Hows IPFS and Filecoin different? IPFS on Ethereum is Filecoin I believe. Currently IPFS is free, will there be a situation to pay for transaction and storage fees?

  • If you read about them, you'll see that IPFS does not incorporate a financial layer to reward farmers/miners. Filecoin is IPFS with a reward system behind. They decided to create their own logical layer and blockchain for the purpose. They don't depend on ethereum as you mentioned. IPFS creators are responsible for the filecoin. So IPFS implementations are not meant to be paid. Anyone can create their network using IPFS that in generic terms is a protocol.
    – Souza
    Dec 9, 2017 at 2:11
  • Can I say Filecoin is based on blockchain but IPFS isn't? IPFS helps us store the files in our local node and it can be accessed by using a hash. But Filecoin provides incentives to node owners to share their disk storage to host files of others and get paid in Filecoin.
    – Arun Kumar
    Dec 9, 2017 at 3:14
  • Sorry for the late reply. Something between those lines, you can say that.
    – Souza
    Feb 16, 2018 at 9:00

2 Answers 2


Filecoin is the incentive mechanism for IPFS. Currently the IPFS team, Infura, and people who are generous are providing public gateways but they often purge their caches frequently because there's no incentive to keep files permanently. Filecoin will change this because providers will be compensated for their storage by anyone who's willing to pay for their content to be stored long term.


The IPFS is a distributed, P2P-based file storage and -distribution system. Files stored in the IPFS are automatically distributed and stored at "some" node. When you request a file, the network "finds" it for you and delivers it to your computer. Obviously, why would anyone host a file "for you"? If everyone only hosts the files he needs, there is a problem in this approach. So you create an incentive. This incentive is Filecoin, which awards users to "rent out" disk space to store these files "for you" (or more specifically "for the system"). You get some coins for storing files, and you can "pay" other users to store files that you deem to be important.

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