In this section we will provide answers to frequently asked questions (FAQ) for bitcoin and other crypto currency wallet password recovery. We will help you identify the best strategies and tools to get your coins back. The way we do this is by providing some scenarios based on Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs). Some of these strategies, such as digital forensics and memory recovery, are often overlooked while being extremely useful for recovering lost passwords, passphrase, wallet files or private keys.
You can search the list of scenarios below to find the scenario that best describes your situation. Below these scenarios, we describe the best strategies and tools to get started with recovering your coins. Many of these solutions do however require that you have some basic understanding of programming and the use of command lines. In case you lack the skills or time to implement these solutions, you can use our wallet recovery service or another professional wallet recovery service.
1. I have a private key but no wallet.
Congratulations! You can simply use your private key to load the lost bitcoins in any new wallet. See this link on how to load private keys in a wallet.
WARNING: Never share your private key with others! If they have your private key, anyone can access your bitcoins. Never store private keys on your computer. There is a lot of malware out there that can scan your computer for private keys! If you want to back up your private key, it is best to make a physical copy.
2. I think I know my wallet password, but it does not work.
Typos are the most common cause for people to not be able to access their wallet. Fortunately, there is great chance you can crack your wallet since the number of possible typos – changes between higher and lower-case, insertions or deletions – are still limited and can therefore be all tested. There are special software tools that can check easily for possible typos. See the wallet recovery software section for the most often used password recovery software.
3. I forgot the password for my wallet.
You can crack your wallet, if you have an inclination of what your password might have been. Think of possible combinations of words, numbers and characters you might have used. If you have no clue whatsoever, recovering your bitcoins will be challenging. However, by using digital forensics and memory techniques and by analyzing all other password that you use, you can recover fragments – words, numbers, characters, names etc.- that you might have used in your password. Using these fragments, patterns or lists of possible passwords can be generated that can be tested by special wallet password recovery software if they are the password of your wallet.
The use of digital forensics as a strategy is often overlooked. The human brain contains most memories we think we have forgotten. Like deleting a file on a hard drive only removes the link to the file (file handle), often it is only a matter of finding the right context to be able to consciously retrieve or access these memories. Read on on how to recover the memories of your ‘lost’ bitcion wallet password.
4. I lost my wallet, password and do not have a private key.
Your chances of recovering your bitcoins are slim since you need to recover first the wallet and then still need to crack your password. You might want to consider if trying to recover you coins is worthy of your time. However, if you think it is still worth a shot, here is what you can do:
Step 1: If you ever stored you private-key, use Digital Forensics to find it back. If your private-key was ever on a USB stick or hard drive, even though you deleted the file (this removes the file path only), the file with your private-key might still be on there. See Digital Forensics on how to recover your private-key. If you succeed in finding your private key, you simply load your bitcoins in a new wallet and you can skip Step 2 and Step 3. See this link on how to do so.
Step 2: If your wallet was ever on hard drive or USB stick that was not frequently use to write data, your wallet file (wallet.dat) might still be on there even though the path to the wallet file has been deleted long time ago. See Digital Forensics on how to recover you wallet file.
Step 3: Use Digital Forensic to help juggle you memory, you might remember names, words, dates that are often borrowed from your passed daily lives to make a list of possible password pieces you used. As long as you have an inclination of what these fragments of your password are, you can still crack you wallet.
5. Your wallet is corrupted.
Do not fear, although wallets can get easily corrupted, the private keys – which are the keys to your bitcion funds, can often be recovered. You need to load the wallet, enter your passphrase, and then perform a private key dump. The private key can be loaded in another wallet (make sure you put a password on the new wallet).
6. Your case is not written here.
I hope you found the answer to your question among these answers to frequently asked questions. If you have other questions regarding wallet password recovery, you can contact me. Or you can check out some of the great community fora out there.
For example, you can start by checking the Bitcoin community page on Redit to see if anyone asked a question similar to yours. If you cannot find your answer there, you can make a new post and get advice from the large Bitcoin community. With near certainty, your specific problem has been encountered by many other members of the Bitcoin community. There are plenty of highly qualified community members out there will provide advice for these cases. However, make sure you do not blindly trust advice and make sure you know what you are doing when you use your BitcoinQT/Bictoin core command console. Never ever share your private keys with anyone unless you trust them completely!
Wallet password recovery software
There are a number of tools that can help you crack your bitcoin wallet. The three most used of these are btcrecovery (BTCR), Hashcat, and Jack the Ripper. All three of these tools are Open Source and freely available and can be used to crack your bitcoin wallet password. All three of these programs allow simple attacks using list of passwords which you can store in a plain text file or more efficient pattern-based attacks. Importantly, all three of them have GPU support which allows for much faster cracking than using CPU cracking.