Beware of phishing attacks, Ledger will never ask for the 24 words of your recovery phrase. Never share them. Learn more

Set up and use Electrum

This article describes how to set up and use the Electrum desktop application to access your Ledger Bitcoin (BTC) accounts with your Ledger device.

Before you start

Step by step

Install Electrum
  1. Go to Electrum.org.
  2. Download Electrum for your operating system.
  3. Select your operating system:
    • Windows: move the downloaded .exe file to your applications folder.
    • Mac: open the downloaded .dmg file and move it to your applications folder.
    • Linux: follow these instructions.
Connect to Ledger device
  1. Connect and unlock your Ledger device.
  2. Open the Bitcoin app.
  3. Launch Electrum from your applications folder. The install wizard opens.
  4. Leave the default wallet name and click Next.
  5. Select Standard wallet and click Next.
  6. At the keystore screen, select Use a hardware device and click Next.
  7. Select your Ledger device and click next.
  8. Choose the right derivation path for your account and click Next:
    • Legacy for an account that has addresses starting with a 1
    • p2sh-segwit for an account that has addresses starting with a
    • Native segwit for an account with addresses starting with a bc1real_final_setup_electrum.gif

Your addresses are generated and voilà! Your account balances are shown in the History tab. You can now manage your BTC from your Ledger device using Electrum.

Receive BTC

  Always start by sending a small test amount. Proceed only with larger transactions if the test transaction has been successful.

Instructions

  1. Open the Receive tab.
  2. Copy and share the Receiving address with the person or service that will transfer to your account. Make sure you double-check the address if you copy and paste it.
Send BTC

  Always start by sending a small test amount. Proceed only with larger transactions if the test transaction was successful.

Instructions

  1. Open the Send tab.
  2. Enter the recipient address in the Pay to fieldPlease verify the address when you copy and paste.
  3. Enter the Amount to send and select the network fees.
  4. Click Send. Check the amount and fees, then confirm by clicking Yes.
  5. Verify the amount, receiving address, and fees all displayed on your device.
  6. If everything is correct, confirm the transaction by pressing the right button to sign it.
Connect to Ledger device with old firmware version
In rare edge cases, you may have not the possibility to update the firmware and connect to the latest version of Electrum. In that case, you may try to connect to the older version of Electrum with your Ledger device with outdated firmware. This part of the instructions is experimental and there is no guarantee that the connection between the older Ledger device and older Electrum will be stable.

Depending on the Electrum version, steps may be slightly different but the general flow should be the same:
  1. Download Electrum
    1. Version 3.0.2 for older Ledger Nano S firmware releases.
    2. Version 3.2.4 for older Ledger Nano S firmware release if you encounter a problem with signing a SegWit transaction.
    3. Version 3.3.5 for older Nano X firmware releases.
  2. Connect and unlock your Ledger device.
  3. Open the Bitcoin app.
  4. Launch Electrum from your applications folder. The install wizard opens.
  5. Leave the default wallet name and click Next.
  6. Select Standard wallet and click Next.
  7. At the keystore screen, select Use a hardware device and click Next.
  8. Select your Ledger device and click next.
  9. Choose the right derivation path for your account and click Next:
    • Legacy for an account that has addresses starting with a 1
    • p2sh-segwit for an account that has addresses starting with a
    • Native segwit for an account with addresses starting with a bc1

Having issues connecting?

Make sure you have the latest version of Electrum. If your version of Electrum is outdated, your Ledger device may not get detected.

Was this article helpful?