A look at Ozcoin Mining Pool
Please note: This review is based on a relatively small amount of hashing, a few hundred ghs. The stats outlined in this review may not apply to larger miners. We hacked our antminer S1’s to mine nine pools concurrently, letting us run proportional power across a wide variety of mining pools. This review is part of our series of bitcoin mining pool reviews.
We thought we would have a look at one of the longest established mining pools from our Antipodean friends in Australia. Ozcoin opened in 2011, and in it’s time generated nearly 2000 blocks. Ozcoin is focused on Australian members, however, at the time of writing, the pool seems to be effectively dead, with few reported miners still using it, a shoutbox filled with people quitting the pool.
Ozcoin operates using a Double Geometric Method reward system (explained here), taking a 1% fee. They also merge mine Namecoin, which is converted into bitcoin and added to your account. I noticed, especially when starting mining with this pool, that my hashing for the first 24 hours was severely throttled. Where I was pointing 160~180 ghs at the pool on one of my miners, the first day showed only 250mhs, although this changed on day two and is presumably an anti-pool-hopping mechanism. They have servers in Europe, the US, Australia and China.
Working out your earnings on this pool are quite difficult, as the method they use for paying out is a little hard to get your head around. Especially with the first hours mining effectively generating nothing in return for electricity, if you’re comparing other pools against this one, it came out worst against the other pools we’ve reviewed. A much more fundamental problem is that whatever happened in the past, right now the pool has only a handful of miners still actively mining on it. As of today (3rd December 14), it has been 70 days and counting since their last block was found in September. So even if you do have funds in your account, it’s going to be very difficult to withdraw it.
You can withdraw your bitcoin when you pass the threshold of 0.01, and as there is no sign of a block any time soon, we can’t verify whether or not they pay out to begin with (and we’re effectively forfeiting the bitcoin we have on our review account). There is 2FA security that can be enabled to secure your account.
The pool owner maintained a relatively active thread on bitcointalk, but this has been abandoned since early in the year. The pool also has an IRC chat channel which you can access directly, but the embedded version on the site doesn’t work. There is suppsoed to be a pool hashrate chart as well, but this is broken too. UIwise, the site is a little all over the place, with a simple interface, but a little haphazard with different screens buried in the site, broken or links that don’t work. There is also a hall of fame, but most of those who found blocks did so in 2013.
In conclusion, there’s little positive I can say about Ozcoin at this time. While I’m aware they were a long standing pool in the bitcoin ecosystem, miners have voted with their feet and abandoned the pool. It is unlikely that the pool will find a block with the overall pool speed they have, and I find it hard to give a recommendation to a pool that you point your miners to, that gives you very little, if any, chance of recouping your investment or electricity. So if you’re looking at trying the pool, there are plenty of others that work better, and are more active to choose from.