The Ledger Nano S is one of the world’s most popular cryptocurrency hardware wallets; quite the feat, considering Ledger released it in 2014. Its reputation for security and usability is a big reason why the Ledger Nano S remains a leading cold storage option for cryptocurrency investors.
In this step-by-step guide, we’ll tell you how to set up a new Ledger Nano S hardware wallet device. Before we get started with the guide, let’s introduce the company Ledger as well as its flagship device, the Ledger Nano S.
Ledger is a company that builds security and infrastructure solutions for cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology. Its Ledger hardware wallets line are sold all over the world. The company was founded in 2014 and has won a string of awards for its Ledger hardware wallet products.
About the Ledger Nano S
Despite being released in 2014, the Ledger Nano S remains one of the most popular hardware wallets in the crypto industry. Crypto investors love the Ledger Nano S mainly because of its reputation and exceptional security track record.
Another big reason why the Ledger Nano S is so popular is that it supports over 1,000 cryptocurrencies. This includes bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum’s ether (ETH), and Ethereum-based ERC-20 tokens. (All cryptocurrencies supported by the Ledger Nano S.)
#1: Download & Install Ledger Live
Ledger Live is an all-in-one companion application for your Ledger hardware wallet. You must download it so that you can set up your Ledger device.
The desktop version of Ledger Live is available on macOS, Windows, and Linux. You can also download Ledger Live on your phone. Both iOS and Android are supported.
#2: Set Up as New Nano S Device
Connect your new Ledger Nano S to your computer using the supplied micro USB cable. The phrase ‘Welcome to Ledger Nano S’ should appear on the display of your device. Didn’t see the phrase? Don’t proceed any further and contact Ledger.
Press the left or right button of your Ledger Nano S to navigate through the on-screen instructions. Simultaneously press both buttons to choose the option ‘Set up as new device’.
#3: Select PIN Code
Simultaneously press both buttons when ‘Choose PIN code’ appears on the display of your Ledger Nano S.
Press either button to choose the first digit of your PIN code. Simultaneously press both buttons to enter a digit. Repeat until you’ve entered 4 to 8 digits. To erase a digit, select the backspace icon.
When you’re happy with your PIN code, select the check mark (✓) and simultaneously press both buttons. You’ll then need to re-enter your PIN code as confirmation.
NUGGET OF WISDOM
Entering your PIN code unlocks your Ledger Nano S. Make sure you choose it yourself and keep it secret. You can always change your PIN code. Your device will reset if you enter it incorrectly three times in a row.
#4: Write Down Recovery Phrase
After your PIN code is set up, the display of your Ledger Nano S will display a string of 24 words. As far as Ledger is concerned, this is called a recovery phrase. Though you’ll likely see it referred to as a seed phrase, back-up phrase, or mnemonic phrase within the industry.
Your 24-word recovery phrase is the only back-up of your private keys. You’ll only ever see it displayed once. And that is right now in this set-up phase. Therefore, it’s vital that you write down this string of words in their exact order. Here’s how you do just that:
- In the box your Ledger Nano S came in, there’s a ‘Recovery sheet’. Get that out.
- See what the first word is. Write it down in position 1 on your sheet.
- Press the right button on your Ledger Nano S to move to the second word. Write it down in position 2 on your sheet. Repeat until the twenty-fourth word.
- ‘Confirm your recovery phrase’ will display on the screen of your Ledger Nano S. Do so by simultaneously pressing both buttons.
- Select the requested word by navigating with the left or right button. Validate by pressing simultaneously pressing both buttons. Repeat for each requested word.
- ‘Processing’ will display on the screen. Don’t touch anything. ‘Your device is now ready’ will display soon thereafter.
- Simultaneously press both buttons to access the dashboard. This is where you can access the apps and settings on your Ledger Nano S.
All done! Congrats, you’ve officially set up your Ledger Nano S crypto hardware wallet. Remember to keep your 24-word recovery phrase to yourself!
Get Help Setting Up Your Ledger Nano S
Ledger has a rich library of support material in the Ledger Nano S section of Ledger Support. If you’re having trouble setting up your device, Nugget’s News encourages you to visit this section of the Ledger website.
In Ledger Support, you’ll find answers to FAQs such as ‘Do I need to update my Ledger Nano S?’. (Answer: Ledger strongly recommends updating to the latest firmware.)
Ledger & Nugget’s News
In this guide, we linked to the Ledger Nano S product page. The link used was an affiliate link that Ledger set up for Nugget’s News. Signing up with this affiliate link doesn’t affect your account or experience with Ledger.
If you want to buy a Ledger Nano S but don’t wish to use Nugget’s News’ affiliate link, visit the Ledger Nano S product page.