Knowledge base | Ledger

General Ledger Nano S FAQ

What is the Ledger Nano S?

Ledger Nano S is a secure Bitcoin and Ethereum hardware wallet. It connects to any computer through USB and embeds a built-in OLED display to double-check and confirm each transaction with a single tap on its side buttons.

What are the differences with the Nano?

Nano S is the latest generation hardware wallet available from Ledger. There are many differences in the security architecture, the firmware and the available features. Nano S has a screen and two buttons. Everything is done directly on device: PIN entry, seed configuration, transaction validation. There is no need for an additional security card like for the Nano or HW.1. Furthermore Nano S can manage multiple applications such as Bitcoin, Ethereum or FIDO U2F (strong authentication).

How to confirm a BTC/ETH transaction?

All transactions are confirmed directly on the device's screen. It will show the amount, the destination address and the fee. A confirmation button press is required by the user to proceed to the signature of the transaction.

What happens if I enter a wrong PIN?

After each wrong PIN, you need to unplug and replug your device. If you enter three wrong PINs in a row, the device will wipe its seed. You'll then have to recover your seed through your 24 words backup (or generate a new seed).

Does Nano S support a passphrase on a seed?

Yes, see the dedicated FAQ entry at https://ledger.groovehq.com/knowledge_base/topics/how-to-setup-a-passphrase-and-an-alternate-pin

Is Nano S based on a Secure Element?

Yes. Nano S is architected around two microprocessors. One secure chip (ST31 family) and one generic MCU (STM32 family). All private key management and critical code execution is done inside the Secure Element.

How does the on-device interface of Nano S look?

All configuration is managed directly on device, with the help of two buttons and one screen. We have published a full presentation of Nano S interface on our blog.

Can I have my Nano S on a keychain?

Yes. Nano S has a foldable swivel cover which protects the device when attached to a keychain. You'll find everything you need in the box to securely attach your device.

Can Nano S manage Bitcoin and Ethereum?

Yes. Just select which app (Bitcoin/Ethereum) you whish to activate on the device, and launch the corresponding Chrome Wallet application on your computer.

Does Nano S support both Ethereum chains (ETH/ETC)?

Yes. Nano S supports all chains, and the Ledger Wallet Ethereum Chrome application will have a switch to select on which chain you want to operate. However, be careful of replay attack and make sure to split your accounts.

ETH account derivation path is 44’/60’/0'/0

ETC account derivation path is 44’/60’/160720'/0'/0

Can Nano S manage any other crypto-currency?

From a technical point of view, it's possible. However it would require to load a specific coin app on device, and therefore that this app would be developed by a third party. Ledger provides will a SDK so anyone can build an app and flash it on Nano S.

Is it possible to have Bitcoin and Ethereum holdings in the same time?

Yes. You can have balances in BTC/ETH/ETC in the same time with your Nano S. Generally speaking, you can have as much balances than it exist coins, there is no limit on what it can supports.

What is the FIDO U2F app?

Nano S is FIDO U2F certified. This means that you can use this device as a strong authenticator (second factor) for compatible services such as Google, Dropbox or Github. Just select the U2F app on device and pair it with your service.

Is there a battery in Nano S?

No. To be powered, Nano S must be plugged to a USB port through a cable (included in the box, but any compatible one can be used).

Are the onboarded apps Open Source? What about the firmware?

All apps are Open Source. Everything is available on our Github.

Regarding the firmware, the source code will be available for all the non secure (STM32) part and some of the secure (ST31) part. Ultimately it'll be available for most of the ST31 with a minimal binary blob implementing the chip functionalities only available under NDA. It'll also not be possible to reverse engineer this binary blob, but it'll be possible to check that it's not performing any other functions than those which are documented.

We have elaborated on our vision for Open Source development on Secure Elements on a blog post.

Is Nano S waterproof?

It has not been designed for being waterproof certified but it can for sure resist rain and accidental immersion. We have a video demonstrating full immersion success, but this is not a feature that we can generally guarantee.

What is the latest firmware version?

The latest firmware version is 1.2 and you can read a short guide of its features. To update your firmware and apps, follow this step by step guide.

How can I update the firmware if the device is not initialized yet?

Keep the the right button pressed when you power on the device, and you'll activate recovery mode. You can then launch the Ledger Manager and start the update procedure. Note that if you have a seed set, the update will wipe the seed. 

Why has my Ethereum wallet suddenly stopped working, while Bitcoin and other alts still do?

It is probable that you have enabled "Browser Support" in your Nano S' Ethereum settings, either inadvertently or in order to use compatible Web applications, like MyEtherWallet.com

Putting the device in "Browser Support" changes it's behavior as a USB device. You need to disable Browser Support whithin the Nano S internal Ethereum application's settings in order to switch the device back to regular USB mode, therefore allowing the PC application to communicate with it.