I want to generate a cold wallet very securely without having to buy a new computer that will always be offline and while I am waiting for a hardware wallet on back order.

Please validate and/or challenge my thinking here I am new to ETH and digital currencies:

  1. Download some lightweight linux distro & Github Ethereum to run offline
  2. Turn computer offline
  3. Install the lightweight linux distro onto USB
  4. Turn off computer and boot from USB
  5. Put Github Ethereum onto running linux using second USB port
  6. Generate ETH account
  7. Store private key and creds on the linux distro USB
  8. Make 1-2backups of the private key/creds on separate encrypted USB keys

Is this overkill? Are there gaps in this approach if my computer is already compromised?

Interested to hear your thoughts.

  • The pendrives should be of good quality and not from the same manufacturer, also you probaly want to have a paper copy of your key.
    – Ismael
    Jul 2, 2017 at 5:10

1 Answer 1


Why not just store your private key encrypted on a USB?
Your idea should work, but it is a overkill.
If you think your computer is compromised, create your private key on a newly set up linux machine.

  • @markuus I don't believe my computer is compromised, but wanted to take the cautious approach and assume it is... Creating a newly setup linux machine would require me to reformat my computer and start from scratch. If I wanted to avoid this, but still take the precaution assumption that my computer could be compromised - would you suggest just creating a newly setup linux machine from a VM, or USB. My thinking as well is that the machine OS would never have internet enabled. Am I being too paranoid or what are your thoughts?
    – ubuntuuber
    Jul 1, 2017 at 16:01

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