Understanding Crypto Wallets
Digital storage for your digital tokens
It's easy to get confused when diving into cryptocurrency with little background knowledge, especially when terms like "tokens", "coins" and "wallets" are not clearly analogous to their real-world counterparts. The following information will help to clear up how a wallet functions.
Understanding how a digital wallet functions is relatively simple: for both software and hardware wallets, the only role they have is to store and manage your private key(s) for you.
A software wallet is a secure digital address that stores your private key(s), preventing unauthorized access to your cryptocurrency.
A hardware wallet is a physical item, such as a USB drive or other storage device, that is designed to store your private key(s) offline.
Aside from exchange specific wallets (such as the Coinbase Wallet), any ERC-20 compatible wallet can be used on the Render Network. This includes hardware wallets such as the Ledger Nano X or S, though we recommend following your specific wallet's guidelines for sending or receiving ERC-20 tokens.
Unlike traditional wallets, digital wallets do not store your cryptocurrency. Tokens are never "in your wallet", they are stored on the blockchain at your address.
You can think of your address like a bank account, and your private key like a PIN. If you would like to receive money from a person or business, you would provide them your bank account number, but never your PIN.
[NOTE]: OTOY/Render Network will never ask for your private key, and anyone asking for your private key is likely malicious. Keep your private key(s) private to prevent any theft or malicious activity.
To use the Render Network with tokens you will be required to install Metamask to handle the blockchain transactions. Follow on to the next chapter (Setting up your Wallet) to see how to install it.