Most seek the safety net of a pool for mining.
Running a gpu for hours or days and getting zero coins requires patience.
In simple math if you mine any proof of work coin solo your yield each day should average out to the same you can earn in a pool or actually more if the pool charges a fee and still more if the pool payout is a pplns system as with solo mining there are no 'ramping up' rounds.
Still in todays world of mining coins I know I am a member of a small minority who prefer to solo mine.
Here are the basics (I may edit & expand this later)
1) I will assume you are on win x
2) download qt wallet
3) 'synch up' blockchain
4) close the client and find the file folder C:\computer\root\Users\xxx\AppData\Roaming\Yourcoin
5) although I may edit this in the future this is for scrypt 1024 (litecoin) based coins or sha 256d (bitcoin) based coins only. For n factor, Groestl, DarkCoin & all others I will add to the post later.
Here 'C' is your local drive (on some systems may be named different)
root is LocalDiscC where C is your local drive (same thing here)
xxx is your name or log in on the system and Yourcoin is the name of your coin.
5) Inside that folder make a new text file which should normally contain the following
(x is you name, P is your password, y is the rpc port the coin uses and z is the communication port the network uses. The rpcport on MOST coins can be set to anything but not all coins work this way.
the port line can usually be left out as can the listen and daemon lines. Including these lines increases your chance at getting a solid connection to the network.
if the coin ANN thread or description has any nodes listed
make a line for each one and add those like this
h and j are the octets of the ip address , sometimes a domain is used.
6) Rename that file Yourcoin.conf (note -- not Yourcoin.text.conf or it won't work.)
upper and lower case should not matter on windows when naming your conf file but spelling the coin correctly matters. Save it as a read only file. Restart the coin client again.
7) Start up your favorite mining program replacing the address you used to pool mine with
http://127.0.0.1:y -u X -p Q
The values of y,X, and Q are as above.
If mining sha 256d coins with a gpu use command (for cg miner) --hotplug 0
I plan to update this guide soon with more detailed information and will include suggestions for settings of scan time & other tips to help you.
Update 1 Sept 2014
How to solo mine cryptonote coins
Cryptonote based coins (see the section here on the forum) are not forks of bitcoin and most do not have even a gui.
They are run on command line and it is actually easy to solo mine them once your wallet is set up.
Here is a short guide on how to solo mine them.
Download the coin for your system, you will get the best results on windows systems 64 bit
Lets use Quazar Coin as our example here.
When you unzip the file you see a few things there. Unzip them to where you want to keep your wallet and when ready start QuazarCoinD and it will start downloading the blockchain. It may take a while.
If you cannot do this in one session type on the command line
so it saves your progress or you will be starting over again
(save) also should work
It may take a day or so (or more as the blockchain grows taller) to get it downloaded at somepoint it will say you are synchronized and you can start simple wallet. I strongly recommend you type
at this time store the blockchain, wait, and after the 'dos box' type window closes , fire it up again,
It should give you this same message pretty quickly, now you are ready to start simplewallet.
Double click on it and since it is your first time starting it you have to create a wallet name and password.
Don't forget it. (note this is not a comprehensive guide on how to use these coins - you can find that elsewhere just how to set up for solo mining)
at this point your wallet should show your wallet address (normally much much longer than the base 58 type addresses used with bitcion) and a balance of zero
it should count up
after it does
where x is the number of cores of your cpu you want to go to work.
If you have an 8 core machine you may want to use just 7 or 3 on a 4 core machine.
If everything goes well in the daemon window which must always stay open if your wallet is open it will say how many threads have started mining,.
In the daemon window you can type
to have it display how fast you are mining
If you hit a block you will see evidence of such in the daemon window if you are actually watching when you solve it and after it matures you will have access to the coins by typing
in simple wallet
everytime you close down before you close down type
in simple wallet
in the daemon
note to stop mining just type
in the simple wallet window
A few tips and points here....
Since this is about solo mining not how to use these coins I skipped a lot of things like how to lock your wallet, how to send coins ect.....read the instructions......
I would strongly suggest you NOT solo mine bitmonero, due to it's popularity the network difficulty is so high your chances of solo mining a block with a cpu are probably about as good as solo mining a block of litecoin with a cpu at this point.
There are lots of places you can look up information on how to get the highest /best performance out of your cpu so I will provide a link. https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1MI-ic0Os25hgGUImW54sUIjZY_pUNQNa_W8Se5pRGBs/edit?pli=1#gid=0
Also there are miners you can get and some can be used for solo mining. Some are closed source and used for pool mining only. I have left them out of this brief basic introduction since there are many other places on the forum you can look up how to use those tools, this guide is for solo miing only !!!