Bitcoin Core

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Bitcoin Core (formerly Bitcoin-Qt) is the third Bitcoin client, developed by Wladimir van der Laan based on the original reference code by Satoshi Nakamoto.[1][2] It has been bundled with bitcoind since version 0.5. Bitcoin-Qt has been rebranded to Bitcoin Core since version 0.9.0 [3].

Bitcoin Core can be used as a desktop client for regular payments or as a server utility for merchants and other payment services.

Current version

Source code (and build instructions for supported platforms) can be found on the Bitcoin GitHub page.


  • Most popular software implementation of a bitcoin full node. Provides trustless validation that all of bitcoin's consensus rules are being followed.
  • Has an RPC interface allowing developers to interface with Core and access the bitcoin currency trustlessly.
  • Has a GUI frontend, Bitcoin-Qt, allowing ordinary users to use bitcoin with full validation.
  • Compatibility with Linux (both GNOME and KDE), Mac OS X and Windows
  • All functionality of the original wxWidgets client
  • Asks for confirmation before sending coins
  • CSV export of transactions
  • Clearer transaction list with status icons and real-time filtering
  • Progress bar on initial block download
  • Languages: Dutch, English, German, Chinese and many more. Translations are being done by volunteers on Transifex.
  • Sendmany support in UI (send to multiple recipients in one transaction)
  • Multiple unit support, can show subdivided bitcoins (mBTC, µBTC) for users that like large numbers (only decimal units)
  • Splash screen that details progress
  • Debug window
  • Payment requests (BIP 70)
  • Coin control

Naming Controversy

Some people like Peter Todd, Luke-jr and Greg Maxwell warned against the renaming to Bitcoin Core because it implied a centralization.[4][5][6].

Bitcoin Core right now may be the most popular or "reference" full node implementation, but that status depends on the economic majority continuing to use it. Should one day come where another implementation overtakes it economically, that implementation would become the reference implementation. In one situation significant parts of the economy moved to the BIP148 UASF implementation[7] and then moved back to Core after BIP148 was successful. The point here is that Bitcoin Core does not control bitcoin and the naming "Core" is misleading in that respect.

Many other people are happy with the name Bitcoin Core and continue to use it. As long as it's emphasized that Bitcoin Core is just one possible software implementation of bitcoin that people are free to use or not use.

External Links


  1., Full disclosure: Bitcoin-Qt on Windows vulnerability, 21st October 2012
  2., Vulnerability Summary for CVE-2012-4682, 21st October 2012
  3. "Bitcoin Core version 0.9.0 released". Retrieved 19 March 2014.

See also