Web3 storage is not ready for enterprise backup

Djuno is a supplier of AI technology that helps businesses optimize their cloud IT infrastructure for better performance and lower cost. A spokesperson got in touch and said that its CEO and Solution Architect Mohammad Sayadi believes that businesses need to embrace Web3 storage. This decentralized storage, they said, shifts control and decision-making from a centralized entity to a distributed network, which creates a trustless environment, improves data reconciliation, reduces points of weakness, and optimizes resource distribution.

He would be happy, we were told, to share his expertise on the following talking points:

  • How Web3 storage is going to change enterprise backup; 
  • How companies can implement IT decentralization solutions; 
  • Differences between the main network architectures: centralized, distributed, and decentralized;

We took him at his word and asked him a set of questions about these points to find out more.

Blocks & Files: What are the differences between the main network architectures: centralized, distributed, and decentralized? 

Mohammad (Moe) Sayadi.

Mohammad Sayadi: Centralized network architecture refers to the architecture where systems and components in the systems are managed, permissioned, and orchestrated by one or multiple authorities, meaning that there is a central command center that decides how the system should run, who can access it, and what permissions are granted.  

Centralized systems do not necessarily require having all the components be on the same underlying machine or infrastructure. Thanks to modern technologies such as cloud computing, Kubernetes, and containerization, systems can be heavily and geographically distributed but still managed, organized, and orchestrated in a centralized manner.  

A decentralized network is a network configuration where there are multiple authorities serving as a centralized hub for the participants. In the computing world, a decentralized network architecture distributes workloads among several machines instead of relying on a single central server. 

Blocks & Files: What are the benefits of decentralized architectures? 

Mohammad Sayadi: There are many downsides and upsides for each network architecture, however, the biggest benefit of decentralized systems is – from my point of view – censorship resistance. Due to the lack of a central authority that controls everything, decentralized networks cannot censor or de-platform anyone due to their race, sex, age, etc.  

Secondly, I believe that another benefit of the decentralized architecture is that of being trustless – a decentralized system does not rely on an authority, person, or organization to perform tasks. In contrast, the system is self-organized – it performs tasks via consensus among the network participants. This contributes to cutting out the middleman, hence lowering the price of services for parties. 

And lastly, centralization also means a single point of failure in terms of security and availability.

Blocks & Files: Can we have decentralized architectures without cryptocurrencies? If not, then why not? 

Mohammad Sayadi: Yes and no – a bit tricky question. Yes, it is possible to have a system organized and orchestrated in a decentralized manner. However, there should be a fair incentivization mechanism that incentivizes contributors in the network in a way that generates behaviors that are beneficial for the functioning of the system. However, this doesn’t mean that you need to build a complete blockchain to implement a Web3 storage architecture, as this introduces unnecessary performance limitations. 

One alternative approach is to create a “headless” blockchain solution (or a “parachain” that attaches to a layer 1 blockchain) that is blockchain-agnostic and can be attached to any crypto ecosystem so that each side can focus on what it’s best in. (This is the approach we have adopted in djib.io).

Blocks & Files: Is Web3 storage enterprise-grade?

Mohammad Sayadi: There are three main pillars that underpin the entire digital world: network, computation, and storage. These three are the main fundamental cloud services too. In a better world, a digital application requires these three elements to be up and running, serving its clients. Currently, there are many various centralized storage technologies offered and orchestrated by cloud service providers and other infrastructure entities, but true enterprise-grade Web3 storage is just being developed. 

Issues that are being solved in the field of performance and security are speed of access (via multi-CDN architecture), as well as security through decentralized key management systems (DKMS) to properly handle the management and delegation of access rights.

Blocks & Files: Is Web3 storage going to change enterprise backup?

Mohammad Sayadi: Web3 is not mature enough to be suitable for enterprise backup. I believe in backup, especially enterprise. There are well-managed procedures and well-developed mechanisms that ensure compliance of backup with regulatory bodies and enforce access segregation, etc.

I would suggest using Web3 storage technologies in different areas than backup storage services. Why? Let us look into what essentially Web3 storage offers you. Web3 technology offers you full ownership (less attractive for enterprises), trustless automation (very interesting for enterprises), and open standards (attractive for enterprises too). With this definition, I would say it may be good to use trustless automation to ensure compliance in a business process such as backing up rather than permanent storage.