Cryptocurrency mining is free money, but only if you’re smart enough. You can earn by contributing to the software technology that runs the crypto blockchain!
Even your personal computer can earn some dollars while you binge-watch your favorite shows on Netflix. In this article, I’ll share various cryptocurrency mining platforms for you to make some passive income.
Mining is the lifeline of the crypto world. It validates ongoing transactions and mints new coins into circulation. In straightforward terms, a miner solves some complex Math problems to verify the transactions.
It is the process by which a miner trades his computing power and electricity for the block reward. Block reward is the incentive for the miner to help sustain the blockchain technology behind cryptocurrencies.
Simply put, blockchain is the foundation of everything crypto and the NFT universe. It’s a digital distributed ledger that holds a tamper-proof record of every entry.
The following section will discuss various advantages of crypto mining.
Benefits of Crypto Mining
If you’re a crypto-miner, then it can be a pretty good side gig. With little analysis, you can generate passive income based on your computing power without anything to do about it. Get–Set–Forget.
Next, you can be a vital part of the crypto movement, as miners are the primary contributors to making decentralized finance a reality.
Finally, you have veto power for any change in the network protocols.
Mined vs. Non-Mined Cryptocurrency
A consensus mechanism is a method to approve the transactions in a decentralized system such as a blockchain. It also assists in keeping the system secure from possible vulnerabilities such as a 51% attack.
A 51% attack is a situation where a bad actor controls more than 51% of blockchain. This majority powers the fraudster to mold the protocols as per will. A consensus mechanism keeps the power decentralized. Such a degree of decentralization demands enormous computing capabilities and work to perform a 51% attack. In the end, a scammer is prone to lose more than they’d possibly gain.
There are plenty of consensus methods like proof-of-work, proof-of-stake, proof-of-capacity, proof-of-activity.
Depending on the type of consensus mechanism, crypto coins may require mining or otherwise.
Blockchains using a proof-of-work consensus mechanism need mining.
They use miners for approving the entries (transactions). Whenever transactions go up for verification, miners start competing to solve for a 64-digit hexadecimal number.
The first one to find the solution broadcasts it to the entire network as proof-of-work. This victory bestows the reward on the winner while others wait for the next challenge.
This process repeats every time for a block worth of transactions. A block is nothing but a group of transactions totaling 1 megabyte in data.
Bitcoin and Ethereum, the two biggest cryptocurrencies, use proof-of-work along with many others. Therefore, they need mining to check double-spending.
The only drawback with the proof-of-work is the energy consumed and time taken per transaction, as all the miners except the winner end up wasting their computing power for nothing.
All cryptos which don’t use proof-of-work are non-mineable such as Ripple, Cardano, etc.
They use more energy-conservative methods to validate the transactions. Proof-of-stake is one such consensus protocol that is an alternative to proof-of-work.
Proof-of-stake removes the competition. Blocks are not mined. Instead, they are validated by the stakeholders. Validators are chosen at random. They stake their share of crypto for approving any block. And they lose their stake (partial or full) based on the degree of misconduct.
While proof-of-stake is eco-friendly, it has its own set of drawbacks such that it promotes amassing crypto rather than its expenditure.
So at present, for the foreseeable future, proof-of-work (mining) has no strong alternatives.
Who can Mine Cryptocurrency?
In general, anyone with a supported wallet, internet connection, and powerful hardware can start mining cryptocurrency. It also depends on the type of cryptocurrency you choose to mine.
You can either go with solo mining or pool mining.
In solo, you alone solve for the hash, while it’s more of a group effort in the pool. Similarly, it’s also based on the type of hardware you’ve deployed, CPU, GPU, or the professional ASIC (application-specific integrated circuit) miners.
Please go through this guide to understand crypto mining in detail.
Crypto Mining Platforms
The following sections will discuss some of the major mining platforms and utilities that make the mining procedure easy–cutting much of the technical setup.
Before initiating, make sure you have a cryptocurrency wallet and mining software that supports your choice of cryptocurrency.
Without further ado, let’s start with some of the best mining platforms.
Slushpool is an excellent place to step in for anyone aiming for pool mining.
It’s one of the veterans in bitcoin mining presently mining about 3.5% of all bitcoins.
SlushPool charges a 2% pool fee for using its platform. It also has a 0% pool fee option for some supported ASIC miners.
It also has an official mobile app for iOS and Android. The app can be used as an account monitoring tool. SlushPool clearly states that you can’t mine with its mobile app.
Its platform has two-factor authentication (2FA) for added security. In addition to the regular one-time passwords, you can use FIDO2 compatible physical authentication devices like the TREZOR or Yubikey.
While the minimum payout is 0.001 BTC, you pay a payout fee of 0.0001 BTC for transactions lower than 0.01 BTC. The same goes for payouts of Zcash.
SlushPool has Bitcoin mining servers across the continents: USA, Europe, Canada, Japan, and Singapore. Zcash mining servers are located in the USA and Europe.
This is a unique concept to mine cryptocurrency while browsing. It has mining features built-in.
CrytoTab Browser promises automatic algorithm switching to boost profits. Similarly, it also assures of no overheating or battery drain while browsing with its in-house browser.
It converts all the rewards in Bitcoin. The minimum payout listed is 0.00001 BTC. You can earn by your mining hardware as well as receive commission for referrals.
This browser is available for Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS.
This is recommended for non-tech users who wish to have a minimum taste of cryptocurrency mining.
Next on the crypto mining platforms list comes Awesome Miner, which is similar to Cudo Miner. It is a mining management utility for Windows and Linux users.
It can be used free of cost for 2 miners. Afterward, its paid plan kicks in, starting with USD 4 per month billing annually.
It also has a cloud subscription that offers mining management from anywhere with just an internet connection. This service starts with USD 4 per month, billing annually for 10 miners. This service has a 30-days trial period if you’ve less than 400 mining rigs.
There are also monthly plans which are a tad more expensive than their yearly counterparts.
Awesome miner seems an excellent solution for huge mining farms. It has rich documentation and help sections to assist users in every possible way.
Bitfly is where you can mine six crypto coins: ETH, ETC, ZEC, BEAM, RVN, and ERG. Each one has a different domain name and set up instructions matching the specific coin.
It charges a standard 1% pool fee irrespective of the coin you mine. It has 3rd-party apps for monitoring supported on Android and iOS.
Bitfly has specific configuration guides depending on the operating system, graphic card, and coin.
Once you click Start Mining, it takes you to the server details and mining software options. After that, you just download the preferred mining utility and set up the mining software to start mining.
It has mining servers in Europe, Asia, and the USA.
Bitfly boasts of instant payouts. It also has a Discord channel, a place to share knowledge with fellow miners. This can be useful if you’re new to the mining space.
A very modern-looking website that says: “Stable and Predictive revenue from crypto mining.”
You can mine ETH, ETC, BEAM, and Ravencoin on Cruxpool. And they are adding new coins as we speak of this.
But when you go to their mining page, they show only two mining pools, ETH and ETC.
These two are the biggest of their pools. However, their help section shows the other two mining pools, Beam and Ravencoin.
Cruxpool charges a 1% pool fee.
Their quick start guide is detailed and helpful in setting up mining Ethereum and Ethereum Classic. It aids in starting with various operating systems (Windows and Linux).
Minimum payouts are:
Ethereum – 0.01 ETH
Ethereum Classic – 0.1 ETC
Ravencoin – 50 RVN
Beam – 1 BEAM
You can mine 14 cryptocurrencies with HashCity.
The good thing about this platform is that you don’t have any payout fee like with SlushPool.
The pool mining fee is 1%.
You can find start-up guides by clicking the ‘How to start’ button against each cryptocurrency.
For instance, when you click ‘How to start’ for Litecoin, this will pop up:
You can directly find the appropriate miner and other files from this section.
Similarly, you can download detailed instructions for every crypto coin to set up mining with HashCity.
They have a HashCity app for Android and a Telegram channel for the pool members.
Coinfly is different from others in that they offer a crypto operating system (COS). No mining setup is required. They do not have a mining pool of their own. Instead, they provide connections to other pools.
For starting with Coinfly, you need to make a bootable USB device and boot from it on your mining rig. It has the miner utilities preinstalled and configured.
You have the option to use COS as the primary OS for your mining rig as well.
As of now, Coinfly doesn’t charge anything for its services. So, you can try their unique service free of charge.
Since CoinFly only connects you to other pools, payout terms will be specific to the pool you join.
CoinFly COS setup video:https://www.youtube.com/embed/g0UpCZ20yVw?feature=oembed
Nicehash is the most complete of the pools/services we have reviewed so far. But its website can easily overwhelm a new miner.
It’s a hash rate marketplace, crypto mining utility, and crypto exchange portal–blended in one.
Mining can’t be easier if you’ve got Windows 10. Check this video for details:https://www.youtube.com/embed/RHZo4GdYZ7I?feature=oembed
With Nicehash, you have two options, either use their in-house mining application: NiceHash Quickminer, or you can use any 3rd party miner application with NiceHash Miner.
Depending on the hardware–CPU/GPU or ASIC–you can find detailed tutorials to start mining with them.
NiceHash OS (NHOS) is similar to what we have COS with CoinFly. You can connect unlimited mining rigs for free with NHOS. It’s an added benefit compared to COS, which will start charging beyond 4 rigs.
NiceHash is compatible with a number of pools: F2Pool, SlushPool, 2Miners, etc.
Nicehash also has a Mobile app for Android and iOS.
Easy BTC Mining
Easy BTC Mining offers a hassle-free mining experience with a cloud mining contract. Cloud mining allows you to buy a certain amount of hash power for the contract period.
The process is to register with an email and then sign a contract to start Bitcoin mining.
The minimum payout is 0.0001 BTC, and their platform ensures immediate and automatic payments.
This platform supports the mining of BTC, ETH, and LTH.
Shamining is also a cloud mining platform. And the process is also similar: registration, contract, and mining.
They pay daily, no matter the amount mined with your hash rate. There is a minimum deposit of $150, and the platform mainly supports BTC mining.
ZHash.pro offers pool mining at a 0% pool fee.
You can mine 4 coins with them: ZEC, ZEN, BTG, and TENT.
The process to mine is easy and doesn’t need any registration. One only needs a supported wallet and can choose the server of choice. Afterward, configure your miner software, and you’re set.
They have mining servers in Europe, the USA, and Asia.
Detailed instructions are available with all four pools according to the mining hardware.
They also have a Discord channel for getting assistance from fellow pool members.
But the pool size, at least on discord, seems small with just 89 online members compared to Ethermine, which has 7,371 online members on the same platform.
Small pools are not necessarily a bad thing, and the payouts are bigger compared to large pools. However, the probability of finding a block can be less with smaller pools because of the lesser pool hashrate.
To sideline any apprehensions with ZHash.pro, you can check out their recent payout list for every pool.
Minimum payouts are 0.01 ZEC, 0.1 ZEN, 0.05 BTG, and 0.5 TENT.
K1Pool has the option to go for a solo mining experience. You can individually find the blocks and keep the entire reward to yourself.
But solo mining is recommended only if you have powerful hardware or are mining cryptocurrencies with the least network difficulty.
You can mine 16 cryptocurrencies with K1Pool. It has servers in China, Europe, and the USA.
You have to create an account to get started. Afterward, you can configure as per your hardware and server location.
One can also mine with the hashrate purchased at NiceHash. They have a separate NiceHash control panel for that.
They have a download section for almost all major mining software. Their download portal helps in choosing the best mining software according to the mining algorithm.
Every pool page consists of vital information about that particular pool, such as minimum payouts, pool hashrate, payout frequency.
They also have a discord and telegram channel for getting any help from the pool members. Based on the discord channel headcount, K1Pool also seems new to the mining sphere.
Yet, the user interface is clean and has a lot of information to help newbies—worth a try.
Minergate has 7 active mining pools to get you started. You can mine ETH, XMR, LTC, ZEC, among others. It promises a single-click mining process.
They have an in-house miner application: MinerGate XFast, which they crown as the fastest in the mining industry. This application supports the mining of 5 coins. For the rest, the mining servers are to be configured manually.
The process is pretty straightforward, to begin with. You can browse their pool section and select the preferred pool, which links to the application download or server details.
MinerGate charges up to a 1.5% pool fee depending on the crypto coin and the reward system. They also have a MinerGate control app for Android.
IceMining is a crypto mining pool website intended for advanced miners.
It doesn’t need any registration. You can click on the pool to join and configure your mining software accordingly.
They are supported with a few mining utilities: Awesome miner, MinerStat, and RainBow Miner. IceMining also has an android app for monitoring.
Conclusively, the user interface can be complex for newcomers and seems a bit dated.
ZSolo is a cryptocurrency mining platform specially focused on solo mining.
The interface is quite simple, but the options are indeed limited.
You can click on any pool template for specific details like pool fee, pool hashrate, server details.
ZSolo lacks any mobile app for monitoring or minimum payout information as of this writing. It presents a bare-bones mining experience for medium to advanced users.
SimpleMininig is similar to Coinfly in that it has a mining OS.
You can use their services for free with one mining rig for 30 days.
The user interface is simple enough with helpful information to get started.
One can register with them and deposit the amount to continue using their services after the trial period.
Check this for a great video tutorial to use SimpleMining OS:https://www.youtube.com/embed/7ONc6umZ3ZY?feature=oembed
Cudo Mining provides cryptocurrency mining software solutions.
Its Cudo mining platform helps in automated mining with minimum manual configuration. It boasts of managing 100,000s of mining rigs and ASIC miners with a single platform.
It has an auto coin switching feature that sticks to the most profitable algorithm to mine for the best possible profit.
They also have a CudoOS for dedicated mining rigs. The setup is similar to the mining OSes we’ve seen in this article.
You can mine 9 coins with their automated mining as of this writing and over 100 cryptocurrencies with manual configuration.
It has a telegram channel with over 6.5k members. The user interface is excellent, and there are tons of articles to help you get around crypto mining.
They have a commission-based pricing model, so no upfront charges. Their mining software is available for major desktop OSes, including Windows, Linux, and Mac.
BetterHash is an automated mining tool exclusively available for Windows OS as of now. It detects your hardware and chooses the best algorithm for maximum gains.
Check out this video to have an introduction to automated mining with BetterHash:https://www.youtube.com/embed/RdcTSNPugfA?feature=oembed
You can mine 9 cryptocurrencies with BetterHash, including the famous BTC, ETH, XMR, ZEC.
There are two mining modes: manual and profit-switching (automatic).
While there is no mining fee for any crypto coin, there is a withdrawal fee for Bitcoin (for non-coinbase accounts) and FIRO.
Summing Up 👨🏫
With cryptocurrency becoming a household term, crypto mining is at an all-time high. There are countless crypto mining platforms to help a technical novice and professional miner alike.
While it seems logical to put the idle computing power at mining, some degree of technical proficiency is essential to churn profits and avoid losses. While choosing any crypto mining platforms, the critical factors remain supported coins, mining algorithms, reward systems, minimum payout, withdrawal fee, and user reviews.
Alternatively, you should consider getting dedicated hardware like Antminer.
Despite its popularity, crypto mining isn’t for everyone–especially the one with ineffective hardware should avoid mining.
While cloud crypto mining seems the easiest method to mine, the payouts are not guaranteed. It’s much like investing in the stock market. And once you sign a contract, you are bound to pay the amount regardless of any mining income.
So the advice that goes with cloud mining is: proceed with caution and dig deep before stepping into this intriguing world of passive income.