Before you get started with NEAR, the first thing that you want to do is to set up a NEAR account on Testnet. This account will also be seeded with a balance so that you can use those funds to deploy your contracts, access applications, and stake tokens.
Either read-on to learn more about the wallet or jump to set up your wallet.
Learn more about the wallet
The wallet allows you to make contract calls to the blockchain, set up your local node, and send and receive funds from other users. When you register your Account ID, you have to provide a unique name. Although every wallet has to have a unique name, every user can set-up mutliple wallets.
You can imagine this similar to a Facebook or Google account. Once you have registered to either of the services, you can use the same account to log-into thrid-party services. The difference between NEAR Account IDs and Google accounts is that the data, stored against an Account ID, is only accessible and manageable by the owner of the wallet. Additionally, all information are stored on a distributed network of nodes instead of a single server.
Let's go ahead and get you started!
Set up your wallet
Go to our wallet faucet: https://wallet.nearprotocol.com, enter a username, and click create account. Usernames can be 5-32 characters long and contain any of the following:
- Lowercase characters (a-z)
- Digits (0-9)
- Special characters (@._-)
If you have entered a valid user name, it will show you "Congrats! This name is available." and allow you to move on to the next step.
Managing Private Keys
From here, you can decide how you would like to manage your private keys. There are two options: If you'd like to be able to recover your private key through NEAR should you lose it, enter your phone number. Otherwise, backup your private key manually.
Recover your Private Keys via Phone Number
After you have provided us with your phone number and clicked the "PROTECT ACCOUNT" button, you will be sent a 6 digit security code to your number. Please provide the same code on the next screen:
Once you click on the "PROTECT ACCOUNT" button, you will be forwarded to the dashboard.
Backup your Private Keys Manually
Alternatively, you can choose to backup your private keys manually. To do so click below the the phone number entry on "I choose to backup my account manually". In this case we're not backing up "private keys". Instead, we are guaranteeing that your account can be recovered using a different (ie. not phone SMS) method; in our case, by using a seed phrase.
In the next step, you will be presented with a seed phrase that will allow you to recover your key pair in the future.
Important Please write down the seed phrase in a secure place, potentially make a copy and store both copies at two different places. We will not have a backup and will not be able to help you recover your key pair. Nevertheless, properly backing up your key manually is normally the more secure option.
did it work?
You'll know it worked when you see your new account name at the top right of the NEAR Wallet
did something go wrong?
If anything went wrong with this initial lesson, please let us know. Creating a new account should be as easy as deciding to sign up for our newsletter.
Ok, so there you go ... you've got 10 NEAR!