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File descriptions

This is a technical article aimed at people with working knowledge of navigating files on their computer.

When MultiBit runs, it creates various files on your computer. This help section describes what each of these files is for.

Installation directory

The installation directory is where you installed MultiBit. No configuration files or wallets are stored there normally.

If you chose the default installation options, you will find the MultiBit application in one of the following locations:

Application directory

The application directory is where MultiBit will store your configuration and wallets. This allows you to safely upgrade MultiBit without worrying about deleting important data.

In the following section [EXAMPLE] is used to indicate an environment variable called "EXAMPLE". Environment variables are used to provide common starting points for directories. If you have an unusual set up you may need to refer to these to locate where MultiBit has placed its application directory. Open a "command prompt" or "Terminal" and type "set" or "export" to see a list of them.

Before exploring environment variables, try one of the following locations.You may need to enable hidden directories.

Windows

OS X

In OS X the user Library directory is normally hidden. Follow the show hidden files instructions to reveal it in the Finder.

Linux

In Linux the user home directory is normally hidden due to the leading ".".

Contents of application directory

Here is a list of the files that MultiBit uses:

Application logs

All logs are stored in plain text in the logs directory as follows:

Log files are automatically deleted after 14 days and all times within are in UTC. At present MultiBit is not configured to automatically log to syslog.

The log files are extremely useful for debugging and are included in an error report upload. In rare circumstances you may may be asked by a member of MultiBit support staff to search your logs as part of an investigation into an Issue that you have raised with us. The procedure for this search is as follows:

  1. Create a new blank text document using the standard text editor for your system (e.g. Notepad, TextMate, gEdit etc)
  2. Locate multibit-hd.log on your system (it may be in a hidden folder)
  3. Use your text editor to open it
  4. Search for "stack_trace" (no quotes) using the editor's search tool
  5. Copy a few lines before and after the big block of technical info if found
  6. Paste these into the blank text document you prepared earlier
  7. Return to the log and attempt to locate another "stack_trace" and repeat the copy/paste until all are covered
  8. Return to our Issue database on GitHub and paste the stack traces into your Issue. We'll tidy them up as necessary.

Wallets

All wallets are stored encrypted in directories of the form mbhd-[some long number] as follows:

If you have a cloud backup directory set for your wallet, the local zip backups are regularly copied to your cloud backup directory.

Troubleshooting file problems

Occasionally people make changes to the application directory in error. Here are some helpful tips to assist in recovery.

I've accidentally deleted something!

Don't worry. So long as you have your wallet words you can recover your bitcoins. See "Restoring a wallet" for step by step instructions to recover.

First try to simply Undo the delete (use CTRL+Z if it's the most recent thing you did) or fish around in your Recycle bin. If you've only just discovered the problem then assess the impact below.

Deleting different files/directories will have different impacts:

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