If it’s your first time using a Trezor hardware wallet then this post will hopefully save you a bunch of time, angst and searching the internet for non-existing troubleshooting guides. In this post we are going to step through – with photos – how to set up your Trezor device and most importantly, your Metamask Trezor connection.
We wrap up with 3 top troubleshooting tips that you just won’t find in the set up guides or MetaMask Trezor support forums. We spent two days resolving these exact issues and couldn’t find the answers anywhere online.
We’re sharing our experience and our fixes, so that you get back two days of your life that we lost making this work! 🙂
Contents of this post
- Why use Trezor with MetaMask
- Setting up your Trezor
- How to connect your MetaMask and Trezor wallets
- 3 MetaMask Trezor connection errors and how to fix them
Why use Trezor with MetaMask?
Before getting in to our tips that you WON”T find in any user guide or online, let’s look at why the MetaMask Trezor combination is A MUST HAVE to build wealth with cryptocurrency.
One of the top reasons we recommend the Trezor hardware wallet is because it integrates with MetaMask wallet. Trezor’s premium model, the Trezor Model T, is one of the top 2 cold storage wallet brands in the crypto market. You can read more about the pros and cons of the Trezor Model T here.
MetaMask is the most ubiquitous hot wallet in the crypto ecosystem. You’ll need MetaMask to connect to loads of different crypto platforms and to DeFi protocols. MetaMask is basically THE wallet to move your assets around the crypto ecosystem, which is what you’re going to need to do if you want to grow your crypto assets and invest in DeFi.
If you want to know more about what a cold storage wallet is and how it’s different from a hot wallet, check out our FAQs here.
The problem with MetaMask is its security. It’s a hot wallet, so its vulnerable to cyber hacks. And… because it’s the most popular hot wallet, it’s also a nice big, fat target for hackers. Reports of MetaMask wallets being hacked are rife on crypto Twitter.
So what do you do keep your crypto secure while using MetaMask? You connect your MetaMask wallet to Trezor and run all of your transactions through the Trezor MetaMask account!
MetaMask convenience with Trezor security
Once you have a Trezor device and connect it with MetaMask, you can safely use a multitude of DeFi protocols. You simply connect to these protocols using your Trezor account in MetaMask.
Using Trezor with MetaMask means you don’t have to worry about hackers exploiting your MetaMask wallet and stealing your coins. This is because you need to manually validate every transaction you complete using your MetaMask Trezor account using your Trezor device. You validate transactions offline, so that the private keys to your crypto are never exposed to the internet and to cyber criminals.
If you want to buy a Trezor Model T to secure your crypto, we recommend Privacy Pros (authorised reseller).
To maintain the highest level of hardware security with MetaMask wallet you must never give anyone your Trezor PIN or Trezor seed phrase. NEVER. EVER.
You can keep your seed phrase secure with a BillFodl metal wallet, manufactured in-house by Privacy Pros.
Now that you know ‘why’ the MetaMask Trezor combination is critical for your crypto assets, let’s start where the journey all began for us: setting up your Trezor Model T hardware wallet…
Setting up your Trezor
The first thing you’re going to want to do when you buy the Trezor Model T is set up its security and native wallets. Here are the exact steps we took to set up our Trezor Model T for the first time:
- Got to trezor.io/start and download the desktop app “Trezor Suit’.
- Open Trezor Suit
- Connect your Trezor device to your computer with the cable provided
- A security check will pop up on the Trezor Suit screen asking you to confirm when you received and opened your Trezor that:
- the hologram was intact
- you purchased from a Trusted Reseller
- box packaging was in tact.
- Once you confirm these security features, you’ll be prompted to do a firmware upgrade for the Trezor device.
You’ll then be given the option to ‘create’ or ‘recover’ a wallet. Most times, you will create a wallet.
Setting up your seed phrase
Whichever option you choose above, you’ll need to input and confirm the seed phrase for your created or recovered wallet, using the screen on the Trezor. Here’s some things to know about your seed phrase:
- Your seed phrase will be a series of either 12 or 24 words in a fixed order.
- If you are recovering a wallet, input the seed phrase for the wallet you want to recover.
If you’re creating a wallet, Trezor Suite will generate a seed phrase for you to input.
- Make sure you tap each letter grouping on the Trezor screen until you get the correct letter to spell out each seed word, then tap the green ‘tick’.
- Words must be spelled out in order.
- Make sure you record your seed phrase somewhere really secure. It’s like the master key to your crypto. If you’re looking for secure seed phrase storage, check out out our metal storage wallet reviews here.
Next you’ll see prompts to set up a PIN, to secure physical access to your device.
How to connect your MetaMask and Trezor wallets
If all goes smoothly, these are the three basic stages to connecting your Trezor with MetaMask:
1. Pre-connection system checks
For the connection to go smoothly, it’s important to check a few things you before trying to connect your Trezor to MetaMask:
- Make sure you have the latest version of Chrome, Metamask and an up-to-date operating system on your computer
- Make sure your Trezor is connected via cable to your computer when following any of the Troubleshooting steps below.
You should also know what systems you’re operating with as different system interacting can cause different connection errors. These trouble shooting steps below are for the following system settings:
- MacOS Monterey v12.1
- MetaMask Chrome Browser
- Trezor Model T
2. Connect MetaMask and Trezor
Open your MetaMask Chrome browser extension and click the circle at the top. A menu will pop up that looks like the one pictured. Click ‘Connect Hardware Wallet”.
A new window will open in MetaMask asking you to select the hardware device you want to connect. Select “Trezor”.
Once you click “Trezor” this will open a window in Trezor Suite . Follow the prompts in this window to complete the connection.
Before you’re finished, MetaMask will pop up again asking you to select the Trezor account that you wish to connect. Pick the account you need, and click ‘Unlock’.
Your MetaMask will open with two accounts showing:
- The original MetaMask account
- The Trezor account you nominated.
3. Import tokens to your Trezor account in MetaMask
If you can’t see your assets in the MetaMask Trezor account, you will need to add the tokens in MetaMask.
You can do this by opening the Coingecko site, typing in the ticker for the token or coin you want to import, and then finding the MetaMask fox icon right of screen. Scroll to the token contract address and click the copy button.
Re-open MetaMask and scroll down to the ‘Import tokens’ link. Click this.
Select ‘Custom Token’ in the menu on the next screen. Paste the contract address from Coingecko in the Token Contract address bar. The correct ticker should appear below once you do this. Click ‘add custom token’.
Rightio, if like us this connection process is not going smoothly, you’re going to want to tune in next for our 3 troubleshooting tips.
MetaMask Trezor connection errors and how to fix them
Things don’t always go smoothly in crypto. The tech is new and sometimes protocols, apps and hardware don’t work together. When we tried to connect our Trezor Model T to the MetaMask Chrome browser, it failed. Instead of a smooth connection, we got error messages that made absolutely no sense to us!
Frustrating, as one of the reasons we recommend the Trezor is because it integrates with MetaMask wallet. This combination gives you secure connection to hundreds or even thousands of DeFi protocols which you can use to build your crypto wealth.
When these tech issues happen in crypto it can be tough to find a solution because support services – like email and chat – are few and far between. You might have to wait days or even weeks to get a response from a contact email. If you get one at all. On top of this, the unfortunate truth is that both the Trezor and MetaMask user guides are a little inadequate when it comes to troubleshooting connection problems.
We spent two days researching and trying every trouble shooting hack we could read about and dream up, before we stumbled on a fix to our connection problems. So lets go through what we learned, so that you don’t have to waste your time doing the same!
3 connection errors you won’t find in the user guides (and how to fix them)
Issue 1: “TypeError: Cannot add property default, object is not extensible.“
When we first tried to connect Trezor to MetaMask, we had this error message come up.
We fixed this first error by doing a manual update of the MetaMask Chrome extension. This is how:
Firstly, open Chrome and click on Chrome Extensions icon in the top right of screen. Then click on the three dots next to the MetaMask extension. A pop up box will appear. Choose ‘Manage Extensions’.
In the ‘Manage Extensions’ screen, turn on ‘Developer Mode’, then click update.
Re-open MetaMask wallet and try connecting again. The TypeError message should be gone.
Issue 2: ‘Looking for Trezor’
The second issue that we had was MetaMask constantly looking for the Trezor device, but never finding it. After following the Connect Hardware steps, a message would display in MetaMask “Looking for Trezor” with the spinning wheel to show a request was processing. MetaMask stayed stuck like this until the request timed out, making it impossible to connnect.
We fixed this by adjusting the settings inside MetaMask. Here is how:
Open MetaMask afresh and click the circle icon. When the settings menu opens, click ‘Advanced’.
In Advanced, scroll down until you see “Preferred Ledger Connection Type”. Now this is misleading because you’re not connecting a Ledger device you’re connecting a Trezor. But stay with us here…
Click on the drop down menu underneath ‘Preferred Ledger Connection Type’ and select ‘U2F’. This is the connection type you need for MetaMask to find your Trezor device.
The default selection in MetaMask is usually ‘WebHID’ – but for us, this would not work with Trezor! If you have WebHID selected, MetaMask will keep looking for Trezor but will never find it.
Once you’ve set the connection type to U2F, navigate back to the MetaMask wallet home screen and start the process of connecting your Trezor to MetaMask that we’ve outlined here.
Issue 3: Enter Trezor Passphrase
Issue 3 is not so much an error as it is a step no-one tells you about.
Once you’ve solved Issue 2 and MetaMask is able to detect your Trezor, you’ll be taken to a Trezor Suite screen to confirm your connection. The Trezor Suite screen features a prompt to enter your Trezor passphrase.
So how do you know what passphrase they’re talking about? Good question!
The passphrase Trezor Suite is prompting you to enter here is NOT your Trezor device PIN OR your Trezor seed phrase. It’s the passphrase you set if you have a hidden wallet in Trezor and want to access that wallet via MetaMask.
What none of the Trezor user guides tell you is that if you want to connect MetaMask to your ‘Standard wallet” in Trezor, you should bypass this step by simply clicking ‘Enter’.
You will only need to enter a passphrase here if you are trying to connect your Trezor ‘Hidden Wallet’ to MetaMask. Let us explain a little more…
When you set up your Trezor initially, you had the option of setting up a ‘Standard Wallet’ or a ‘Hidden Wallet’. Most typical users will first set up a Standard Wallet. The Standard Wallet does not require a separate passphrase (on top of the Trezor device PIN and seed phrase). The “Hidden Wallet’ requires an additional passphrase to access it as an extra layer of security.
So at this step, DON”T ENTER ANYTHING. Simply click ‘Enter’ and the connection process will continue. If you’ve done this step correctly you will be asked to select the Trezor account you wish to connect.
A list of wallet addresses will appear, some of which are completely irrelevant. Select the one you need based on the token value associated with the address. Click unlock.
That’s it! Your MetaMask Trezor connection should be up and running!
You’ll now be able to interact with DeFi protocols, stake crypto and build your wealth with the added safety of knowing the private keys to your cryptocurrency are protected.
Huzzah and happy investing!