Commit 3c3f2980 authored by René Brunner's avatar René Brunner

MMS (Multisig Messaging System) manual added to user guides

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restore-from-keys: إستعاده محفظه من المفاتيح
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{% assign version = '1.1.0' | split: '.' %}
{% include disclaimer.html translated="false" version=page.version %}
# Multisig Transactions with MMS and CLI Wallet
## Introduction
This manual describes the *Multisig Messaging System*, abbreviated as *MMS*. It's a system that aims to **simplify multisig transactions** for Monero and similar CrypoNote-based cryptocurrencies by making it easy to exchange info like key sets and sync data between wallets and by offering some "workflow support" guiding you through the various steps.
The MMS so far presents itself to the user as a set of new commands in the CLI wallet. This is not surprising, as currently the CLI wallet is the only way to do multisig transactions interactively anyway. Hopefully this will be extended in the future; the MMS was designed with other wallets like e.g. the Monero GUI wallet in mind.
This manual has some tutorial-like aspects and is intended to be read in sequential fashion, best without skipping any chapter before chapter *The Commands in Detail*.
If you have high requirements regarding security and are not sure whether using the MMS is acceptable for you in the first place, you may read the chapter *Security* first.
This first version of the manual was written around year-end 2018 by René Brunner (*rbrunner7*), the original author of the MMS.
## Monero Multisig in a Nutshell
Probably it will be pretty hard to understand the MMS without at least a basic grasp of how Monero multisig transactions work in principle. Here a short overview together with info about the *terminology* that this manual uses; for more details and more *technical* explanations you will have to look elsewhere.
*Multisig* means that a transaction needs multiple signatures before it can be submitted to the Monero network and executed. Instead of one Monero wallet creating, signing, and submitting transactions all on its own, you will have a whole group of wallets and collaboration between them to transact.
In this manual those wallets, or if you prefer, the people controlling them, are called *authorized signers*. Depending on the type of multisig used, not **all** authorized signers need to sign before a transaction becomes valid, but only a subset of them. The corresponding number (which is equal to or smaller than the number of authorized signers) is called *required signers*.
The usual notation in use here is *M/N*, with *M* standing for the number of required signers, and *N* standing for the total number of authorized signers. For example, probably the most useful and most popular type of multisig is written as *2/3*: Out of a total of **three** authorized signers, any **two** are needed to make a transaction valid.
For technically "simple" coins like Bitcoin and its forks doing multisig transactions consists of the following steps:
* Configure the multisig wallets and establish the multisig address
* Fund the multisig wallets / the multisig address so there is something to spend in the first place
* Do as many multisig transactions as you like
Monero adds one more type of step, necessary for internal bookkeeping so to speak. Simply told all the mechanisms that make Monero transactions truly private complicate things and lead to a necessity to exchange information between wallets to enable them to correctly process transactions, both incoming and outgoing.
The MMS uses the term *syncing* for the process to making wallets ready to transact again after sending or receiving transactions, and *multisig sync data* or simply *sync data* for the information that has to be exchanged to achieve that.
So the steps for Monero multisig look like that:
* Configure the multisig wallets and establish the multisig address
* Fund the multisig wallets / the multisig address so there is something to spend in the first place
* Sync the wallets for a first time
* Do 1 multisig transaction
* Sync the wallets again
* Do another multisig transaction and/or receive more funds
* Sync the wallets yet again
* ...
The "value" of the MMS is making it easy and painless to exchange all those data packets between the wallets, and telling the signers at which point of the "workflow" they currently are and what has to be the next action in order to proceed.
## The Architecture of the MMS
The MMS basically has 3 parts:
* A set of new commands in the CLI wallet
* A running instance of PyBitmessage reachable from the computer running the CLI wallet, doing message transport on behalf of the wallet
* Internal code extensions to wallet code managing a new `.mms` file per wallet with the messages in it and interfacing with PyBitmessage
[PyBitmessage]( is currently the only supported program for message transport, the MMS won't "speak" to any other system. You can't use e-mail nor any other of the myriad of communication programs out there. If you don't like PyBitmessage or can't run it for any reason you won't be able to use the current version of the MMS.
The author of the MMS hopes that you will give it a try: PyBitmessage is fully open source, is under continued development, has enough users to almost assure message transport at any time, and takes privacy very seriously - just like Monero.
Hopefully a future MMS will build on Monero's "native" private communication system, [Kovri](, but we are probably still quite some time away from a Kovri release ready for broad use.
MMS communications should be **safe**: The Bitmessage system is considered safe as it's completely invisible who sends messages to whom, and all traffic is encrypted. For additional safety the MMS encrypts any message contents itself as well: Nobody except the receiver of an MMS message can decrypt and use its content, and the messages are signed, meaning the receiver can be sure they come from the right sender.
## The MMS User Experience
To see the "user experience" of multisig in the CLI wallet **without** MMS you can e.g. check [here]( and [here](
Those pages are also useful to familiarize yourself with the steps for multisig transactions in general, as the MMS will not change the order of the steps or make any of them superfluous, but will just make execution considerably easier, and the MMS will be able to tell you the next step in order automatically in most cases.
### A Messaging System
The general approach of the MMS is very **similar to e-mail**: You send messages around, with the MMS command set in the CLI wallet playing the part of your e-mail client, allowing you to send messages, receive messages and manage a list of stored messages, something like a combined inbox and outbox.
The contents of those messages are of course all those things that must be transported between the wallets of the signers: key sets, wallet sync data, transactions to sign and/or submit to the network.
PyBitmessage is used for the actual message transport and thus plays the part of your e-mail server. Once configuration is done sending and receiving messages is fully automatic i.e. needs no manual intervention.
You don't use e-mail addresses, but Monero addresses to tell where messages should go, and you only ever send messages to other authorized signers: E.g. with 2/3 multisig you only have 2 partners to send something to.
Like with e-mail people don't have to be online at the same time for message transport to work: PyBitmessage will keep messages for up to 2 days, giving you time to fetch them.
The approach is in general quite flexbile and robust: If you need messages from several signers to proceed the MMS will wait until it finds all of them in the list of received messages, and the order of reception does not matter either, which results in a quite unstressed experience.
If another signer tells you that a particular message did not arrive or was lost somehow you can send it again anytime, picking it from the message list, like you would re-send an e-mail in a similar situation.
### Signers and Messages
So, where a "normal" Monero wallet without MMS simply told manages three types of data (addresses, accounts and transactions), the MMS adds two more: Signers and messages.
The MMS manages, for each multisig wallet separately, a list of *authorized signers*. With 2/3 multisig that list has **three** entries. On a technical level, each entry represents a Monero wallet containing keys that can be used to sign multisig transactions. On a conceptual level it's easier to imagine a group of 3 people, i.e. yourself and 2 partners, as those "authorized signers". (Often there will be indeed 3 distinct people controlling the 3 wallets, but not always of course.)
The MMS also manages a single list of *messages* per wallet: All messages you send, plus all messages you receive. While the list of authorized signers is the same in all involved wallets, those messages of course differ. The more authorized signers there are to send you messages, and the longer you transact, the more messages will accumulate.
## Getting the MMS
Right now, at the time of writing this manual (year-end 2018), the MMS is only available as part of the latest Monero code (`master` branch on Monero's [GitHub repository]( To use it, you have to check out that source code and compile it yourself. Doing so is easiest on a Linux system.
With the next hardfork in Spring 2019 the MMS will become an integral standard part of the Monero software: You install Monero, you have it.
A word of caution: At the time of writing using the latest development Monero version does not lead to conflicts and complications with any regular Monero release software and downloaded blockchain on the same system, but that may change between now and the hardfork, especially near the hardfork.
## Installing and Configuring PyBitmessage
Installing PyBitmessage is easy enough: You find links to downloads and install instructions from the [Bitmessage Wiki homepage]( There are versions for all the major OS that Monero also supports: Linux, Windows, and macOS.
After installing run it, configure a Bitmessage address for you and note it, as you will later need it to configure your multisig wallet.
Don't worry right away if PyBitmessage does not seem to connect to the Bitmessage network when you run it the first time: Due to the decentral nature of that network it can take quite some time for your initial connect. It seems this often takes **half an hour**.
Likewise sending the very first message to a brand-new Bitmessage address can take time because there is a key exchange involved, sometimes another half of an hour. Once the key exchange is done messages are typically delivered within a few minutes however, sometimes within seconds.
You don't need to configure more than one Bitmessage address for you. You can run several multisig wallets over a **single** address without any problems because the MMS will be able to pick the right messages for the right wallets. You can even continue to use the same address for "normal" messages; those won't disturb the MMS, it will simply ignore any messages not intended for it.
Out of the box your PyBitmessage installation is not yet ready for use with the MMS because it does not allow other programs to use its API per default, you have to enable this explicitely (which makes sense, of course, for security reasons).
You find instructions how to **enable the API** on the [Bitmessage wiki API reference page]( You will use the user name and the password you choose here later as command-line parameters for the CLI wallet so that the MMS will be able to log in to PyBitmessage.
## Further PyBitmessage Tweaks
The current official release version has a [Dandelion++ protocol extension]( built-in that hardens the network further against attacks that try to track message flow to find out who sends messages to whom. Unfortunately it seems that it has still a bug somewhere that can lead to wildly differing and very long message transmission times which is quite unfortunate when using the MMS.
There is a way to switch off Dandelion++ which, in general, is not recommended of course, but useful for using the MMS as of now:
* Locate PyBitmessage's config file `keys.dat`
* Make a new section there named `[network]`
* Add the following line to this new section: `dandelion = 0`
* Restart PyBitmessage
As a "good citizen" you may consider to open your PC for access from other Bitmessage nodes to your node from the outside by opening port 8444. You find background info about that in their [FAQ]( It's not strictly necessary however for your client to function.
## MMS Command Overview
There is only **one** new command in the CLI wallet that gives access to the MMS, sensibly called `mms`. That command has however quite a number of subcommands to handle all the various functions of the MMS. Here a list of the commands; for details each command has its own chapter later in the manual:
init Initialize and configure the MMS
info Display current MMS configuration
signer Define a signer by giving a single-word label, a transport address, and a Monero address, or list all defined signers
list List all messages
next Evaluate the next possible multisig-related action(s) according to wallet state, and execute or offer for choice
sync Force generation of multisig sync data regardless of wallet state, to recover from special situations like "stale data" errors
transfer Initiate transfer with MMS support; arguments identical to normal 'transfer' command arguments, for info see there
delete Delete a single message by giving its id, or delete all messages by using 'all'
send Send a single message by giving its id, or send all waiting messages
receive Check right away for new messages to receive
note Send a one-line note message to a signer, identified by its label, or show all unread notes
show Show detailed info about a single message
export Export the content of a message to file
set Set options, 'auto-send' being the only one so far
start_auto_config Start the auto-config process at the auto-config manager's wallet by creating new tokens
auto_config Start auto-config by using the token received from the auto-config manager
stop_auto_config Delete any tokens and abort an auto-config process
send_signer_config Send your complete signer configuration to all other signers
You get the list of commands by issuing `help mms`, and help for a particular subcommand by using `help mms <subcommand>`, e.g. `help mms next`. You can alternatively use `mms help <subcommand>` if that feels more natural.
## Configuring a Wallet for Use with the MMS
### Addresses and Labels
First for better understanding some basic facts about addressing and referring to signers (or their wallets respectively) in the MMS:
If you create a new wallet it gets (of course) its own, unique public Monero address. If you later configure the wallet for multisig, the wallet **changes** its public address to the common multisig address that you share with all the other authorized signers.
The MMS uses the first, "original" public Monero address over the whole wallet lifetime for addressing, before **and** after "going multisig". It may be a little confusing that a wallet should have **two** public addresses somehow, but once you got the original address into your signer configuration you can more or less forget about it.
The MMS uses *labels* that allow you to name yourself and the other signers, and that the MMS commands use when referring to signers. (Using Monero addresses or Bitmessage addresses in such commands would be quite cumbersome.)
Labels must be one word, and they must be unique within a single wallet. The example later on in this manual uses the labels `alice` and `bob` for a case of 2/2 multisig.
### Running CLI Wallet
When you start the CLI wallet for use with the MMS there are the following two new (optional) command line parameters for connecting to PyBitmessage:
--bitmessage-address Use PyBitmessage instance at URL <arg>
--bitmessage-login Specify <arg> as username:password for PyBitmessage API
If you have PyBitmessage running on the same machine as the CLI wallet the default for the first parameter will do, and you should not need to set anything different. If it does not seem to find it despite running locally try to use `http://localhost` or `` as argument for the first parameter.
Beside that, you need of course either `--testnet` or `--stagenet` to connect to the right network. Also using `--log-level 0` could be useful: This instructs the wallet to write detailed info into its logfile that might help to find bugs or problems with the MMS.
So a complete command line for the CLI wallet could look like this:
./monero-wallet-cli --testnet --bitmessage-login mmstest:p4ssw0rd --log-level 0
### Initializing the MMS
After creating a new wallet you have to initialize it for use with the MMS; without that crucial first step you won't be able to use any MMS features. The command to do so is `mms init`:
mms init <required_signers>/<authorized_signers> <own_label> <own_transport_address>
`own_transport_address` is the Bitmessage address that you configured in your own PyBitmessage program. A full `init` command could look like this:
mms init 2/2 alice BM-2cUVEbbb3H6ojddYQziK3RafJ5GPcFQv7e
Use that `init` command **only once**: Executing it a second time will completely re-initialize the MMS by deleting any signer info and any messages, which you don't want except in special circumstances.
If you want to go through a MMS test as fast as possible you can instruct the wallet to ask for the password only when strictly necessary for technical reasons, and tell the MMS to send any generated message right away instead of prompting before doing so:
set ask-password 0
mms set auto-send 1
(Both those settings are active during the 2/2 multisig example shown in this manual.)
### Configuring Signers
About each signer the MMS needs to know three things:
* The one-word *label* that you will use to refer to that signer
* The *transport address* which currently means their Bitmessage address as long as this is the only supported message transport system
* The *Monero address* i.e. the "original" Monero address of their wallet
(See also above chapter *Addresses and Labels*.)
You don't have to create signers; after the `mms init` command they are already all "there", although without any info yet with the exception of yourself. The commands for setting signer information refer to them by number, 1 up to the total number of authorized signers, so 1 and 2 in the following 2/2 multisig example with signers named *Alice* and *Bob* and thus with the labels *alice* and *bob*.
After the above sample `init` command the list of signers looks like that:
# Label Transport Address
Auto-Config Token Monero Address
1 alice BM-2cUVEbbb3H6ojddYQziK3RafJ5GPcFQv7e
2 <not set> <not set>
<not set>
Note that signer #1 is always "me" i.e. your own label, transport address and Monero address. So in Alice's signer list #1 will be Alice and #2 will be Bob, while in Bob's wallet it will be exactly the other way round.
There are **three ways** to complete signer information: You can enter it manually, or you can use the auto-config mechanism that the MMS offers, which has a second, "semi-automatic" variant. With 2/2 there is hardly a difference in effort, but with higher numbers of signers auto-config is easier and more reliable. In any case, one advantage of auto-config is a secure transport of addresses because PyBitmessage is used.
So pick **one** method from the three following chapters *Manually Configuring Signers*, *Auto-Config* and *Sending Signer Information*:
### Manually Configuring Signers
The command to manually enter signer info and display the list of signers is `mms signer`:
mms signer [<number> <label> [<transport_address> [<monero_address>]]]
Without any argument the command displays the list of signers. With at least a number and a label you can set or change info about a particular signer. A full command to set everything about signer #2 could look like this:
mms signer 2 bob BM-2cStcTfCx8D3McrMcmGZYZcF4csKcQT2pa 9yXKZ6UUdd8NnNN5UyK34oXV7zp7gjgZ4WTKHk8KzWsAAuyksfqoeRMLLkdWur85vnc1YL5E2rrMdPMHunA8WzUS9EL3Uoj
A command to later change only the label of signer #2 could be:
mms signer 2 bob-the-builder
With this manual method it's up to the signers *how* they all get to know each other's addresses.
Be careful while entering signer information: Any mistakes like wrong Bitmessage addresses will probably make it impossible to correctly transact later on.
Before you go out and start to exchange signer information over insecure channels like IRC or plain unencrypted e-mail, please note that there are certain dangers in doing so. If somebody can e.g. intercept your e-mails and get hold of your addresses that you send to a signer that person can then impersonate the signer.
There is also the danger that in a 2/3 multisig scenario for *escrow* signer Bob can set up a second wallet for the trusted third-party Trent beside his own and trick Alice into sending everything to that wallet instead of Trent's. After this Bob will be able to transact alone and steal coins from Alice.
You find a more detailed explanation of this second danger in chapter *Security* towards the end of the manual or [here]( Auto-config mitigates this danger to quite some extent.
Alice's complete signer list looks like this:
# Label Transport Address
Auto-Config Token Monero Address
1 alice BM-2cUVEbbb3H6ojddYQziK3RafJ5GPcFQv7e
2 bob BM-2cStcTfCx8D3McrMcmGZYZcF4csKcQT2pa
### Auto-Config
MMS auto-config is based on so-called *auto-config tokens*. Such tokens are always 11 characters long, the fixed string "mms" followed by 8 hexadecimal digits. Examples for such tokens are `mms561832e3eb` and `mms62cb2b87e2`.
The basic trick: Unlike Bitmessage addresses and Monero addresses those tokens are short enough to type them easily and e.g. use reasonably safe smartphone messenger apps or SMS to transmit them, or dictate them over the phone, again not perfectly safe, but still much safer than plain e-mail or IRC.
The workflow is as follows - it's simpler than it looks at first sight, go once through it in practice and it makes sense:
* One signer takes on the job to lead and organize configuration, furthermore called *manager*
* The manager assigns a label to each signer and enters all labels into the signer configuration, either using `mms signer` commands or giving them as arguments of the `mms start_auto_config` command in the next step
* The manager uses the command `mms start_auto_config` to generate auto-config tokens for all other signers, one distinct token per signer
* The manager transmits the tokens to their respective signers outside of the MMS
* All other signers enter their token with `mms auto_config <token>`
* Their wallets will generate messages that send their addresses to the manager's wallet, already using PyBitmessage
* As soon as all those messages arrive there the manager can in turn send messages to all other signers containing the complete signer information by doing `mms next`
* The other signers process those messages to complete their signer information with `mms next`
Several points are noteworthy here. Manual configuration with e.g. 5 signers could mean 5 times 4 = 20 initial manual information transfers, if each of the 5 signers sends addresses to 4 others. Even a more clever approach with someone collecting all addresses first and sending the complete list to all others then would take 4 plus 4 = 8 information transfers. With auto-config there are only **4** such manual transfers - 4 tokens from the manager out to the other signers; after that point it's already messages over PyBitmessage.
You may wonder how the other signers' wallets can send their Bitmessage addresses back to the manager by using PyBitmessage. Doesn't this snake bite its own tail? The solution: A temporary, "throw-away" Bitmessage address is derived from each token and used just for this transfer, and temporary keys are derived as well for encrypting message content.
Part of the increased safety of the auto-config process is the fact that each signer gets its own, distinct token. In 2/3 multisig, just make sure Bob cannot get hold of Trent's own token, and already Bob has no way to "play" Trent and set up a second wallet to be able to sign transactions all on his own.
### Sending Signer Configuration
Beside full auto-config there is a second, alternative way to make configuration easier, based on a command called `send_signer_config`. It's less "automatic", but you may prefer it because it's more transparent what happens.
Here the workflow is as follows:
* One signer takes on the job to lead and organize configuration, furthermore called *manager*
* The manager receives from all other signers their addresses over channels outside the MMS, e.g. encrypted and signed e-mail
* The manager enters complete signer information into their wallet, using `mms member` commands
* The manager uses the `mms send_signer_config` command to send the completed information to all other signers
* The other signers process the messages containing signer information with `mms next`
For all signers except the manager this is nearly as comfortable as auto-config. Note however that the security of the scheme depends on securing the sending of info to the manager: If some signer can posit as not only themselves, but as other signers as well, they will be able to control several wallets and undermine the whole signing process. (See also chapter *Manually Configuring Signers* for more about such dangers.)
## Establishing the Multisig Address
In general, there are no MMS commands to execute particular steps regarding multisig transactions (with the exception of starting a transfer using `mms transfer` and force sync with `mms sync`). You just use the `mms next` command, and the MMS will do whatever is next in the "multisig workflow", and if nothing is ready, e.g. because some messages are still missing, will tell you the reason why nothing is "next" yet.
So, after you completed the info about all signers, either manually or through auto-config, you just issue a `mms next` command, and the MMS will start with the first step needed to establish the multisig address: Calculate *key sets* for all coalition members and set up messages to send those to them. The whole scene might look like this for Alice:
[wallet A1VRwm]: mms next
Send this multisig info to all other participants, then use make_multisig <threshold> <info1> [<info2>...] with others' multisig info
This includes the PRIVATE view key, so needs to be disclosed only to that multisig wallet's participants
Id I/O Authorized Signer Message Type Height R Message State Since
1 out bob: BM-2cStcTfCx8D3McrMcmGZ.. key set 0 0 ready to send 2018-12-26 07:46:21, 1 seconds ago
Queued for sending.
The `prepare_multisig` output there is a hint that the MMS works by putting something like a "wrapper" about the CLI wallet `pepare_multisig` command, it even displays the `MultisigV1` string for confirmation. Now you don't have to send that manually to the other signer somehow: The MMS prepares a message for that and sends it in a fully automatic way.
After Alice receives Bob's key set, another `mms next` command will process it and establish the multisig address:
[wallet A1VRwm]: mms next
Wallet password:
2/2 multisig address: 9uWY5Kq6XocGGqUByp22ty4HYxj4CfjCXdRrZ24EKvYW2U7fudSzCvTRRT35tMNx5heQfqKmVmFjahWUZ1BENnzH8UvyVF7
The wallet may be "out of sync" after this step; if yes, just do a quick `refresh`.
In the case of non-symmetrical M/N multisig, with M different from N, like e.g. in 2/3, it's not enough that each signer sends one key set to every other signer: There will be several *rounds* of key set exchanges. However the MMS knows about this and will automatically take care of almost everything: For a particular wallet it waits until the key sets of all other signers have arrived before going on. If there is another key exchange round necessary, `mms next` will then start a new one. If not, the command will process the last key set(s) and establish the multisig address.
It's possible that a future enhanced version of the MMS will do this in a fully automatic way, i.e. sending all necessary key sets around without further intervention until the multisig address is configured. For now however you have to push things along yourself by issuing `mms next` commands.
## Funding the Multisig Wallet
With the multisig address established the wallet is now ready to receive funds. Here the MMS plays no role, nor does multisig in general: Just transfer some coins to the address, to have something to transfer out later, and wait until they arrive.
## Syncing Wallets
Every time after receiving or sending coins multisig wallets must exchange some info with each other to get "into sync" again. That's the case whenever the CLI wallet tells you about *partial key images* like in this `balance` command output:
[wallet 9uWY5K]: balance
Currently selected account: [0] Primary account
Tag: (No tag assigned)
Balance: 7.000000000000, unlocked balance: 7.000000000000 (Some owned outputs have partial key images - import_multisig_info needed)
That "import_multisig_info needed" thing is perhaps the single most tiresome aspect of CryptoNote multisig transactions and quite some work e.g. in the case of 3/3 or 2/3 multisig where already a total of **six** pieces of information must be passed around each time, only to finalize reception of some coins and/or being able to transfer again after a transfer.
At least, with the MMS, it's only a case of issuing `mms next` commands until all sync data is sent and received and the wallets get into sync again: It guides you automatically through the necessary `export_multisig_info` and `import_multisig_info` commands. Here again how Alice sees this:
[wallet 9uWY5K]: mms next
Multisig info exported to MMS
Id I/O Authorized Signer Message Type Height R Message State Since
5 out bob: BM-2cStcTfCx8D3McrMcmGZ.. multisig sync data 1 0 ready to send 2018-12-26 08:58:14, 0 seconds ago
Queued for sending.
MMS received new message
Id I/O Authorized Signer Message Type Height R Message State Since
6 in bob: BM-2cStcTfCx8D3McrMcmGZ.. multisig sync data 1 0 waiting 2018-12-26 08:59:45, 0 seconds ago
[wallet 9uWY5K]: mms next
Height 1117984, txid <b515082063a6242f1b62f21c80f95c90801f14ce3f48f51094d069e3580a78aa>, 7.000000000000, idx 0/0
Multisig info imported03
Don't worry if you receive such sync messages from other signers already before you are able to start sending yours: The MMS will handle this situation quite fine and send first, process afterwards.
Check the chapter *Troubleshooting* if you ever get stuck somehow: E.g. there is a way to force sync even if `mms next` gets confused and thinks that syncing is not necessary or not possible.
## Making Multisig Transactions
For initiating multisig transactions there is the command `mms transfer` instead of the normal `transfer` command. The MMS variant supports all the parameter variations of the normal command; thus to get help use `help transfer`.
The MMS does not care about subaddresses and accounts; whatever address you use for sending (and receiving) transactions, the MMS only cares about the data that the particular event creates, about the right moment to process that and about sending it to the right recipient(s).
If you don't like your transaction data to become part of the `.mms` file in the form of stored message content, you can use the normal `transfer` command, but then it's of course your problem to send the partially signed transaction to the next signer.
With multisig the `mms transfer` command does of course not yet transfer, but produces a partially-signed transaction instead. This stretches the concept of messages a bit because `mms transfer` produces a message to "me" i.e. the owner of the wallet itself, with the partially-signed transaction as content. Check message #7 below to Alice:
[wallet 9uWY5K]: mms transfer 9zo5QDV9YivQ8Fdygt7BNdGo1c98yfAWxAz6HMwsf15Vf1Gkme9pjQG2Typ9JnBKv5goziC2MT93o3YDUfoWdU9XUinX5kS 5
No payment id is included with this transaction. Is this okay? (Y/Yes/N/No): y
Transaction 1/1:
Spending from address index 0
Sending 5.000000000000. The transaction fee is 0.000094300000
Is this okay? (Y/Yes/N/No): y
Unsigned transaction(s) successfully written to MMS
[wallet 9uWY5K]: mms list
Id I/O Authorized Signer Message Type Height R Message State Since
7 in alice: BM-2cUVEbbb3H6ojddYQz.. partially signed tx 1 0 waiting 2018-12-26 09:10:42, 40 seconds ago
The idea behind this: In this state, with the transaction waiting, and depending on the number of required signers, `mms next` will result in a question what to do with it: Especially in the case of 2/3 multisig, it's central to be able to decide **where** to send the transaction for the second signature that will make it valid, i.e. to **which** of the two possible signers.
This could look like in this case of 2/4 multisig:
Unsigned transaction(s) successfully written to MMS
[wallet 9vAbBk]: mms next
Choose processing:
1: Send the tx for signing to two: BM-2cUVEbbb3H6ojddYQziK3RafJ5GPcFQv7e
2: Send the tx for signing to three: BM-2cStcTfCx8D3McrMcmGZYZcF4csKcQT2pa
3: Send the tx for signing to four: BM-2cUjNoSxPkUY7ho4sPcEA6Rr26jqcasKiE
In the case of the 2/2 multisig example in this manual, there is no choice however: The transaction started by Alice has to go to Bob as the only other authorized and required signer:
[wallet 9uWY5K]: mms next
Send tx
Id I/O Authorized Signer Message Type Height R Message State Since
8 out bob: BM-2cStcTfCx8D3McrMcmGZ.. partially signed tx 1 0 ready to send 2018-12-26 09:29:30, 0 seconds ago
Queued for sending.
After receiving Bob signs, as usual not with a dedicated signing command that does not exist, but by simply using `mms next`:
[wallet 9uWY5K]: mms next
Loaded 1 transactions, for 7.000000000000, fee 0.000094300000, sending 5.000000000000 to
9zo5QDV9YivQ8Fdygt7BNdGo1c98yfAWxAz6HMwsf15Vf1Gkme9pjQG2Typ9JnBKv5goziC2MT93o3YDUfoWdU9XUinX5kS, 1.999905700000 change to
9uWY5Kq6XocGGqUByp22ty4HYxj4CfjCXdRrZ24EKvYW2U7fudSzCvTRRT35tMNx5heQfqKmVmFjahWUZ1BENnzH8UvyVF7, with min ring size 11,
no payment ID. Is this okay? (Y/Yes/N/No): y
Transaction successfully signed to file MMS, txid c1f603a9045f28b28f221eddf55be41e95f2ac7213384a32d35cadc0a8be3026
It may be relayed to the network with submit_multisig
Yet another `mms next` does result in a choice for Bob, because he can either submit the transaction to the network himself, **or** send it back to Alice for doing so:
[wallet 9uWY5K]: mms next
Choose processing:
1: Submit tx
2: Send the tx for submission to alice: BM-2cUVEbbb3H6ojddYQziK3RafJ5GPcFQv7e
As already mentioned elsewhere after the transaction is submitted to the network and processed you have to sync the wallets before you can do another transfer. Also note that regardless of any syncing needs it's a restriction of Monero multisig that you must do **strictly one transaction after the other**. For example you can't put away fully-signed transactions for submitting them later and already start a new one to submit that first. (For some such scenarious the MMS is not smart enough to prevent you from trying; see chapter *Troubleshooting* about how you can recover by deleting messages containing unprocessable transactions and forcing sync.)
As already mentioned you can keep out your transaction data out of the `.mms` file in the form of stored message content and use the normal `transfer` command, but then it's of course your problem to send the partially signed transaction to the next signer. Note also that the MMS does not support cold signing; that would be another reason to directly use `transfer` instead of `mms transfer`. You can, however, export transaction data contained in a message with the `mms export` command.
## The Commands in Detail
### mms init
mms init <required_signers>/<authorized_signers> <own_label> <own_transport_address>
mms init 2/2 alice 2cUVEbbb3H6ojddYQziK3RafJ5GPcFQv7e
Prepare a wallet for use with the MMS. You can later change your own label and your own transport address using `mms signer`, but the two numbers, required signers and authorized signers, cannot be changed without issuing `mms init` again which will erase all signer information and all messages. The command will lead to the creation of an additional file with an extension of `.mms` for the wallet.
For wallets created in "pre-MMS times" (before the MMS code was included in Monero) it's only possible to initialize the MMS if the wallet is not yet multisig. For wallets created with Monero code already present it's possible to initialize even with the wallet multisig already: When the wallet switched to multisig the "original" Monero address needed by the MMS was saved before it got replaced by the common multisig address.
There is no command to deactivate the MMS. If you no longer want to use it for a particular wallet, just delete the `.mms` file or at least move it out of the way.
### mms info
mms [info]
Display whether the MMS is active or not, and if yes, show the number of required signers and number of authorized signers. This is the only MMS command allowed with the MMS inactive.
### mms signer
mms signer [<number> <label> [<transport_address> [<monero_address>]]]
mms signer
mms signer 2 bob BM-2cStcTfCx8D3McrMcmGZYZcF4csKcQT2pa 9yXKZ6UUdd8NnNN5UyK34oXV7zp7gjgZ4WTKHk8KzWsAAuyksfqoeRMLLkdWur85vnc1YL5E2rrMdPMHunA8WzUS9EL3Uoj
mms signer 2 bob-the-builder
Without argument, show the list of signers and their info, as far as known. Things never set and therefore still unknown are displayed as `<not set>`. Note that you don't have to and can't create signers: After `mms init` they already all "exist", although without any information set, with the exception of signer #1 which is always "me" i.e. the current wallet itself. Their number is fixed, it's the number of authorized signers as specified with `mms init`.
With at least a number and a label as argument, set information about a signer, or change any information already set. You can always freely change labels and transport addresses, but for technical reasons Monero addresses can only be changed as long as there are no messages. In the worst case do `mms init` again and start from scratch.
Numbers start with 1 and go up to the number of authorized signers.
A *label* must be a single word. Use characters like minus "-" or underscore "_" to write more complex labels like e.g. `alice_in_wonderland`. Labels must be unique for all signers. There is no fixed maximal length for labels but some output will look strange or become hard to read with very long labels.
A *transport address* can currently only be a Bitmessage address like e.g. `BM-2cStcTfCx8D3McrMcmGZYZcF4csKcQT2pa`, PyBitmessage being the only supported program for actual message transport. Transport addresses are not checked for syntax or validity by the MMS; if you enter a malformed address you will get an error message from PyBitmessage only later at first (attempted) use.
If you enter a wrong address i.e. not the correct address for the respective signer most probably nothing will happen, the messages will just not reach the intended recipient; if nobody holds the key for that address, with a Bitmessage client configured to receive messages to it, the message will just "float around" the Bitmessage network for a while and finally expire.
### mms list
mms list
List all stored messages. There are no separate inbox and outbox; all messages are contained in a single chronological list. The columns in detail:
* `Id`: The unique id of the message that you can use to refer to the message in commands like `mms show` and `mms send`. Message ids count strictly upwards from 1. Ids of deleted messages won't get "recycled".
* `I/O`: Message direction. `in` denotes a message that you received, `out` a message that you sent. Note than for some message types you can receive a message from yourself, e.g. a partially signed transaction that you started yourself.
* `Authorized Signer`: In case of a received message, the sender, in case of a sent message, the recipient. Listed are the label and, within the width limit of the column, the transport address of the signer.
* `Message Type`: The type of the message telling what kind of data it contains. For a complete list of possible message types see below.
* `Height`: The number of transfers contained in the wallet at the time of message construction or reception. Used to group the "right" sync data messages which all must be from the same "height" for all other signers before sync can be successful. This height is unimportant for you except in cases where something went wrong; for more see chapter *Troubleshooting*.
* `R`: The number of the key exchange round a key set belongs to, if the type of multisig requires more than one round in the first place, like e.g. 2/3. 0 for all other message types.
* `Message State`: The current state of the message. `waiting` or `sent` for outgoing messages, `waiting` or `processed` for incoming messages. You can't directly change this state, it's always the result of the execution of commands.
* `Since`: Point in time and time span since the message got its current message state. Times are in UTC, not local time. If you re-send a message, this timestamp is not adjusted and continues to display the time of the first sending.
The complete list of message types:
* `key_set`: Data about keys that wallets must exchange with each other for establishing multisig addresses
* `additional_key_set`: A key set for an additional key exchange round, after the original one, as necessary for non-symmetric multisig types like e.g. 2/3
* `multisig_sync_data`: Data that wallets must exchange with each other to correctly and completely interpret incoming and outgoing transactions; see also chapter *Syncing Wallets*
* `partially_signed_tx`: A transaction that has not yet the necessary number of signatures (= number of required signers) to commit it
* `fully_signed_tx`: A transaction with a full set of required signatures, ready for submission to the Monero network; any signer could submit this
* `note`: A message containing a note; see command `mms note`
* `signer_config`: Full information about all signers, to be sent as part of an auto-config process or as a result of a `mms send_signer_config` command
* `auto_config_data`: Address data from a signer to send back to the auto-config manager after entering a token with `mms auto_config`
### mms next
mms next [sync]
*The* central and probably most useful command of the MMS: Check the state of the wallet plus the received and sent messages and their message state, and decide which action is the next one to execute, and then actually execute it.
When in doubt, just issue a `mms next` command; the MMS will either execute the proper next command according to Monero's "multisig workflow rules", or tell you what it's waiting for before it can proceed. For "dangerous" things you can count on confirming prompts before the real action happens. Worst case a `mms next` can execute something earlier than you might have intended, but otherwise can hardly do any harm.
Note how for many actions there is **no** dedicated command, and `mms next` the **only** way to move things forward. Don't look e.g. for commands to selectively process certain messages: If it's time to process some received messages in state *waiting*, the command will do so.
Interestingly and maybe surprisingly, in Monero it's **always** clear what has to happen next regarding multisig, except in the case of partially signed transactions where you can decide **which** signer sending them to, and in the case of fully signed transactions that you can submit yourself to the network or send them to another signer for submission by them.
The special command form `mms next sync` is for cases where sync data is waiting that the MMS on its own would not process because it "thinks" the wallet is in a state needing no new sync - which might be wrong. More about this in chapter *Troubleshooting*.
### mms sync
mms sync
Manually start a round of syncing forcibly i.e. even if the MMS is of the opinion that no exchange of sync data is currently necessary. More about this in chapter *Troubleshooting*.
### mms transfer
mms transfer <transfer_command_arguments>
Start a transfer under the control of the MMS, the difference to the standard `transfer` command being that the resulting partially signed transaction won't be written to a file that you have to handle further yourself, but that a message containing the transaction will result. Use `mms next` after `mms transfer` to ask the MMS to actually process the message which in effect means deciding which signer send it to for the next signature and create another message for that.
The arguments of the `mms transfer` command are exactly the same of those of the standard `transfer` command. Check the info about that command with `help transfer` to learn about all the various possible parameters and parameter combinations.
Note that quite in general the MMS does not care about addresses, subaddresses and acccounts. Regardless of what you specify in this regard for a `mms transfer` command afterwards there will always be a single new message containing the partially signed transaction.
Even with MMS active you can still use the standard `transfer` command; you are then simply on your own regarding handling the transaction. Try to use the right command variant; `transfer` won't ask for confirmation whether you really intend to use it instead of `mms transfer`. If you issued `transfer` but really wanted the MMS variant, ignore the written transaction file and simply go on with `mms transfer`.
The MMS does not, or at least not yet, keep track how many signatures a transaction actually has and who signed already and who not yet. Because of this weakness it can include choices that do not make sense, e.g. a choice to send a partially signed transaction to somebody who signed already.
This hardly matters with multisig types like 2/2 or 2/3, but of course the higher the number of authorized signers, the more acute this can become. Some attention by the signers is needed to do the right thing. You can't go wrong in an absolute sense however: The CLI wallet, or more exactly the CLI commands called internally by the MMS, will reject any attempts to do invalid actions.
### mms delete
mms delete (<message_id> | all)
Delete a single message given its message id, or delete all messages by using the `all` parameter. Single messages will be deleted without confirmation even if not yet sent or not yet processed. A deleted message is gone for good, there is no undo, and it's gone from PyBitmessage's store as well. (If you loose a message you can ask the sender to re-send it to you.)
There are situations where you have to clear by deleting messages that did not get processed, got unprocessable and now "disturb the workflow"; more see chapter *Troubleshooting*. Deleting is also useful when somebody re-sends you a message and the original message finally reaches you as well later on.
You could say that the value of a sent or processed message itself is not very high as in most cases you won't ever need it again, and for many messages there are no commands to process them again on demand anyway. But of course the list of messages itself can be quite valuable to see what happened, and when, so better not delete messages without a good reason.
### mms send
mms send [<message_id>]
mms send 14
Without parameter send any messages in status *ready to send*. With a message id as parameter send or re-send that particular message. To be able to re-send a message is part of the "messaging system UX" and makes for a quite robust processing because there are very few situations that you can't recover from: The Bitmessage network ate your message? No problem, re-send. PyBitmessage crashed? No problem, restart PyBitmessage and re-send your message.
Whether messages are immediately sent or whether the MMS asks for confirmation to do so first depends on the value of the `auto-send` parameter; see `mms set` command. Getting each message to send presented that way may be useful for beginners because it's clearer to see what happens; on the other hand it hardly ever makes sense to postpone sending because something else has to be sent first.
"Sending" does not mean really send; the MMS just submits the message to PyBitmessage and *that* program will actually send. The MMS cannot give any feedback whether a message is still waiting to go out to the Bitmessage network or went out already. When in doubt, check in PyBitmessage itself.
Any mistakes in Bitmessage addresses will only be detected at the moment of sending; the MMS itself does not check those addresses.
### mms receive
mms receive
Force an immediate check for received messages, or more exactly force an immediate query of the MMS to PyBitmessage whether there are any new messages.
The MMS checks for new incoming messages with the same frequence the CLI wallet checks for incoming transactions: Once very 90 seconds. And the setting to decide whether checking automatically or not is the same as well, `auto-refresh`.
### mms note
mms note [<label> <text>]
mms note
mms note bob Did you already submit the last transaction?
mms note alice Yes, just waiting for the next block :)
Without parameters display any notes not yet read. With a label and further text as parameters send the text as a message of type `note` to the signer with the label.
Sending notes to each other directly from one Monero wallet to the next might be a fun way to avoid having to use additional communication channels for talking to signers.
If you want to read or re-read a particular note use the `mms show` command and look at the last line with the message content, in this case the text of the note.
### mms show
mms show <message_id>
Show detailed information about the message with the id used as command parameter. Useful to read or re-read notes. Binary message content is not displayed; use the `mms export` command and inspect the resulting file if you need to check such a message content.
### mms export
mms export <message_id>
Export the content of the message with the given id into a file with the fixed name `mms_message_content` in the current directory. An already existing file will be silently overwritten.
There is no `mms import` counterpart command yet.
### mms set
mms set <option_name> [<option_value>]