Help! My IOTA balance is zero!

Eric Hop
Eric Hop
Mar 7, 2018 · 14 min read
  1. Next, do not get tempted to use the reclaim tool. This tool will not help you regain your balance. It is only helpful in certain very specific cases. I will explain these cases at the end of this list. Just continue with step 3 first to find your balance again. If you did start the reclaim tool unnecessarily there’s no problem. You can still use your old seed and use the next steps to find your balance.
  2. After installing the new wallet you need to set up your wallet correctly. What you need to do is go to Tools->Edit Node Configuration.
  3. Make sure that a Host node is selected. If you see ‘Select Your Host’ in the Host field, use the drop down to select one. Usually any one will do. However, keep in mind that a host may be temporarily offline, so if after selecting one the wallet indicates No Connection you may want to select another Host. To find a node that is reliable use the list you find at:
    https://iota.dance/nodes
    The ones at the top are usually the best ones to select.
  4. Make sure that Min Weight Magnitude is set to 14. Higher values should be no problem but will just cause the Proof of Work to take much longer unnecessarily.
  5. Finally, you see a field that says Curl Implementation. The default is WebGL, which is a setting that allows the wallet to use your graphics card to do the Proof of Work, thereby possibly speeding up the process. However, some people will find that they get an Invalid Transaction Hash when they use this setting. The solutions for that are to either select CCURL instead, or to follow the instructions found in this link to make sure the wallet uses the correct graphics card:
    https://steemit.com/iota/@tector/iota-light-wallet-2-5-1-dealing-with-invalid-transaction-hash
  6. Note that it may be necessary to close and restart the wallet after changing any of those settings. I would do that just to be sure that the changes are activated.
  7. Now you can use your seed to log into the wallet, so you can start finding your balance again. Make absolutely sure that you are using the correct seed. Any typo in the seed will result in a different wallet, and trying to find your balance in there is not going to work, obviously. There is a helpful checksum field next to the field where you can enter your seed. The wallet will tell you if your seed is too short or too long. And if you have entered exactly 81 characters it will show you a 3 character checksum that should always be the same for every version of the wallet. It will allow you to very quickly see if you made a typo, since any typo will result in a different checksum. If you are not sure if you used the correct seed there are instructions further down to help you make sure.
  8. After logging into the wallet you click on the Receive section. It will show you a new receive address. Now click Attach To Tangle. It will show ‘Attaching to Tangle’ for a while. Just wait for that to complete. If it takes too long you could try a different, faster node as outlined in step 4. Once it says ‘Address Attached’ you may see your total balance get updated with the balance of that address. If not, then click ‘Address Attached’. It will now say ‘Generate New Address’. Click that again. That will cause the next address to be generated and it will show ‘Attaching to Tangle’ again. Keep repeating this loop until you have recovered your balance completely. You can click the History section to see how many and which addresses you have generated so far. Addresses can be in pending state but that does not matter for finding your balance. These attachment transactions do not need to confirm at all. They are zero value transactions, so they will not impact your balance anyway. You will need to generate all addresses you have used before for your entire balance to show up again. So if you have an idea of how many you used before that will be helpful. Most people should be able to find some or all of their balance within the first 20–30 addresses. But I know of people who needed to do 150+ re-attachments because they had been very active with their wallet. If your balance started to show up but never completely shows, and does not change any more after re-attaching don’t bother continuing. The funds are usually clustered at the end of the address list. Any funds still missing have probably been taken into custody (this only goes for wallets that have not been updated since before mid October 2017). See below for details on how to verify that.
  9. If you did not manage to find your balance using these steps, I suggest you take the time to read through the explanations below. You need to be able to understand why it still does not show and what you can do about it. If you did find your balance? Congratulations! But I still suggest you educate yourself by reading the below explanations so you know what you are invested in. I know it’s a drag to have to go through such a long document, but we’re still in beta software stage with the wallet and IOTA as a whole. Understanding how it works is equal to protecting yourself from losing your funds.

IOTA Demystified

A deep dive into the concepts, technology and magic of IOTA.

Eric Hop

Written by

Eric Hop

Software developer since 1979

IOTA Demystified

A deep dive into the concepts, technology and magic of IOTA.