Getting started with your Ledger Nano S

Have more questions? Submit a request

You will find a very detailed explanation on the initialization and use of your Ledger Nano S on the Coinhouse blog. The main steps for using your Ledger Nano S are summarized below:


Ledger Nano S overview


The Nano S includes an OLED screen, 2 buttons, and it is supplied with a micro USB / USB cable to plug into the USB 2 port of your computer (not USB 3 compatible). If your computer only has USB C ports, you can use an On-The-Go adapter.



The 2 buttons that are used to navigate:

  • Scroll right and left through the dashboard and menus by pressing the right or left button.
  • Select and confirm by pressing both buttons simultaneously and briefly.

There is no power button (ON / OFF): you just need to connect your Nano S to turn it on, and disconnect the cable to turn it off, without any prior action.

Prerequisites for using the Nano S

You need 2 things to make your Nano S work:

  • A connected computer, on which the Ledger Live application is installed, from which you will install and run your wallets to manage your accounts, send and receive payments.
  • The USB cable to connect to your Chrome applications and authenticate your transactions.


Initialization does not need to be done online.


  1. Connect your Nano S to a wall outlet or computer
  2. Press both buttons as shown
  3. Then you can choose:
    - Or configure a new device, with a single backup
    - Either restore a configuration from an existing backup
  4. If you want to create a new backup, select "Configure as a new device" by clicking on the right button (above the check mark). If you want to import a backup you have, click on the left button (above the cross), you will then be prompted to restore a configuration instead of creating a new one.
  5. Choose a 4 to 8 digit PIN code, using the left button to decrease the value, the right button to increase it and the two buttons to validate each number. Depending on the firmware (version of internal software) installed on the Nano S, the number of digits of the PIN may vary: you can select 4, 5, 6, 7 or 8 digits.
  6. As long as the next step (saving 24 words) is not validated, this PIN code is not validated.

Saving the 24 words

The 24 words of your save will now be displayed, one by one. This step is essential because this backup represents the only access to your wallet in the event of loss, theft, destruction or failure of the equipment. It provides full access to the funds stored in the wallet. Be sure to read and write each word correctly: if unfortunately you were to change a letter, your save would be invalid and you would not be able to recover your funds if needed.

  1. The Recovery Sheet provided in the box of your Ledger Nano S.
  2. On this recovery sheet, write down word # 1, and check it two or three times.
  3. Write down word # 2, and check it two or three times, and be careful to write it down in the second position.
  4. Write down word # 3, and check it two or three times, and be careful to write it down in the third position.
  5. And so on for each word until all 24 words have been copied. 

Yes, this step is long and requires full concentration, but it is absolutely required.

Note that the 24 word backup is:

  • what makes you your own bank, because only you know this information
  • what makes you the owner of your cryptocurrencies
  • the only way to get your funds back if you lose your Nano S
  • shown only once, during this initialization step. This wordlist will never be displayed again
  1. Once the full 24 word list has been written, validate as requested
  2. Check the displayed words by selecting the ones that match the ones you copied
  3. When your Nano S displays "Your device is now ready", your Nano S is configured

Install your apps

To open and manage a wallet, you must:

  1. launch the wallet application on Ledger Live,
  2. open the dedicated companion application on your Nano S, to unlock and synchronize the wallet.

So for each wallet, you need to have the wallet in place on the Ledger Live, in the left tab, at the bottom (Accounts) as well as on the screen of your Ledger Nano S.


Your Nano S is a multi-application device: so you can install and uninstall several applications, like Bitcoin, Ethereum, XRP, and many others (altcoins, authentication, etc.).

These applications can be deleted, replaced, and you can install new applications thanks to the manager present in the Ledger Live application, the "Manager" (located in 4th position in the Leger Live menu)


Articles in this section

Was this article helpful?
39 out of 52 found this helpful