Frequently Asked Questions
What's the best wallet software to delegate from?
It actually doesn't matter that much; you will earn the same amount of rewards regardless of the wallet software that you use.
Daedalus is a full node wallet, meaning that it keeps and validates a copy of the entire blockchain. This means that it operates in a completely decentralized manner and doesn't depend on someone else's servers to work. Yoroi is a light wallet, meaning that relies on servers to keep and validate the blockchain. This means that it will load a lot faster and take up less disk space on your device.
Do I have to send my ada to a pool in order to delegate to them?
You never have to send your ada to anyone in order to delegate. Anyone trying to convince you to do that is probably attempting to scam you. Cardano is built in such a way that you can delegate to pools in a completely trustless manner.
However, don't freak out if you see approximately 2 ADA missing from your wallet after delegating. The reason why this happens is explained below.
Why did I lose approximately 2 ADA when I delegated?
The first time you delegate with a wallet it, you have to register it as a stake address, which requires that you make a deposit of exactly 2 ADA. If you ever undelegate your stake, you will get those 2 ADA back. You will not have to make this deposit again if you ever change your delegation to a different pool.
Any time you alter your delegation (including when you delegate for the first time), you do have to make a transaction on the Cardano network. Just like with any transaction, there is a small fee required, usually somewhere between 0.15 ADA and 0.2 ADA. You will not be getting this back.
What is the "Cost per epoch"?
The cost per epoch is not for each individual delegator, but for the pool as a whole.
Each epoch (5 days), a pool will earn rewards. The pool operator is allowed to take a certain amount of rewards for themselves before the rest is distributed among the delegators. This is the cost per epoch. They do have to declare this value in advance, it's not possible for them to take more than they declare.
Unlike the pool margin, the cost per epoch is not a percentage, but rather a fixed value.
It is not possible for you to lose any ada because of this, even if a pool doesn't produce enough rewards in a certain epoch to cover the cost.
Right now, the lowest value that pools are allowed to set this to is 340 ADA.
What is the "Pool margin"?
Each epoch (5 days), a pool will earn rewards. The pool operator is allowed to take a certain percentage of the rewards for themselves before its distributed among the delegators. This is the pool margin. They do have to declare this value in advance, it's not possible for them to take more than they declare.
Unlike the cost per epoch, the pool margin is not a fixed value, but rather a percentage.
What is the "Pledge"?
When a pool is registered the pool operator has to declare a certain amount of ada that the pool owners are going to delegate to the pool. This value is known as the pledge. The higher this value is, the more rewards the pool will earn for delegators. However, if the pool owners don't delegate enough to meet the pledge of a pool, the pool won't earn any rewards at all.
It's important to make sure that the pool you're delegating to has actually met their pledge, otherwise you won't be recieving any rewards. You can check this on either PoolTool or AdaPools, by looking to see if the pool has a checkmark next to their pledge amount.
Does delegating my ada mean it's locked up?
Besides the 2 ADA deposit (explained above), you're completely free to move your ada around however you wish. However, keep in mind that you'll only earn rewards on it if it's in a delegated wallet.
Do I need to keep my wallet software running in order to earn rewards?
Once you've delegated, you're completely free to close your wallet software. You can even turn off your computer. All you need to access your rewards (and the rest of your ada) is the wallet recovery phrase.
The process of earning rewards is done by pools. As long as you've delegated to a pool, you will be given your rewards.
When will I start getting rewards?
You should expect to start seeing rewards appear in your wallet anywhere from 15 to 20 days after you start delegating your stake. This is because you have to wait for the current and next Cardano epochs to pass before your delegation takes affect. You then have to wait for the 2 epochs after that to finish before your rewards become accessible. An epoch lasts 5 days.
Once you start earning rewards, you should see new rewards appearing every 5 days.
How can I delegate to multiple pools?
In order to delegate to multiple different pools, you will have to create multiple wallets inside your wallet software. From there, you can decide how much to put in each one and which pools they should delegate to.
Do I have to redelegate each time I add ada to my wallet? What about when I earn rewards?
All the ada in your wallet is delegated, even if you added it to your wallet after you made the delegation.
Any rewards you earn are also automatically delegated. You don't have to do anything.
What's the difference between the Mainnet and Testnets?
The Mainnet is the real Cardano network. Anything you do on the Mainnet is for real. Transactions and rewards are done with real ada.
Testnets are for testing purposes. They mimic how the Mainnet behaves so that people can try out different features without risking any of their real ada. You cannot transfer ada between the Testnets and the Mainnet (with one exception).
The exception to this is the Incentivized Testnet (also known as the ITN, the Rust Testnet, or the Jormungandr Testnet). It took place in early 2020 and has since been discontinued . Any rewards earned on the ITN can be transferred to the Mainnet. To clarify, not all the ada on the ITN, just the rewards. In order to retrieve your rewards, use your ITN recovery phrase (15 words) in Mainnet wallet software (such as Daedalus and Yoroi).
Since there was a hardfork, does that mean that there's a new coin I can claim?
A hardfork is just a fancy name for a software update. As long as everyone is onboard, the end result is that the protocol is upgraded and everything runs smoothly. This is what happened with Cardano.
However, there have been certain times in the past (not on Cardano, but on other blockchains), in which a certain update was contraversial. Not everyone agreed to go along with it. As a result, certain people decided to upgrade, and others decided to stay behind, resulting in two separate blockchains that have the same history before the hardfork. This is not what happened with Cardano.