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I'm wondering about different ways that the blockchain could be stored to make it cheaper for people. Just wondering if anyone has tried running a node with the blockchain data stored remotely (e.g. node on a desktop PC, blockchain data on a NAS). I'm wondering if it would ultimately be possible for many people to run their own validating node while sharing a copy of the blockchain data.

It could be stored in cloud block storage, where those who access the one copy share the cost. It could be split up and stashed in object storage which is even cheaper. Perhaps an ideal solution would be if it could be stored in IPFS so that each person was sharing a part of the chain with everyone else (torrent style) and only downloading the parts they needed on-demand for verification purposes.

Of course, the recommended method for running a node is to use an SSD rather than a HDD. If a local HDD isn't fast enough, I'm not holding my breath for network storage to work very well. Just thought I would ask in case anyone has tried it.

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In general, LMDB is unsafe on remote filesystems and such use is officially unsupported.

(source)

Even if it worked reliably, it would be terribly slow.

I'm wondering about different ways that the blockchain could be stored to make it cheaper for people.

Pruning drastically reduces storage space requirements and using a remote node eliminates the storage requirement.

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  • This is probably the key. If such a thing were going to work, it would probably mean swapping in something other than LMDB for the storage backend (huge task, obviously). Pruning is a good short-term solution, but Monero has the added difficulty that you never know when an input has been spent, so a validating node needs to be able to access every transaction ever created in order to be able to verify all possible future payments. In clear-ledger coins, a validating node can fully discard spent txns, because they are not needed in order to validate future txns.
    – Nick W.
    Mar 2, 2022 at 4:17
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I'm running it in a Docker container on a Synology NAS. It is all on the same machine but accessible over the LAN.

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