This article explains how to install and work with Geth and Mist, which allow you to mine or develop Ethereum software, and to control your own node and your own wallet’s key, thereby signing your own transactions instead of relying on third-party software. In order to communicate with the Ethereum blockchain, we must use a blockchain client.

The client is responsible for broadcasting transactions, mining, signing messages and communicating with smart contracts. Currently, the most popular clients for Ethereum are Geth and Parity.

They both come as command line tools with terminal consoles for blockchain operations. Since most people aren’t comfortable using command line tools, client extensions like Mist were created.

They “wrap” the functionality of the client in a user-friendly interface — enabling people not proficient in command line usage to participate in the network. Mist is a program which connects to Geth in the background, and also serves as an interface for the wallet.

When Geth is running, it synchronizes with the public blockchain by downloading all its data. Mist is just a human-friendly interface for talking to Geth. Read more from…

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