The days of mining bitcoin with your PC are over. As bitcoin mining difficulty has increased over time, individual mining at home has become unable to keep up with large-scale mining operations that use dedicated mining hardware.
If you are still interested in using your PC to mine other cryptocurrencies though, you are in luck. Fortunately, there are still digital currencies that you can mine in this way. Here’s the scoop on three of the best of these cryptocurrencies.
|Zcash (ZEC)||Grin (GRIN)||Vertcoin (VTC)|
|Recommended Mining Software||Zcash Software||Grin Miner||One-Click Miner|
Zcash is a privacy-focused digital currency that was launched in 2016 via a code fork of the Bitcoin protocol. The altcoin has a lot in common with Bitcoin, such as a limited supply of 21 million coins and uses a proof-of-work consensus algorithm.
Unlike Bitcoin, however, Zcash uses the Equihash algorithm, which makes the digital currency ASIC-resistant. As a result, Zcash emerged as a popular digital currency for at-home miners who are using GPUs to mine crypto.
To start mining Zcash, you will need to download a Zcash node and sync the blockchain. Next, you need to download the mining software specific to your hardware set up. The Zcash community recommends using Optiminer, Claymore, or Genesis SGminer if you are mining with AMD GPUs and EWBF Cuda, Nicehash EQM, or NEHQ if you are mining with Nvidia GPUs. Then, you are ready to go to start mining ZEC.
Grin was launched in early 2019 with great anticipation of the broader cryptocurrency community. Grin’s primary focus is privacy and scalability, which it aims to achieve through the deployment of the privacy-enhanced MimbleWimble consensus algorithm.
Grin is an ASIC-resistant, CPU-minable proof-of-work digital currency, which is why it immediately became popular among small-scale crypto miners upon its launch. Moreover, the Grin developer team hard forks the Grin code every six months to remain ASIC-resistant.
While Grin supports CPU mining, you will be more bang for your buck mining with GPUs. The latest Nvidia graphics cards are considered the most effective for mining GRIN.
To start mining GRIN, you need to download a Grin node and sync the blockchain. Next, you set up your wallet so that you can receive mining rewards. Then, you need to configure your graphics cards and set the mining software to Cuckaroo POW, which supports GPU mining.
Vertcoin is a relatively new altcoin that has been growing in popularity in the past year. Like bitcoin, the coin uses a proof-of-work algorithm to verify transactions. However, Vertcoin was also designed to be ASIC-resistant. In other words, it is resistant to the development of specific hardware to use for mining purposes by large cryptocurrency mining operations.
The Vertcoin team released an easy-to-use one-click miner. The miner is a graphical user interface (GUI) miner that facilitates mining for both CPU and GPU users. Once you download the miner, you just need to choose a mining pool depending on your computing power. If you have less than two graphics cards then you should pick Network 2, while those with larger hash rates should pick Network 1.
Once this is done, input the hardware that you are using, whether CPU or GPU. Keep in mind that Vertcoin only supports AMD and NVIDIA graphics cards.
To mine coins on your PC, you may need to add additional fans to help with cooling.
While mining altcoins at home remains feasible if you have the right hardware and software, there are still some guidelines you should follow in order to keep your investments safe.
Laptops are not suitable for mining as they are likely to overheat. In addition, it is advisable to purchase extra fans if you want to run several graphics cards during the mining process.
Moreover, be sure to stay current with the updates offered by the software you use. Mining software developers, digital currency wallets, and even mining pools will offer updates occasionally. This will help protect you from any vulnerabilities as well as potentially increase your efficiency as a miner.
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