Last month, a group of miners split off from the main Bitcoin network and created a new cryptocurrency called Bitcoin Cash.
The new cryptocurrency starts with the same blockchain, which means people who own coins on the main Bitcoin blockchain are entitled to the same number of coins on the new Bitcoin Cash blockchain, effectively receiving a free dividend.
The fork, however, caught many digital wallet providers off guard and left many users reportedly unable to access their new funds, which brings us to the question: how can users claim their Bitcoin Cash tokens?
There are some wallets that have the ability to split the coins for users. Ledger launched its coin splitting tool one day before the fork event, followed by Trezor, which released its own tool on August 1, the same day as the fork, although the tool had some difficulties, resulting in a relaunch two days later. Breadwallet is another wallet that has its own coin splitting tool.
For those using Blockchain.info or Mycelium wallets, you will need to extract your private keys manually using a BIP39 private key extraction tool. This tool will generate a list of addresses as well as public and private keys, which can be used to locate the funds.
Once you have your private keys, you can start extracting your Bitcoin Cash tokens using Electron Cash, which is a better alternative to downloading the whole Bitcoin Cash Ledger and extracting the tokens via the Bitcoin ABC node.
Users attempting a coin-split must keep in mind to move their Bitcoins first to a new wallet, ensuring that their coins are safe in case something goes wrong. Another word of caution: Electron Cash will overwrite any Electrum wallet directory and could make things confusing to manage. If you are planning to use Electron Cash and Electrum regularly, it may be a good idea to use VMware to isolate the two wallets.
For a step-by-step process on how to extract BCH, check out this guide.
New to Bitcoin? Check out CoinGeek’s Bitcoin for Beginners section, the ultimate resource guide to learn more about Bitcoin—as originally envisioned by Satoshi Nakamoto—and blockchain.