Juni's Journal

BSV Wallet Derivation Paths and where to find them

Thursday, September 17th 2020

If you are new to BitcoinSV like I am, I've had to learn the mechanics of wallets.

You might have been asked to keep a copy of your BSV wallet's secret 12-word mnemonic, also called your BIP39 words. The 12 words are a human readable version of your wallet's not-for-human-consumption private key. You should NEVER share your 12-words or your private key with anyone, because if someone has them, they can spend the stored value within that wallet.

But that's not all of a wallet. There is a derivation path. Technical explanations aside, you need both the 12 words and the derivation path to use a wallet anywhere.

When a wallet is generated, Different wallet apps use different default derivation paths. Restoring such a wallet to that same app will always work, as it assumes you're recovering a wallet that app generated. But all BSV wallets are actually created equally. You should be able to use a generic app to work with most common BSV bitcoin wallets, such as simply.cash or ElectrumSV.

Default Derivation Paths for common BSV Wallets

  • MoneyButton.io = m/44'/0'/0'
  • RelayX.io = m/44'/236'/0'
  • simply.cash = m/44'/145'/0'

The 44 here is a reference to BIPS-44, and the second number is supposed to be coin type: 236 is BSV, and 145 is BCH and 0 is BTC, but that doesn't seem to be applied as a hard and fast rule.

I haven't found an easy way to discover a given wallet's derivation path if you didn't make it.

Not all wallets are created equal

HandCash

If you're using HandCash 2.0, HandCash are apparently doing something a bit different in the name of security, and explicitly say you cannot import your HandCash wallet into any other apps. They seem to have a proprietary way of using HD (hierarchical deterministic) keys, with the real value stored in a wallet within your root wallet. It seems anyone telling you the derivation path for your HandCash wallet is m/0' would be referring to an older HandCash 1.x wallet.

Centbee

I'm told that Centbee's derivation path is m/44'/0/0 and the passphrase is your 4 digit pin, but I have been unable to get this going.

Where to from here

I don't know a whole lot about the ins-and-outs of BSV, Bitcoin, or Cryptocurrency in general. I wrote this article because I wanted to be able to get all my wallets into simplyCash so I can check their balances quickly. I wish simplyCash made switching between wallets easier.

If you have further insight to shine on what I've written, please contact me, I'd love to learn and chat! I'm Juniper Skunktaur on Twetch! If you found this useful or interesting, like or rebranch my Twetch about it, and even use Twetch's /pay @5675 $3 feature to throw me enough for a virtual coffee.

I'm also a beginner illustrator, and do art commissions! Hit me up if you're keen on a cheap fun PFP or whatever.


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