Blockchain Cloud Storage
In recent times, there was a lot of buzz in the market and the world of Information technology relating to blockchains and cryptocurrencies.
The value of Bitcoin skyrocketed in the year 2017, ending the year at just over $1,000 with a value of over $14,000 after beginning 2017. Cryptocurrency is not the only thing that has seen a tremendous rise over the years, while some think crypt currencies are just a social bubble that is waiting to burst, many others see it as a future of the world of finance.
As we all are familiar with the world of cloud computing, it is also important to know that the IT infrastructure has transformed into something that is generally being very centralized. Rather than businesses and corporations hosting their own servers, many have migrated to the cloud. This turn to centralization lets companies push workloads to larger, public clouds in order to utilize the storage infrastructure of large companies, like Amazon Web Services or Microsoft Azure.
So let’s get to the basics and try to understand the basic concept of blockchain.
What is Blockchain?
A blockchain is a continuously growing list of records commonly referred to as blocks which are linked together using cryptography. Each block contains a cryptographic hash of the previous block like a timestamp and their transaction data.
In the blockchain, the modification of data isn’t possible. The entire concept of blockchain and cryptocurrency is an undeniably ingenious invention. Year after year since its invention, it has evolved into something greater and still remains to be out of the ordinary.
Due to the centralization that is currently present in the field of cloud computing, the resources can be shared and the client at the end can have significantly reduced his expenses and increase his effectiveness and uptime. The field of IT and cloud computing has grown massively with Gartner claiming that by the year 2020, ‘’cloud change’’ will have a positive impact on the IT sector and a yearly expenditure of more than $1 Trillion.
Blockchain technology for cloud storage services:
Blockchain cloud storage solutions take the user’s data and break it up into small chunks. They then join an additional layer of security and distribute it throughout the network. This is possible using blockchain features like the hashing function, public/private key encryption and transaction ledgers. Each chunk of data is stored in a decentralized location. If intruders try to hack into it, they first get encrypted data, and then get only a chunk of the data and not the whole file, so this secures documents in blockchain-based cloud storage.
Another benefit is that the owner is hidden since the node does not store the owner’s data. The miner only gets a chunk of data; hence, all the sensitive information is protected and secured. Data redundancy and load balancing mechanisms are applied for high availability and quick access. Whenever a user tries to fetch data, all chunks of the data are first validated and if any alteration is found on a data chunk, then the user who altered the data chunk is removed from the network, and that altered part is taken from another redundant copy. Thus, all users get original and identical copies of the data. Many new companies have jumped into this new blockchain cloud storage market and the entire business is taking on a new shape. Blockchain is the newest and possibly the cheapest way to get cloud storage because many small entities participate in cloud storage by providing their computing power and space to store data. Hence, cloud storage costs are lowered and all the entities that participate can also get paid.
When we take a look at the companies and study their client-server computing, we will notice that all the servers and workloads are centrally managed. This is managed by a single service provider and is inevitably controlled with a single blockchain approach.
Even if the data of the company and the software’s are physically distributed across many servers, the workloads and services will remain logically centralized to one entity.
This is also completely distinct from the hybrid cloud strategy where the companies maintain data of both the public and private cloud. Blockchain thus creates and generates a marketplace for decentralized and distributed storage. Blockchain technology for cloud storage can be a rather complex data structure to understand.
Another issue that could be solved by blockchain is that it helps users have more privacy because information and user files are not fully monitored or available by a single third party. Alternatively, encrypted fragments are distributed across various key-controlled nodes held by the users.
This means that any nodes holding your information can not look at them because they are strongly encrypted with a key that only you (or the owner of the data) have. Moreover, even if the host node finds a way into your file anyhow, it’s only an unfinished file, so it wouldn’t compromise.
Why is storing data on blockchain considered to be a problem at this age?
The biggest problem of storing data on a blockchain is the amount of data that you can store. This is either because the amount is limited by the protocol or because of the huge transaction fees you would have to pay.
The main question that arises is how much data can a blockchain cloud server hold? Well, it is interesting to know that despite having a large server with limitless technology, the amount of data that can be stored in blockchain cloud is very limited. It is only confined for a particular space and allows files in the storage between the ranges of a few kilobytes.
Theoretically, we could overcome that limitation by breaking up our data into many small chunks. That would allow us to store larger files/data but also would significantly increase our costs. This is because we would have to pay the base price of the transaction multiple times.
Blockchain is a completely ingenious technology and is undeniably one of the best IT product. It has revolutionized the internet and has transformed the way we deal with online currency.