What is Ledger Live?
Announced in early July 2018 Ledger Live is the new software application to manage your Ledger devices including the ever popular Ledger Nano S. Previously you managed your crypto through its dedicated Ledger Chrome app such as the Bitcoin app. Ledger Live promises to make life easier with a one stop shop for managing all the cryptocurrencies on your Ledger hardware wallet in one place. In this post we take a more detailed look at what exactly Ledger live is and then dive into how to use it.
How do I get Ledger Live?
You can download the software from the Ledger site. This link is for the Windows system but you can also use the same link to see the MAC and Linux versions by selecting download for another platform.
What are the system requirements?
The system requirements for Ledger Live are simple
- OS level = macOS 10.9 (64-bit), Windows 10 (64-bit) or Linux Ubuntu 16.10
- USB Port
- Internet connection
Hardly a stretching list of requirements, right?
How to install Ledger Live
The install is dead easy, just run through the install wizard, the steps for installing on Windows install are below, for the full steps and for all other OS’s check out the guide on the Ledger site.
- Run the downloaded Ledger Live Desktop.exe file
- Accept the UAC warning
- Check the install location and if happy click install
- Click finish
Setting up Ledger Live
Once the install is complete the application will open automatically and display a welcome screen, choose get started to begin.
If you already have a Ledger and have been using the Chrome apps choose “Use a device that is already initialized”. If you are using a new device for the first time follow these steps, you can also checkout our Ledger Nano S setup guide.
Select your device either Ledger Nano S or Ledger Blue
You will then run through a security checklist with some questions you must answer and then the software runs some checks on the attached device to validate that its genuine. You will need to enter your PIN and accept access on your device.
All going well the device should come back and confirm it’s genuine.
Next is a new security feature to set a password on the software, it’s optional but adds an extra layer of security .
Lastly you are asked if you wish to share bug reporting information. Choose your preferences and click continue.
Job Done! You should see the sceen below confirming that everything is setup and the device is ready to use.
Adding cryptocurrencies already on your Ledger
If you are an existing Ledger user the next thing you will want to do is add the currencies you already have on your device so you can see your balance and manage them.
First click on the plus symbol next to accounts.
Choose the coin or token you wish to add
- Connect and unlock your device with your PIN
- Open the app on your device relevant to the crypto you are adding, in this example the Bitcoin app
- The balance on your account will show on your computer screen, choose add account and you should then see it syncronizing
You should then receive a message the balance has successfully been added.
Interface and Charts
The interface is really easy to use and intuitive so this is just a quick overview of the UI. You now get a chart which shows the value of all your crypto stored on the Ledger device over time. You can see for time frames from a week to a year.
Also below the overall portfolio view you can click on any of your indvidual accounts to see the value just for that crypto in your wallet over time.
The main navigation menu of the application is on the left. The functions of each option is summarized below:
- Portfolio – view the overall value of your holdings on your device over time. Also drill down into the value of individual coins and tokens
- Send – send crypto
- Receive – receive crypto
- Manager – Install apps or update firmware
- Exchanges – provides shortcuts to recommended exchanges
- Accounts – add account for crypto asset
- Choose send from the left toolbar
- Choose the cryptocurrency you wish to send
- Enter the recipient address, amount and click continue
- Next connect and unlock your device and then open the app for the coin you wish to send
- When you are happy click the right button to confirm on the Ledger device
- Choose receive from the left toolbar
- Choose the cryptocurrency you wish to receive
- Next connect and unlock your device and then open the app for the coin you wish to receive
- Click on verify to generate a new address. Then check the addresses on your device and computer screen match
- You will then see the address crypto can be received at
Ledger Live Review
The basic functionality from the Chrome apps is pulled over to Ledger Live but the big improvement is that you can manage all your coins and tokens on your Ledger from one place. Ease of use within the app remains on par with the Chrome extensions plus there are some nice additions like the portfolio chart showing the value of your holdings and the built in device manager. In summary worth the upgrade.