A crypto wallet is a device or application that stores a collection of keys and can be used to send, receive, and track ownership of cryptocurrencies.Solana Docs – Wallets
This post is a continuation of our Solana.Blog Post Series – Inside the Solana Docs.
If you want to receive $SOL tokens on the Solana Blockchain, you will need to create a Wallet !
Having a Wallet is where you store the Solana SOL currency. There are many different types of wallets that you can have. You can have a wallet running as files/folders on your home computer, it can be a specialised secure piece of dedicated hardware or even simply a piece of paper with the secret private keys printed on it.
There are Pro’s and Con’s to Each Type of Cryptocurrency Wallet
When choosing a wallet, it is important to consider your own use case and the security of each wallet type. Will you be able to keep your private keys safe? Will you be using this everyday or only for longer term storage? Some wallets store only one currency while others can store multiple types of cryptocurrency.
The following types of Solana Wallets we will be going through in this guide are the following:
- Online / Exchanges
- Mobile App
- Desktop / Laptop Computer
- Dedicated Hardware
Solana Wallet Type – Online / Exchanges
At the time of writing, $SOL token is currently being traded on Binance, Hotbit, Hoo and Bilaxy. You can see the active trading pairs on CoinMarketCap. The online/exchange Wallet option is recommended for beginner cryptocurrency holders/traders and for accounts with small amounts of $SOL.
|Easy to access through a Web Browser||Potential for malware or phishing (fake) website to take your keys.|
|You dont have to worry about local computer security as much||If you don’t have your keys, there is risk Exchange/Website could close down or be hacked|
|Easy to setup and quick||It is online and dependent on the Exchange or Website’s security measures|
Solana Wallet Type – Mobile App
Currently, SOL is supported on the Trust Wallet, which is available on Apple and Android devices. You can install it on your smart phone, making it very practical for sending SOL and receiving it by giving out your wallet address. You also get to backup and keep your own private keys. This wallet type is recommended for beginners, who actively use SOL for transfers, small to medium amount storage.
|Easy to Setup||You can still lose your private keys easily|
|Practical as you carry around all day||If you lose your phone, you will have to restore your wallet|
|You can get your wallet address easily||You can delete the app by accident|
|It is always online, so dependent on your smartphone security|
Solana Wallet Type – Desktop / Laptop Computer
In the Solanaverse, a wallet that is installed on your personal computer is called a file system wallet. This is for advanced technical users only and not recommended unless you know your way around the Mac terminal or Linux, as you have to being using the Solana Command Line Tools working.
|Good for Solana Dapp developers, or blockchain node validators.||Harder to setup, as you need linux knowledge|
|You can create lots of local wallets quickly||The keypair file is stored locally, so anyone with access can get into your wallet|
|If your hard drive dies, your wallet dies, back up your recovery phrase|
|Least secure way to store SOL tokens|
Solana Wallet Type – Dedicated Hardware
Signing a transaction requires a private key, but storing a private key on your personal computer or phone leaves it subject to theft. Adding a password to your key adds security, but many people prefer to take it a step further and move their private keys to a separate physical device called a hardware wallet. A hardware wallet is a small handheld device that stores private keys and provides some interface for signing transactions.Solana Docs – Hardware Wallets
Solana currently supports the Ledger Nano S, through the use of the Solana App. You can use Ledger Live to install it. In order to get the wallet address out of the Ledger Nano S, you need to install the Solana Command Line Tools (Mac/Linux) then run some terminal commands as per the Ledger Nano S guide. This is recommended for semi-technical people who want to securely store their significant amount of SOL’s. A Ledger Nano S costs about $100 USD.
|Private keys are not connected to internet (cold wallet) so very secure||Expensive to get started|
|You can store other coins/tokens on it||You need Mac/Linux command line tools|
|Easy to carry around||There is a learning curve|
|You can physically lose it, burn it, get it stolen|
Solana Wallet Type – Paper
A paper wallet, is where you print both the wallet address and the private key, on a piece of paper. It is obviously stored offline, meaning no-one on the internet can hack it after it is printed. This is not a formal option in the Solana Ecosystem yet, until their is an official app or website that gives the option like the image above.
|It is offline and not remotely hackable||The ink can run or fade it|
|You are ammune to Exchange Hacks/Collapses & Internet outages||You can physically lose it, burn it, get it stolen|
|It is not formally an option for Solana at the moment|
Secure You SOL Now !
For the majority of users, we recommend using one of the app wallets, which will provide a more familiar user experience rather than needing to learn command line tools.Solana Docs – Wallet Guide
For SOLdiers who are trading then keeping your SOL on the exchange is ok. When you finish trading it is recommended to keep your SOL off the exchange, as you do not know your wallet private keys.
A Trust wallet is a great app where you know your wallet address and get to keep your private keys and the backup phrase. It is the simplest to setup and very convenient.
Finally, once you start getting serious it is a good idea to invest in a hardware wallet such as a Nano Ledger S. This lets you be super secure, so you can store your SOL offline and the private keys are stored safely in the USB hardware stick.