A Look at the Long and Annoying Process of Claiming Bitcoin Forks

Technology

Over the past year, there has been a lot of forked coins based on the Bitcoin Core (BTC) codebase in various forms and with all types of interesting names. There are anywhere between 40-70 forked coins in the ecosystem that are worth a few bucks, while some of them are worthless and not worth the time to claim. Over the past three weeks, news.Bitcoin.com started the process of collecting as many forks as we can, just to see if the processes are easy or how hard it is to claim these tokens.

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Attempting to Claim the Vast Quantity of BTC Forks

If you’ve been in the cryptocurrency space for a few years, you have definitely heard about all the forked Bitcoins in existence. At the time of writing, there are roughly 40-70 coins that are snapshot-like clones with major to minor differences that reflect the BTC codebase from a certain period of time. There is Bitcoin diamond (BCD), Bitcoin private (BTCP), Bitcoin gold (BTG), Bitcoinx (BCX), Bitcoin god (GOD), new Bitcoin (NBTC), Bitcoin cloud (BCL), Bitcoin holocaust (BTHOL), Bitcoin smart (BCS), and many more. Seeing how there are so many and some do have a little value, we decided to give our readers a taste of what it’s like to claim the myriad of BTC-based forks in existence.

Make Sure You Empty Your Wallet and Study the Claim Process Carefully

The first and foremost thing to do before beginning the process of claiming BTC forks is to take your BTC wallet and empty it into a completely different wallet, because you will need the empty wallet’s private keys. This means simply send your funds to a different wallet and you can now use the old seed phrase or private key to begin the collection process. You should never do this with a wallet that still contains funds. Next up is the search for coins and there are a lot of them, but we also found that a great portion of these forks are still unattainable. News.Bitcoin.com used data collected from the website Forkdrop.io, and the latest research from Bitmex that also lists a vast collection of recorded BTC forks. We then further studied the extensive amount of walkthroughs and processes found online concerning fork collection.

A Look at the Long and Annoying Process of Claiming Bitcoin ForksForkdrop.io lists forks like the website Coinmarketcap.

Coinomi, Different Derivation Paths, and Ian Coleman’s Standalone Mnemonic Tool

One of the easiest ways to collect a good portion of BTC-based forks is the Coinomi application, which can be found on both Android and iOS mobile app stores. With Coinomi we were able to obtain four forks from the massive list of clones out there in existence with ease. This includes Bitcoin gold (BTG), Bitcoin private (BTCP), Bitcoin atom (BCA), and bitcore (BTX). There are a few other BTC-based forks that Coinomi holds but for some reason, we were not able to obtain these coins using the platform. Further, not all BIP 39 formats are the same and we used a BRD Wallet seed which uses a different derivation path than other wallets. To get the private keys for our BRD Wallet seed and sweep them into Coinomi and other fork wallets we used Ian Coleman’s BIP 39 Mnemonic Code Creator standalone offline. Not only does the platform create seeds, it also reveals the private keys derived from mnemonic phrases in all formats like BIP 32, and BIP 44.

A Look at the Long and Annoying Process of Claiming Bitcoin ForksIan Coleman’s BIP 39 Mnemonic Code Creator.

You can download the client and use it offline and after entering the mnemonic phrase it will show you all the private keys to all the associated addresses and the extended private key as well. After entering an existing seed to an empty wallet, the tool will provide private keys that can be copy and pasted alongside scannable QR codes so people can sweep the private keys with a mobile phone. The tool also warns that some mobile scanners may be malicious and may save the scanned images.

A Look at the Long and Annoying Process of Claiming Bitcoin ForksThe Coinomi wallet for Android or iOS gives users access to a variety of BTC-based forks. We were able to claim Bitcoin gold, bitcore, Bitcoin atom, Bitcoin z, and Bitcoin private using Coinomi.

Electrum Wallet Forks, Shady Websites, and Blatant Scams

A Look at the Long and Annoying Process of Claiming Bitcoin ForksThe Electrum fork for Bitcoin diamond (BCD). We were able to claim BCD using our existing seed.

After using both Ian Coleman’s tool and Coinomi, we then visited a few of the forked coin websites that offer different wallets and tools so you can claim tokens from an existing seed. We visited Bitcoin diamond’s website and utilized the BCD forked version of Electrum. Other websites like Bitcoin hush (BTCH) used other clients like the Agama wallet.

Visitors of these sites should note, a lot of them are insecure websites with no certificates and downloading some of the wallet clients could put…

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