How to get at your BTG from pre-fork BTC


#1

Continuing the discussion from BTG Electrum Wallet Development - Fork Progress:

You already have your BTG in the corresponding address on the BTG blockchain. What you really want to know is how to get control of them. You’ll need to import your private key into a wallet that supports BTG, or sweep your balances into a wallet that supports BTG - but you want to do it safely.

The general process:

  1. Choose a BTG wallet to use. Learn the basics for that wallet/software/hardware.
  2. Move your BTC out of your BTC wallet into a new address. This should always be done for safety before exposing and manipulating your private keys - if your computer is being spied on, or if the private key gets saved anywhere, an attacker can later use those private keys to get your BTC out of that original wallet. Moving out your BTC before beginning is an excellent precaution.
  3. Go to your old BTC wallet (in this case, bitcoinofficial.org), log in, and get your private keys. This is fairly simply through the web site on bitcoinofficial.org, but web wallets are inherently more risky and maximal caution should be used. Protect your private key. Never give it to anyone, unless you want to give them control of your coins.
  4. Depending on the new BTG wallet you’re using, either:
    a. import the private keys (which gives your wallet software control over that BTG address) and then move those coins into a new wallet address (because it’s safer to store them in an address that has never had the private keys exposed) or
    b. Tell your new wallet software to use the private keys to Sweep the coins into a fresh address. (In this case, there’s no need to moving the coins; Sweeping moves the coins directly into a new address.)

Recap:

  1. Choose a BTG wallet
  2. Move your old BTC to a new address
  3. Get your private keys from the old BTC wallet
  4. Depending on the new BTG wallet, either:
    a. import the private keys and then move the BTG to a new address or
    b. use the private keys to Sweep the coins

Notes:

  • You do not need to rush; if you have BTC in cold storage from before Oct 25, 2017, both the BTC and the BTG will be safe as long as the private key is safe. (Note: some other fork projects have burned coins, possibly including coins based on your BTC; we can’t speak for what other projects do.)
  • Once you expose and work with the private key, those coin addresses are less safe - on all chains where they exist! How much less safe? It depends how careful you were with your private keys! Prudence dictates that you move coins out of all addresses that use that private key, no matter what coin/blockchain it is. If your Bitcoin have been sitting in an old address since June of 2017, there could be corresponding coins on many forked chains (including Bitcoin Cash, Bitcoin Gold, Bitcoin SV, and others.) That private key can unlock and move coins from all of those chains.
  • If the exposed private key is snooped by someone in any way, they can use it to grab any BTC in the original Bitcoin address as well as forked coins from all BTC forked coins created from them. It’s best to plan ahead to take control and move all the forked coins you control on every chain you care about. Take your time when planning - again, you’re not in a rush to start, but after you expose you private keys, you should go to all chains where those private keys are in play and move those coins to new addresses. The sooner you move them, the sooner you can be sure those private keys can no longer be used to take your funds.

BTG Electrum Wallet Development - Fork Progress