Salvaging an old, incompatible wallet with bitcoind


I have an old wallet, created with a very old version of bitcoind, which I’m trying to access once again. I’m trying to understand the various issues that might be preventing me from seeing any balance, currently. I put the various questions I encountered in bold, below.

My plan was to access the old wallet using the old build of bitcoind, then run dumpwallet to get the private keys exported, and re-import those keys to a new wallet on a plain, modern build of the software.

Does this sound like a feasible plan? Is there any information that is lost, when going throuigh dumpwallet as I describe? Will it still see every transaction that occurred and be able to do everything I could with the old wallet?

Some relevant tidbits:

  • The bitcoind binary that created this wallet was compiled with --with-incompatible-bdb. It is bdb5, I believe. If I want to run a more modern binary, I will have to compile it with that flag too, right? There’s no way to ‘downgrade’ from 5 to 4.8 (which is the default, I believe), as I understand it? This is my main reason for trying to go through the dumpwallet approach.

So far, I have run the old code, with the old wallet, but it is showing a balance of “0.000…” and “txcount:0”, even after the block chain is fully downloaded, and even after doing -rescan on the wallet. I’m trying to figure out what the problem is, here.

  • There have been a few transactions on the wallet, over the years. Probably via different builds of bitcoind (I forget, exactly).

  • There have been a few splits and many upgrades to bitcoin and I have not followed that stuff in detail. Could they explain why I am seeing “0.000…”? Maybe my old client is communicating with a new network and some information is lost, somehow?

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