I took an old laptop out of storage today because I recalled trying to mine BTC years ago. I remember giving up quickly because, whatever the UI was, it showed that I had mined 0. I'd like to confirm that.

Is there anything in any of these files that would confirm that there's 0 BTC in these? debug.log seems to be the only plaintext file.

Date modified on these files are in the range of 05/2011 ~ 06/2011

-database/    (9MB)
-.lock        (0KB)
-addr.dat    (18MB)
-blk0001.dat (279MB)
-db.log      (0KB)
-debug.log   (3MB)
-wallet.dat  (104KB)

What I would do in this case (the easiest approach):

  • Copy wallet.dat to a new directory called Bitcoin in %appdata%
  • Run latest Bitcoin core
  • Open the console and do
  • dumpwallet C:\Users\yourusername\Desktop\wallet.txt
  • Quit Core and delete your new Bitcoin directory. (Don't forget to delete it, it might become larger than 100 MB, to save space)
  • Save my script with Ctrl + S and name it dumpwallet.html. Open it in your browser. Copy the wallet.txt output here so that only the private keys are listed.
  • Import wallet to Electrum: "New wallet > Import private keys > Copy from the webpage output"

Then you can see your balance or spend from it.

The tedious approach is to use db_dump of db-util to dump all the transactions and calculate the final balance by yourself. I would not bother doing it this way.

  • Thank you. The old computer is extremely slow. Can I move these files to a new computer and do this, or is there something tied to that machine? Jan 10 '21 at 16:59
  • Yes, you just need to copy wallet.dat to new folder named Bitcoin in %appdata% on your new computer. Then when you launch Core, it'll show 0 BTC however that doesn't mean anything, so just follow the steps above then. I can also write in more details on "import wallet to electrum" once you come to that step
    – MCCCS
    Jan 10 '21 at 17:00
  • Thanks. Was able to follow these steps. Looks like the best block at time of backup was mined on 2010-03-21, and there are 1000 lines in here. One with label= and the rest with reserve=1. If I did this correctly, I'm looking in Electrum and they indeed all have a balance of 0 and Tx of 0. Jan 10 '21 at 17:59
  • 1
    reserve means unused, so yes.
    – MCCCS
    Jan 10 '21 at 18:11
  • Thanks. When I run Bitcoin core, will it ask for a passcode? Because I don't have it.
    – user114196
    Jan 19 '21 at 16:18

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.