5

I've been reading official BTC documentation and now I'm completely lost. Documentations is too tangled and written in unnecessary many words. They have:

https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Address

https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Accounts_explained (no, actually not explained)

https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Wallet

Please, somebody tell me the difference between them in a simple manner. What's an address, an account, a wallet, and how does the keys fit in.

migrated from stackoverflow.com Feb 13 '14 at 22:02

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  • No, I did not, but thanks to you - now I do! – Sly Feb 13 '14 at 21:59
7

"Accounts" are a concept limited to bitcoin-qt, and it's probably better to forget about them entirely.

Each address has a corresponding private key, that you use to move bitcoin out of that address. A wallet is simply a collection of (address, address_key) pairs.

Some people also use the term "wallet" to refer to the software that implements the wallet functionality.


Obviously, this is a grossly simplified answer, and not strictly true, but useful if you just want to understand bitcoin superficially.

  • Can you elaborate why Accounts should be forgotten? It is a useful feature which allows to arrange funds into buckets. Only end-single-user wallets doesn't need that feature. – jangorecki Aug 29 '15 at 1:43

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