Storj.io (pronounced “Storage eye oh) is a proposed new service for storing data in the cloud. The data can be anything you wish. I suspect most users will use Storj.io as a file backup service, keeping copies of critical files off site and available at any time. Storj.io’s primary goal is to provide a cloud storage solution that is substantially faster and 50% less expensive than traditional data center-based cloud storage solutions provided by Amazon, Google and Microsoft.
Storj uses distributed peer-to-peer storage. That is, there are no centralized servers with huge disk drives. Instead, the Storj.io software breaks the file(s) to be stored into thousands of tiny segments, encrypts each segment, and then stores the segments in available disk space of other Storj.io customers. Each segment is stored in multiple locations. The result is that the information can be restored to the user’s system at any time, even if some or even many of the other Storj.io customers turn their computers off. There are so many segments saved in so many locations around the world that the possibility of any segment being unavailable at any time is mathematically almost impossible. The developers of Storj.io expect the system to provide 99.99999% availability, higher than most any competitive system in use today.
Of course, having each segment encrypted adds industrial-strength protection. Anyone storing an encrypted segment of your data should be unable to decode it. Even if it was decoded, each segment is so small that it probably is meaningless by itself. After all, who can use 100 bytes of a typical spreadsheet or a picture? Each spreadsheet or picture or other file will be broken into hundreds or even thousands of segments, then individual segments will be stored on other users’ disk drives around the world in a storage array built on thousands of computers connected together in a peer-to-peer network.
No one has a complete copy of the files or even have a chance to glance the content of the files. The tiny file segments are saved in many copies to the decentralized networks, which eliminate the chance of losing the access to your files.
Those storing data in the Storj system will pay pay only for what they use at a rate of $0.015 per gigabyte per month. The price is significantly lower than most any of the present cloud-based file storage services available today. Also, there will be no setup fees and no minimum usage fees. That is, if you store 3.75 gigabytes of data in Storj.io, you will be charged for 3.75 gigabytes, not for a “block” of 4 or 5 gigabytes. The price will always be for exactly what is consumed.
In addition, there will be a charge of $0.05 for each gigabyte downloaded. There is no charge for uploading. Most people who use cloud-based files storage services typically upload a lot of data but only download tiny amounts. Most downloading is for retrieving individual files or groups of files following a data loss. Therefore, downloading fees will be low for most users.
The Storj.io system is to be high-security, using only Free and Open-Source Software, otherwise known as “FOSS.” If you have questions about security or “back doors” in the Storj.io system, you or any programmer can examine the source code yourselves.
Perhaps the most interesting part of Storj.io is that you can rent available space on your disk drive(s) for other people to use and you can even be compensated for doing so. The software will allow any Storj.io customer to rent disk space to other users and be paid in Ethereum crypto currency. The process is called “farming” for coins. The earned Ethereum coins can be used to pay for storing the farmer’s own files on other systems or can be converted to cash.
As a result of this new business model, users will gain access to a much more secure, private and cheap hosting solution than has been available previously while also providing a revenue stream for users that want to monetize their idle hard drive space.
Storj.io already has more than 20,000 users and almost 19,000 farmers on the Storj network, with steady growth each month in the last year.
A crowdfunding campaign will take place on the 19th of May 2017 and will last for one month until the 18th of June 2017. Users that participate in the crowd sale will be presented with new Storj tokens that will already “live” in the Ethereum blockchain. Visit the Storj token sale website at https://storj.io/tokensale to learn more about the crowdfunding campaign.
You can learn more about Storj.io at: https://storj.io.