This release primarily tries to make the multi-signature wallet experience clearer about the effect of the Genesis changes that are happening on the 4th of February 2020.

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The best desktop wallet for Bitcoin SV.

Useful links:

What has changed in this release?

If you don’t want to know the details, just read the titles.

Affects existing multi-signature wallet owners, and people who might want to send to multi-signature wallets.

Electrum Core has only ever provided one kind of multi-signature wallet, the kind based on P2SH scripts. And so, this is still the kind that ElectrumSV provides. On the 4th of February 2020, with the Genesis upgrade to the Bitcoin SV blockchain, the ability to send funds to P2SH addresses will be removed. This means that anyone who manages to create a transaction sending funds to one of these addresses, will find it rejected when they attempt to broadcast it to the network. And since only multi-signature wallets generally use P2SH scripts, this will only affect those users with this kind of wallet.

In this release, the ElectrumSV user interface has been changed in several ways to provide a better experience when dealing with multi-signature wallets or payments. If you use multi-signature wallets and do not upgrade, do not be surprised if you see errors and exceptions instead of the things listed below, after the Genesis upgrade.

Let’s get on with how the user interface will change.

Post-Genesis, multi-signature wallet owners should not be able to give out P2SH addresses, at least not without a visible warning. They can work around this by using the Addresses tab directly, but that is almost always going to be pointless. And in any case, we still want our users to be able to see and use addresses if they really know what they are doing.

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The multi-signature wallet owner no longer has the ability to easily give out a receiving address.

Post-Genesis, multi-signature wallet owners can only send whole coins. As it will no longer be possible to make payments for specific amounts, their best option might be sending their entire balance to a new wallet.

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If a multi-signature wallet cannot receive funds, it cannot send change back to itself.

Post-Genesis, any wallet user who has or is given a P2SH address to pay to, will not be able to send funds to that address.

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If someone is given a P2SH address somehow, they will not be able to pay to it.

Additionally, we have added warnings to the multi-signature wallet creation process that declare all these things. We will do this differently in the upcoming 1.3 release that supports the new kinds of multi-signature wallets replacing P2SH. But it will suffice for now.

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Pre-Genesis warning for multi-signature wallet creation.
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Post-Genesis warning for multi-signature wallet creation.

The reason we still allow P2SH multi-signature wallets to be created after Genesis, is because our users may need to create them again if they are lost. Recreating them does not mean that funds can be sent to them again, but what it does mean is that these users have the ability to access and send the funds in them somewhere else.

Affects anyone who attempts to split their coins, if faucet problems are encountered.

When the faucet is not working, people ignore it and do all manner of things in order to try and get ElectrumSV to split their coins. They never mention what it is they do in enough detail, but it seems to cause errors we cannot reproduce. We now have extra handling in place to ensure they get more consistent messages that the faucet didn’t deliver dust or the coin-splitting attempt is over and it failed.

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If the user cancels the process.
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If the user takes over two minutes to click the button on the faucet web page.

It is a little disappointing that people don’t seem to make the obvious link that when we send them to the faucet to get dust, and the faucet is not working, this might be why their coin-splitting attempt didn’t work.

  • Changed the address of the testnet block explorer test.satoshi.io to testnet.satoshi.io to match the change in domain name. People, please do not change your domain names if they’re being used — or at least let us know.
  • If a wallet cannot connect to a server on startup, it might error opening the wallet window, preventing the user from accessing the wallet. This would be indicative of networking problems for the given user, and not encountered otherwise.
  • If something needed the default label (I don’t know what one is either..) for a transaction and asked for it while another transaction was being added to the wallet, it could result in the label request erroring. This was reported once for one user, and the user could likely have repeated the action and had it succeed on any given subsequent attempt.
  • If someone attempted to sign a message using a Trezor hardware wallet, it was not possible due to a long term bug. Given this was never reported, it is unlikely that anyone ever signs anything with hardware wallets.

Final thoughts

The first milestone for ElectrumSV beyond this release is 1.3.0. The primary user visible change in 1.3.0 will be a new kind of multi-signature wallet, replacing the existing P2SH in 1.2.5 and other earlier versions of ElectrumSV.

While the path forward for users of existing P2SH multi-signature wallets may be sending the full balance to a new multi-signature wallet, it might very well be that we can simply upgrade people’s existing wallets to spend the old coins with P2SH and deal with new coins using whatever the new approach is. But keep in mind that the very idea of this highlights that BIP32 as a simple mechanism for wallet restoration is no longer enough when real use cases are in play.

Wish us luck!

What changed before this release?

You can find even more guides to changes in earlier versions from within the following guides:

Written by

ElectrumSV developer

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