Bitcoin News Journal

How To Import And Redeem Bitcoin Paper Wallet


Earlier this week we published a guide to create Bitcoin paper wallet for cold storage. Today we’ll show you the other part, where you’ll learn to import private key in to your Bitcoin QT wallet or online wallet, so you can redeem your Bitcoins out of cold storage.

There are several ways to import the private key data from a paper wallet to other wallets. Original bitcoin QT wallet supports an “importprivkey” RPC method for this purpose. Several online wallets like  also import them directly into wallets.

Most popular Bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox also provides the ability to Add Funds using a private key. In this article we’ll use official Bitcoin QT wallet and online wallet. Let’s start with QT wallet.

Import Paper Wallet to Bitcoin QT Wallet :

First of all make a backup of your wallet.dat file (instructions here) before starting.

Step 1 : Launch your Bitcoin-QT wallet. Go to Help >> Debug window from the menu bar and then click on “ Console ”.

Step 2 : If your wallet is encrypted you must unlock it first. If not just skip this step and encrypt your wallet later for more security (instructions here)

To unlock your wallet run the following command without quotes, where 600 stands for the seconds your wallet is unlocked.

walletpassphrase "Your Passphrase" "600"

Step 3 : Now import your private key using following command without quotes.

importprivkey "yourPrivateKey" "Label"

Step 4 : Wait for 2-5 minutes while Wallet imports your private key. After 2-5 minutes check your address book for newly imported address.

Step 5 : That’s it. Now you can send these coins to wherever you want.

Note : Since the private key has now been imported to your wallet, it would be no longer consider as cold storage anymore.

Import Paper Wallet to Online Wallet :

Importing paper wallet to Blockchain wallet is much easier than QT wallet. You don’t need to execute any command, simply type your private key and that’s it.

Step 1 : Log in to your wallet and click on import / export button.

Step 2 : Type your private key in “ Import Private Key ” box and hit the “ Add ” button.

Step 3 : That’s it. Now you can check your coins in your wallet balance.

If you still have any doubt, feel free to ask us in comment section below.


Comments ( 2 )

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  1. marco October 20, 2013 Reply

    Thank you !

  2. Ilan December 8, 2013 Reply

    Hi I have been trying to import my litecoin wallet to my online litecoin QT client by following the same steps as above, however it won’t unlock the pass phrase for some reason and will not import the wallet, it works fine with a single paper wallet (no encryption) any ideas why I am having problems?

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