Quick help resource to keep funds safe.
Replace by Fee (RBF) Functions
A replace by fee transaction uses the same bitcoin inputs as the original transaction, and can send them to a different address ("double spend", "reverse", or "cancel") or to the same address with a higher transaction fee ("Bump Fee"). RBF can be used by only the sender of the bitcoin and isn't a tool available to the recipient of unconfirmed funds; the tool for the recipient is Child-Pays-for-Parent or CPFP.
Reverse a Transaction
In practice, only unconfirmed bitcoin transactions may be reversed or "canceled". The operation to "cancel" a transaction is called Replace-By-Fee or RBF. A replace by fee transaction uses the same bitcoin inputs as the original transaction, and can send them to a different address. The reversal transaction will compete with the original transaction for confirmation so the reversal must be sent with a higher fee to increase the probability that it will be confirmed before the original transaction.
Bump Transaction Fees
To increase the fee paid by a transaction, a Replace-By-Fee of RBF transaction will be used. This transaction will replace the original transaction by spending the same bitcoin inputs as the original transaction with a higher fee.
Known wallet software that is capable of a reversing a transaction is:
- Electrum Wallet (download (opens in a new tab))
- Sparrow Wallet (download (opens in a new tab))
Verify Software Signatures
As a best practice, always verify wallet software signatures before using them with bitcoin private keys. GPG is needed to verify signatures, you can install GPG for OXS (opens in a new tab) or Windows (opens in a new tab). GPG is pre-installed on Linux.
Import Private Keys (fastest, least secure)
This is the least secure step, but is the fastest. This step can be avoided by instead importing a public key and using an external signing device e.g. a hardware wallet or another wallet with the private keys to sign the transaction.
Using the 12-24 word mnemonic seed phrase that secures your bitcoin, import them into your RBF-enabled wallet of choice. This may require creating a new wallet and then importing the private key seed phrase.
Identify the unconfirmed transaction that needs its fee increased. Verify that the transaction ID matches.
Right click on the transaction to find the Increase Fee option.
Select a higher fee rate that will confirm based on a Static fee, an ETA, or based on the Mempool Depth.
After signing and broadcasting the transaction, the unconfirmed transaction with a higher fee paid should be visible in the History tab.