What is a mining pool?
In a mining pool several miners combine their individual computational power, which helps to achieve the desired output faster and the chance is higher to discover e.g. bitcoins. It is recorded how much work each participant is doing, and then they split the reward among the various pool members afterwards. By joining a mining pool, your chances of getting rewarded with cryptocurrency are higher, but through the split the amount of it will be less. If you have a lot of computing power and multiple ASICs you might be alright going solo. But if you do not, you should definitely consider joining a mining pool.
How do I get paid in a pool?
As we know, an identification of the block leads to a reward, which is then shared based on the pool shares mechanism. Shares describe how much work each participant’s computer is contributing to the community. The shares are divided into accepted (work that gets rewarded because it was successful and helped to find a new coin bock) and rejected ones (not paid for, because work was not successful and helpful for the discovery of a blockchain). So accepted shares get rewarded by different methods: PPS (Pay-per share), PROP (Proportional), SMPPS (Shared Maximum Pay Per Share), ESMPPS (Equalized Shared Maximum Pay Per Share), DGM (Double Geometric Method), RSMPPS (Recent Shared Maximum Pay Per Share), CPPSRB (Capped Pay Per Share with Recent Backpay) and BPM (Bitcoin Pooled Mining).
How to pick a mining pool?
In the process of joining a mining pool you should check several things beforehand. How high are the fees? Are they higher than one percent? What reputation does the pool have in the community? Are there any reports? What are the details about the server location and uptime? Is the hash rate much higher than your personal hash power? How long are the servers online? How is the payout schedule organized? What payout schemes or designs are used (PPS, SMPPS, ESMPPS, etc.)? Make sure you do proper online research before you join a pool. Two mining pools that are recommended are Poolin- a very popular and efficient pool, that is available for desktop and apps- and Antpool, which is one of the biggest, securest and user-friendliest Bitcoin, Litecoin and Ethereum pools. You can choose between PPS and PPLNS. Both of them a worth having a closer look at.