I’ve seen a few tutorials out there showing how to mine dogecoins, bitcoins, or litecoins in the cloud. None of them were as complete as I wanted them to be, so I’m putting this post together.
WHY mine using amazon’s servers? Good question. Generally setting up a mining computer will be cheaper in the long run, but it involves more technical know-how and it involves a lot more money. You have to pick out the ‘right’ motherboard, graphics card, hard drive, a case, and then you have to put it all together and get it to work. With Amazon’s servers, you could be up and running in 20 minutes. Using your own hardware also means that you are capped at a certain rate. If the price of dogecoin increases 200% tomorrow, then you could simply fire up more servers. It would take a lot longer to order up the parts for more mining computers. The downside is that amazon’s prices fluctuate, and amazon will rent you a computer that will barely break even, or not make a profit. That onus is on you in order to do the math.
HOW to mine dogecoins on amazon.
1 – Download the dogecoin client – from here. Run it and let it sync. It will take a long time (days!) but it will run in the background and you don’t need to wait for it to finish in order to continue on.
2 – Get your dogecoin address – In the dogecoin client go to the third tab in. “Much Recieve” Select the only entry and hit the “copy Address” button. This string of characters is similar to your checkbook routing number. This is where you will get paid for your mining. Save this number somewhere, you will need it later.
3 – Join a pool – Mining is a lot like playing the lottery. You try and try and eventually win. If you have an underpowered machine, then it may take a VERY, VERY, long time for you to ever find a winner. Consequently, people have created “pools” where everyone mines together and then splits the winnings based on how hard they worked. This is generally the better way to do it, as you will be paid more consistently. My current favorite is hashfaster.
4 – Join an exchange – Cryptsy will allow you to trade your dogecoin for bitcoin, litecoin, or a lot of other coins. This will let you hedge your bets and give you a place to swap one coin for another. Join here, we’ll come back to this in step 2.
5 – (finally!) Set up an ec2 account – Sign up here for the ec2 free tier. Don’t worry, they won’t charge you for anything until you start renting servers.
5b – Find my AMI – On the left side click on “Community AMIs” and then type tinyenormous into the search box. I should probably explain what this means. I have configured a machine image so that it will start mining as soon as it starts up and is configurable. You could do this if you wanted to, but it is easier to simply use the one that I have already set up.
Search for “TINYENORMOUS” and you should find mine. Just to be safe, here are the specific ID numbers of the authentic ones.
ami-2b5f6242 – east coast
ami-8ae4d6cf – california
ami-eaddbcda – oregon
ami-f3ac32c9 – sydney
ami-e60553b4 – singapore
ami-a3a4cda2 – Tokyo
5c – Choose an instance type – In this section you will pick the “computer” that you will be renting. This AMI is going to be cpu mining, so the number of vCPUs is the most important thing. Generally you will get ~4.5k per cpu. Amazon has configurations that run anywhere from 1 to 32 cpus. It doesn’t matter if you have one machine running 32 cpus or 32 machines running one, so check the prices and find the sweet spot. In order to find the prices you can do two things. The first way is to select a configuration and hit the next button. Then hit the “show spot prices” radio button on the next screen. This shows you the current pricing for that configuration. The other way is to open up a new ec2 tab in your browser and click “spot requests” on the left side and then “pricing history” on the top. That way will show you a graph of prices over time.
5d – Configure your instance – Now you have picked the best value of $/cpu and you know what the market rate is. In the next page, titled “Step 3: Configure Instance Details” click on the “request spot instances” button and put in a bid equal to or higher than the minimums. You can limit the amount of time that the request will be valid for by putting a time into the “request valid from” and “request valid to” fields, and you can click the “persistent request” button if you want the instance to launch again after it is shut down.
Here is an interesting thing about ec2 bidding. If the average price goes above what you are currently paying then your computer will get shut down. The only way to prevent this is to either big well above the minimum bid, or to not bid. If you don’t click the “request spot instance” button, then amazon will charge you top-dollar for every instance but won’t kick you off.
5e – Once you have your bid figured out, hit next until you get to step 6 (on amazon). In this page you will configure your security settings. You don’t want anyone in the world to be able to log in to your instance, so you are going to set it to only allow connections from the i.p. address you are using. Go to whatismyip.com and copy your ip address. Now go back to amazon, hit “add rule” select ssh, and then paste your ip in the box all the way to the right. Amazon will suggest you add /32 to the end and you should do it. If there is a rule above the one you created then delete that by hitting the circle with an x in to the right side. Now hit “review and launch” on the right side.
5f – The last step in getting a spot server bid in is to set up a key pair. This is a small file that helps amazon verify that you are indeed the owner when you connect to the computer. On the popup select “create a new key pair” then download it, and click on the “I accept” terms and conditions.
5g – Congratulations! You have now submitted your bid. If you go to spot requests you should see your request being processed. Provided you bid high enough it will be fulfilled and should show up under “instances” shortly. If it says “price-too-low” under status then your bid wasn’t high enough to win.
In part 2 I will show you how to log in to the instance and update it so that it is mining for you!
(if this guide has proven useful to you, feel free to tip me in dogecoin at DB7UPpjsUqdWvDPxJcUdnZ3Ymtb4K2KBNQ or send me any type of coin via cryptsy at c99b5ef67fdd3f7e3900b3e8d52f1e37c1197a00 )