Situation at time of writing:

Written as of 29 May 2016; web based Blockchain.info wallet is HD; MultiBit is also HD.

The Query/Story

Since its become a little uncertain whats going to happen with Armory as a wallet; I decided to explore some other wallets.

After signing up with blockchain.info (and getting the N word recovery phrase) I transferred a small amount of BTC into my new Blockchain.info wallet. So far so good.

Now my understanding is that a Hierarchical Deterministic wallet (HD) such as MultiBit HD should be able to restore the wallet using those N words.

So effectively playing the disaster recovery game; I have installed MultiBit HD; Gone through the recover process using my recovery phrase. MultiBit had downloaded some 130K+ blocks. And I end up with a wallet that seems operational BUT... and this is the but.... no BTC.

My blockchain.info account is showing the BTC; but MultiBit is not.

Therefore either a) My understanding that I should be able to restore the wallet - and its BTC from the recovery phrase is incorrect (pretty sure that that's the whole point!)

or b) I am doing something wrong with MultiBit.

Yes this scenario would mean that I would have (as Blockchain.info is not down) 2 wallets with the same BTC but this would be on the same address(es) and the blockchain would protect again any attempt to spend twice.

Basically looking to feel protected in that with my recovery phrase I can recover the wallet (either to blockchain.info / to multibit HD or other wallet) should PC's blow up, web sites crash etc.

Any advise? I have repaired the MultiBit HD wallet a few times - but always sits at 0 BTC

Thanks in advance

1 Answer 1


MultiBit HD supports BIP39 seed phrases for BIP32/44 wallets. If a different deterministic algorithm is used then the seed phrase is not compatible. Also note that due to the limitations of SPV mode MultiBit HD is not currently able to support accounts other than 0.

You can read more on this here: https://multibit.org/en/help/hd0.3/how-spv-works.html

  • 1
    Thanks for the corrective edits Gary; Also thanks for the advice on "different deterministic algorithm"; Am a) attempting restore as BIP/44; b) contacted blockchain.info for clarity on what they use. will update this page with answers.
    – SnowDog
    May 30, 2016 at 8:53
  • 1
    Restoring the wallet in MultiBit; I originally chose "What created these wallet Words" as "MultiBit HD, Lighthouse (BIP 32)" - This is "accepted" but at the end of the restore there is no BTC (as previously advised) BUT - following Garys information - I removed the MultiBit wallet I had created; then repeated the restore as "Trezor/KeepKey device, Mycelium (BIP 44)" - This worked and hey presto my MultiBit "Disaster Recover" Wallet has the same balance as blockchain.info wallet. Thanks again Gary - you provided the "nugget" of info to get through this hitch.
    – SnowDog
    May 30, 2016 at 9:50
  • @SnowDog Glad it worked for you :-)
    – Gary
    May 31, 2016 at 10:21
  • @SnowDog Don't forget to mark an answer as "Answered" if it worked for you.
    – Gary
    Jun 2, 2016 at 9:23

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