What is IPFS, and how can it store NFT information?
IPFS, an open-source hypermedia protocol, allows peer-to–peer (p2p), decentralized data storage through:
* Simple sharing
* Resistance to censorship
* It is easy to retrieve
IPFS makes it possible to move data throughout the network and locate what you need using its content address and advanced file versioning data structures.
The IPFS ecosystem is made up of the three basic steps that are built upon each other:
Step 1: Content Addressing via unique identification
When users upload NFT information to IPFS they get an IPFS hash, also known as a “CID”. CIDs can be used to identify the unique addresses or identifiers for NFT data and are used to refer the content regardless of its storage location.
Step 2: Content Storage & Linking via DAGs
IPFS offers decentralized data storage options and retrieval methods to keep NFT data long-term. IPFS’s permanence layer is cryptographic and ensures NFT data persistence over time. IPFS uses a Merkle DAG to represent files and directories when NFT data is linked. You can structure a Merkle DAG many different ways.
Step 3: Content Retrieval via Distributed Hash Tables (DHT)
IPFS uses a distributed haveh table to identify peers that host NFT data. A hashtable is a database of keys and values. This hashtable is distributed among peers within a distributed network, where the libp2p manages connectivity and interactivity. The libp2p query the DHT to find which peers hold each block that makes up the NFT information. After finding the content you will need to connect to it (NFT Data) and retrieve it.
What are the best practices for storing NFT data on IPFS
1. Different types and uses of IPFS Links
There are several ways to refer data on IPFS. Each method is suitable for different purposes. Here are some examples.
* CID (Content ID)
CIDs can be used to identify any content. They can be stored and transmitted over the network in compact binary forms. These characters are shown to users in the following way: strings of random-seeming character strings
* URI (Uniform Resource Identifier)
The IPFS URI Uniform Resource Identifier can be used to identify specific content in a particular context. The URI scheme identifies the context. It is appended to the URI by ://).. This is the IPFS’s URI schema.
* HTTP Gateway URL
Legacy browsers that cannot resolve IPFS URIs natively may have interoperability through HTTP gateways. These links are used by an application’s presentation layer and are not stored in a blockchain.
How do you deal with the content in different situations
The NFT smart contracts should return an IPFS-URI to the assets, metadata, and metadata contained within each token
Before you cast any token, it is crucial to create an IPFS URI. It is clear that smart contracts interfaces need URI. The ipfs:// URI schema makes it possible for any app to verify that IPFS has retained the data.
It is best to link IPFS content using the IPFS URI and the HTTP gateway URL. The gateway links can be generated from an IPFS CID or IPFS depending on the requirements.
2. Linking Metadata to Its Assets
Metadata is an essential part of NFT values. To specify the properties of a token, most NFTs will require structured metadata. It is essential to store metadata as a JSON object encoded in a UTF-8 by string. To link to images and videos, it is better to store an IPFS URL than an HTTP gateway address. You can create gateway URLs in your application’s presentation layer.
How to access the linked metadata
Step 1: Create distinct directories for assets, metadata.
Step 2: Add assets into newly created directories.
Step 3: Add your asset catalog to IPFS, and note its CID.
Step 4: Generate metadata for your directory using CID references assets in order to create IPFS URLs.
Step 5: Next, continue adding metadata directory IPFS and noting its CID.
Step 6: Create an IPFS URI using the CID mentioned and store it for an ownership record.
3. Data Persistence and Availability
NFT data stored on IPFS can be retrieved by any IPFS node with its copy. It allows data to be transferred quickly and decreases server load. When fetching data, the user retains its local copy for later use. These temporary copies can be deleted if the user decides to pin the data.