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Creating a Bitcoin Address in Golang with btcd

Imagine bitcoin as digital cash. To receive it, you need a unique identifier called a bitcoin address. You can share this address publicly to receive payments.
But how do you access and manage your Bitcoin? That's where a Bitcoin wallet comes in.
It's like a secure digital container that holds your keys and allows you to send bitcoin, receive bitcoin, and track how many bitcoins were sent to your address.

What is a bitcoin address?
A Bitcoin address is a unique identifier used to receive or send bitcoin in the Bitcoin network.
You can use it to receive or request payments. It is typically a string of letters and numbers, and it plays a role similar to an account number in traditional banking.
Keep in mind that a Bitcoin address is just one part of a Bitcoin wallet, which also includes private keys, which is a cryptographically generated random number that allows you to spend the bitcoin sent to your bitcoin addresses.

Different types

  • Legacy Addresses (P2PKH): These are traditional Bitcoin addresses that start with a '1'. They are derived from the public key and are widely used. For example, a legacy address might look like: 1BvBMSEYstWetqTFn5Au4m4GFg7xJaNVN2.

  • Segregated Witness (SegWit) Addresses (bech32 encoding format): SegWit is an upgrade to the Bitcoin protocol that makes various changes to the protocol one of such is introducing a new bitcoin address format called segwit addresses.
    SegWit addresses have 32 characters, which comprise lowercase letters a-z and numbers 0-9, it starts with '3' and are more space-efficient, resulting in lower transaction fees. For example, a SegWit address might look like: 3J98t1WpEZ73CNmQviecrnyiWrnqRhWNLy

A private key is a secret, alphanumeric string that allows you to access and control the funds associated with a specific public address.

Keep your private keys safe, like your regular wallet's pin.
Never share your private keys with anyone!

Let's dive into it
Ensure you have go installed

on MacOs
brew install go

Verify the installation
go version

on Windows:

  • Download the MSI installer from the official Golang website.
  • Run the installer and follow the installation prompts.
  • Open a new Command Prompt or PowerShell window, and verify the installation by running go version

Step 1: Set Up Your Go Module
a. Open your terminal.
b. Create a new folder for your project:
mkdir btc-wallet- generator
c. Change into the project directory:
cd btc-wallet-generator
d. Create a new Go module:
go mod init btc-wallet-generator
e. Run go mod tidy to clean up and update dependencies.

Step 2: Install Dependencies
Run the following command to install the btcd library, which is used for wallet generation:
go get

Step 3: Create main.go File
Create a main.go file in your project folder and add the following content below:

package main

import (

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Step 4: Write the Main Function

func main() {
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Step 5: Generate P2PKH Address Function
Add the createP2PKHAddress function to your main.go file:

func createP2PKHAddress() {
    // Choose the Bitcoin network (testnet in this case)
    params := &chaincfg.TestNet3Params

    // Generate a new private key
    privKey, err := btcec.NewPrivateKey(btcec.S256())
    if err != nil {

    // Get the corresponding public key
    pubKey := privKey.PubKey()

    // Create a P2PKH address
    addr, err := btcutil.NewAddressPubKeyHash(btcutil.Hash160(pubKey.SerializeCompressed()), params)
    if err != nil {

    // Display the generated address and private key
    fmt.Printf("| Public Address | %s |\n", addr.EncodeAddress())
    fmt.Printf("| Private Key     | %s |\n", hex.EncodeToString(privKey.Serialize()))

    // Save the wallet information to a JSON file
    wallet := map[string]string{
        "address":    addr.EncodeAddress(),
        "privateKey": hex.EncodeToString(privKey.Serialize()),

// Serialize wallet information to JSON format with indentation
walletJSON, err := json.MarshalIndent(wallet, "", "    ")
if err != nil {

// Write the serialized JSON to a file named "wallet.json" //with read-write permissions (0644)
err = ioutil.WriteFile("wallet.json", walletJSON, 0644)
if err != nil {

// Print a message indicating that the wallet has been created //and saved to "wallet.json"
fmt.Println("Address created and saved to wallet.json")
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Step 6: Run the Program
Run the following command in your terminal to compile and execute the Go program:
go run main.go

Step 7: Check Your Address on Mempool
The program will generate a public address and private key, save them to wallet.json, and display a message. Copy the generated address and visit coinfaucet to get free bitcoin which in this case is just for testing purposes.

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After receiving some funds, check your UTXO and other information on mempool-testnet.

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In conclusion, this article aims to guide developers through the process of setting up a development environment, using btcd, writing Golang code, and testing a basic Bitcoin address.

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