Cryptocurrency Info on MinerWarz.com

by Jason Green on January 14, 2018 · 0 comments

I’m officially moving the cryptocurrency conversation to my new website, MinerWarz.com. I’ve learned a lot in the past few months, but I’m sure not an expert yet. However, I’m seeing the same questions asked over and over again on the crypto and mining forums. I’m starting MinerWarz to catalog the answers to all of those questions.

I’ll leave the existing posts here on BusinessHut, but future questions should be directed to MinerWarz.com. See you there. 🙂

My First GPU Mining Rig

by Jason Green on January 9, 2018 · 0 comments

My first GPU mining rig has been running smoothly (well, almost smoothly) for about 4 days. As there are so many questions about mining, I’m just going to post my entire adventure below. If you have any questions, leave a comment and I’ll do my best.

1. How did I get into all of this?
I only bought my first $100 worth of Bitcoin in August, 2017. Then, $100 in Litecoin….then Ethereum… The prices kept going up so I kept buying a little more here and there. Eventually, I found Hashflare which is a cloud mining service. They basically have a warehouse full of Bitcoin mining equipment and they sell contracts to mine for yourself. For example, 1 Terahash of mining power costs about $220 and will make around $2.00 per day. Learn about Hashflare here. Then, I learned that you didn’t need special equipment to mine altcoins. (altcoins are all the other non-bitcoin cryptocurrencies. aka alternate coins) You can actually mine these coins with any decent graphics card in a computer. I then joined a few Facebook groups related to GPU Mining and absorbed as much as possible. (GPU = Graphical Processing Unit (aka a graphics card)

2. Where to start with GPU mining?
If you ask anyone on a GPU mining Facebook group about what coins to mine, the first response is almost always to check out the WhatToMine.com website. This is a great site that lets you select your desired graphics card(s), input a few parameters, and it’ll tell you what is most profitable to mine. I went through each one to see how much each would make per day. Then, I searched for the best prices for each card. Sprinkle in a little math and I had a list of cards by profitability and time to break even. (The prices vary so wildly, that rather than post a list, I think you’ll need to do your own legwork on this one.)

3. So how do you build a GPU mining rig?
I expected this to be more complicated, but honestly you can start today if your home computer has any of the graphics cards listed on the WhatToMine website. As you get more into it, you’ll want to add multiple GPU’s to your PC. Many newer motherboards can fit 2 GPU’s with no major alterations. Above that, and we have to introduce risers. But let’s not go there yet. Let’s assume you’re going to get started just like me.

4. The hardware bits:
I bought a new motherboard, power supply (PSU), SSD hard drive, 8GB of DDR4 RAM and 2 GPU’s for about $1,500. I intended to use an old Xeon server case for this, but the graphics cards were so big that they didn’t fit. This led me to do what most miners do, and build an open air rig. This basically means to connect everything out in the open and tie it down as much as possible. Here’s my shopping list if you’d like to follow in my footsteps.
– Motherboard: $120 – MSI Pro Series Intel Z270 DDR4 HDMI USB 3 SLI ATX Motherboard (Z270 SLI PLUS)
– Power Supply: $100 – EVGA SuperNOVA 750 G2, 80+ GOLD 750W
– Processor: $46 – Intel BX80677G3930 7th Gen Celeron Desktop Processors
– Hard Drive: $50 – Kingston Digital, Inc. 120GB A400 SATA 3 2.5 Solid State Drive SA400S37/120G 2.5″ SA400S37/120G
– Graphics Cards (GPUs): $1,040 – 2X – MSI Gaming GeForce GTX 1080 8GB GDDR5X SLI DirectX 12 VR Ready Graphics Card (GTX 1080 AERO 8G OC)
– RAM: $100 – Corsair 8GB DDR4
After tax and whatnot, it all came to about $1,500.
As far as “building a rig frame” I just used some scrap plywood and screwed everything to that. Both GPU’s fit directly onto the motherboard, so there’s no need for risers or additional supports/mounts. The PSU sits on one side of the board, and the motherboard with GPU’s on the other.

5. What software to use for mining?
I bought this stuff with almost no idea how I’d actually go about mining. I knew I didn’t want to pay for Windows so I went with a specific Linux distribution for mining called SimpleMining. You just download the image for the SimpleMining OS (SMOS as some call it) and write the image to a USB or SSD drive. Plug that drive into your mining computer, boot up and you’re mining. Well, almost… You need to change one line in the config file so it uses your SimpleMining login email. This is how the OS communicates with the SimpleMining.net website, and that’s where you manage your rig. If you can’t edit the config directly on the USB, you’ll need to boot up your mining rig and use PuTTY to access the configfile. I thought that was all there was to it, but no, apparently you also need to join a miningpool…

6. What is a mining pool?
While SMOS is a great way to control your rig, you still need to pool your resources with other miners. Pooling resources evens out the payout. Rather than wait a month to mine a block, your resources are pooled with others. When a block is mined, everyone shares in the rewards. The pool I’m using right now is called MiningPoolHub. They take out a 0.9% fee from my mining which is the industry norm. Once you sign up for an account at MiningPoolHub then you can start mining… well…almost…

7. Now you need to choose what you want to mine and get the appropriate wallet.
Search for the most official wallet for the cryptocurrency you decide to mine. Make sure you own both the public and private keys. Without the private key, you don’t really own your wallet. There’s also an auto-exchange feature on MiningPoolHub which will…you guessed it.. automatically exchange whatever you mine into the coin of your choice. So, let’s assume you’re on MiningPoolHub and you have a wallet set up.

8. Config SimpleMining.net to work with MiningPoolHub
Let’s go back to SimpleMining.net and insert our mining pool info.
Under your rig groups, you’ll choose the mining software depending on your GPU brand (NVIDIA vs AMD) and you’ll enter a string as shown below.
–server us-east.equihash-hub.miningpoolhub.com –user myusername.myrig–pass x –port 20594
This will mine the equihash algorithm on miningpoolhub. “myusername” would be replaced with yours and “myrig” can be anything you want. Once you activate mining on SimpleMining, MiningPoolHub will identify your miner with whatever name you provide here. The password is usually just left as an “x”. And that’s all you should need to change. It’s scary to think that you missed something, but really the worst thing would be that you accidentally mine to someone else’s account until you figure out what’s wrong.

I hope that was a decent overview. If you’d like a deeper dive into anything, please leave me a comment.

Cryptocurrency Historical Prices

by Jason Green on December 20, 2017

crypto prices on yahoo finance
For anyone trying to analyze the prices of cryptocurrencies or altcoins, it’s been a struggle to find reliable price data. Until now… I recently noticed that yahoo finance now has cryptocurrencies listed with the rest of the stock prices. Just go to yahoo.com/finance and you can quickly check the price of your favorite crypto. If looking for Bitcoin Cash, make sure to include your currency. BCH will show you Banco de Chile prices. BCH-USD is Bitcoin Cash to US Dollars, and BCH-BTC is Bitcoin Cash in Bitcoin. This will bring up a price chart and news stories for your currencies.

To download the historical Bitcoin Cash prices as a CSV file, click the Historical Data tab and click Download Data. I believe the time period defaults to one year, but you can change these settings as you’d like. If data is all you’re looking for, you’re all set.

Bitcoin Cash Historical Prices

Cloud Mining with HashFlare

by Jason Green on December 18, 2017

I recently started cloud mining with Hashflare to help diversify my crypto investments. I’m working on a post about diversification, but I think it’s important for anyone getting started with cryptocurrencies to spread their money out. With the newfound popularity of Bitcoin and other cryptos, there are lots of scams out there. Everyone is trying to make a buck from our ignorance. Never put all of your money on any one site or into any one cryptocurrency. There are just too many horror stories of exchanges or other crypto services disappearing or outright skipping town with their customers’ money.

Anyway, I’m researching all of the various ways to make money with cryptocurrencies and cloud mining is just one of them. We will certainly investigate the differences, but for now I’m just going to show what I’m doing on Hashflare.

When I first started, I spent $150 for 1 TH (TeraHash) of SHA-256 mining power. (SHA-256 is how you mine Bitcoin and a hash is a measurement of processing power.) This amount will make you about $2 per day. At about $60 per month, you’ll have your money back in less than 3 months. HashFlare recently limited their contracts from “lifetime” to 1 year which really upset their existing customers. They are justifiably upset, but I understand the business decision. The equipment and probably even this entire industry has a finite lifespan. To think you could buy a lifetime contract for this stuff is just a bit naive. So, you make your money back in 3 months and have 9 months of profit. On a $150 investment, you end the year with $730. After accounting for your $150 investment, you profit $580. That might not sound like the 10,000% increase you were thinking, but it’s more than you’ll make in just about any traditional investment.

Once I got the bug, I kept putting more money into the account. (Mostly from prior Bitcoin/crypto profits.) So, now I’m up to 6TH for $900. Sounds like a lot, but I’m currently making $16 per day. Honestly, $16 per day doesn’t sound like much, but that’s $480 per month. In 60 days I will more than have paid for my investment. In the remaining 10 months, I’ll profit about $4,800. At those profit levels, I just can’t make the case to not invest more money here.

Ready to go? Click here to get started on HashFlare.

My actual dashboard is below. The hashrate has updated to 6.09TH based on my latest purchase today, but the revenue estimate hasn’t yet updated.

Hashflare Earnings

My only warning would be that there is almost no transparency on this site. Many people swear by HashFlare and note that they’ve been around for several years. I say…yeah, Bernie Madoff was around for several years as well. As I warned above, never put all of your eggs in one basket. Some of these sites are so sketchy that I would almost assume my money is gone as soon as I invest. The only thing stopping me is the incredible upside. My recommendation is to get in at an amount you’d be comfortable losing and withdraw as soon as your balance meets the minimum requirements.

So, if you like making 3 to 5 times your money in a year, give Hashflare a try. And if you would like to support me and this site, please use the links on this page. If you sign up through them, I’ll get a small referral bonus. Always appreciated.

Sign up for Hashflare here.

Stay tuned for a revisit when we talk about the reinvestment option where you can compound your daily earnings. That’s where this math gets really crazy.

** Update Jan, 3 2018 **
With the price of Bitcoin dropping and the difficulty increasing, my earnings outlook wasn’t looking as good for the next year. However, the market recovered and my earnings are back up to par. Not quite as good as they were but still a respectable return on a sub-$1,000 investment. *Note that prices have gone up from $150/TH to $220/TH. So this would now cost about $1,430. Still profitable though.

Cryptocurrency Market Capitalization – Dec 15, 2017

by Jason Green on December 15, 2017

To give an idea of the current cryptocurrency market, take a look at the chart below. Bitcoin accounts for 56% of a $537 Billion Dollar market. This list changes frequently, but these top 10 have made it here for a reason. These are the coins people are consistently talking about. If you’re looking to make an investment in the cryptocurrency market, these are the coins you want to research first. If you’re just getting started, check out our intro to Bitcoin article. Cryptocurrency Market

All stats are as of 12/15/2017.

1. Bitcoin – Market Cap: $298 Billion – Price: $17,825

2. Ethereum – Market Cap: $66 Billion – Price: $688

3. Ripple – Market Cap: $30 Billion – Price: $0.77

4. Bitcoin Cash – Market Cap: $30 Billion – Price: $1,767

5. Litecoin – Market Cap: $16.5 Billion – Price: $305

6. IOTA – Market Cap: $10.6 Billion – Price: $3.84

7. Dash – Market Cap: $7 Billion – Price: $900

8. Cardano – Market Cap: $5.5 Billion – Price: $0.21

9. NEM – Market Cap $5.2 Billion – Price: $0.58

10. Bitcoin Gold – Market Cap: $5 Billion – Price: $295

These top 10 coins have a combined market cap of $474 Billion, accounting for 88% of the total market.

There are nearly 1,350 more altcoins in the cryptocurrency market of varying usefulness and reliability. 15 have a market cap over $1 Billion. A good site for tracking the top crypto coins is Coinmarketcap.com.

Getting Started with Bitcoin

by Jason Green on December 14, 2017 · 2 comments

Bitcoin Wallet CodeAfter having lots of conversations with my friends and coworkers about Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, I’ve decided to put together this overview. If you know almost nothing about Bitcoin or cryptocurrencies, this is how you get started. It’s not that hard and you really don’t need to know what a blockchain is or how it works.

*I use and recommend every service listed below. These links are my affiliate or partner links which sometimes result in me getting a small bonus if you sign up through them. If you decide to sign up for any of these services, please use these links to help support my habit site.

1. How do I buy Bitcoin?
The easiest and most user friendly way to buy Bitcoin right now is by using Coinbase. You add a credit card and/or bank account and you can almost instantly start buying Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin.

Coinbase Link: https://www.coinbase.com/join/59756122a4c3a0029739862b

2. What is Ethereum and Litecoin?
These are the other two “cryptocurrencies” or “altcoins” you can buy on Coinbase. Bitcoin is the most widely known cryptocurrency, but Ethereum and Litecoin are close runners up. There are literally thousands of other cryptocurrencies. As you learn more, you’ll want to get into trading these other coins and eventually look at ICO’s (Initial Coin Offering).

3. How do I trade altcoins / other cryptocurrencies?
To trade the other altcoins, you need to use an exchange. I currently use Bittrex. You transfer from your Coinbase account to your Bitcoin wallet and purchase other coins with that Bitcoin balance. Every coin is denominated in Bitcoin which gets a bit confusing. If you want to dabble in the other coins, this is the way to do it. I recommend to diversify your purchases.

4. How do I mine Bitcoin?
Currently, mining Bitcoin pretty much requires an Antminer S9 which costs $3,000 to $5,000 and is currently out of stock. An alternate way of mining is called cloud mining. I use a service called hashflare.io for mining Bitcoin. Starting with about $150, you can buy 1 Terahash (TH) of mining power. I’ll write a much longer post about this, but 1 TH will return about $2 to $2.50 of Bitcoin every day. At that rate, you’ll recoup your initial investment within 2-3 months and the rest is profit. At the end of a year, they say I should expect to make about $750. On a $150 investment, I’d call that a pretty good return.

Hashflare Link: https://hashflare.io/r/A080F0E7-businesshut

Anyone interested in going in on a physical miner, leave me a note.

Please add questions to the comments below. I’ll try to answer them all and will expand the more confusing topics into their own post.

If you found this useful feel free to toss me a few coins to the links below:
Bitcoin: 1HqP5ngr55tqdxJynkR3vw5xU4HGkAw7iC
Litecoin: LhLiU7qUMpbsaZN6sqoixVa82UDnGL1Ypv
Ethereum: 0xD1612e1CE0A2BA45D6d5d1f73c126ae7af874FbB

Spoofed Google Voice Message

by Jason Green on March 19, 2015

I received a call today from phone number 571-279-8054 claiming to be Google. The beginning of the message was cut off, but stated, “To verify your listings press 1 or press 9 to be removed from the list. Again, press 1 to validate your Google listing.”

They first called on March 4th, 2015 and just now on March 19th, 2015. I suspect it’s a scam/phishing/marketing ploy, but maybe someone from Google can chime in?

For the record, I recommend not responding to the message in any way. Best case, they confirm that you are a human and are likely a sucker for their tricks. Worst case, you get charged some enormous fee for special phone usage. (like when people had missed calls from the Bahamas.)

Just spreading the word. Good luck. 🙂

Update (3/23/2015) :
In addition to the number above (571-279-8054) I just received another call from a local number (412-347-3486) stating that they were Google and I needed to press 1 to update my listing or 2 to be removed from the list. If this phone call really was from Google, I’d expect to see an associated email or other notification. Google is normally very good about these things, so I’d be surprised to find out this is anything other than a scam.

Update (3/24/2015) :
With a tiny bit of internet research, I’ve discovered that Google has a scam reporting page in place. Whether you’re receiving fake telemarketing calls like those above, or even text messages, you can learn more and report the issue at the link below. They also mention that Google does not make robocalls. So, any automated call or message claiming to be from Google is likely a scam.

https://support.google.com/faqs/answer/2952493?hl=en#telemarketing

How to Install Windows PowerShell

by Jason Green on April 2, 2013

If you want to know how to install Windows Powershell, this is the article you must read. You can run commands or scripts on your server using this software. Windows Powershell has been added to Windows Server 2003 but it is included in Windows Server 2008 R2 as well. System administrators and IT professionals will be able to automate many tasks using Windows Powershell in their servers. Scripting will be enhanced as well. In Internet there are a lot of places to download this software.

If you are looking for detailed instructions to help you install windows powershell for SQL 2008 R2, check out the page below for all of the downloads and details.
http://www.businesshut.com/microsoft/install-windows-powershell-for-sql-2008-r2/

In a Core server PowerShell is really useful. After installing the operating system you need to install PowerShell. This way you will enjoy a powerful programming language when you need to configure some parameters of your operating system. Let me tell you something. If know how to install Windows Powershell and have this computer program in your server, getting rid of a virus is only an annoyance. If you want to protect your server to avoid that virus kick in, then you need to use Windows PowerShell.

In the next lines we are going to talk about how to install Windows Powershell in a short time. You will know all the tips you need to install this useful programming language to take full advantage of all the capabilities of your server.

First, you have to go to the Windows Management Framework Core section in the website of Microsoft. Get a free download of Windows Powershell and choose your operating systems. Second, access the location where you will download the “setup.exe” file and start off downloading. After the installation click Start, All Programs, Accessories and select Windows PowerShell. You need to install this computer program in your server right away. If you want to use PowerShell V2.0 you need to install Windows Server 2002 Service Pack 2 (SP2) as well. In the next lines we will talk about commands used to install it, important considerations to do it and many other things.

The first thing you need to do when you follow the steps above is to get the Windows Management Framework. Now you just have to lunch the program. To do this just click Start-Run and type “powershell”, then press Enter and you are done. When you do this, Windows PowerShell will be added to the programs that your frequently use. If you do not see this program in this section, you can create an icon manually. Please make sure that WMI and remote management are enabled in your server. Then you will need to click Start, then Run and find “services.msc”. The following programs must be set to run automatically: Windows Remote Management (WS-Management) and Windows Management Instrumentation. As you can see, knowing how to install Windows Powershell is very easy.

Now you need to test the program trying a connection to the 2003 machine. You do it when you open PowerShell in a Windows 2003 Server. Then run the command “Enable-psRemonting” and press ENTER. If you are using a Windows 2008 R2 machine, you really need to use this command while you are there. Now we are going to use the following command for our first connection Enter-psSession MachineName and this one to end our remote section Exit-psSession .

You have learned how to install Windows Powershell using the tips we have told you. As you can see, understanding how to install Windows Powershell is not rocket science. All you need to do is to follow the tips above and that is all. You have learned that after downloading the software from the Microsoft website you need to choose the operating system. Please make sure you select the correct operating system because if you do not do it, the software will not run properly.

We told you that you need to use the command section and type the commands we told you above. Please remember that you need to use this file: services.msc. This is an important step as well. We have outlined all the steps you need to know on how to install Windows Powershell but you can also watch a video in Youtube to improve the process. You can also get the help of an IT professional if you go to any programming forum on the Internet.

The Basics of Windows Scripts

by Jason Green on March 26, 2013

Windows scripts are used to control all the aspects of Windows. They are created using a powerful scripting language that this operating system has built-in. The basics of Windows scripts for Windows XP are what we will talk about here. You must also know that Windows 98 was the first operating system of Microsoft with scripting included. If you want to finish your job easier and faster you need to create Windows scripts. You will just need to use your computer to get this help. As you have experienced, computers are one of the most helpful devices invented by the human mind. But if you want to finish your tasks in the computer in the shortest time possible you need Windows scripts.

In the next lines we are going to talk about what you can do using Windows scripts. We will talk about variables, importance of scripts, OCR, comments, how to create your first script and many other interesting things.

There are many Windows applications to automate all your tasks. You can use standard programming paradigms to go beyond step repetition. You will also find many of them with OCR techniques included. This way you will recognize the most difficult words. Your Windows scripts can be run via schedule with the use of the Task Scheduler. This computer program is included in every copy of Windows.

We just need to launch the Notepad to start off creating Windows scripts. These are the names of other editors you can use: SciTE, Scintilla and Script Editor. But most of the time Notepad will be enough. When you finish writing the script you need to give it the .VBS extension.

If you want to write out your first script, please open your Notepad and type the following line: wscript.echo “Hello World” and that is all. If you double click on the file a pop up will show up with “Hello World” in it. But you can also use the command prompt and type “cscript hello.vbs” as well.

If you are a programmer, you will need to comment your programs if you want to know what they are all about in the future. A comment will not be seen by anyone but you. Your program will not be affected in any way if you write comments. Others will know what a piece of code is all about if you comment on it. To write a comment in a VBS file you just need to type REM at the beginning of the line and start off writing in the same line your comment. If an error happens, Windows will let you know about it. It will also let you know about the line that has the error.

All Windows scripts use variables to store strings and values. All you need to do to give a value to a variable is to type its name followed by the = sign. For example, ‘store = 24’ will be fine. The variable “store” holds the value “24” in the previous example. To create input boxes you will use the following command: InputBox(“message”). For example, store = InputBox(“What is your store?”) will display an input box asking for a store name. The value of the input box will be stored in the variable “store”.

If you want to really speed up your tasks you need to get the help of a computer. Windows scripts are here to make your dream come true. You can automate almost anything in Windows and this is thanks to the help of Windows scripts. As you have seen in the above lines, creating a script in windows is not rocket science. If you want to automate Windows using scheduled task you need to use the Task Scheduler.

You must also remember that you need to comment almost all the pieces of your scripts. The reason is that if anyone will ever need to modify your script, he/she will know what your program is all about if you leave comments on it as we said above. This is a very easy task and you will avoid a lot of problems in the future. Windows scripts are here to stay because your productivity will be enhanced using them. You need to automate most of your tasks and Windows scripts, the Task Scheduler and many other tools will help you a lot.

What is Windows PowerShell?

by Jason Green on March 19, 2013

This should give a very high-level of what Windows PowerShell is for anyone who really just doesn’t know what PowerShell is all about.

Overview

Windows PowerShell is used by System Administrators who write in a task based scripting and command line language system. IT System Administrators use this scripting language to automate the administration of Windows Operating Systems, as well as other applications that are run on Windows. This system also allows IT Administrators to be able to use commands to manage all of the computers in a network from the command line.

Features

PowerShell offers many features that will simplify a System Administrators job. One feature the program provides is by having a navigation system that is based on commands, which lets the Administrator browse through a computers’ registry database, as well as any other data storage areas. The way the program is designed is to use a common syntax and naming system, so data between computers can be shared easily.

Complex Tasks

When using this program for completing complex and tedious tasks, System Administrators are able to use a combination of simple command tools in the program in order to complete tasks, instead of issuing the commands out separately. This system houses over one hundred different commands to use; or the user may create their own commands, and then share them among other power users.

Data Accessibility

With Powershell, a System Administrator is able to access their computer file system. The shell system is also able to give the administrator access to other computers data storage areas and registries just as easily.

New Language

When using the Powershell system, the user of the system will realize that it does not use any other existing shell system languages. The reason why this system has its own language is because it needs to manage the .NET Framework objects. The shell system had to have an advanced system when dealing with the higher level programming systems, such as C#.

Using Commands

A System Administrator is able to use command line programs inside of the shell system. The system is also able to start a graphics interface which can run a program like Notepad at the shell prompt. When using the Powershell commands, a power user is able to use the select-string feature to change Windows Programs text.

Processing Objects

When a System Administrator is using Powershell, they are essentially using the framework for .NET objects. This new language system will enable an Administrator to be able to think in objects. A user can think of an object as a data entity that has different properties, which are similar to what characteristics are. When working with objects of the same type and properties, they will often have different values for each of the properties.

Windows Powershell is able to simplify the way a System Administrator runs commands. They will be able to access data storage areas from different computers as easily as they can open a file on their own computer. This system also simplifies the way to enter commands in programs by combining the tools in order to complete a task.