Passing Hash | Table O Contents

Have you ever wanted to learn how to transfer ether …

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How to GETH

Hint. Place the intro paragraph ie.) the ‘hypothesis’ here …

More to come …

How to GETH in Mac Os High Sierra

To transfer ether over the Ethereum platform, you must first learn how to GETH.

Go Ethereum = GETH

GETH is an acronym for the official Command line interface, or (CLI) implemented in GO for running a full node on the Ethereum platform.

The GETH Executive

First, download the current GETH executive file ( dot tar dot gz ) for your type of development machine from

Establish My_GETH

From the Finder of your Mac Os development machine …

Transfer In: Genesis dot json


Note. You will now have to right-click over the genesis.json.txt file and select “info” to remove the “txt” suffix

GETH Development

This section of our tutorial on GETH will now focus on the issue of “How to Construct a Development Instance of GETH in Mac Os High Sierra”.


From the Finder in Mac Os High Sierra …

This will open a local Terminal window pointed at the root of your My_GETH directory.

Genesis dot json

From the local Terminal prompt for the My_GETH directory …

./bin/geth --datadir=./datadir init genesis.json

Note. This line of code places a data directory within your My_GETH repo and configures the new data directory per the previously imported genesis dot json file.

This is a test sentence for the internal page anchor #2 in red => For: Newline dot co [2].

The reference points to the second internal citation [Newline dot co] below.

By clicking on either the red [2] above, or the red [Newline dot co] …

The reader will be hyperlinked to the bottom of the page directly to the referenced citation.

Establishing an Account

We are now ready to establish a new GETH account OFFLINE of the Ethereum platform for testing purposes.

From the local Terminal prompt for your My_GETH directory …

./bin/geth --datadir=./datadir account new

The result of the execution of the code is to create a test account within your local My_GETH repo.

Note. The above line of code is provided without warranty courtesy of Newline dot co.

New Passphrase

All new accounts established via the GETH protocol require a secure passphrase to shelter the Private hidden key.

Enter your selected passphrase for the account.


Repeat passphrase:

This will generate both a visible public hash as well as a hidden private key for use in our new test account, as follows:



As a result, the Public hash for your new GETH test account is shown at the Terminal window while the Private hidden key remains sheltered from all eyes.

List O Accounts

To show our new testing account at the Terminal prompt …

./bin/geth --datadir=./datadir account list

Note. The above line of code is provided without warranty courtesy of Newline dot co.

And, to structure our view of the new account via the Terminal …

tree datadir

Note. You can also see the same result via the Finder in Mac Os High Sierra from your My_GETH directory under the subdirectory datadir/keystore.


The GETH or Go Ethereum local “Test - Mining - Etherbase” account we have created has many functions associated with it at the time of its inception.

For an added layer of protection, both the Public hash and the passphrase for the Private hidden key may be stored in the Mac Os High Sierra keychain as a secure note.

For example,

Name of Account
- GETH Ethereum Local Test Mining Etherbase Account [0]
Public Hash
- 9d64628c18f510488c6a7ecdce178e3e50aadd90
Private Hidden Key Passphrase
- SZgzbXfVybN$#kjxU%PZS!bKd$$Wd7w6

Hint. The passphrase for your new Private hidden key can be generated by a Password Management program.

See Last Pass dot com for more detail.

The Public Hash

The public hash may be displayed publically and compressed digitally as a QR code for marketing purposes.

Remember, no one knows your Private hidden key and the passphrase which guards it.

No one even knows your Public hash or your Private hidden key and passphrase even exist …!

Until your Public hash becomes a part of a transaction in the Ethereum network.


We have now confirmed the Public hash to our new GETH testing account.

Plus, the passphrase to the Private hidden key is also stored securely.

Private Hidden Key

Ethereum accounts are generated offline programmatically by following the provided algorithm.

The algorithm given generates a Public hash and a Private hidden key stored locally.

The Private key is hidden by default.

A secure passphrase guards the virtual door to the Private hidden key.

WARNING. The Private hidden key must ONLY be used for signing digital transfers and for signing digital smart contracts that propagate throughout the Ethereum network.

The Virtual Door

Your passphrase guards the virtual door to the Private hidden key of your Ethereum account.

If you fail to properly secure the passphrase to your virtual door, your digital currency ( ether ) will become entombed, or worse …

May even get hacked …!

Changing the Passphrase

If you ever feel the passphrase that guards your Private hidden key has been compromised, then change it post-haste.

Changing a passphrase in GETH requires a bit of coding dexterity, but WITHOUT the aid of the GETH Javascript console.

Target the Account

From the local Terminal window of your My_GETH directory …

Where the hash shown is the target account Public hash

./bin/geth --datadir=./datadir account update 9d64628c18f510488c6a7ecdce178e3e50aadd90


Unlocking account 9d64628c18f510488c6a7ecdce178e3e50aadd90 | Attempt 1/3

Enter the current passphrase for the account.



INFO [11-28|20:01:35] Unlocked account => address=0x9d64628c18F510488C6A7ECdCe178e3e50AAdd90

Remember, if you lose-ah the passphrase to your Private hidden key …

You will be S.O.L ( well, almost …!)

Note. If you cannot remember or find a stored digital ( or, physical ) copy of the passphrase for the Private hidden key of your Ethereum account …

You will have to attempt a brute force via Python attack on your own account …

In order to try to recover the initial passphrase you used when first establishing the account offline.

Typing a new Passphrase

Do not forget this passphrase.



Repeat passphrase:

Note. Please Enter a secure passphrase for the new test account from your Last Pass secure password generator.

Be sure to copy, paste, and visually test your Last Pass secure passphrase to a new, open, blank TextEdit document first.

This will ensure your clipboard cache truly represents your Last Pass secure passphrase.

Upon successful verification, save the new secure passphrase in your Last Pass application and paste the new passphrase in the Terminal window here as instructed.

Note. The GETH Javascript console does not currently offer an API whereby a change to the passphrase of an account may be effected through the console prompt >.

Therefore, all passphrase changes must occur directly in the local Terminal window at your My_GETH root directory as shown.

The GETH Javascript Console

The GETH executive program also comes bundled with its own Javascript console.

To access the prompt > for the GETH Javascript console …

./bin/geth --datadir=./datadir console

This fires up a GETH Javascript console command line cursor > aka “the prompt”.

The prompt > is now ready to accept your GETH Javascript console code statements.

The Eth Library

We can also access our new Ethereum test account eth library that comes bundled with the GETH executive program, as follows:




Note. All Public hash are pre-fixed with the hexadecimal characters 0x when rendered by the GETH Javascript console.

Account Balances

To obtain your account balance …

Use the test account Public hash to access your account via the GETH Javascript console.

From the command line cursor > aka “the prompt” of the GETH Javascript console …


Returns, no balance ( zero ), as follows:


Note. All GETH Javascript console code statements and functions are written in camelCase with the exception of constants.

Constants are written in ALL CAPS.

Note. In order to access the account balance from the GETH Javascript console, the hexadecimally pre-fixed public key must be used.

Mining Local Ether

Over the Ethereum network, each new mined block of transactions …

So, over the course of one (1) hour, the Ethereum network generates …

Formula: [ Sixty (60) seconds X Sixty (60) minutes ] / [ Twenty-five (25) seconds ]

Simulation Results

To count the amount of ether produced from your simulated mining run …

We will need to view your mining destination account aka your Etherbase account ie.) the original testing account we set up initially.

Note. More than one (1) account is allowed when using the GETH Javascript console.

However, we shall keep our mining destination account ie.) our Etherbase account the same as our original test account for now.

The Index Account

Because in our array of accounts we simply have the one “index” account, we can use the numeral zero 0 to access our mining - testing - Etherbase account balance when wrapped in the array [ ] placeholder.

Setting Extra Text

To set an extra thirty-two (32) bytes of text inside each locally mined block …

Invoke the setExtra method of the miner API, as follows:

From the GETH Javascript console prompt >

miner.setExtra("Medcoin™ symbol #MDC Test Block")

Note. Any transactions or “smart contracts” that have entered a gas value below the designated gas limit ( as expressed in g-wei ) are excluded from the mining process.

Ethereum Converter

To convert any denomination of ether to any of its many subdivisions …

For example …

Wei-dai: Setting the Gas Limit

To set a gas limit required to mine each local block …

Invoke the setGasPrice method of the miner API, as follows:

From the GETH Javascript console prompt >


Eth Gas Station

Reviewing an excerpt from the Hash Power Table over at the Eth Gas Station

Hash Power Table

Lowest Gas Price In Block ( g-wei ) Percentage ( % ) of Total Blocks Mined
0.0 0%
0.1 0%
0.2 0%
0.3 0%
0.4 0%
0.5 0%
0.6 0%
0.7 0%
0.8 0%
0.9 0%
1.0 5%

Observe. Notice no transaction took place within the time frame given when a gas limit of less than one (1) g-wei was designated.

As a result, only 5% of the transactions entered during the time frame given became entered into an official mined block at the gas limit of one (1) g-wei.

Although it may take longer for your transaction to enter the Ethereum block chain with a gas limit of one (1) g-wei

Conclusion. Go with a gas limit of one (1) g-wei ( and, be prepared to wait ).

Note. The amount of time it took for those successful transactions to make it into the Ethereum network blockchain is also shown at the Eth Gas Station.

Start to Mine

To mine local ether for gas …


To end the local mining session …

End Mine Session




Designating the Etherbase

The Etherbase account is where all local mining rewards will be credited.

Recall in the original test account ( the [0] index account ) …

The Etherbase account automatically defaulted to the [0] index account upon inception.

To explicitly designate the original test account as the recipient for all mining rewards …

Or, to designated any other subsequent instance of account created …


Test Blocks

To find out how many test blocks were mined during our local mining session …


Returns, a numeral


Counting the Ether

How much wei has been credited to your Etherbase account as a result of the mining of x blocks?

Note. There are 1,000 zillion wei in one Ether coin, or 1 quadrillion wei per ether.

That’s right.

So, when you see Bitcoin (BTC) or Ether (ETH) quoted at a crypto currency exchange, think not in terms of what the dollar value of a single coin is today.

Think rather what the cost of (1) wei will be tomorrow!

By the way, that’s (18) zeroes.

Hundreds, (000)

Thousands, (000,000)

Millions, (000,000,000)

Billions, (000,000,000,000)

Trillions, (000,000,000,000,000)

Zillions. (000,000,000,000,000,000)

Quadrillions (000,000,000,000,000,000,000)

All with a set of three (000) zeroes each.

Crypto Billionaires

When Bitcoin (BTC) first hit the global scene a-way back in ‘09 it was priced at eight (8) cents USD per coin.

About the cost of electrically mining one (1) bitcoin at the time.

Fast forward to today … at the close of the year #2017.

Had you been lucky enough to purchase $10,000 worth of bitcoin a-way back in ‘09 for the princely sum of eight (8) cents USD per coin …

You would have today a portfolio value of 125,000 x $10,000 = $1,250,000,000

And, at $15,000 USD per coin …

Your portfolio value would be = $1,800,000,000

800 - 250 = 550

Wow! A change in portfolio value of $550 mill USD in one week!

All you had to do back then was simply print out your paper wallet with your Public hash and Private key ( and, secure passphrase … if applicable ).

And, then stuff that piece of paper in your lock box over at the bank …

And, wait.

Get Balance Method

Type the following command statement at the GETH Javascript console prompt > to return the ether balance denominated in wei




Note. The balance shown is denominated in wei, the smallest ether denominator.

Conversion to Ether

Now, to convert our wei to ether

;where one (1) ether is equal = to ten (10) to ^ the eighteenth (18th) power wei

We will have to access the web3 library.

Web3 Library

As is the case of the previous utilized eth library …

The web3 library also comes bundled with the original GETH executive file which we downloaded at the start of this exercise.

Inside the web3 library is a method called fromWei.

To access the web3 library and convert our locally mined wei to ether

web3.fromWei(eth.getBalance(eth.accounts[0]), "ether")



Transferring Ether

In order to transfer a small portion of the ether earned from our mining effort …

We will have to create a new Personal account [1] via the GETH Javascript console prompt >.

Note. The personal API manages the Private hidden keys of the local key store.

Adding Another Account

At the GETH Javascript console prompt >


Remember to use the Last Pass platform to generate a new, secure passphrase.



We have successfully added another instance of account to the account array by providing a new Passphrase parameter as the argument for the personal.newAccount method.

Protecting the Passphrase

As an added layer of protection …

For our new GETH Ethereum Local Test Personal Account [1]

In a secure note.

Note. You may use the Mac Os High Sierra secure keychain as a repository for the secure note, as follows:

Name of Account
- GETH Go Ethereum Local Test Personal Account [1]
Public Hash
- e6a21600f542464d20982bd6b5e2ae874ad8901c
Private Hidden Key Passphrase
- 6$&!wk33s$zA9Zm#VysHf!kP6JUApGy3

In addition, the same parameters may be stored locally …

A. As an entry within the Last Pass program Vault


B. As a physically written down memo that is stored at your lockbox at the bank


C. As a separate entry stored within a hard wallet far removed from access to the Internet.

Concept Hammer

The concept here to hammer home is …

“Do NOT lose …

A. The Public hash to your account


B. Your Private hidden Key passphrase

Updated Accounts List

How to view the updated accounts list from the GETH Javascript console prompt >?



The two Public hash ( one for each account ), prefixed hexadecimally

Ether Transfer Code

Use the sendTransaction method to transfer ether from one account to another, as follows:

var trx = {from: "0x9d64628c18f510488c6a7ecdce178e3e50aadd90", to: "0xe6a21600f542464d20982bd6b5e2ae874ad8901c", value: web3.toWei(3, "ether")}

The Smart Contract

personal.sendTransaction(trx, "SZgzbXfVybN$#kjxU%PZS!bKd$$Wd7w6")


INFO [11-28|21:02:03] Submitted transaction  =>  fullhash=0x7c7da4e4a6e4fabe8a05f422be22cd91bc23727407a232513193f9f8243cd232 



Also returns, a transaction id …


Note. The balances of the target “to” account and the Etherbase “from” account have not yet reflected the transaction …

As shown by the following GETH Javascript console exercise.

The Conundrum

From the GETH Javascript console prompt >





web3.fromWei(eth.getBalance(eth.accounts[1]), "ether")

Returns same,



web3.fromWei(eth.getBalance(eth.accounts[0]), "ether")



Time to Mine Again

Before we can fire up our local mine again …

In order to allow our expert miners to include our already entered “smart contract” in the next block of transactions …

We must unlock the account that holds the ether.

Unlocking an Account

How do we unlock the account that holds the ether?

In this case, we must unlock the “index” [0] test - mining - Etherbase account aka the “From” account.

From - To

To unlock the “From” account …

personal.unlockAccount("0x9d64628c18f510488c6a7ecdce178e3e50aadd90", "SZgzbXfVybN$#kjxU%PZS!bKd$$Wd7w6")



Common Error

Porting a newly generated secure passphrase from the Last Pass program to the Terminal window can be sticky at times.


personal.unlockAccount("0x9d64628c18f510488c6a7ecdce178e3e50aadd90", "./bin/geth --datadir=./datadir account new")

Sometimes, the clipboard cache from the Terminal will override an attempt to copy and paste new items elsewhere.

You just may have entered the item stuck previously in the clipboard cache when prompted for a passphrase when originally creating an account.

Since there is no display by default of the passphrase entered …


And, even though the new account method calls for a 2nd entry of same …

Repeat passphrase:

Without a confirming visual of the actual item being pasted, there is no simultaneous confirmation.

Hence, this author’s call for a copy and paste of the contents of the current clipboard cache onto a blank sheet of TextEdit to confirm you are indeed dragging the secure passphrase from the Last Pass program to the Terminal.




To confirm the “Passing of the Hash” in the form of ether from one account to the other …


The Code

Place the transaction id as a parameter to the getTransaction method …



  blockHash: "0xa1de5ac3cec0bbe87962233f265472b963379b0063c570ca0dc0e20c184605c8",
  blockNumber: 1109,
  from: "0x9d64628c18f510488c6a7ecdce178e3e50aadd90",
  gas: 90000,
  gasPrice: 18000000000,
  hash: "0x7c7da4e4a6e4fabe8a05f422be22cd91bc23727407a232513193f9f8243cd232",
  input: "0x",
  nonce: 0,
  r: "0xe315d6d3f20eb776c7f048e75b2418355743b26bca4d836c87034d8a4db8c4f8",
  s: "0xfadbc1f3d896690fcf62d2a4834a7436f4917d2814900adcc049016d828c098",
  to: "0xe6a21600f542464d20982bd6b5e2ae874ad8901c",
  transactionIndex: 0,
  v: "0xed",
  value: 3000000000000000000

When The Given Fails

Note. The following line of code is provided without warranty courtesy of Newline dot co.

eth.sendTransaction({from: eth.accounts[0], to: eth.accounts[1], value: web3.toWei(3, "ether")})


Error: authentication needed: password or unlock


Error: insufficient funds for gas * price + value


Go to the “How to Unlock” section above …

And, get the balances of each account to confirm, as follows:


Last Subtitle

More to come …

Note. The above synopsis was derived from an article written by Newline [2].

  1. Code lines courtesy of Newline dot co. Published by © 2017


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