I just purchased a new laptop and I want to decommission my old one. I have a back-up of my wallet.dat file copied to my new PC. What do I need to do to restore it to my Bitcoin (Windows) client? Please note, this is a wallet.dat file that is about 6 months old and I haven't loaded it in at least four months. I'm not sure if that makes a difference or not, contingent on the original version of the client that created the file.

1 Answer 1


You need to put the old wallet.dat in your bitcoin data directory.

The default for Windows is:

C:\Documents and Settings\YourUserName\Application data\Bitcoin (XP)

C:\Users\YourUserName\Appdata\Roaming\Bitcoin (Vista and 7)

Then run the bitcoin client with the -rescan option.

Alternatively you can run the bitcoin client with the -datadir=<location of backup wallet.dat> as well as the -rescan option if you do not want to move/backup the new wallet.dat.

The default for Mac OS X is:


The default for Linux is:

  • 4
    It worked on Ubuntu too, but the wallet file was located at ~/.bitcoin
    – Jader Dias
    Sep 2, 2011 at 18:34
  • 4
    And on OS X in ~/Library/Application\ Support/Bitcoin/ Sep 3, 2011 at 0:47
  • 7
    Note that since 0.3.21 it is not necessary anymore to specify -rescan when moving a wallet file to a new installation. Mar 26, 2012 at 13:13
  • That requires that you wipe out the other wallet. How can you merge the two? Jun 20, 2014 at 3:02

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.