What data is exchanged between peers?

Hi all! I just learned about IPFS recently and I’m still trying to wrap my head around the technology. I hope my questions belong here, otherwise please move my post somewhere more appropriate.

One thing I couldn’t find on the docs is what the actual role of a peer is and what data it sends and receives. While running a daemon on my computer (ipfs daemon), I can observe that it seems to send and receive quite some data (ipfs stats bw), ~ 650 MB over night. I can also observe that the size of ~/.ipfs remains constant. Can somebody explain, what that daemon is doing during idle? I believe that ~/.ipfs holds my own data as well as everything I’ve previously downloaded by browsing the IPFS. In the case of my new, clean installation, this is only several hundred kilobytes. So, what is the daemon sending and receiving to whom and where is it stored?

Thanks a lot in advance for helping me understanding IPFS better :slightly_smiling_face: .

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