The Ledger Nano S is one of the best cryptocurrency hardware wallets available to date. The significance of hardware wallets (aka cold storage) stems from the fact that in order to gain access to your crypto, you must have physical access to the device.

Only can you access your crypto once you have correctly put in your pin number (which you set yourself upon device configuration)

Inputting pin number

This adds a great layer of security which reduces the chances of you getting hacked!

After properly putting in your PIN number, you can now access your cryptocurrency through Ledger’s software Ledger Live which provides a beautiful UI experience for managing your portfolio.

I recommend purchasing a Ledger Nano S to anyone who is serious about keeping the cryptocurrency safe.

Unboxing the Ledger Nano S


Ledger Nano S Unboxing

Straight out of the box you should find:

  • A Ledger Nano S
  • USB Cable
  • Lanyard & key ring
  • User Manual
  • Recovery Sheet

Note that your recovery sheet that comes within the box should be blank like the one shown below. If you happen to get one with words already written on it, this is an attempt of a scammer trying to scam you!

Recovery sheet

Your recovery sheet should come blank with no words written on it.

Aside from the Ledger Nano S itself, the recovery sheet is the most important piece of the package. In the event you forget your pin, or accidentally lose/damage your Nano S, the only way you’ll be able to recover your cryptocurrency is through the recovery sheet.

Setting up the Ledger Nano S


To set up the device, plug it into your computer via USB cable. You should be greeted with a welcome message.

welcome screen

There’s two buttons on top. Use these to navigate through the ledger interface. Pressing both at the same time is akin to an ENTER. Press both at the same time to begin the set up process.

Steps 1-2

  • Click the button on the right to configure as new device
  • Choose a pin code (then confirm pin code)

steps 1-2

Steps 3-4

  • Write down your recovery phrase on your recovery sheet (A list of words will be shown on your device)
  • Confirm your recovery phrase

Once you have confirmed your recovery phrase word by word, you should see on screen that your device is now ready.

Setting Up Ledger Live


Go to Ledger.com, download and install Ledger Live.

After installing, open the application. You should be greeted with a welcome screen. Follow the instructions as shown: Get Started> Initialize a new Ledger device > Ledger Nano S

Steps 2 and 3 are steps we’ve already completed.

Next check to see that your Ledger Nano S is genuine. This is a process Ledger Live will do automatically for you.

check to see if device is genuine

Next, set a password lock for Ledger Live. This is optional but recommended for added security.

Finally, choose whether or not you want bug reports to be sent.

Yay! Your Ledger Nano S is now ready!

Installing Ledger Nano S Applications


Your Ledger Nano S is now ready, but there’s still more work to be done. In order to actually use the Ledger as a cryptocurrency wallet, you need to install the proper wallet(s) onto the device. The Ledger Nano S supports over 700+ crypto assets and more are constantly being added. I’m going to show you how to install the Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin wallets as these are what’s pretty commonly known.

This process is very simple and can done right through Ledger Live. Let’s get started.

In Ledger Live click Portfolio then Open Manager.

 

You should be brought to the App Catalog. Use the search bar to search for Bitcoin and then click Install.

Do the same for Litecoin and Ethereum. Notice on your device, the Bitcoin, Litecoin, and Ethereum logos appear on screen.

Next go back to Portfolio and click Add Accounts.

Make sure your Ledger Nano S is connected via USB. Find Bitcoin in the drop down menu, navigate to Bitcoin on your Ledger then click both buttons to open the application.

Your Bitcoin account should start synchronizing.

adding bitcoin

Next, you should see Bitcoin 1. Make sure the check mark is checked then click Add Account.

The same process applies for Litecoin and Ethereum and any other crypto asset available via Ledger Live.

Now if you go back to your portfolio, you should see a list of your accounts.

Receiving Cryptocurrency


Next I’m going to demonstrate how to send bitcoin to your Ledger Nano S. This is a very straightforward, simple process.

First, sign up for Coinbase. Coinbase is one of the easiest ways to buy bitcoin and various other cryptocurrencies.

Once you’ve purchased bitcoin, go to Accounts, under BTC Wallet and click Send.

coinbase btc purchase

Next, we need to find our Ledger Live bitcoin address. To do that, in the Ledger Live sidebar, click Receive, select your bitcoin account in the drop down menu then click Continue.

receiving btc

Next, you’ll be asked to connect your Ledger Nano S then verify the address on the device.

btc ledger live verification

A bitcoin address will appear both on your computer and Ledger screen. Make sure they match up letter by letter! If the address on your computer screen is different then the one on your Ledger Nano S, your computer could be potentially compromised with malware.

If they match up you’re good to click Copy Address and paste it into Coinbase.

btc address

Once you click Continue you’ll be asked to input a verification code which is sent to the phone number associated with your account. Your transaction should then be on its way!

coinbase send complete

After sending the bitcoin from Coinbase, it took ~1 minute for the transaction to show up in Ledger Live.

btc transaction

The amount of time it takes for a transaction to propagate will depend on how much network congestion there is. Waiting for over an hour for a bitcoin transaction to process is not uncommon so don’t be worried if you don’t see your transaction appear right away.

Sending Cryptocurrency


Sending cryptocurrency from your Ledger Nano S is as easy as receiving. Simply select the account you wish to send crypto from and click Send.

sending bitcoin

Next just populate the the relevant information including: recipient address, and amount.

bitcoin sending ui

Final Thoughts, Conclusions


The Ledger Nano S is one of my favorite wallets to use. While it can seem a bit tedious to set up, the the peace of mind you get from the enhanced security is worth it alone.

Thanks for reading! Feel free to ask question in the comments section down below.