How to Mine Litecoin (LTC)

Instructions for choosing and installation of special hardware for Litecoin mining, a client recommended for Litecoin, mining programs and algorithm used and the reason to join a mining pool

We have already compared Bitcoin and Litecoin and understood their core differences, Bitcoin mining process and even Ethereum have been described as well. Now you know all the basics about Bitcoin and altcoins and the mining process at all, but still no idea how to mine Litecoins. Here we are to provide you with all the important information which will help you to become a Litecoin miner.

Litecoin is a cryptocurrency developed by Charlie Lee, a former Google engineer, in 2011. Lee recognized Bitcoin’s major issues and created a more scalable and quicker version. Unlike other numerous Bitcoin clones, Litecoin holds its ground to this day and remains one of the most popular cryptocurrencies. If you know what you are doing, you can make good profits mining litecoins.

Choosing hardware

At one point bitcoin miners realized that GPUs do a much better work than CPUs at finding proof-of-work solutions. They moved to GPU mining, and graphics card companies drove up their prices. It became a lot harder for individual small miners (who cannot afford expensive multiple-GPU-powered mining rigs) to make any profit. Charlie Lee wanted mining to go back to good old CPUs. Instead of SHA-256, his Litecoin uses Scrypt, a CPU-oriented mining algorithm. As time passed, however, hardware companies developed ASICs for Scrypt, as they previously did for Bitcoin’s SHA-256. Today it is almost impossible to make any or at all money without using Antminers L3+ of the world. So if you decided to mine litecoins, do a research into available ASICs, choose one you can afford, go to an online litecoin mining calculator, and do the math.

Installing software

So you’ve got yourself an ASIC for Litecoin mining. Now you have to take care of the software. First of all, you need a wallet to store all your precious litecoins that you’ve worked hard for. There are abundant litecoin wallets available online but, for the security purposes, it is recommended to use the official Litecoin Core client. To become a full litecoin node, you will have to download the entire litecoin blockchain, which, at time of writing, was 18Gb. This may take few days.

Now that you have become a full-fledged member of the litecoin network, you download mining software. Scrypt mining programs, such as sgminer, cgminer and cudaMiner, are abundant online, but you will have to choose based on your hardware and operating system. Keep it mind that mining software may require you to work with the command line but don’t get too scared, everything is pretty googleable. For more detailed info, visit Litecoin’s official website.

Joining a mining pool

As an individual miner, you risk going long periods without any results. No matter how much powerful a rig you have, you present a very tiny fraction of the total hashrate, and your chances are appropriate. This is why you should consider joining a mining pool. A mining pool is a group of miners, who combine their processing power to improve the probability of winning a reward. If even one of the miners in a pool finds the block, the reward is split between all of the members according to the power they’ve provided. Though your share may not be as high as a full reward plus fees, mining pools ensure that you have a steady predictable income. Before joining a mining pool, however, carefully examine their website, read their papers, and familiarize yourself with their payout structures.

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