I have about $200 in bitcoin but my wallet (Core) won't synchronize the blockchain (it's been doing this for days) since for some reason it got corrupted (As it tends to do say every other month) and now I'm unable to retrieve my money. I want to transfer it to a lightweight wallet so this won't happen anymore but I don't want to lose the money I have locked in there. How do I transfer this money when I can't synchronize to the current state of the blockchain?

1 Answer 1


You'll want to use bitcoin-cli to dump the priv key and import it into a lightweight wallet. Here's the command to do this in bitcoin core:

$ bitcoin-cli dumpprivkey <address that contains your coins>

This should dump out the WIF format private key.

You can import this private key into something like Mycelium which will then have access to your funds. Typically, the wallet will sweep the funds from the address containing your coins to an address controlled by Mycelium. In any case, you'll have full access to your funds after you do this, though at the cost of some miner fees (about 10 cents)

  • I'm trying to run this on a command line promp from both Program Files and %appdata% bitcoin locations but I'm getting 'bitcoin-cli' is not recognized as an internal or external command, operable program or batch file
    – Thiago
    Oct 9, 2015 at 23:37
  • bitcoin-cli was added in version 0.9, so if you are using an earlier version you'll need to do this with Bitcoin-QT instead (easiest from the debug console). If you are on v0.9 or later just make sure you have done a cd to the Bitcoin directory and run it from there (or if Linux, add prefix to load the program from the current path: ./bitcoin-cli ). Oct 11, 2015 at 2:58
  • I'm trying to run dumpprivkey myAddress from console but the it asks for walletpassphrase before. I've tried tke phrase I use to make transfers but it gives me the error "parse: have" ("have" is the second word I use in my passphrase for transferring funds) so I'm lost, how can I find this walletpassphrase?
    – Thiago
    Oct 12, 2015 at 21:25
  • If you have multiple words in your wallet passphrase (or a space somewhere), quote the entire phrase. So c:\> bitcoin-cli.exe walletpassphrase "<your passphrase>".
    – Jimmy Song
    Oct 12, 2015 at 23:56
  • 1
    @Tom Jimmy means you need to put your passphrase in quotes after you paste it in. So if your passphrase is I have Bitcoins, then you have to put it in quotes, like "I have Bitcoins". The quotes tell the computer to treat all the words inside as a string of characters or letters, not a command that gets parsed. Oct 14, 2015 at 1:15

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