The Bitcoin API call for walletpassphrase allows one to open the wallet for a set amount of time. If one calls it again while the wallet is still unlocked, we get an error of 'Error: Wallet is already unlocked.'. Does the call extend the amount of time the wallet is unlocked, or not?

1 Answer 1


After doing some experiments it appears that as calling the function results in an error, it is not processed, and thus the unlock time is not extended.

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    Right. And that's quite annoying functionality. If I want to make a payment, I run the unlock command, then make the payment. If it happens that the wallet was already unlocked, but was due to lock again 1 second later, the unlock call fails, and then the wallet has locked itself before I can make the payment. I just reported a github issue about this: github.com/bitcoin/bitcoin/issues/1528 because it has been annoying me for some time. Jun 28, 2012 at 2:35
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    @ChrisMoore I also posted the issue earlier - github.com/bitcoin/bitcoin/issues/1527 .
    – ThePiachu
    Jun 28, 2012 at 12:11
  • Ugly workarounds: call walletlock before walletpassphrase. Or call getinfo to see if the wallet is unlocked (and get the time of when it will be locked again) Jun 29, 2012 at 18:25

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