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If testnet coins are this difficult to get, what's the chance people start throwing in some real money to speed along the process? If only to just have to not wait to test, say if you have an important time sensitive simulation you want to run?

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I don't think people should pay for testnet coins. I was able to finally mine 50 btc. I'll send you enough to get started if you send me your address. –  makerofthings7 Dec 17 '12 at 22:40
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I don't think they should either, it could happen though, as an unexpected side effect of the whole bitcoin ecosystem. –  Kinnard Hockenhull Dec 18 '12 at 1:31
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This question needs rewording; the primary question seems to be "What are the chances..." which could simply be interpreted as a request for funds (this isn't the best place for that kind of request). –  Highly Irregular Dec 18 '12 at 2:25
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I think I should make some testnet wallet and faucet to help people with their testnet Bitcoin needs... –  ThePiachu Dec 18 '12 at 7:52
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There's always testnet-in-a-box if you really need coins to run something. –  Stephen Gornick Dec 18 '12 at 11:11
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I have recently created a TestNet Faucet. It is available on

http://tpfaucet.appspot.com/

I hope this remedies the situation

To answer your question - while there is nothing stopping people from charging for TestNet coins, I think they should be freely available to anyone for testing. It lets newcomers get a feel for what Bitcoin is without risking their money. I hope that a few Bitcoin developers (or even the Bitcoin Foundation) will provide TestNet Bitcoins for free as long as the Bitcoin project is used.

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As an alternative to the great tpfaucet, we also give away free testnet coins at

http://testnet.mojocoin.com

We should help out our fellow developers with testnet bitcoins. There's no need to pay for them.

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You can always try to hit up a developer on #bitcoin-dev IRC channel (Freenode).

Also, there is now a faucet:

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