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I have a limited amount of data included in my internet plan. If I exceed that limit I get charged extra. So, before signing up for Bitcoin, I'd like to know whether Bitcoin mining causes a lot of internet traffic. Does it involve a lot of downloading and uploading throughout the day?

  • Will you be solo mining or joining a pool? – Nate Eldredge Nov 27 '13 at 0:48
  • If you make enough from mining you might still make a profit and be able to pay for the extra charges :p – Broseph Nov 27 '13 at 1:39
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If you use a light wallet like Electrum, definitely not. But even if you run a full node, it is unlikely. You could also use a web-based wallet like blockchain.info which would mean that nothing at all is running on your local computer and you can access it from anywhere.

  • OP is not asking about running a wallet, but about mining he could probably benefit from knowing statistics on bandwidth utilization. – Mark S. Nov 27 '13 at 0:36
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If you mine with a pool, your actual internet activity will be fairly small. I just took a look at my network statistics and BFGMiner used 9MBytes down and 11 MBytes up over the previous 24-hour period.

The Bitcoin-Qt application on the other hand maxes out my upload bandwidth since I always seem to get 2-3 peers who want to download the entire 12 GB blockchain from me. Other than that, the main Bitcoin-Qt network usage occurs when you are receiving or relaying the latest block (blocks are typically 100-400 KBytes).

Since you have limited internet bandwidth, your best bet would be to run a lightweight client such as Electrum or Multibit. If you are mining in a pool, you don't need a local Bitcoin-Qt.

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