The Monero GUI is the ‘official’ wallet that has been developed and maintained by the open source community behind the Monero coin itself.
As such, it should come as no surprise that the GUI wallet offers one of the smoothest and most secure experiences in transacting with the privacy coin. Since the developers already know the ins and outs of the blockchain supporting Monero, clashes with the underlying system are non-existent.
Also, the application is what is known as a full node wallet. This means that it runs a full-fledged node for servicing the Monero Blockchain. While this makes the initial set-up process a bit lengthier than usual, it pays off eventually by significantly speeding up the transaction times.
This also means that the application does not depend upon an external server to route your information, securing it against hackers and malware.
The only problem is that the software is available only as a desktop client, so no luck for mobile lovers. Linux users, however, can rejoice, as Ubuntu and other distros are well supported. Even FreeBSD enjoys a limited, console only support, making Monero GUI wallet a good choice for all PC users.
Below you’ll find all you need to know in our review and guide for the Monero GUI Wallet.
Getting started with the Monero GUI Wallet
- The official Monero wallet.
- Desktop only.
- Supported on Windows, Mac OS & Linux.
Get the top Monero wallet built by the Monero team.
Choose your language, and the welcome screen will show up.
If you already have a pre-existing wallet, then you can restore it from here. There are two ways to do this: if you have the encrypted wallet file on a thumb drive, you can use that file, or alternatively, restore your wallet from the 25-word mnemonic ‘seed’ phrase that was given to you at the time of its creation.
For the purpose of this guide, we would be assuming that you need to create a new wallet. Click the first option.
The Create New Wallet screen prompts you for a wallet name, presenting the 25-word mnemonic in a box below. The apparent string of nonsense is the key to your wallet; make sure to write it down somewhere safe. And no, simply saving a screenshot is not an option, as images can be easily accessed by hackers, making your wallet – and the funds stored in it – compromised.
The wallet is also stored as an encrypted file on your computer, to make backups and restoration easier. You can change the location of storage of the automatic backups from the default.
Next up is a password. Set a reasonably strong password. Apart from the mnemonic phrase, this is all that is keeping your account safe.
That’s it for the setup. The final screen shows the details you have entered one last time for confirmation. Once you are sure everything is correct, hit the ‘Use Monero’ button to continue.
Don’t worry, the ‘daemon’ is not something being summoned from the fiery circles of hell (the spelling is wrong for that), but simply a program running in the background. It is required for syncing with the Monero Blockchain and detecting transactions.
Once the Monero Daemon is up and running, it will proceed to download the blockchain. Depending on when you used the wallet last, it may take some time and data.
Finally, you will be presented with the Wallet main screen. As you can see, there is a wealth of options arranged in the clean, clutter-free interface. Don’t be overwhelmed by the number of alternatives before you; only a precious few are needed for the main tasks like sending and receiving coins. We will deal with these functions in the next few sections.
How To Receive Funds on Monero GUI Wallet?
Receiving funds is fairly straight-forward. At the top is the Address field, which displays your wallet’s public address. Anyone can send funds to your account using the alphanumeric code.
Additionally, you can generate a payment ID to uniquely identify any particular payment. In that case, the Integrated Address comes into play, combining your address and the payment ID into a single code. All that remains is to share this code with the sender of funds; either by copy-pasting it directly or if the person is nearby, by scanning the generated QR code.
The Amount field is mainly in the interests of book-keeping since the amount actually depends on the sender’s discretion. All it would do is provide a default amount to the sender, streamlining the process in case of payments.
Once the transaction has been detected by the Monero client, the Tracking information would be displayed, constantly updating you on the status of the transaction.
How To Send Funds?
Sending funds is even easier. Simply enter the required amount along with the receiver’s address, and you are good to go.
If you are not in a hurry, however, the other options too can be useful. The Transaction Priority can be increased for a faster confirmation time; though it ups the fee for the transaction. Similarly, the Privacy Level can be increased for a more anonymous and secure transaction, for a higher charge.
The Payment ID is entirely optional. It is only useful in cases that you are not trying to keep your transaction anonymous – at least to the receiver of the funds – in case of a payment, for example. Similarly, the description does nothing to the transaction itself, acting only as a personal log for the transaction. It is not sent but only saved to your local Wallet history.
As you might have noticed, the Monero Wallet has several additional options on the side-bar apart from simply making transactions. History, of course, is self-explanatory, showing a log of your transactions.
Each transaction is recorded with its date, payment ID, and fee if applicable. To quickly distinguish between inflows and outflows of funds, the records are marked with colored dots – green for received tokens, and red for sent.
Mining On Monero GUI Wallet
The Advanced tab hosts many other useful features. One such feature is mining; the capability to ‘mint’ Monero tokens by utilizing your system’s processing power.
Mining with the Monero GUI Wallet is pretty straightforward. Specify the number of threads you wish to use (only useful if you have a multi-core processor) and hit the start mining button. Be warned; the process will hog a lot of your computer’s processing power, so only use it when not using any intensive applications. And even then, the yield is unlikely to be significant. Unless you have the specialized ASIC processors in use these days, you will hardly make a dent.
Still, it may be worth trying out for the novelty alone.
Then there is the check payment option. Clicking it would bring you to a screen like the one below.
As evident by its name, this option lets you verify a transaction by specifying a recipient’s address, the transaction ID, and the key to the transaction itself. This allows verification of the otherwise anonymous transactions on the network.
This is a nifty little feature that can actually come quite handy sometimes. Basically, it lets you ‘sign’ a message or file with your wallet’s unique private key. This signature confirms the authenticity of the file to anyone you send it to, allowing you to safely share important documents and texts without the fear of forgeries.
Obviously, it also lets you verify a received file or message for the correct signature. Mostly, the signing feature is used in the sharing of crucial financial information, where the integrity of the information is absolutely necessary.
Lastly, there is the Settings tab. As the name would suggest, it lets you customize the options for your wallet. For the most part, these options are rather technical in nature, and of little utility. In the ‘Manage Wallet’ section though, you can find a couple of useful things.
‘Show seed’, for example, can display your 25-word mnemonic seed again in case you have lost the paper wallet you made upon setting up. It alone can help you save quite a bit of hassle in a pinch.
Then there is the View only Wallet. Indispensable to power users, it lets you safeguard your funds behind another layer of security. The methodology goes like this: you use two wallets, one actually holding your funds, to be used offline, while the view only wallet for syncing with the network. What this does is put your tokens behind an impenetrable firewall of sorts, preventing hackers from accessing your money remotely. Definitely a must-have if you store sizable funds on your wallet.
The Monero GUI wallet will be the go-to solution for most users, simply by the virtue of being the default wallet supported by the foundation. That being said, it has its flaws, mainly in the form of a purely desktop support. By lacking a mobile wallet, it creates a conundrum for most of its users who use their mobile for most of their networking needs.
But if all you need is a PC app, the Monero GUI Wallet is the thing for you.
Additionally, it sports an Ubuntu friendly version as well, coming as a lifesaver for all those open source OS users out there. Add to that its pretty straight-forward interface, and you have little reason to use anything else.