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What Is Blockchain Sharding?

by BlockchainX about a month ago in cryptocurrency
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What is Sharding and why is it important to understand Blockchain business models.

Blockchain companies use sharding to partition databases and increase scalability, allowing them to process more transactions per second. Sharding is a key mechanism under the Ethereum Blockchain and one of its critical components. In fact, sharding allows Blockchain protocols to overcome the scalability trilemma (as a Blockchain grows, it remains scalable, secure, and decentralized).

shard understanding

Blockchain is now used in everything from independent supply chain cross-border financial transactions.

While extremely versatile, one critical issue remains: scalability. This problem is already prevalent with cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ether, where more computers join a peer-to-peer network causing the entire system to degrade.

For fintech companies that must compete with fast payment networks, lack of scalability is a particular concern. How can Blockchain be a viable solution in this energetic world ? How can scalability and performance be increased to address latency issues?

Developers think fragmentation is the answer. To increase transactional performance, sharding describes the partitioning of computational and storage workload on a P2P basis. at . This avoids a situation where a single node is responsible for processing the entire transactional load from one to the .

Sharding can help Blockchain provide all three (scalability, security, and decentralization).

How is the workload distributed?

Sharding uses horizontal partitioning, a database architecture that allows Cryptocurrency development company to dynamically scale their databases.

Each database table is separated into multiple tables by partitioning its rows. The data contained in each partition is independent of other partitions and is unique, but the schema and columns of each partition remain the same.

The individual partitions are called logical shards, which are distributed across separate database nodes called physical shards. Each physical shard can contain multiple logical shards. Collectively, the chunks comprise a complete logical data set.

It is important to note that database shards typify a shared-nothing architecture. Shards are autonomous in the sense that they do not share computing resources or the same data with other shards. However, shards can share information with other nodes if necessary. This maintains a decentralized ledger where all ledger entries can be viewed without each shard having to process and store all the information.

Strengths and weaknesses of fragmentation


Sharding allows for horizontal scaling , or the act of adding machines to a stack to spread the load and improve processing times. This method of scaling is preferable to vertical scaling , which involves adding more CPU or RAM to an existing server. In theory, horizontal scaling allows the to be expanded indefinitely. On the other hand, vertical scaling is inevitably limited by the capabilities of the server.

Fragmentation also reduces query response times. Non-fragmented database queries have to search every row in the table to find the result. This process can become extremely slow in large, monolithic applications. Through horizontal partitioning, queries search for fewer rows and results are returned faster.


The implementation of a fragmented database architecture is quite complex. Errors during deployment can lead to corrupted tables and data loss. Even when implemented successfully, fragmentation can be detrimental to some computers. Instead of managing data from a single entry point, people must manage data across multiple locations.

Fragmented databases are nearly impossible to return to an unfragmented state. Database backups made before the partition will not include any data written after the partition. Going back to a non-fragmented architecture involves combining partitioned data with older backups or creating a single database from many partitioned databases. Both are costly and time-consuming operations.

Key points:

Sharding is the process of increasing the scalability of blockchain networks.

Sharding separates database tables into horizontal partitions called logical shards. These shards are self-contained and do not share resources or data. Collectively, they comprise a complete set of data and can share rare information when needed.

Sharding allows you to increase computing power by adding more machines to a stack. Partitioning also increases query response times because fewer rows need to be fetched. However, implementing a fragmented database is complex and difficult to reverse.


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