Using the new Ledger Live interface for the Ledger hard wallets

The Ledger Nano S has become one of the most popular cryptocurrency hard wallets. Retailing for about $100, it offers security and ease of use for an affordable price, especially if you want to secure a sizable amount of digital assets.

Until recently, the only convenient way to manage the Nano S was to use a Chrome app for each kind of asset: Bitcoin, Ethereum or Ripple/XRP. But this week Ledger released Ledger Live, an all-in-one multi-platform application to put all the asset management under one interface.

That is, if you can get it to recognize your Nano S. I had some troubles, but some googling and previous experience dealing with Windows helped me smooth things out.

Act I, Scene 1:

Once you install Ledger Live, there are three steps to get it working with your Nano: account creation, security and connection. The last step is where I and some other users have had troubles.

First, Ledger Live will how you wish to begin: use a new Ledger device, restore a Ledger device, use a device that is already initialized, or obtain a new one. The first option is for a newly purchased, never-before-used Ledger wallet. The second button is to recover a lost account because your Ledger is lost or damaged. The third is to use an existing Nano S that you have already used with the Chrome apps. That’s the button I chose.

Choose the button in red to use a Ledger wallet that’s already set up

Act I, Scene 2:

Next comes the security process, as Live will check to see if your Ledger wallet is genuine and not a fake or one that is compromised in some way. It is VERY important that any Ledger device you buy does not have a pre-existing PIN code or seed phrase, because someone who knows both can steal your assets. The PIN code is one you choose and the seed words the device creates from that PIN code.

Answer yes to the first two questions if true, then the last, which will open the security process.

Act I, Scene 3:

So far, I had had no problems, but starting here I had several, because there were some issues with connectivity.

On my first go-round, I passed the first test, but when I navigated to the Dashboard, nothing happened. I tried a few times with the same result. So, I tested my Nano S with the Chrome apps. They worked fine, and I noticed in the Ledger Manager app that my wallet’s firmware needed to be updated. Reckoning that the old firmware was creating problems with Ledger Live, I went through the process of updating the firmware.

Act II, Scene 1:

With my freshly updated firmware, I returned to Ledger Live and repeated the same steps as before, but this time the application refused to recognize the wallet. The arrows kept spinning on the first bar. Worried that I could have messed something up, I decided to test the Linux version of Ledger Live.

Success!

But why was the Windows version being so troublesome?

To make a long story short, it was a driver issue, which I may have exacerbated by upgrading to the new firmware.

Act II, Scene 2:

No yellow warning signs? Good!
To fix the problem, I had to open up Windows Device Manager with the Ledger wallet plugged in and unlocked, and look for any USB device (or Human Interface Device) with a yellow warning sign next to it, uninstall it (right-click to get to that choice in the context menu), then launch Ledger Live. Presumably, the application installed a new Windows driver, because now I could complete all the steps listed above and use Ledger Live in Windows as advertised.

I hope my false starts have helped my readers. If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments below. Thanks!

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Ledger Nano S - The secure hardware wallet

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