Image from bitcoinboard.net.
Bitcoins require ASICs to mine these days, so outside of heading over to butterflylabs.com or kncminer.com and plunking down a fair bit of cash, how does one easily get Bitcoins? The answer is by mining Litecoins and converting them to Bitcoins.
Mining Litecoins requires much less power in terms of hardware (for now – watch out for the ASIC Scrypt miners coming from places like alpha-t.net in the glorious agorist future) and can be done with regular graphics cards. Setting up a Litecoin mining rig will be outside the purview of this particular post, but I may cover a really easy way to set up Litecoin mining in an upcoming post.
For now though, assuming you can set up a mining rig, how do you convert your Litecoins to Bitcoin? It’s a straightforward process.
- Get on your VPN.
- Get a litecoin wallet. I use the standard software available from litecoin.org. (Litecoin.info has additional information about Litecoins and wallets in general.)
- Get a bitcoin wallet. I recommend blockchain.info. Ensure that you have enabled the two-factor authentication.
- Open a BTC-e.com account with a throw-away email address. (A throw-away email address is one that’s not tied to your identity in any way.)
- Once on BTC-e, you can fund your Litecoin wallet there by selecting “Finances” in the upper right, then choosing the “Deposit” in the Litecoin row.
- After confirmation, return to the front page. Click the “LTC/BTC” button above the chart.
- Below the chart, in the “Sell LTC” section on the right, choose how much Litecoin to sell. Press “Calculate”, and then “Sell LTC”.
- You will then have Bitcoin. You can confirm this by selecting “Finances” in the upper right again, and looking at the Bitcoin row.
- Select “Withdraw” on the Bitcoin row.
- At the bottom of the page, type in one of the addresses from your Bitcoin wallet, and the amount to withdraw. Press “Withdrawal”.
That’s it! It’s ten easy steps, and it could even be done in seven since you should already be doing step 1 all the time anyway, and steps 2 and 3 are usually done prior to starting the process of working with cryptocurrencies.
Remember always to take backups and to ensure that you’re using the highest levels of security where possible. Be safe, and enjoy your cryptocurrencies responsibly!