As the initial ETH coins were minted and not mined, the contract which was used must exist somewhere.

It would be very interesting to study this contract in order to verify how new ETH can be minted.

We all know of the rewards which are granted to miners when they discover a new block. Is that the only way to mint new ETH? And how can we be sure?


The way presale ether was distributed was through inclusion in the genesis block.

At the genesis block, all nodes fetched the list of initial balances from data stored on the Bitcoin blockchain. They then constructed the genesis block based on the transaction list and the hash of block 1028201 on the testnet.

Since this method was only valid during block number 0, it is not possible to "mint" Ether, except through mining.

See https://blog.ethereum.org/2015/07/27/final-steps/ for details of how the genesis block was constructed

  • Wonder if anyone will post client snippets to try "prove" that mining is the only way to mint new ETH. – eth Feb 26 '16 at 18:50
  • There's really no way to do that, short of formal verification of the code, which is not feasible. Any way of getting ether without mining would be a very serious bug, which would need to exist in every client implementation to prevent forks between clients. – Tjaden Hess Feb 26 '16 at 18:52

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.