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Myths and misconceptionsEdit

Nxt is a scam because all Nxt coins are pre-minedEdit

The term "pre-mined" is a misnomer.  Nxt coins are not mined at all.  The original stakeholders in Nxt contributed Bitcoin in order to seed the creation of the 1 billion coins represented in the genesis block, and these coins were distributed among the original stakeholders.  The stakeholders are expected to distribute coins by donating them, using them as "bounties" to pay for work on the coin (software, documentation, translations, support, etc.) that is done by the community. Even the creator of Nxt (BCNxt ) made an investment.  The coins were not generated from nothing!

The creation of the genesis block was fully public: https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=303898.msg3652710#msg3652710

If there are no new Nxt to be mined, how do you validate the blockchain and secure the network?Edit

Nxt is a pure Proof-of-Stake (PoS) currency. Users validate the blockchain and secure the network by running a light weight client on any computing device (even one that used to run Windows XP). For doing this users are rewarded with Nxt coin that is collected from transaction fees.

In addition, the "transparent mining" feature of Nxt will penalize accounts that do not participate in the mining process by temporarily preventing them from earning transaction fees.

Currency questionsEdit

How divisible is Nxt?Edit

Right now, the Nxt software supports divisibility of Nxt to two decimal places (one-hundredths, or cents), but all transactions can involve a minimum of 1 full Nxt.  Since there are 1 billion Nxt available and the software is very young, divisibility is not a top priority. It can be adjusted in the future.

Where can I find charts for the price of Nxt?Edit

The most robust chart for NXT/BTC is available at cryptocoincharts.info, which provides a visualization of the price on the DGEX exchange.   Other charts will be forthcoming.

SoftwareEdit

What is the difference between the Nxt Server and Nxt Client?Edit

The Nxt Server is the software that implements the core features of Nxt. When we talk about "version 0.4.0 of Nxt" being released, we are talking about the server. It is written in Java, and runs on a command-line interface.

The Nxt Client is the web-based interface you use when interacting with Nxt at https://127.0.0.1:7875/ (or https://localhost:7875/). This client is intended to be temporary, because it is very basic. Access to it will eventually be removed altogether, once better clients are created. Developers are currently working on new clients for all platforms (even mobile devices!). It's likely that any new client software will also include the core server software so that you can easily set up and operate Nxt.

When I go to https://127.0.0.1:7875/ in my browser, I get a security warning. What does this mean?Edit

Port 7875 in Nxt is used for secure communications, and any website that uses this protocol must provide a "digital certificate" to verify that the site is who it says it is. Nxt uses a "self-signed" certificate, which isn't seen as secure by most browsers. You can safely proceed past this warning, and use the software.

Why is the software so hard to install and use?Edit

Hopefully the download and installation instructions can help you get your Nxt software running, but we recognize that the software and installation is not as easy-to-use as it will be.  As of the time of this writing, the development team is working on the core features of the software (the server), and the Nxt has not yet officially been launched (this will happen on January 3, 2014). The Nxt client that the development team has created is a very basic web interface. Other developers are stepping up to create better Nxt clients for users.  

Details on these clients will be added as soon as they come available. Some "beta" clients that are being created can be found on the Nextcoin.org forum. Give them a shot, but remember that they, too, are still works-in-progress. Generally, all Nxt clients include the server, so you only have to download and install one package.  

Why isn't Nxt open-source?Edit

Eventually, it will be.  At the moment, some of the code is still private because it is still being hammered out.  The development community is releasing all of the base source code on January 3, 2014, and source code for additional features (the "secret sauce") in the Spring of 2014.  

Moreover, the developers have purposefully introduced three security flaws into the source code that they will be releasing, as a means of encouraging the community to scrutinize the code and to prevent people from creating copies of Nxt by simply taking the source code and re-using it.  People who discover the security holes will be able to claim rewards for finding them.

Wallet, accounts, and account balancesEdit

Where is my wallet?Edit

Unlike Bitcoin or other altcoins, there is no local wallet with Nxt.  More specifically, the coin uses a "brain wallet", which is to say that wallets are decentralized and kept on the network.  When you create an account in Nxt, your secret passphrase is used to create your account number.  Once your account number is generated, you can unlock it and access it by using your passphrase on any running Nxt node.

I just created an account but I don't see it in the blockchain explorer! Why?Edit

As soon as you unlock an account with a secret passphrase, the account is created if it does not already exist. But until you send a transaction to your account, it will not appear in the blockchain (or the blockchain explorer). This is because the blockchain is a record of transactions, and not accounts.

Send some Nxt to your account, and then check the blockchain again. As soon as the transaction is confirmed (which could take less than a minute), your account will being to appear.

Can I access my wallet from another computer?Edit

Yes! There is no wallet file in Nxt because all of the accounts are stored on the network.  This is referred to as a "brain wallet". This means your account can be accessed from anywhere... but it also emphasizes the importance of using a strong passphrase, since the passphrase is the only thing that protects your coins from being accessed by others. (This authorization mechanism might be rewritten / updated / strengthened later).

For security reasons, it is recommended that you only access Nxt software when it is running locally. This helps eliminate the possibility of someone intercepting and recovering your account password.

How do I get my first Nxt coin?Edit

There are a number of ways for you to get your first Nxt coin!

  • Ask for donations!  As these are early days for Nxt, stakeholders are more than happy to donate small amounts of coin to help seed interest.  Try posting your account information on this forum topic .
  • Contribute to the community!  A great deal of work needs to be done to help the Nxt community grow -- everything from contributing documentation, to promoting Nxt, to assisting with translations, to contributing code, and more.  Take a look at this list of Nxt forum bounties or this list of Bitcointalk.org bounties  to see what "tasks" need to be performed. Take one on, and earn some coin for your work.
  • Purchase some Nxt coin on DGEX.com , using Bitcoin.
  • Pick up some coin by trading directly with members of the community in the Nxt Buying / Selling Thread.  If you buy coins from someone directly, make sure you trust them, and try to break the amount in smaller groups! (Example: Trade 200 000 NXT for 1 BTC by breaking it down to 20 000 NXT/0.1 BTC packages)

Where can I buy Nxt coin?Edit

You can exchange Bitcoin for Nxt at DGEX.com .  Eventually the Nxt software will implement its own decentralized exchange.

SecurityEdit

I'm worried about account security. Since all of the accounts are stored on the network, isn't it possible for someone to guess my "secret phrase" and get easy access to my coins?Edit

This question actually emphasizes the importance using a strong, secure password to create your Nxt account.  In fact, we prefer the term "passphrase" because a "phrase" is generally much longer than a "word".

If you enter a passphrase less than 30 characters long in the Nxt client, you will be warned that you are creating a security risk.  A truly random string of 50 to 60 characters is a far better choice for a passphrase, and will significantly reduce the risk of someone "brute-forcing" your account or stumbling across it or happening to use exactly the same passphrase.  Nxt supports 10^77 different account numbers (that's 100 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 accounts), so the range of possible passphrases is significant.

You can use a site like https://howsecureismypassword.net/ to test the strength of your passphrase, and get an estimate of how long it would take a standard computer to crack it.

I've just realized I should have chosen a better password/passphrase.  Can I change it?Edit

You cannot change your account passphrase in Nxt, because it is actually used to generate your account number.  More accurately, for those of you who know a bit about public-key cryptography: your passphrase is the private key for your account, and your account number is your public key.

If you would like to use a different passphrase, just create a new Nxt account using whatever passphrase you'd like.  Once you've done that, use your Nxt client to send your Nxt coins to yourself – from your old account number to your new one.  The transaction fee can be set to 1 coin, so it won't cost you much to make the change.

ForgingEdit

Why is it called forging instead of mining?Edit

With Bitcoin and many other cryptocurrencies, the act of securing and verifying the blockchain results in new coins being created.  With Nxt, however, all possible coins already exist, and accounts earn coins from transaction fees alone.  As a result, it was felt that a new word - "forge" - was needed to describe the manner in which coins are earned.

How does forging work?Edit

With Nxt, coins can be earned through transaction fees.  24 hours after receiving your first coins, your Nxt software will begin to contribute to the block generation process and can earn coins for you as long as your account is "unlocked".  The amount of coin you can earn is dependent upon the number of coins you hold, the total number of coins "active" on the network, and the transaction fees included in blocks on the blockchain.  

Why do I have to buy Nxt coins in order to forge them?Edit

If you´d like to own some Bitcoin, or any of the other altcoins, you have to invest in mining hardware to be able to mine some coins. With Nxt, you buy an actual amount of coins in order to start to start forging. There are no additional costs, and no expensive mining hardware is needed.

I have some coins in my account. How can I start processing transactions and forging coins?Edit

If you are running the Nxt software on your computer, have your Nxt account unlocked, and some Nxt in your account, you will automatically begin forging Nxt!

Officially, you can start processing transactions and forging Nxt once the first transaction that puts Nxt into your account is confirmed 1440 times. This usually takes a day (blocks are generated once per minute, so 1440 blocks are generated every 24 hours). Once you have reached this milestone, the client user interface will show you a "timer" in the "blocks" widget that estimates how long it will be before you generate a block.

This timer is just an estimate, based on the number of coins you have versus the total number of coins that are active on the network. The estimate will vary from minute to minute, and is just a guess based on your current probability of generating a block.

Do I have to leave the client open in order to forge coins?Edit

No.  Once your server is running, simply leave your account "unlocked", and then you can close your web browser.

What does it mean to "leave my account unlocked"?Edit

When you type your secret passphrase into the Nxt client window, your account will be "unlocked" in your server software.  Once it is unlocked, it will stay unlocked until you specifically lock it again, or until you stop your server.

To unlock your account, access your server by opening https://127.0.0.1:7875/, clicking the padlock icon in the upper left-hand corner of the browser window, and entering your secret passphrase.  Once this is done, the padlock icon will change to the "unlocked" state and your account number and balance will be displayed in green text at the top of the browser window.  At this point, you can close your web browser and your account will remain unlocked on the server. Your server (computer) must still be running.

Suppose I lock my account (for example, by means of shutting down the server). The next time I unlock it, is the time I remained unlocked counted towards generating my next block? Edit

No.

Think of your chance of generating a block a little bit like entering a prize draw.

When a block is being created and your account is unlocked, it is like you have one prize draw ticket in your hand for every Nxt coin you own. Everybody else who has Nxt coin also has prize draw tickets for all of their coins. Someone is going to win the prize draw, so your chance of winning depends entirely on how many tickets you have, versus the total number of tickets entered in the draw.

Now, imagine that to win the prize, you also have to be in the room when the winning ticket is drawn.

If your account is "locked" or your server is not running, it is as if you are not in the room – you cannot win the prize.

Once a block is generated (meaning someone has won the raffle), a NEW prize draw is started, with all-new tickets, based on who is in the room when the new prize draw begins.

So: you have zero chance of generating a block when your account is locked or your server is not running. And since the generation of each new block is NOT dependent on the result of previous block, you do not get any credit for the time that your account has been locked or unlocked.

How can I see if my account has forged a block?Edit

An easy way to see how many blocks you've forged (and exactly how much Nxt you've earned from forging) is to use the Nxt blockchain explorer :

  1. Go to http://87.230.14.1/nxt/nxt.cgi?action=1
  2. In the text box on the right hand side, labeled "block or transaction or account", enter your account number and then clock the "GO" button.
  3. Near the top of the query result, you will see a line containing the information you want: "Mining ratio", "Blocks generated", and "Fee earned".

How much Nxt can I earn by forging, and how often will I get it?Edit

You can start processing transactions and earning Nxt after the first amount in your account is confirmed 1440 times (or 24 hours).  Once 24 hours has passed, an estimate of the time before your software will forge a block will be shown at the top of the "Blocks" widget.

It is very important to note that block generation is essentially a random process, so the best anyone can do is estimate how long it might be before you generate a block. In the Nxt client, you will see text that says "you can generate the next block in X days....": this is just an estimate of how long it could take to generate a block, based on your current probability. The estimate will vary from minute to minute, because the probability varies from minute to minute.

Here is a mathematical walkthrough of how Nxt coins can be earned from transactions:

  • Every 24 hours, there should be 1440 blocks added to the chain. This is based on an average block generation time of one block per minute. These blocks represent transactions for the total volume of coins (1 billion)
  • Your probability of forging a block depends on your share of the total number of coins that are active on the network. If all available coins (1 billion) were used for active mining, then an account balance of 694,444 NXT (1 billion divided by 1440) would mine 1 block per day. However:
    • coins moved to a brand new account must wait for 1440 blocks to mature
    • some owners don't bother with mining, don't leave their Nxt software running, or their Nxt software crashes, so only portion of all coins are actively mining at any point in time.
    • the number of active coins on the network varies from one block to the next
  • If you look at the "recent blocks widget" in the Nxt client you will see a red-white target icon in each block. If you divide 100% by the target value you'll get the portion of coins that was used for mining that block. (Note: Because blocks are generated once per minute, you should take an average value of these targets, since they fluctuate from minute to minute)
    • For example, if the average target value is is 400%, then only 100/400 = 25% of coins are mining blocks.
  • Now you can calculate an approximate value of how many blocks you might create per day by multiplying the number of coins you own by the absolute value of the target (e.g. the absolute value of 400% = 4), and then divide by 694,444.
    • For example, if you have 50,000 Nxt coins and the average value is 400%, you could forge 0.288 Nxt blocks per day, which translates to one block every 3 or 4 days.
  • The number of coins you earn from finishing a block depends on the number of "fee coins" in the block.  The minimum fee per trade is 1 coin, and the number of trades in a block will vary. A block can contain a maximum of 255 transactions.  It is also possible for blocks to be empty.

Can I forge Nxt more quickly by running multiple servers and multiple accounts?Edit

No.  Your ability to forge Nxt depends solely on your total account balance as a percentage of all available coins.  This is what sets Nxt apart as a pure "Proof-of-Stake" cryptocurrency.  CPU power, GPU (graphics processor unit) power, and the number of servers you run have no effect – in fact, you could even forge Nxt on a very old, low-power computer!

The Nxt Alias SystemEdit

What is the alias system?Edit

See the feature documentation for the Alias System for a general description

How do I create an alias?Edit

See our How-To page on creating aliases.

How much does it cost to define an alias?Edit

Just the transaction fee! Currently, you can set this as low as 1 Nxt. Be aware, however, that if multiple accounts request the same alias at the same time, the request with the highest specified fee will "win".

How do I know my alias has been created?Edit

Like any other transaction in Nxt, you should wait to see that your transaction is confirmed. Your alias creation transaction will appear in your "transactions" window as a transaction involving a transfer of 0 Nxt.

Can an account have more than one alias linked to it?Edit

Yes. You can link an unlimited number of aliases to your account.

Can I give an alias to someone else once it's been created?Edit

The account that creates an alias "owns" it. Currently, the owner of an alias cannot be changed.

What can I alias?Edit

Almost anything! Web links, phone numbers, email addresses, Nxt account numbers – almost any piece of text!

How do I change an alias?Edit

As long as your account is the owner of an alias, you can change it by sending another transaction. Just choose a new definition for an alias that you've already created, and the network will change the definition from the old alias to the new one. The change will cost you a transaction fee.

Are aliases case-sensitive?Edit

No.

Are any aliases reserved?Edit

Not at all. All aliases are assigned on a first-come, first-served basis.

Edit

From here, you may want to learn more about the Nxt client or look at common problems and resolutions!