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I've seen this question pop up on reddit multiple times, and I don't know the answer.

However, I do know that in my own wallet, several unlabelled addresses have appeared over time without me requesting for them to be created. Are these be the change addresses used when I spend bitcoins, or are the change addresses invisible from the GUI?

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Change addresses should be invisible from the wallet GUI.

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However, I do know that in my own wallet, several unlabelled addresses have appeared over time without me requesting for them to be created.

Could you provide a bit more clarity on where these addresses have appeared? In Wallet.dat after using PyWallet or in the receive coins gui?

Bitcoin-Qt uses a regenerating key pool of a 100 pregenerated keys mechanism to handle change https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Key_pool

and to read Satoshi's words:

https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=1414.0

Are these be the change addresses used when I spend bitcoins, or are the change addresses invisible from the GUI?

My understanding is that all change addresses should be invisible in the normal GUI. The only way you should be able to see them is if you open wallet.dat.

I hope this helps.

Edit:

I spoke with Wladimir here is his reponse:

That indeed sounds weird.

The old UI (wxbitcoin) used to generate new, unlabaled addresses in some circumstances. With Bitcoin-Qt this should not be happening.

The wallet starts with one receiving address, and all receiving addresses after that should be manually created. If receiving addresses still appear out of the blue with 0.8.x this is a (minor) bug. To be able to fix it I need a way to reproduce it.

Could you take some screenshots and also forward me your hardware configuration. I'll send it to him and hopefully we can try to reproduce it on his end.

  • The addresses appeared in the GUI list of receiving address, with no description against them. I've run several versions of the client over time starting from something like 0.3, and as far as I'm aware new addresses have continued to appear in the list occasionally up to at least version 0.7 There's about 10 there now that I didn't create, and I've re-labelled several more for use too. Thanks for your answer! – Highly Irregular Apr 24 '13 at 5:26
  • You know I've been working with Wladimir J. van der Laan on my course. I will forward your question to him. If he can't answer it, then no one can. bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=185185.0 – Charles Hoskinson Apr 24 '13 at 6:08

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