Mining Software

Mining software is used to coordinate between the mining hardware being used and the Bitcoin network. One option for mining software is the original Bitcoin-QT client. The only problem with mining using the original client is that only solo-mining is possible. Since millions of dollars of hardware is required for solo-mining to be effective, many miners use mining pools coupled with third party mining software.

For mining with CPUs, CPU Miner is a popular choice. CPU mining is so ineffective with current network difficulty that this method has become obsolete. The two most popular choices for mining software are BFGMiner and CGMiner. Both of these options allow users to set mining pool accounts, configure graphics cards for mining, and they are both compatible with modern ASICs from Butterfly Labs, ASICminer, and Avalon.

Mining software is almost always open source. This means that users can view the source code, make changes, and compile the application themselves. Open source software is always free so the programmers generally accept donations in Bitcoins. Below is an example of what CGMiner looks like during active Bitcoin mining.

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