The Ledger Nano S is one of the world’s most popular crypto hardware wallets. Its reputation for security and usability is a big reason why the Nano S remains a leading cold storage option for crypto investors. Use this guide for assistance in setting up your new Nano S.
Ledger is a company that builds security and infrastructure solutions for cryptocurrencies. Founded in 2014, its Ledger hardware wallets are sold globally and have won various industry awards.
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.
Ledger Nano S supports over 1,000 cryptocurrencies, including bitcoin (BTC), ether (ETH) and Ethereum-based ERC-20 tokens.
#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 for both iOS and Android.
#2: Set Up as New Nano S
Connect your new 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 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 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 4–8 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.
#4: Write Down Recovery Phrase
After your PIN code is set up, the display of your 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’ in 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 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 Nano S to move to the second word. Write it down in position 2 on your sheet. Repeat until the 24th word.
- ‘Confirm your recovery phrase’ will display on the screen. Do so by simultaneously pressing both buttons.
- Select the requested word by navigating with the left or right button. Validate by 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 after.
- Simultaneously press both buttons to access the dashboard. This is where you can access the apps and settings on your Nano S.
All done! Congrats, you’ve officially set up your Nano S. Remember to keep your 24-word recovery phrase to yourself and store it in a safe location that only you can access.
Need Help Setting Up Your Ledger Nano S?
Ledger has a rich library of support documentation. Visit this section if you’re having trouble setting up your device or would like to know more about using your Ledger, such as how to install, uninstall and update apps.
Another useful resource is the FAQ page on updating your Ledger device. (Answer: Ledger strongly recommends updating to the latest firmware.)
Finally, the Ledger YouTube channel has lots of detailed videos to help customers.
For example, below is an onboarding session that covers setting up the Ledger Nano S Plus and best practices.
Where to Buy a Ledger Nano S
If you want to buy a Ledger Nano S, visit the Ledger Nano S product page.