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