Help Buying New Laptop for Minting

Hey guys, I need some help. I have a faster laptop which I use for personal and daily use. I also have a much slower desktop computer from back in the day that I wiped and use solely for minting Peercoin, NuShares and BlockShares. I don’t touch this computer except to update the clients and leave it running 24/7.

This older computer has been sufficient running these clients for a while now, but unfortunately I’ve been running into problems over the last month. The B&C and Peercoin client work fine. My main issue is with the Nu client. It takes hours to start up and even longer to update the blockchain. When I go to switch to the NuShares tab, the entire client freezes and says it’s not responding. Sometimes it recovers and sometimes it doesn’t. If it doesn’t then I have to wait for it to restart all over again. Another problem I’ve been having is that I’ll finally get the client running, unlocked for minting and the blockchain completely updated, but then when I check on how it’s doing a couple days later I notice that the blockchain is a couple days behind, like it stopped downloading for some reason. The spinning wheel is there in the bottom right corner, but I don’t think it’s actually downloading anything, like it got stuck, or is at least downloading too slow.

I realize that the devs are working on a new client version to help use less resources and speed things up, but since the network is currently under stress because of the demand for new NuBits, I figured I should be more proactive in getting my minting power added back to the network as soon as possible. I decided that I’d like to purchase a new laptop solely for minting to replace the old desktop that I use. I’m hoping that will help solve some of my issues due to the increased speed, memory, etc…

I have about $400 to burn and was thinking about taking a ride up to Best Buy later today to look for something. The problem is that I don’t know that much about computer specifications, so I thought I’d ask here for feedback. Again, the only thing this laptop will be used for is minting 24/7, not playing games or using the internet, except to download new versions of the clients. Because of this, I figure it doesn’t have to be an expensive laptop, but I’d at least like to have the required specs to simultaneously run a lot more clients in case we expand into even more DAOs/DACs over the next couple years. Can anybody suggest what type of specs I should be looking at to meet this goal?

Another question is the operating system I should install on it. I have been using Windows 7 for minting without any problems, however I expect any new laptop I purchase to come pre-installed with Windows 10. I currently use this OS for my personal computer and I like it, but I’m concerned about using it for minting coins and shares. For one it’s still a brand new OS, so anything could go wrong. Second, Windows 10 is a lot more connected to Microsoft than previous versions. I don’t want the possibility of things I type such as my wallet unlock passwords to somehow make their way into being stored on their servers, where it can be abused. I hear you can disable Microsoft’s data collection somehow, but I would still be hesitant to use it. I know some people will suggest buying a Raspberry Pi for minting, but it’s currently too complicated for me and I’d rather have the actual clients installed on my computer so I can take advantage of the GUI and all its features. Some will also probably suggest Linux as a safer OS, but I honestly have no experience with this at all. Older versions of Windows like XP and 7 have worked fine for me so far as long as I don’t use the computer for anything else except for minting. What do you think of buying a new computer and just wiping it and installing Windows 7 on it like I’ve had for the last year? Does anyone else share my concerns about Windows 10? Does anyone actually use it for minting?

Anyway, thanks for any help. :smile:

I m using win for minting.

What version though, 10 or earlier?

Not 10. Win 9?

a simple dual core (or i3) with 4 or 6GB ram and win7 64 should be ok.
i don’t trust win10, yet!


Microsoft skipped from Windows 8 to 10, so 9 doesn’t exist. Sounds like you might have 8.

If you could share the model of the laptop I think we would have a better idea of what do you need.

Might be cheaper and more cost effective switching to a SSD.

I’m interested in hearing alternatives as well. I would like one or two light laptops that can mint with several networks, looks good, has at least medium-quality components (trackpad, keyboard, display), while being reasonably affordable.

There’s Chromebooks, and… haven’t looked into this in a while so I don’t know. If you don’t care about the things I do, you’d get more raw performance buying a bulkier laptop.

Best Chromebooks of 2015,

Perhaps 16 GB SSD is restrictive though… and the performance I’m not qualified to judge for minting.

Operating system

I would not use Windows XP. Microsoft doesn’t even ship security fixes anymore.

Windows 10 is the best Windows yet (usually sounds ridiculous to me—“your latest product isn’t worse than the previous iteration?”—but anyway. It’s good, I like it). Windows 8.1 (with Classic Shell for desktop use) is what I would run instead of Windows 7 if you don’t want Windows 10. I condemn their non-approach to privacy, but it’s the best Windows I’ve used.

There’s a tool that automatically disables at least parts of Windows 10’s privacy-hostile features at, but while the site’s recommendations seem sensible, I don’t know who they are and whether to trust them.

Regarding Linux distributions, I think you wouldn’t have trouble using a popular one (e.g. Ubuntu) assuming you can install Windows. Creating an installer USB stick is quite easy.

Here are the specs for my current desktop just for reference…

  • Gateway
  • AMD Anthlon 64 X2 Dual Core Processor 3800+ 2.00 GHz
  • 1.00 GB RAM
  • 232 GB

I honestly have no idea. I’ll probably get a Dell or something, but I wasn’t going to the store until later to look.

A small barebone computer should also be suitable for minting.


Do you really need a laptop? I mean if you are supposed to move it around with you.

Given that you want to run multiple clients and be somewhat “future-proof” you will need LOTS of RAM, a multicore processor, and a fast storage (SSD).

Your 400$ will get you less than half the performance for that task in a laptop, compared with what you would get if you spend that in a desktop.

Nu v2.0.2 uses 869 MB RAM on OS X for me according to Activity Monitor (810.6 MB real, 17.3 MB shared, don’t know how that works). Edit: May be worth pointing out that a Raspberry Pi 1 Model B Rev 2 (the most common, I believe) has 512 MB RAM. Usage likely varies between OSes and builds, but swap could help run nud with insufficient RAM.

Minting isn’t very CPU intensive, is it? We’re doing it on Raspberry Pis. Nu seems to use around 0–15% (or 3–10%) on my Intel Core i7 1.8 GHz (MacBook Air 11″ mid-2011).

Edit: Do we have any statistics of RAM and CPU usage?

my virtualboxes are running on Linux Lite with 1 gb memory with no problems.

Not sure you can run nu client and bce client both at the same time with that though. Both split up your outputs excessively which explains why your tabs takes ages to load up.

Buy a second hand pc with decent amount of memory (at least 2gb) and flash it with linux lite and you r set

If you are in the USA you can get a dual core@2.7ghz, 16GB RAM, 120GB SSD for 253 USD. And that with decent quality, branded components.

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If you are tech-savvy enough to setup multiple clients for minting, you are perfectly capable of setting up and running Linux. The XFCE version of Ubuntu called Xubuntu is almost a cloned experience of Windows XP. Use your $400 to buy a used or refurbished PC on ebay or at WalMart. Don’t worry about the OS it’s running, as you’ll wipe the disk clean. Download the free Linux software and burn it to a CD. Go into the BIOS and set it to boot from the CD first. (Flash drive is also possible, but I think the CD is easier) Startup the PC and you’ll be running Linux from the CD. It will be slow, but you’ll get the idea. At that point, you’ll be convinced how easy it is to use. In a few mouse clicks you can have it installing the OS to the hard disk. Heck, you can even retain the original OS on a separate partition and boot to that as an option. You’ll be far safer (although not immune) to attacks, malware, etc compared to Windows. Plus you’ll have more computer resources available to devote to minting.

PS. Your local bookstore will have a magazine rack with several Linux-oriented magazines and likely even a Ubuntu-specific magazine. These usually come with a CD that has the current release, although using that is not critical. This CD will save you the trouble of setting up the install media and you’ll get to read some informative articles as well.

The main issue is the RAM. You will need at least 2Gb, ideally more to run the 3 minting clients. The dual CPU should not be an issue as long as you don’t start up the clients all at the same time. Especially Nud needs to be started separately.

The cheapest option is to upgrade the RAM in your old computer, but you might need to provide a few more specifications before you can buy the right RAM modules. I bet you can upgrade to 2Gb or even 4Gb assuming the computer has at least 2 memory slots.

On top of that or instead you can add a SSD as ttutdx suggests. That would speed up the memory swapping (when you don’t upgrade) and loading of the clients/blockchain and the computer in general.

When you are not confident replacing those items yourself buying another computer is indeed the best option. The suggestions in this thread appear more than adequate to me.

Edit: My experience with Linux Ubuntu is indeed that it is very simple especially when you only run those clients or some internet browsing. It only gets complicated when you want to partition harddisks, install RAID or need to get to the command line for installation of software etc. That is all not required to run 3 minting clients.

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Macmini and reuse your screen /keyboard perhaps.
I personally use a win7 laptop that was then customized for game playing.

As I’m new to Linux, I was just wondering what the difference was between Linux Lite, XFCE and Linux Ubuntu. All were suggested above.

Mainly the GUI, much like windows 7, 8, 8.1 and 10 are behind the scenes technically the same.

Ubuntu is the most popular, you have resources like and plenty of guides and tutorials.
You can start here, at the bottom you have instructions on how to switch from windows with a USB drive.

I strongly encourage you to try it out, especially for the usage you propose.