Wallet, Accounts and Addresses – TREZOR Blog

Wallet, Accounts and Addresses

In this article, we explain the basic terms that are used in TREZOR and other cryptocurrency wallets. Understanding them will help you better understand how TREZOR works.

Last time, we looked at what Seed, PIN and Passphrases are, explaining what roles do these three contraptions play when it comes to the security of your cryptocurrencies. If you need to refresh your memories, go after the link below. Some of the today’s terms will be lighter to understand if you have read the previous article.

In this article, we explain the basic terms that are used in TREZOR and other cryptocurrency wallets. Understanding…blog.trezor.io

Wallet

This is most likely one of the most used terms you will see in the cryptocurrency world. While it may seem fairly straight-forward, confusion can arise when the term is used in a wrong context. Let’s have a closer look at what do we mean by the word “wallet”.

Compare the TREZOR with your wallet that you carry with you on a daily basis. In the wallet, you most likely have debit cards to different bank accounts, credit cards, private documents, fiat bills, maybe even for different currencies. The wallet in your TREZOR is similar — there are separate pouches for different currencies: one for Bitcoin, one for Ethereum, but also for your U2F identity, etc. Everything you need is in one wallet.

Does it not sound like something familiar? Like the Recovery Seed? Exactly! Each seed generates only one wallet. Your TREZOR is the key to this wallet. Therefore, under normal circumstances*, you have exactly one wallet “in” your TREZOR.

This wallet is further subdivided into currency-specific wallets, such as Bitcoin wallet, Ethereum wallet (incl. ERC-2o tokens), Litecoin wallet, Zcash wallet, DASH wallet for better orientation. * If you use passphrases, each passphrase generates a separate wallet. If you use two passphrases, you have three wallets in total — the two passphrases, and the empty passphrase.

Accounts

Unlike a wallet, for which you only have one per seed, you can have many accounts (for every currency separately). Compare this to your bank accounts — you might have a Checking account and a Savings account. As they are separate accounts, they are totally independent, save from the fact that they are generated from the same seed. Account one does not see what is in Account Two, etc.

TREZOR Wallet, the web-interface for bitcoin and bitcoin-like altcoins permits you to have up to ten accounts per currency per wallet. This is a practical limitation, as it decreases the flow on our servers.

Notice that for Ethereum this might be a little different. Technically, both ETH and ETC do not use numerous accounts, instead they separate accounts by addresses. More details in the next section.

Addresses

Bitcoin-like cryptocurrencies

Like there are many accounts in a wallet, there are many addresses in an account. You can send your coins to any of the addresses listed under an account, and you can spend them altogether in one transaction when using that specific account. (This is in contrast with accounts — you cannot spend coins in one transaction when sending from different accounts.)

Account one sees all the coins saved under all addresses in Account one (for a specific currency), but it does not see what is in the addresses in Account Two, etc.

Bitcoin also has switch addresses; when you receive your switch, it goes into a fresh address instead of the original one, in order to maintain your privacy. Spending from these switch addresses is as seamless as spending from a normal addresses; you won’t see a difference.

By using different addresses for every transaction you are maintaining a high level of privacy, as you make it more difficult to track where your coins go. It is not possible to deduce that this and that address belong to the same account.

Ethereum, Ethereum Classic and ERC-20 tokens

As previously mentioned, technically Ethereum does not have many accounts. Instead, it considers single addresses as separate accounts. This means that there are no switch addresses, but also that you cannot send one transaction from numerous addresses.

Moreover, ERC-20 tokens are stored on Ethereum (ETH) addresses. In order to send them, you will need to have ethers on the same address as the tokens.

Therefore, this simplifies things a little bit — while using Ethereum only use one address for one account. If you want to separate accounts, use numerous addresses.

We hope that this article was at least as informative as the previous basic guides on TREZOR functionality. Next time, we are going to look at something even more fundamental: how do private and public keys work, and where do they fall into this scheme. (Don’t want to wait? Explore how BIP thirty two works here.)

About Us

TREZOR is the most trusted and ubiquitous hardware wallet in the world. It offers an unmatched security for cryptocurrencies, password management, 2nd Factor, while maintaining an absolute ease-of-use, whether you are a security accomplished or a brand fresh user.

Wallet, Accounts and Addresses – TREZOR Blog

Wallet, Accounts and Addresses

In this article, we explain the basic terms that are used in TREZOR and other cryptocurrency wallets. Understanding them will help you better understand how TREZOR works.

Last time, we looked at what Seed, PIN and Passphrases are, explaining what roles do these three contraptions play when it comes to the security of your cryptocurrencies. If you need to refresh your memories, go after the link below. Some of the today’s terms will be lighter to understand if you have read the previous article.

In this article, we explain the basic terms that are used in TREZOR and other cryptocurrency wallets. Understanding…blog.trezor.io

Wallet

This is most likely one of the most used terms you will see in the cryptocurrency world. While it may seem fairly straight-forward, confusion can arise when the term is used in a wrong context. Let’s have a closer look at what do we mean by the word “wallet”.

Compare the TREZOR with your wallet that you carry with you on a daily basis. In the wallet, you very likely have debit cards to different bank accounts, credit cards, private documents, fiat bills, maybe even for different currencies. The wallet in your TREZOR is similar — there are separate pouches for different currencies: one for Bitcoin, one for Ethereum, but also for your U2F identity, etc. Everything you need is in one wallet.

Does it not sound like something familiar? Like the Recovery Seed? Exactly! Each seed generates only one wallet. Your TREZOR is the key to this wallet. Therefore, under normal circumstances*, you have exactly one wallet “in” your TREZOR.

This wallet is further subdivided into currency-specific wallets, such as Bitcoin wallet, Ethereum wallet (incl. ERC-2o tokens), Litecoin wallet, Zcash wallet, DASH wallet for better orientation. * If you use passphrases, each passphrase generates a separate wallet. If you use two passphrases, you have three wallets in total — the two passphrases, and the empty passphrase.

Accounts

Unlike a wallet, for which you only have one per seed, you can have many accounts (for every currency separately). Compare this to your bank accounts — you might have a Checking account and a Savings account. As they are separate accounts, they are fully independent, save from the fact that they are generated from the same seed. Account one does not see what is in Account Two, etc.

TREZOR Wallet, the web-interface for bitcoin and bitcoin-like altcoins permits you to have up to ten accounts per currency per wallet. This is a practical limitation, as it decreases the flow on our servers.

Notice that for Ethereum this might be a little different. Technically, both ETH and ETC do not use numerous accounts, instead they separate accounts by addresses. More details in the next section.

Addresses

Bitcoin-like cryptocurrencies

Like there are many accounts in a wallet, there are many addresses in an account. You can send your coins to any of the addresses listed under an account, and you can spend them altogether in one transaction when using that specific account. (This is in contrast with accounts — you cannot spend coins in one transaction when sending from different accounts.)

Account one sees all the coins saved under all addresses in Account one (for a specific currency), but it does not see what is in the addresses in Account Two, etc.

Bitcoin also has switch addresses; when you receive your switch, it goes into a fresh address instead of the original one, in order to maintain your privacy. Spending from these switch addresses is as seamless as spending from a normal addresses; you won’t see a difference.

By using different addresses for every transaction you are maintaining a high level of privacy, as you make it more difficult to track where your coins go. It is not possible to deduce that this and that address belong to the same account.

Ethereum, Ethereum Classic and ERC-20 tokens

As previously mentioned, technically Ethereum does not have many accounts. Instead, it considers single addresses as separate accounts. This means that there are no switch addresses, but also that you cannot send one transaction from numerous addresses.

Moreover, ERC-20 tokens are stored on Ethereum (ETH) addresses. In order to send them, you will need to have ethers on the same address as the tokens.

Therefore, this simplifies things a little bit — while using Ethereum only use one address for one account. If you want to separate accounts, use numerous addresses.

We hope that this article was at least as informative as the previous basic guides on TREZOR functionality. Next time, we are going to look at something even more fundamental: how do private and public keys work, and where do they fall into this scheme. (Don’t want to wait? Explore how BIP thirty two works here.)

About Us

TREZOR is the most trusted and ubiquitous hardware wallet in the world. It offers an unmatched security for cryptocurrencies, password management, 2nd Factor, while maintaining an absolute ease-of-use, whether you are a security pro or a brand fresh user.

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