In both our Advanced Bitcoin Privacy and Advanced Bitcoin Security guides we outline why it’s so important to make sure you connect Green Wallet to Umbrel. If you’re not connected to your own Full Bitcoin Node then any transaction you send or receive, your balances, wallet info and more can all be tracked, recorded and tied to your IP Address and identity.
This extremely private information about your finances can then be shared with governments, sold to unknown third parties or worse, hacked and sold to criminals and scammers. The best way to counter these risks is to address the data leak at its source.
Although Umbrel is super easy to use, it can be tough for people that are new to it as there’s a lot of terms that you likely aren’t familiar with. But. That’s why we’re here! To give you the best educational content out there and help you use Bitcoin the way it was intended.
Why Connect Green Wallet To Umbrel?
Everything in Bitcoin is done through nodes
If it’s not your node, then someone else knows your balance and spending info and can also feed you false information creating all sorts of security concerns. For example they could allow a transaction that isn’t following the rules of the Bitcoin network. If you then try to spend those bitcoins somewhere else they’ll be rejected by the rest of the network and it’s as good as them stealing your funds.
Most Bitcoin Wallets by default connect to a public server (usually Electrum) in order to access all the information on the Bitcoin Blockchain and to broadcast new transactions. While this works and is great to get people started quickly, it’s not very private or secure. This is because as stated, the people that own those public servers you’re connected to can see everything you do.
While this seriously affects both your Bitcoin Security and Bitcoin Privacy, the natural way that people learn about Bitcoin means that it’s not until later that they understand enough about What A Bitcoin Wallet Is, how it works and why it’s so critical to run your own node. Fear not though!
Umbrel not only makes running a Full Bitcoin Node cheap, simple and fun, it also makes it super easy to connect all your wallets to it so your transactions and balances stay safe and private.
What Is Electrum?
At its core Electrum is a lightweight Bitcoin wallet. In order to achieve this speed and fast setup time it uses a client and server architecture. The Electrum wallet (client) connects to the Electrum Server and this server can be run by anyone. On an Umbrel node, the Electrum Server is also run on the node making it private and fully under your control.
As Electrum was created way back in November 2011, many wallet applications have integrated it into their code and support for it is near universal. It’s also Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) and many public servers are available to connect to. By default Green Wallet will connect to a public Electrum Server, but it’s much better to run your own Private Electrum serer and connect to that.
Before You Begin
In order to connect your Green Wallet (or any wallet for that matter) to your Umbrel, you’ll need to make sure you have a few things setup:
- Bitcoin Core: Install and fully sync the Bitcoin Node app on your Umbrel
- Electrum Server: Install the Electrs app on your Umbrel
- Green Wallet: Install Green Wallet on your computer or phone
Make sure to fully verify that what you’re installing is the legitimate Blockstream Green Wallet and not some random piece of malware that will steal your coins.
How To Connect Green Wallet To Umbrel
Step 1: Open Green Wallet App Settings
Once you have Green Wallet open, click on App Settings in the bottom left hand corner. If you’re using the mobile Green app, open the side menu and click App Settings there.
Step 2: Get Your Electrum Server Details
Next, you’ll need to locate your Electrum Server Details. This can be either a clear net address such as 127.0.0.1 or a Tor host name or .onion address. The Umbrel OS has different Apps for different things and to find the Electrum details you have to install and then open the Electrs Umbrel App.
Once open, we recommend selecting the Tor address as most people don’t have the connection to their Umbrel Full Node setup with a HTTPS certificate which means it’s not encrypted. Even on a local LAN this can be dangerous if you have random IoT devices or other users also connected. Tor is encrypted by default, so it’s much safer.
Step 3: Enter Your Electrum Server & Restart
In Green Wallet, first make sure that the Connect With Tor toggle is enabled. This should be turned on by default, but make sure it’s enabled and connected.
After that, copy across the Address and Port details into the Bitcoin Electrum Server text box in the format “abc1234.onion:50001” and make sure that the SPV Verification toggle is also enabled.
Once everything is entered, click Save and restart Green. Be aware that connecting to your node via Tor can take a minute or two, so just be patient and let it do its thing.
Green Is Not Connecting
If you’ve only just recently finished downloading the full blockchain and syncing your node, it can take a number of hours for Electrum to sort and organize the data. As such, if Green Wallet isn’t connecting, try waiting 24 hours.
Does Umbrel use Electrum?
Yes. Umbrel has its own dedicated Electrum app that connects to their Bitcoin Node app. Both of these need to be installed for you to connect Green Wallet to your Umbrel.
How Do I connect Without Tor?
If you’d like to connect your Green Wallet to Umbrel without Tor, simply use the “umbrel.local:50001” address in the Bitcoin Electrum Server text box and turn the Connect With Tor toggle off.