Electrum Wallet Review

Rating: 4,5/5

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What Is Electrum Wallet?

Electrum is a lightweight software-based cryptocurrency wallet that supports most major modern platforms: Windows, MacOS, Linux and Android. The wallet has been on the market since 2011 and accounts for approximately 10% of all bitcoin transactions. It is one of the most time-tested and reliable hot wallets for bitcoin storage.

Review Summary

Feature

Total Rating

Ease of Use

4,5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐

User Interface

4,5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Features

5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Security

4,5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Support

5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Advantages and disadvantages

Advantages

Disadvantages

  • Decentralisation.
  • Control over private keys. Their import or export.
  • Cold storage.
  • Wallet recovery using a seed-phrase from which private keys are generated.
  • Transparency ensured by publishing open source software code.
  • Manually set fee.
  • Mass transfers.
  • Multilingualism.
  • Functionality.
  • Complicated for beginners
  • Security problems

About the wallet

About the wallet

Electrum Wallet is a software interface for Bitcoin cryptocurrency transactions. Electrum is a 'thin' wallet - there is no need to wait for the network blockchain to load. This means a quick and easy start-up after installation. Synchronisation and transactions take place online on remote, decentralised servers.

Electrum has a high degree of security: the owner retains full control over the private keys. They are generated locally on the device and are not available to third parties. Access to Electrum Wallet can be restored using a seed phrase, a password-protected wallet file or a private key.

Electrum Wallet is a free and open source program. Anyone can verify the code.

Electrum Wallet installation

Electrum Wallet installation

To install Electrum Wallet go to the official website. Under "Downloads" select the required operating system and download the installation file. In this review we will consider the installation of Electrum version 4.1.5 on Windows 10.

Run the installation file (has an exe extension) and follow the commands of the installation wizard.

Electrum Wallet installation
  • The first thing to do is to choose how you want to connect to the servers: Auto connect or choose to connect manually. If you are installing Electrum for the first time, select "Auto connect" and continue with the installation.
Auto connect
  • Choose a name for the wallet file. Click "Choose" to see the path to the folder with the file and its changes. Leave it at the default.
Wallet name
  • Choose what type of wallet you want to create: standard; with two-factor authentication; with multi-signature; import a private key or address. Most likely, the Electrum Wallet is created for the first time, so you should choose "Standart Wallet".
Create new wallet
  • Next, create a new seed phrase. With its help it is always possible to restore access to Electrum wallet; extract private keys. Seed can be imported into other cryptocurrencies, such as Blockchain.com.
Create a seed phrase
  • Wait for the seed to be generated. Copy the 12 words in the same order as they are presented. To do this, just right-click and select "Select All" and then "Copy". Be sure to save them.
Wait for the seed to be generated.
  • The next step is to repeat the seed phrase in the same sequence. 
  • The last step of the installation is to set a complex password for the wallet file.
Set up a password

This completes the installation of the Electrum Wallet.

Login to Electrum Wallet

Login to Electrum Wallet

To enter Electrum Wallet you need to click on the icon of the installed wallet. Then you must enter the password to unlock, which was set at the last stage of installation.

Electrum Wallet Overview

Electrum wallet after launching has the following view:

Let's look at each menu item in detail.

In the bottom panel of the Electrum Wallet there are the following elements:

Bottom panel
  • Green circle - it means that Electrum is connected to the servers. When you click, detailed information about the number of nodes, their names will appear. You can select servers manually or automatically.
  • Seed icon - view the seed phrase at any time after entering the password. If it was not saved during the installation, you must do it.
  • Settings - this item is similar to the top menu "Tools" - "Settings".
  • Lock - change password.
  • Balance - the number of your bitcoins in the wallet.

At the top of the Electrum Wallet there are the following elements:

Top menu
  • File menu - Resently open; Open; New/Restore; Save backup; Delete; Quit.
  • Wallet menu - change password; view seed-phrase; import or export private keys, history, contacts, etc.
  • The "View" menu contains the ability to show "Addresses", "Coins", "Contacts", and "Console" sections.
  • Tools menu - it contains the main settings, network, plug-in operation, messaging operations, mass payment to multiple addresses, downloading the transaction.
  • The Help menu contains information about the version of the wallet, links to the official Electrum website, documentation, 'Report a bug' and 'Donate' items.

Electrum Wallet basic settings

To change basic Electrum Wallet settings, click on "Tools" and select "Preferences"

Electrum Wallet basic settings

The following settings are available:

  • General;
  • Transactions;
  • Lighting;
  • Fiat;
  • OpenAlias.

The most important of these are:

  • General - Here you can choose language, currency (BTC, mBTC, bits, sat), block browser, colour scheme, logging.
  • Transactions - here you may set up address usage for change, changing address, spending only verified coins, rounding value for outputs.
  • Fiat - here we configure the choice of fiat currency to display the Electrum bitcoin wallet balance.

How to get bitcoins to your Electrum wallet

To receive bitcoins to your Electrum wallet you need to click on "Receive".

How to get bitcoins to your Electrum wallet

You then need to click on the New Address button. A public bitcoin address for the cryptocurrency will appear. It looks like a random set of letters and numbers 33-34 characters long. It is also presented as a QR code. You need to copy the address and specify it when transferring.

New Address

How to withdraw Bitcoins from Electrum Wallet

To transfer bitcoins from Electrum Wallet, you need to go to the menu "Send", specify the recipient's wallet address, amount, description of the payment. Check the information and click on "Send".

How to withdraw Bitcoins from Electrum Wallet

Private keys in Electrum

Private keys are generated from the seed phrase. Public addresses (public keys) are generated from the private key.

Public addresses can be given when receiving the cryptocurrency. Private keys cannot be given or shown to anyone, as knowing them you can gain full access to the balance.

In Electrum the private keys can be viewed under Wallet - Private Keys - Export. The corresponding Private Key will be located next to the address. To save, select the format (csv or json), specify the folder and click "Export".

It is better to write the private key on paper, duplicate it and save it in several places. It can be imported into other cryptocurrencies (Exodus, Bitcoin Core and others) and not just used in Electrum.

If you need to import an existing Private Key into Electrum, select "Wallet" - "Private Keys" - "Export" and insert it.

Electrum Wallet Console

To go to the Electrum Console, select "View" - "Show Console" and it will appear on the top menu.

Electrum Wallet Console

List of basic commands:

  • "createnewaddress()" - generates a new bitcoin address;
  • "getbalance()" - show balance;
  • "getconfig('dynamic_fees')" - check dynamic commission;
  • "getseed()" - output seed phrase;
  • "history()" - history of transactions;
  • "importprivkey(privkey)" - import private keys;
  • "is_synchronized()" - synchronization status;
  • "listaddresses()" - list of bitcoin addresses;
  • "listrequests()" - payment request;
  • "make_seed()" - create a new sid (previous one is kept);
  • "password(opt_old_password=None, opt_new_password=None)" - create new wallet password;
  • "getfeerate()" - optimal commission, which is calculated in real time.

To see all commands, enter "help()" and press "Enter".

Conclusion

Electrum is one of the safest ways to store bitcoin cryptocurrency. It is mandatory to save the seed phrase; the private key of the address where the funds are stored; the password of the wallet file. This information is best kept in a secure location, preferably in printed form. You should not store it on a computer because of possible vulnerabilities.

Jack Evans


I became a crypto asset owner in 2014, when the industry was in its infancy. Before that, I was working in the classic US and European stock markets. Since then, I have gained extensive experience in both cryptocurrency investing and day trading. I am happy to share with readers my experience with crypto exchanges, DeFi and NFT instruments.
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