Bitcoin mining is the process through which new bitcoins are discovered. In reality, it is the process through which new bitcoins are verified by the bitcoin peer network. This process involves the processing of blockchains to verify all transactions within the bitcoin peer network. It involves all miners who are members of the bitcoin system. One can mine bitcoins either individually or in a mining pool. There is also a third alternative which is commonly known as cloud mining.
In solo mining, you have to acquire a computer with specialized bitcoin mining hardware and some conventional software. The computer and the bitcoin mining hardware have to run nonstop with the open source bitcoin mining software installed. The bitcoin mining software is the open source GUIMiner. This piece of software does the mining for you. The prospects of your mining efforts yielding profit are solely dependent on the processing power of your computer hardware. The faster it is, the better. The best hardware to use in bitcoin mining is the application specific integrated circuits model which is purposely designed for bitcoin mining. Nonetheless, this is the least productive approach to bitcoin mining.
In pool mining, a user joins a pool of miners in which there are connected high processing power computers dedicated to bitcoin mining. The advantage of joining a pool is that you benefit from the high computer processing power of the rest of the members and increase your odds of getting bitcoin rewards to monetize. Mining pools are intuitive and all you need is a basic computer or a USB ASIC mining hardware that is simply a periphery device plugged into a conventional USB port. This hardware is nearly free at a $20 price mark. It a gateway to bitcoin mining pools with high probability of discovering new bitcoins. For most mining pools you just need to create a user account online and designate workers from your personal computer to start mining bitcoins.
The third and last bitcoin mining strategy is cloud mining. It involves signing up for a user account at an annual fee with cloud mining service and sharing the virtual computer processing power of their bitcoin mining hardware to mine bitcoins. All you need with you at home is a personal computer for communications and a noncompulsory local Bitcoin wallet to make money from Bitcoin mining. This is a very popular option in Bitcoin mining because the cloud service provider is responsible all the hardware and software requirements and maintenance for bitcoin mining in the cloud. The user does not have to handle the hassles of software and hardware compatibility and configuration. The user goes direct into bitcoin mining right away once they have signed up.