First things first, what is Bitcoin mining? Bitcoin mining is the process in which Bitcoin transactions (or any other cryptocurrency transactions) are verified and added to the Blockchain – a public ledger. Through this process, new bitcoins are released. People called “miners” use special software to solve complex math problems and are rewarded with Bitcoin. This results in both new Bitcoin and motivation for people to mine it.
There are two main ways of mining. One is doing it solo and the other is doing it in a mining pool. A pool is a place where different miners join forces, share their processing power and, of course, share the reward equally. This happens after they solve a block.
Mining solo could mean, especially for beginners or slow miners, not getting an award in years. When the pool of joint miners solves a block, the 12.5 bitcoins are generated and shared by the pool participants.
To sum up, mining solo means that if you solve a block you earn 12.5 bitcoins by yourself, not having to share it with anyone. As a matter of fact, solo miners don’t have to pay any type of fee. On the other hand, solo mining is a lot more difficult process and could mean never earning anything. This is why lots of miners start mining in pools.
Beginners usually don’t know how to start mining, and which cryptocurrency to choose. There is a pool called ‘Multipool‘ which shows you the most profitable cryptocurrency for the type of hardware you have. When you create an account on the pool’s website, you will create a ‘worker’. If you have several pieces of mining hardware, you can create several workers.
Some websites offer lists of some of the best mining pools. For example, AntPool is of the most efficient mining pool. AntPool participants have solved around 18% of the total solved blocks. AntPool is followed by BTC.com. BTC.com participants solved around 16.5% of the total solved blocks. Third in line is BTC.TOP. It has mined about 13% of all bitcoins mined in the past six months.
Difficulty levels of mining could vary, so can the efficiency of any particular mining pool. This means never taking one-time information for granted, especially when big financial decisions are the matter.