Although there are more than a few wallets out there that can support ADA there are only two official native wallets for Cardano: Daedelus and Yoroi
Where can I find these wallets?
The simplest place to start is at the Cardano website. They have official links to the two wallets:
Why use these wallets?
You can find ADA support within many different hardware and software wallets, but the easiest answer to “why” is the staking experience. The Cardano wallets offer an amazing experience (as well as support for other Natively Minted Cardano Tokens).
(If you’re new to staking check-out our guide Staking 101)
Some other 3rd party wallets offer staking as well, but your millage will very. Many limit your choice on stake pools or might ask you to lock-up your tokens for a specific period of time. They are all different but if you have a favourite 3rd party wallet you’ll need do some research and see if they offer the support you’re after.
However, the 1-2-3 simplicity of staking with a Native Wallet (like Yoroi) makes the whole process extremely simple. The native wallets are well designed for this task.
- Select the “Delegation List” Tab
- Type in the Ticker of the pool you’re interested in (or scroll through the list)
- Press “Delegate”
Daedalus – A Full Node Wallet
The Daedalus wallet is a “full-node” wallet and runs as a stand-alone application that maintains a full-copy of the Cardano Ledger. If you are interested in maintaining the maximum privacy then this is the wallet for you.
Understand though that this wallet is resource intense in terms of both Disk space and Ram requirements. You will need to have a machine that meets the requirements.
You’ll need to be patient when using Daedalus as every time you launch the application it will sync updates from the blockchain.
Yoroi – A Lightweight Wallet
The Yoroi wallet, by contrast, is a “light-weight” wallet. It is an extension that runs within a web-browser. This extension contains localized encrypted data that communicates with private databases run by Emurgo (the creator / maintainer of the software).
Yoroi is extremely quick to get up and running. It is also not resource intensive.
This wallet is perfectly secure, but it will talk to Emurgo when looking up the blockchain balances associated with your wallet addresses. This isn’t too different from any other 3rd party multi-chain wallet out there.
Best Practices – Security / Clean Machines
If you plan to use a desktop wallet, especially without hardware to protect your keys, then it is best to maintain a “clean machine” and use that machine only for your wallet usage.
A “Clean Machine” is a computer that is dedicated to only one task: your crypto wallets. It is not a general purpose computer, and as such, means no general web browsing, email, or even installing the latest video game you’ve been meaning to try.
This computer has one dedicated task… store and use your wallets. Keep the operating system up-to-date and the computer clear of anything distracting. It’s rather boring. Boring in this case is good and has a reason.. security.
After all, the goal is to keep your computer from being infected by a virus or other malware to prevent anyone other than yourself from having access to your wallets (and their associated funds).
Best Practices – Seed Phrases
This topic is a little harder to make recommendations to you. Both Daedalus and Yoroi work with a 21 word seed-phrase (unless you’re using a Hardware Wallet with them, but then again the Hardware Wallet has a seed-phrase to worry about).
You’ll need to have a backup of these words somewhere. They will need be kept both private and secure. Beside just simply memorizing your phrase, the standard practice is to write them down and store a physical copy somewhere you deem private and secure.
It is not a good idea to keep a digital copy of these words anywhere (especially on the cloud or other network). In this digital age a simple hand-written letter to yourself can often trump anything stored on a computer.
There are solutions out there to help with the various failings of physical mediums (such as paper). These solutions can be metal based, fire resistant, water proof, etc. What you find is only a few web searches away.
If you’re a more advanced computer user look into encrypting your seed phrase. This will allow much more flexibility on how and where you can store your phrase.
The biggest take away is: DO NOT SHARE YOUR SEED PHRASE and KEEP IT SAFE.
Your Seed Phrase is ,quite literally, the key to all the crypto you have stored on the Cardano network. Treat it like you would any other valuable item in your life.
Best Practices – Stay safe from scammers
If you’ve kept your Computer boring and your Seed Phrase safe and secure.. there is really only one last thing to keep in mind: Scams and scammers.
Scammers are just other people trying to trick you in order to gain access to your funds or keys. Just remember, if it’s too good to be true.. it probably is. Practice a lot of common-sense and just take things slowly when transacting with crypto. No one needs access to your information ever. If someone ask for it, suspect something is going on and think it through.
We as people are the largest weakness for other to gain access to our funds.
In this world of crypto a little paranoia is healthy and can keep your funds safe.
Hopefully this has helped provide a quick introduction to the native wallets of Cardano.
There are plenty of 3rd party choices out there if you’d rather use different solutions.
I’ve simply found the staking experience with the Native Wallets to be exceptional.
Stay safe out there and know that we at TavernCrypto aren’t interested in your funds.
We only want to provide a great stake pool for the Cardano community and won’t ever ask for any information related to your wallets or funds.