Here you will find answers to the most commonly asked questions.
What is Bitcoin?
Bitcoin is a peer-to-peer currency. Peer-to-peer means that no central authority issues new money or tracks transactions. These tasks are managed collectively by the network.
How does Bitcoin work?
Bitcoin utilises public/private key signatures. A coin contains the owner's public key. When a coin is transferred from user A to user B, A adds B’s public key to the coin. The coin is signed using his private key. B now owns the coin and can transfer it further. A is prevented from transferring the already spent coin to other users because a public list of all previous transactions is collectively maintained by the network. Before each transaction the coin’s validity will be checked.
Do I need to configure my firewall to run bitcoin?
Bitcoin will connect to other nodes, usually on tcp port 8333. You will need to allow outgoing TCP connections to port 8333 if you want to allow your bitcoin client to connect to many nodes. Bitcoin will also try to connect to IRC (tcp port 6667) to meet other nodes to connect to.
If you want to restrict your firewall rules to a few ips and/or don't want to allow IRC connection, you can find stable nodes in the fallback nodes list.