There are 3 ways you can mine and power crypto from home. Full-DIY, Semi-DIY and Plug-n-Play. Let’s look at the cost in terms of time and money and also where to get started.

Crypto networks like Bitcoin, Ethereum and many others run on decentralized computing. That means these networks are powered by millions of computers all over the world. In exchange for computation, those computers earn crypto.

The different crypto protocols sometimes use different types of computation. Proof-of-work computation for Bitcoin and Ethereum is called mining. Proof-of-Stake computation for Tezos is called staking. There is routing for Bitcoin Lightning and validating for Bitcoin Nodes. No matter what, it’s always a type of computation and there are three approaches you can use to help power crypto networks and earn crypto for your computation.

1. Full-DIY
Spend the most time to save money
Time: Research how-to build one, and then build a miner and lightning node. Install the operating system and software and keeping it updated for years to come.
Money: Parts to build the miner and lightning node plus a monitor, keyboard and mouse needed for setup and updates.

Here’s what an example DIY hardware and software setup looks like.

Miner, Bitcoin Lightning Node not included.Bitcoin Lightning Software Not IncludedBitcoin Lightning Node, Software Setup Not Included

2. Semi-DIY
Save some time by spending more money
Time: Research which one to use and install the operating system and software and keep it updated for years to come.
Money: Buy a pre-built crypto miner or lightning node (a monitor, keyboard and mouse is needed for setup, updates and metrics)

Here’s an example Semi-DIY hardware and software setup.

Pre-Built Miner (Bitcoin Lightning Node not included, Software may or may not be included)

3. Plug-n-Play
Spend no time, just money.
Time: None
Money: Buy an all-in-one crypto miner and Bitcoin Lightning node. Hardware, software and updates included. Controlled with an app.

Here’s an example of a Plug-n-Play solution.

Coinmine Plug-n-Play miner and Bitcoin Lightning node. Software and updates included.

No matter how you do it, you have to spend time and/or money.

And time is money.

We even speak about them the same way. You spend both.

We know this because we learned it first hand. We’ve been building computers since we were kids. Before starting Coinmine, we built our own miners from scratch running on Ubuntu and then Ethos. Today, there is staking, and Bitcoin Lightning and new protocols to keep up with too.

There are lots of resources for Full-DIY and Semi-DIY hardware and software solutions including help guides and online groups and pre-built devices. Here are few examples.

Full-DIY Resources:
1. http://notsofast.com
2. https://proofofwalken.com/
3. http://ethosdistro.com/
4. https://simplemining.net/

Semi-DIY Resources:
1. https://miningstore.com/
2. https://www.etsy.com

There are only a couple of Plug-n-Play solutions today.

Plug-n-Play Resources:
1. https://coinmine.com/ (Mining and Bitcoin Lightning Node)
2. https://store.casa/ (Bitcoin Lightning Node with Yearly subscription)

Here’s just one example of how time and money can add up when you’re deciding to go Plug-n-Play, Full-DIY, or Semi-DIY for your own mining, Bitcoin Lightning and other crypto solutions.

You can use this table as a template for your own situation. Maybe your time is worth more, maybe you can buy the hardware for less, or maybe the amount of time you’ll need is different. If you have a larger mining setup, you should keep your electricity costs in mind too. No matter how you do it, the more people powering crypto — the better. Just make sure to understand the time and money you’ll have to spend so you can make an informed choice. Today, you have more options than ever to get rewarded for powering crypto and building a new world.

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How To Mine Cryptocurrency From Home was originally published in HackerNoon.com on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.