If you were among the few people who bought Ethereum during its presale in 2014, you would realize things have changed considerably. To begin with, the price of Ether has increased compared to then. Additionally, when you paid for Ether, you didn’t get Ether but a wallet.
So, considering how the presale went down in history and how users were able to secure their wallets compared with today, it is undeniable that there have been significant improvements. Back then, users were given specific files when participating in the presale. There’s something called the Ethereum wallet backup JSON file, which was given to investors to recover a presale wallet in case of an error. Read on to learn more.
What is an Ethereum presale wallet?
An Ethereum presale wallet was what early investors in the Ethereum network got. Better still, you can refer to it as a wallet for the inner circle. If you own a wallet like this, you most likely obtained it from the presale. Take note that this wallet was given to investors before the existence of Ether. According to the Ethereum team, they planned on mining the first block of Ethereum based on the amount they raised from the presale. The essence of this, according to them, was to reduce the speculative nature of the sale.
Investors didn’t get their Ether token immediately after they paid for it. Rather, they only received a wallet capable of holding Ether and a password, which was also sent to the email the investors used to register it. It was until the launching of the platform before they got their Ether.
According to crypto history, the Ethereum presale is considered a sale of the century, as over 50 million Ether was sold. During the presale, over 25,00p BTC worth of Ether was sold. Note that as at the presale period, with 0.01 BTC, investors could buy about 2000 Ether. So, if you did the math, you’d realize quite a considerable amount of Ether was sold.
How to recover an Ethereum presale wallet?
During the Ethereum presale, no mnemonic or seed phrases were given to investors. So, what was the Ethereum team’s plan to help investors recover their wallets in case of an error? Well, it was something called the Ethereum wallet backup JSON file. Read on to learn how to use the Ethereum wallet backup JSON file to recover an Ethereum presale wallet.
Step 1: Find the Ethereum wallet file
So, where do you look? The first thing you want to do is to locate the files for the wallet. Ideally, the files for the wallet should be in the inbox of the email you used during registration. So, check for an email label related to Ethereum. The file name would look like “ethereum_backup_wallet.JSON,” so it will not be hard to locate.
Step 2: Download the Ethereum wallet file
When you find this Ethereum wallet file, the next step is to download the file. Downloading the file wouldn’t be hard since it is already in your email. You should see a download icon on the file name; click on it, and the download will start automatically. This JSON file serves as a private key. Anyone with access to your Ethereum wallet backup JSON file could gain access to your wallet. Although, even with the JSON file, you still need to know the wallet’s password.
Step 3: Install pyethsaletool
If you don’t know the password of your Ethereum presale wallet, then you need the service of a crypto recovery agency. At BruteBrothers, we can help you recover your Ethereum presale wallet. All we need to help you recover your Ethereum presale wallet are some information related to the wallet, like the Ethereum wallet backup JSON file. But if you remember the 10-character password you set for the wallet, then you can go ahead to install pyethsaletool on your PC. With pyethsaletool, you can extract the private key in the JSON file using the command:
python pyethsaletool.py getethprivkey -w <path to presale wallet file>
Step 4: Redownload your wallet
Once you have the private key extracted from the Ethereum wallet, backup JSON file using the pyethsaletool on your PC and head over to www.myetherwallet.com to recover your wallet. You could as well download the MyEtherWallet software for offline usage. Inside the software, choose the private key, and then proceed by inputting the private key you extracted in pyethsaletool, and you will have access to your wallet.
If you still need extra help, you can always take a helping hand from Brute Brothers, where you can find all this information and more.