I compiled Bitcoin Core from source following instructions. I then installed it and that all went well, but now I've realised, I have no idea how to update it when the time comes! (this is all on Debian 12 by the way).

I checked out the version that I wanted, configured/make/installed, and so although it's running well at the moment on 25.0, I'm wondering what I'll need to do when the time comes to update.

Also what about config file changes?

Thank you!

2 Answers 2


When updating, just recompile, shut down the running bitcoind, install the new one, and start it again.

The configuration file should be compatible, but it may be good to read the release notes of the new version you're upgrading to (and those of any versions you skipped) if there are features/options you're interested in.

  • Thank you for confirming, I was worried I would have to recompile everytime but no matter. But do I not need to uninstall the old version first? Also, how often do people usually upgrade, with every version?
    – l30
    Jul 22, 2023 at 17:34
  • 2
    You do not need to uninstall the old version, it will just overwrite the files that need to be updated. You probably want to update at the latest when the version you are running hits Maintenance End. Many node operators update to the newest version soon after the release, but that’s really up to you.
    – Murch
    Jul 24, 2023 at 13:19

edit: I misread question but here are instructions to upgrade Bitcoin Core using the binaries on bitcoincore.org.

You'll need to shut down bitcoind first.

New Bitcoin Core versions are announced on bitcoincore.org.

Then the exact commands to upgrade are going to depend on your operating system.

The binaries for a particular release will be available on that site e.g. for v26 they are here.

You can enter on Linux/Gnu:

wget https://bitcoincore.org/bin/bitcoin-core-26.0/bitcoin-26.0-x86_64-linux-gnu.tar.gz

You can untar using:

tar xzf bitcoin-26.0-x86_64-linux-gnu.tar.gz

The new untarred binaries will then be stored in /usr/bin or /usr/local/bin and you need to copy bitcoind, bitcoin-cli and bitcoin-qt into your ./bitcoin directory and remove the old bitcoind, bitcoin-cli and bitcoin-qt binaries from that directory.

e.g. sudo mv bitcoind bitcoin-cli bitcoin-qt ./bitcoin from within /usr/bin

A couple of video tutorials from 402 Payment Required on upgrading Bitcoin Core are here (1, 2)

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