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Ethereum New User Guide

New to Ethereum? You're in the right place! This guide will walk you through the necessary steps of getting onboarded to the Ethereum network.

Buy ETH

In order to interact with the Ethereum network, you will need to own Ether (ETH). The easiest way to acquire ETH is to buy it on Coinbase.

One important note is that you do not need to buy 1 full ETH. Ether is divisible down to 18 decimal places so you can buy fractions of it.

Setup MetaMask

Now that you have ETH, you will want to send it to a wallet of your choice to store it and use it on the network. Wallets setup accounts for you which are randomly generated 42 character long addresses starting with 0x. Accounts allow you to store and use ETH by generating transactions on the Ethereum network.

We recommend first moving your ETH to the MetaMask wallet. MetaMask is a browser extension that allows you to interact with Ethereum dapps inside of Chrome, Brave, Firefox or Opera.

MetaMask has a nice video to help you get setup:

After MetaMask is setup, you now have your own wallet address (0x......). You can go to Coinbase and send your acquired ETH to your new wallet address. This should take about a minute and you will see the ETH show up in your MetaMask wallet.

Setup Mobile Wallet (optional)

Every Ethereum account can be restored via a random string of words. In the MetaMask setup above this was referred to as the seed phrase. It is possible to have this same account in multiple different wallets, including mobile wallets.

We recommend downloading Coinbase Wallet, clicking restore and typing in your seed phrase. Your wallet is now also mobilized!

Try Ethereum Applications

Now that you have ETH in a wallet of your own, you can use any of the amazing applications (sometimes referred to as dapps) that have been built on Ethereum.

There are many different types of applications built on Ethereum but here are a few suggestions to get started:

Decentralized Finance

  • Compound: Lend and borrow ETH or other tokens.
  • Uniswap: Easily trade your ETH for other tokens.

Games

Collectibles

  • OpenSea: Buy, sell and discover rare digital items.
  • Origin Protocol: Decentralized marketplaces on the blockchain.

Other

  • ENS: Buy an ENS name to give your address a more human readable format (myetheraddress.eth).
  • PoolTogether: Join a no-loss lottery for a chance to win a prize.

Long term storage

As you continue to use Ethereum, you might start to acquire more ETH and other tokens. It is highly recommended to store larger amounts of crypto in solutions such as hardware wallets and smart contract wallets which are more secure than basic account wallets.

Hardware wallets are the most-secure method for accessing your funds while online, as they do not expose your private key to the internet when signing transactions.

Smart contract wallets are wallets with unique abilities due to the power of smart contract functionality. They enable additional security and recovery features for users.