Sparrow’s home folder is different depending on the operating system:
On Windows, the %APPDATA% folder can be found by opening File Explorer/Windows Explorer, typing %APPDATA% into the address bar, pressing enter. The Sparrow folder will be in the Roaming or Local subfolder.
Testnet is a copy of the Bitcoin network where coins have no value.
It is ideal for testing wallets and transactions, and it’s use is highly recommended.
The simplest way to start Sparrow using testnet is via the Tools > Restart in Testnet menu command.
This will close Sparrow, and restart it with a separate testnet configuration in the
testnet folder in Sparrow home.
It’s also possible to run Sparrow from the command line (or set up an equivalent shortcut). Sparrow has a number of command line options, for example to change its home folder or use testnet:
Usage: Sparrow [options] Options: --dir, -d Path to Sparrow home folder --help, -h Show usage --level, -l Set log level Possible Values: [ERROR, WARN, INFO, DEBUG, TRACE] --network, -n Network to use Possible Values: [mainnet, testnet, regtest, signet]
> open /Applications/Sparrow.app --args -n testnet
> Sparrow/bin/Sparrow -n testnet
> Sparrow.exe -n testnet
As a fallback, the network (mainnet, testnet, regtest or signet) can also be set using an environment variable
SPARROW_NETWORK. For example:
> export SPARROW_NETWORK=testnet
A final fallback which can be useful when running the Sparrow binary is to create a file called
network-testnet in the Sparrow home folder (see below) to configure the testnet network.
Note that if you are connecting to an Electrum server when using testnet, that server will need to be running on testnet configuration as well.
When not explicitly configured using the command line argument above, Sparrow stores its mainnet config file, log file and wallets in a home folder location appropriate to the operating system.
Testnet, regtest and signet configurations (along with their wallets) are stored in subfolders of Sparrow’s home folder to allow easy switching between networks.
Once Sparrow is running in testnet, you will need to connect it to server or node that is also configured for testnet. A public testnet server is configurable from the Server Preferences tab.
Finally, you can receive free testnet bitcoin from a Bitcoin Testnet Faucet like https://testnet-faucet.mempool.co/.
See the section above. You need to run Sparrow with the
-d command line flag. Setting this will cause Sparrow to store its configuration and any wallets at the given location. For example on Windows:
> Sparrow.exe -d D:\sparrow
This feature allows you to store all Sparrow data on removable media making for more plausible deniability.
This is almost certainly due to an incorrect passphrase. Following the BIP39 specification, Sparrow stores nothing in your wallet file that is derived from your passphrase. This makes a passphrase enabled wallet more difficult to brute force. It also means that if you enter an incorrect passphrase, Sparrow will be using a different seed and will therefore derive different addresses. Your existing address labels will even be applied to the new addresses, since Sparrow has no way of telling the passphrase has changed. Further, your wallet will show no funds are present. They are not lost however.
To fix this, close the wallet and reopen it, entering the passphrase carefully. If you can’t remember your passphrase, take your time and try different options systematically.
If you have restored your wallet from seed, but are missing newer transactions, it is likely you need to increase the wallet gap limit. This is a setting which controls how far ahead a wallet looks in your sequential address list for new transactions. You can increase it in the Settings tab by clicking Advanced. Increase the gap limit value, Close and then Apply. The default is 20 for normal wallets, and 40 for Postmix wallets. Increasing it makes Sparrow look farther ahead in the address list, but don’t increase it too much as your wallet loading will take longer.
A transaction’s fee can be increased either by replacing it (RBF), or creating a child transaction (CPFP).
To perform Replace by Fee (RBF), the transaction must:
- Be in the mempool (not yet confirmed)
- Have all inputs enabled for RBF (this is the default for transactions sent by Sparrow)
- Have all inputs from your wallet
If all the above is true, then Sparrow will add a hover icon next to the transaction on the Transactions screen which looks like a hand with a cross above it. You can also right click to ‘Increase Fee’, which takes you to the Send screen with the transaction loaded, from where you can increase the fee (Sparrow may add another UTXO if there is insufficient change).
You can also use CPFP by spending the outputs of the transaction at a higher fee rate.
You may see this error if you are:
- Trying to connect to a Tor .onion address
- Don’t have a Tor proxy configured
- Already running Tor externally on your computer
Sparrow is trying to start its internal Tor, and is failing because Tor is already running.
To solve this, either stop the external Tor, or simply use it as a proxy instead. To do the latter, open Sparrow’s Preferences, go to Server, turn on the Proxy toggle, and set the proxy to localhost:9050. Note that if you do this, your external Tor proxy will need to be running for Sparrow to connect.
If your wallet tab has a red icon, it means there was an error loading the wallet history from your configured server. This is due to either a problem with the connection to it, or (more likely) a problem with the server itself. If you are using a prebuilt node (like Umbrel) it is often a good idea to restart it. Also, consider uninstalling unnecessary apps on it, which can affect performance of the system as a whole. If the issue persists, consider upgrading to a more performant server such as Fulcrum.
If you see this error on a Windows machine, you are probably missing two Microsoft libraries the webcam driver depends on. These standard libraries can be added by installing the Microsoft Visual C++ 2010 Service Pack 1 Redistributable Package MFC Security Update.
Here’s a guide that describes the installation process.
If you have been using the Trezor web wallet at trezor.io, it is likely that when recreating your wallet in Sparrow you need to select the ‘Nested Segwit’ script type.
After this is done, import your Trezor xpub by using the Connected Hardware Wallet option.
Sparrow gets the exchange rate from the configured exchange rate provider, and then multiplies that with your wallet balance internally. Your wallet balance is never shared externally.
If you have a Tor proxy configured, Sparrow will use it to retrieve the exchange rate. You can also turn it off by configuring ‘None’ for the exchange rate provider in the Preferences.
Often, when setting up a watch only wallet only the xpub is known.
In this case, it’s safe to use a default value like
00000000 for the master fingerprint.
The derivation path can be set to the default for the script type (indicated in the textfield prompt) if not known.
This is an SSL error, mostly likely due to an expired certificate.
The right way to fix this is to address the error on the certificate and replace it.
For a quick fix, look in the
certs folder of Sparrow home for a file with the same name as the URL of the server.
Delete that file to clear Sparrow’s record of the SSL cert. It will download the cert again on reconnection.
Sparrow’s log file is available in the Sparrow home folder, as
You can open it by using the Help > Show Log File menu command.
Go the UTXOs screen (just above the Settings), select the UTXOs you want to spend (use Ctrl/Cmd+Click to select several), and click ‘Send Selected’.
You will need to fill in the address to send to and the label on the Send screen.
It’s possible to control the scaling of Sparrow in Linux or Windows by setting an environment variable.
You can also try setting the scaling factor in GNOME more globally:
gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.interface scaling-factor 2
Set the environment variable
glass.win.uiScale to whatever percentage of scaling you require (e.g.
Here’s a guide on how to do it.
To rename a wallet, first close the wallet in Sparrow.
Then go to the wallet file in the
wallets folder in Sparrow home, and find your wallet file - it will have the same name, ending in
You can now rename the wallet file - just be sure to preserve the
When you load the file again, the wallet name will be changed.
Yes! The Apache 2 license is very similar to the MIT license, which is used by Bitcoin Core. You can read a reasonable summary here: MIT vs. Apache vs. GPL
Read the instructions here: https://github.com/sparrowwallet/sparrow
Please use the Issues on Github to report an issue. If possible, look in the sparrow.log file in the configuration directory for information helpful in debugging.