With the OS installed on the Raspberry Pi, next I needed to configure the mining software. This is fairly easy to do, and there are plenty of options out there for software to use. As the SBCs are pretty much CPU only, I had to choose a coin that could be mined with CPU only. Most coins are optimised for expensive GPUs or ASICs which mine a lot faster, but the point of what I was doing was to see if I could make it work, not necessarily make a load of profit doing it.
I had a good read and stumbled across a blog from someone doing something similar to me (blog now sadly withdrawn, it was extremely informative) they suggested I use mining software XMRig. After some reading, it seemed that I needed a CPU mining algorithm, and settled on ‘Cryptonight’ mining for Monero, a widely-known altcoin.
At this point I had already familarised myself with a mining pool called ‘MinerGate’ which has a really nice graphical interface on Windows, but as i was using command line linux I had to set up the config manually.
Next up I had to compile the config.json file which tells the mining pool who you are, what coin you want to be rewarded for your effort in, the destination for the payout and various other pieces of important information. The easiest way to do this is to look up the pool-specific config options (some pools have a section where you can put in this info and select the mining software you use and they auto-generate it for you) then use a template config like the one available at https://github.com/xmrig/xmrig/blob/master/src/config.json.
With this configured, all you have to do is run ./xmrig at the command line and away it goes!