Filecoin Storage Provider Spotlight — Linix

Apr 21, 2023

This is one in a series of periodic blog posts devoted to profiling Filecoin storage providers. In these posts, we examine what they bring to — and the benefits they derive from — the Filecoin ecosystem.

Filecoin is an ecosystem that attracts many kinds of storage providers, from startups to smaller companies and grassroots providers. A perfect example of the latter is Linix, founded nearly two decades ago by network architect Angelo Schalley as a side project to provide web hosting and cloud storage to friends and family.

Linix essentially started as a hobby while Angelo’s main job involved building large data centers back when hosting was not as prevalent. From its headquarters in Belgium, the company grew organically to the point where it is now hosting several thousand custom websites.

Beginning in mid-2021, Angelo officially began using the Filecoin network for some of Linix’s backups and archiving data for some of its customers. While his company still relies on centralized servers for its hosting business today, adding Filecoin to the mix was not only practical — it was a principled step for Angelo.

From a cost standpoint, Angelo found that the Filecoin network had a very basic and compelling value proposition, which meshed with his values and vision for the company. As he puts it: “In this industry, I really believe we need to decentralize to a Web3 mindset, bringing power back to the people when it comes to their rights and options around data.” That is also why he educates customers around the benefits of the Filecoin network for storing and backing up their data, highlighting the cost efficiencies and the confidence level for data security.

To date, Linix is working with several dozen clients to archive and backup their data on the Filecoin network — roughly 50TiB in total and growing, with advanced encryption for security. Looking ahead, Angelo said Linix plans to leverage the Filecoin network for archive and backup storage, with a focus on evolving usability for enterprise customers.

Today, customers in the enterprise environment are not used to working with Web3. However, Linix expects this to change as the company improves UX and gives customers easier access to the back-end of the Filecoin network. With Linix, Angelo is aiming to provide customers with more options for apps and interfaces so they don’t have to figure out things like how to bring up a node, build on IFPS, or take other configuration steps.

While Angelo only began using the Filecoin protocol recently for his Linix business, he’s no stranger to the Filecoin community. He has been involved in the Filecoin MinerX Fellowship Program; has collaborated via on Web3 best practices for data archiving, loss prevention, and migration; and is also an active member of the Slack community. But using the Filecoin protocol for Linix represents a welcome confluence of his personal values and professional needs.

“Every little thing that a developer or somebody in my position can do to contribute to the decentralized web will make it work and grow over time. I’m not only saving money and having another storage option, but I’m also investing and helping grow Web3,” Angelo said. “My company is an example of how centralized and decentralized solutions can work together; it’s not an ‘either/or’ situation.”