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Uses of FPGA vs GPU?

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New Member
Mar 22, 2021
Good day all,
I have a question regarding FPGA performance vs GPU (I've reviewed this). I’m trying to recover lost bitcoins that I mined in the early days. I knew it was important to keep the private key but in the end I somehow managed to lose my private key but I still have 24 out of 32 bytes of my private key, found on half a piece of paper when I printed that private key back in 2012.

So I have 24 bytes out of the total 32 bytes of my private key. I can only recover this by brute forcing. But I’m not familiar with FPGA and I’m totally unsure how fast they would be able to do these calculations.

The required calculations would be incrementing a 256 bit number (starting at the lower boundary of the 24 bytes out of the 32 I have), doing the elliptic curve calculation in order to get a public key and then ripemd160(sha256(publicKey)) and compare the resulting hash160 with my address hash160. If they are equal I found my private key and I can recover my bitcoins.

Do you think an FPGA like this could do this in a reasonable time? I don't mind if it takes a year for example but there is no point in doing this if it takes > 100 years... I’m trying to figure out if it’s worth going with an FPGA for this in order to recover +- 110 BTC. Maybe I need too many FPGA’s and it might not be worth it… Or do you think high end GPU’s like an nvidia 1080TI will be better suited for the job?

If you think an FPGA can certainly be used for this. What kind of FPGA am I looking at, how much do they cost and how many would I need?

Many thanks.

Best regards
110BTC = 3 million USD.
AWS EC2's 1 GPU instance costs about 1USD per hour.
If your crack can be done in 3 million hours (342 years) with it, you should go AWS, since you can rent 1000 instances at once and get it done in 4 months.
You may want to rent one and try to write your algorithm with CUDA and do some profiling to see how much hours are needed in total. RIPE and SHA are fast but EC is generally not.
The advantage of FPGA are low latency and low power consumption. Both of them are not what you need.