The InterPlanetary File System (IPFS) is a powerful protocol for storing and sharing data in a distributed file system. However, managing and storing data on IPFS can be a complex task, and there is a steep learning curve to understand how it works. This is where services like IPFS gateways come in, which simplify decentralized storage and web hosting. One such platform is Spheron Network, which harnesses the power of blockchain technology to provide secure and scalable solutions, simplifying the hosting and deployment of dApps while reducing the learning curve.
In this blog, we'll explore the complexities of IPFS, understand its intricacies, and delve into the challenges that often accompany its adoption. We'll also discover how Spheron Network comes to the rescue, offering a user-friendly interface and robust infrastructure to simplify the web hosting process.
What is IPFS?
IPFS is a peer-to-peer hypermedia protocol designed to make the web faster, safer, and more open. It uses content-addressing to uniquely identify each file in a global namespace connecting IPFS hosts. IPFS can replace the location-based hypermedia server protocols HTTP and HTTPS to distribute the World Wide Web. IPFS allows users to host and receive content in a manner similar to BitTorrent. As opposed to a centrally located server, IPFS is built around a decentralized system of user-operators who hold a portion of the overall data, creating a resilient system of file storage and sharing. Any user in the network can serve a file by its content address, and other peers in the network can find and request that content from any node that has it using a distributed hash table (DHT).
The Complexity of IPFS
While IPFS is a powerful protocol, managing and storing data can be complex. It involves a deeper understanding of peer-to-peer networking, Cryptographic principles, Distributed Hash Tables, BitSwap, MerkleDag, and the IPFS protocol's intricacies. This complexity can make it difficult for new users to understand and utilize effectively.
Also, the IPFS installation process has a lot of hassles, and it is less user-friendly. Here's a breakdown of how IPFS works:
Representing and addressing data: In IPFS, data is represented as blocks, and each block is assigned a unique Content Identifier (CID) identifier. The CID is computed by combining the hash of the data with its codec (a way to encode the data). This unique identifier allows data to be fetched based on its content, making it easier to find and verify.
Directed Acyclic Graphs (DAGs): IPFS links content via Directed Acyclic Graphs (DAGs). A DAG is a type of graph that doesn't contain any cycles. This structure allows for efficient and flexible data representation and manipulation
Routing data: IPFS uses different subsystems to route data. One is the Kademlia Distributed Hash Table (DHT), which keeps track of which network peers have which data. This helps in finding the peers storing the data you are looking for. IPFS nodes can also use Bitswap to ask connected peers if they have the data they need without relying on the DHT. This peer-to-peer network protocol ensures efficient transfer and routing of data.
Transferring data: To transfer data, IPFS uses the Bitswap protocol, where peers can directly transfer requested blocks to each other. This ensures fast and efficient data transfer within the IPFS network. Additionally, IPFS has HTTP Gateways that allow applications to fetch data from the IPFS network using a standard HTTP interface. This makes it easier for non-IPFS applications to access IPFS content.
Pinning: To ensure that content persists on the network, it can be pinned to one or more IPFS nodes. This process gives users control over disk space and data retention. When content is not pinned, it can be garbage collected or removed from the network to make room for new content.
Also, IPFS consumes a lot of bandwidth. Running an IPFS node requires significant bandwidth, which may not be feasible for many users, especially in regions with limited internet connectivity. This could potentially hinder the adoption of IPFS in areas with slower internet speeds or limited data plans. These complexities can make it difficult for developers and organizations to adopt IPFS.
Simplifying IPFS with Spheron Network
Spheron Network is a PaaS designed for startups, optimizing scalability and minimizing infrastructural costs to boost growth and profitability. Spheron simplifies the web hosting process, making it easy for developers to deploy their applications in just a matter of minutes. Spheron offers a suite of services that support blockchain applications, including hosting, storage, and computing services.
With Spheron's user-friendly interface and robust infrastructure, users can focus on developing great apps and dapps without worrying about the hassle of setting up and managing servers. Spheron Network takes care of the technical details so developers can concentrate on what matters most - creating innovative and successful web applications.
The Spheron platform encompasses three primary categories: Web hosting, computing, and storage services. Let's delve into each of these to gain a more comprehensive understanding.
1. Spheron Web Hosting
Spheron Network provides a simple, fast, and economical solution to deploy and host dApps on any decentralized cloud network in three streamlined steps:
Connect your repository
Configure your settings
Launch your decentralized applications
Spheron makes front-end web deployment easy, effective, and efficient and reduces the learning curve of different chains through its simplified platform that takes web applications to Decentralized Storage Networks (DSNs).
Spheron supports 20+ frameworks, including React, Next, Gatsby, and many more, and offers a complete suite of services to support decentralized applications. Users can deploy static sites on Spheron by connecting their Github, Gitlab, or Bitbucket accounts.
With Spheron Web Hosting, users get many features such as Preview Links, Image Optimization, Private Repository Support, Shared IPFS Gateway, EDGE Network, HTTP/SSL by default, Secureon Support, DDoS Mitigation, PPS. Spheron also provides comprehensive documentation, support, and open community, helping users navigate any challenges they may face during deployment and development.
Spheron's Storage provides SDKs as a tool that makes it easy for developers to upload files directly from a web browser to services like IPFS, Filecoin, or Arweave. It handles all the complexities of interacting with the IPFS network so users can focus on building their applications without worrying about the details. The SDK also offers features like encryption, access control, and streaming, making it a powerful tool for creating modern web applications.
Spheron also provides an intuitive Spheron Browser SDK that allows developers to store their data on IPFS securely. The SDK provides convenient functionalities and supports multiple protocols, allowing developers to use various decentralized storage networks seamlessly. Using the Spheron Browser SDK combined with IPFS provides a powerful and efficient solution for decentralized data storage.
One of the main advantages of using these SDKs is that you can avoid writing complex code for file uploading, such as multi-chunking and parallelization. Another advantage is that it takes care of storage scalability and redundancy, so users don't have to worry about managing lots of server space or developing a complicated mechanism for load balancing on their server instances.
Spheron simplifies setting up an IPFS node using Spheron Compute and white-labeling the gateway using a custom domain. Spheron Compute allows users to quickly deploy an IPFS node and access its features like IPFS Web Interface and IPFS Gateway. To get started, users can create a new cluster by clicking on the "New Cluster" button and selecting the IPFS template from the marketplace. Spheron Compute also allows users to deploy their IPFS nodes, giving them more ownership over their content. They can add their custom domains and fully control how their content is served.
IPFS is a powerful protocol for storing and sharing data in a distributed file system. However, managing and storing data on IPFS can be complex and have a steep learning curve. Spheron Network simplifies the hosting and deployment of dApps while reducing the learning curve.
By combining IPFS storage, Filecoin, and Arweave, Spheron ensures a seamless yet affordable multichain experience. Spheron Compute, Storage, and Hosting provide convenient functionalities and support for multiple protocols, allowing developers to take advantage of various decentralized storage networks seamlessly. Spheron Network offers many benefits for developers and organizations looking to adopt IPFS as a storage solution.