I found the password today, and in the nick of time, too.
What I had found in a backup were the wallet files for two cryptocurrencies I had bought in 2014, then eventually forgot about. One of the files held about $2.50 of Namecoin, while the other (at the time) held about $8 of PeerCoin. Trouble was, the PeerCoin wallet was encrypted with a passphrase I had long since forgotten.
After wracking my brain for a few days and trying different possible passphrases, I gave up on the project, assuming those $8 would be forever out of my reach.
Then today I learned PeerCoin’s value had shot up from 80 cents to $2, making my tiny holding worth $20. Once again, I attempted to guess the long lost passphrase, to no avail.
Just before I had classes this afternoon, I went over to my desk to fetch something and noticed one of the sticky notes on the wall behind my computer screen had curled up enough to hide the note written on it. So I pulled it off the wall and unfurled it.
You can guess what I found there.
By way of professional advice, I do not recommend writing passphrases and passwords on sticky notes and leaving them next to your computer, so I was a bit surprised to discover I had done it myself. On the other hand, it enabled a total dolt (me) to open up an encrypted wallet file to remove the $20 hiding inside. So, sometimes stupidity can be rewarded.
Take our current president, for example.
Anyway, I transferred the approximately 10 PeerCoin to the Bittrex exchange to be turned into some other more active token. PeerCoin (PPC) was one of the first alt-coins coming out after the introduction of Bitcoin, but it’s been a real sleeper since the time I bought some in 2014, seldom topping $1 in value.
Then suddenly it woke up. Take a gander at this chart from CryptoCompare.com.
In fact, a whole host of cryptocoins have trended upward in value, as Bitcoin has crossed the $1,600 level and Litecoin topped $30 after months of hovering around $4. It’s hard to explain why there is a such a boom, but apparently a wide range of people, from small-time investors like me to billionaires have realized there’s money to be made with these things.
How long the boom will last is anyone’s guess. I decided to take my profit now, and hope I won’t regret cashing out later on.
P.S. On the off chance a burglar manages to find my flat, there are no passwords on sticky notes next to my computer now. Don’t waste your time.
[Add repetitious plea for donations here.]
Also published on Medium.