Get the most out of this tutorial
So you're entirely new to the mining scene and don't know where or how to start. Here's a guide for you that will get you on your way.
This tutorial contains both a written and video portion. If you are new to the concept of mining, or using Minergate, we suggest that you watch the video then read the written tutorial to solidify your understanding. Use the written tutorial as a reference later or when you need to refresh your memory of this process.
What you'll learn
- Mining one non-BTC coin, Bytecoin (BCN)
- Mining through a pool, Minergate
What you can expect
Mining is a highly equipment based activity, and in order to get a decent ROI you will either have to spend, or have already spent, money.
Unless you have a computer setup that either has at least
- Multiple Xeon processors (CPU)
- At least 4 graphics cards (GPU)
or any combination of those, you will probably not even be able to mine enough to pay the electricity it consumes.
Mining is a highly equipment and resource based activity, and in order to get a decent ROI you will either have to spend, or have already spent, money.
You can, however, still learn what it's like to mine and from there decide if you'd like to take the next steps.
This guide assumes the following about your computer environment
- A single graphics card (nVidia/AMD)
- Minergate as the mining pool
Let's get mining!
1. Register an account
This is not strictly required for mining, but it will give you more statistics. You can skip this step if you just want to start mining. If you want all the features Minergate can provide, go register an account. Note! Enable 2 Factor Authentication! If you don't, you run the risk of getting your account hacked, which could mean someone who can break your password, will be able to walk away with your coins!
2. Download the miner
Go to the Minergate download section and get the miner that works for your operating system. The website is pretty smart at guessing, so the one it suggests usually works. For this guide, we'll be using the Windows version.
When you've downloaded the miner, install it. Note! A lot of Antivirus services detect miners as potential threats, and will either warn or block you when trying to install it. These are almost always so called "false positives". You should always be vigilant when these warnings appear. So far, the Minergate software has not yet been confirmed and verified as running any kind of keylogger, malware or virus. Still, if you don't trust the software, don't install it! If you don't install it, then you can skip the rest of the steps as they wouldn't make much sense.
3. Start the miner
Start the Minergate GUI. You'll be presented with this interface, asking you to log in. If you've enabled 2 Factor Authentication, which is strongly recommended, you'll also be presented with the Verification code field when you attempt to login. You also have the option of only entering an email address and login without a password.
4. Select a coin to mine
When having logged in, you'll be presented with the choice to do something called "Smart mining". This means the application will figure out which of the coins available on Minergate is the most profitable to mine, and all you have to do is click the "Start smart mining" button and let it go.
But, for the sake of this guide, we are going to click the "Miner" button, and pick a coin for ourselves to mine. The list of coins are those available to you for mining.
You will see a number of columns on each row, here's a list of what they mean
|Currency balance||This is the amount of coins that have been allocated to your balance of that coin.|
|CPU mining||If you want to use your CPU(s) for mining, you should activate this.|
|CPU cores||The number of CPU cores you want to mine with.|
|GPU mining||If you want to use your GPU(s) for mining, you should activate this.|
|Intensity||The GPU intensity you want to mine with.|
|Shares: good||The total amount of good shares your miner has committed/sent to the pool. The more of these your miner can generate, the better your reward when a block is found.|
|Shares: bad||The total amount of bad shares your miner has committed/sent to the pool. These may be a result of bad miner configuration, network issues, or other reasons. The more of these you have, the higher the risk that your miner will be banned temporarily or permanently.|
|Shares: last||The last recorded share your miner committed.|
|Shares difficulty||This value is set and controlled by Minergate, and not something you can modify. This value is used to adjust the bandwidth requirements on your miner, and as a result, also the Minergate pool. The higher this number is, the lesser the bandwidth requirements, but with the side effect that the variance of your rewards will increase.|
|Unconfirmed balance||A balance of a not yet confirmed amount of coins for each currency. When you have mined a certain amount, it will confirm and instead show up in your Currency balance.|
|Reward method||The way in which you receive your rewards. It is usually either PPS or PPLNS. It depends on the coin if you can choose which method you want to use.|
|Merged mining||This is a unique feature of Minergate; You can merge two coins at once, with minimum/next to no impact on the primary coin you mine. If you want to merge mine, choose which coin you want to merge mine in the drop down and start mining the coin on the same row as the drop down you selected.|
Now that you are more familiar with what the GUI fields mean, select 1 CPU core on BCN (Bytecoin) and click Start mining. Notice how the status changes, a CPU hash rate appears, and also after a while (can take several minutes) that the shares count is increasing.
If everything looks ok (good shares are increasing, you may even already have seen some of the Unconfirmed balance increase), select 1 as GPU intensity on BCN (Bytecoin) and click Start mining. Notice how the status changes, a hash rate appears for the GPU column, and also after a while (can take several minutes) that the shares count is increasing, faster than when you only did CPU mining.
If everything have gone smoothly up to this point, you're mining! The more you mine, the more you earn. But, that said, a lot of your earnings depend on your hardware and your choice of coin you're mining.
It's really easy to start mining with the Minergate GUI. When you've come this far, you should do one or more of the following things, in no specific order
- Try mining something else and see what the differences are in terms of hash rates, share speed and coin balance
- Test the different reward schemes; PPS or PPLNS
- Try merge mining
- Adjust the number of CPU cores and GPU intensity; more cores and higher intensity often means more effort is put into mining. This often means you'll get a more unresponsive Windows experience, but it also often means an increase in the amount of shares you can produce, which in turn means a higher payout.
- Read the other sections on this site. It has information about terminology, Minergate pool specifics, more examples of the console/terminal/command line interface (CLI) tools
Other videos to watch
Now that you know what it's like to mine with Minergate, you could try a few other videos for mining other coins.
Mine Zcash on Minergate with EWBF's CUDA Miner
Mine with your GPU on Minergate using CCMiner
Good luck with the mining!