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IAmATroll

Ellipal Cold Wallet

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16 hours ago, IAmATroll said:

Any insights would be helpful!

Hardware wallets will be useful if/when it becomes possible to use crypto-assets for low-value in-person transactions (coffee shops, bars, farmers markets). But for anything more than a few day's expenses, they will always be inferior to air-gapped software wallets. You need esoteric knowledge to audit the security of a hardware wallet, but you can audit your own air-gap with nothing more than common sense (especially if you use QR codes rather than potentially malicious USB sticks when you're moving data across your air-gap).

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58 minutes ago, tev said:

Hardware wallets will be useful if/when it becomes possible to use crypto-assets for low-value in-person transactions (coffee shops, bars, farmers markets). But for anything more than a few day's expenses, they will always be inferior to air-gapped software wallets. You need esoteric knowledge to audit the security of a hardware wallet, but you can audit your own air-gap with nothing more than common sense (especially if you use QR codes rather than potentially malicious USB sticks when you're moving data across your air-gap).

Which air-gapped software wallet you're thinking of?

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39 minutes ago, panmores said:

Which air-gapped software wallet you're thinking of? 

Doesn't really matter. I've mostly used @ripplerm's wallet (i.e. a copy of this web site on a non-networked computer), but I'm sure other software (toastwallet perhaps?) can be used offline too. (Apparently, people get confusde by ripplerm's wallet being denominated in drops, where 1 XRP = 1 million drops.) Whichever wallet-software you use, the workflow is something like this:

  1. Draw up your transaction in an internet-connected copy of the wallet-software. You'll need your address, but don't even think about entering your secret. At this stage, you want the internet connection because the wallet-software wants to be able to see the XRP ledger in order to draw up the transaction properly.
  2. Transfer your unsigned transaction to your disconnected computer. A USB stick is the obvious way to do this, but see comments below about QR codes.
  3. Use your other copy of the same wallet-software, on your disconnected computer, to sign the transaction. You do need your secret here, but you're disconnected from the internet, so thieves can't intercept it (but look behind you for CCTV cameras and people with binoculars!)
  4. Take the signed transaction back to your internet-connected computer.
  5. Load the signed transaction into the internet-connected copy of your wallet-software and broadcast it.

A transaction is a fairly small file, even after you've added your cryptographic signature. So, if you're worried about malware hardwired into USB sticks, you could convert it into a QR code and use the web cams on your computers. I haven't used the QR code technique myself, since my cold computer is in fact the same machine as my hot computer (except, booted off a USB stick), but the concept is trivial.

The whole process makes sense as long as you remember than XRPs are not stored in wallets; they're stored on the XRP distributed ledger. Wallet software does two things: (i) it interacts with the XRP ledger, and (ii) it writes cryptographic signatures. It uses the internet for (i), but not for (ii).

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9 hours ago, tev said:

they will always be inferior to air-gapped software wallets

You do know that the Ellipal hardware wallet is airgapped and communicates using QR codes?

Your step 1 to 5 above can be simplified, with even higher security, by using a hardware wallet together with the XRP Toolkit.

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Edited by RareData

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