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DNS Load Balancing: How to Improve Web Site Performance

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DNS Load Balancing: How to Improve Web Site Performance

If you are looking to speed up your website or web app, DNS load balancing may be something that can help you achieve your goal.

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If you are looking to speed up your website or web app, DNS load balancing may be something that can help you achieve your goal. By helping to disperse the traffic you receive, you can help keep things running at optimal speed.

What Is DNS Load Balancing?

DNS load balancing is a technique used to help distribute the requests for a domain across different machines so that no single machine is bearing the entire load. This can be used to help improve website and/or web application performance since the traffic load can be shared among numerous server machines rather than a single one.

DNS stands for Domain Name System. It is used to associate a domain name, such as google.com, to the IP address of a particular server machine, such as 101.22.83.144. This mapping allows visitors to a website to easily remember its address using the domain name and allows routing to take place to identify the correct machine IP address for the connection.

How Load Balancing Works

While one machine IP per domain name is the simplest version of DNS routing, many companies make use of a single domain to be able to point to one of multiple IP addresses, thus allowing more than one server machine the ability to handle the request.

Most clients simply use the first IP address that is received for a domain name, and DNS load balancing makes use of this in order to distribute the load across the all of the available machines. DNS can send the list of available IP addresses for a domain name in a different order each time a new request is received.

In what is known as the round-robin method, this change in the order of the listed IP addresses - combined with clients using the first IP address in the list for the domain name – allows the different clients to be sent to different servers to handle their requests. As a result of this, the request load effectively gets distributed across multiple server machines rather than relying on a single machine to handle all of the incoming requests.

Why Every Enterprise Needs DNS Load Balancing

If an e-commerce site is making $100,000 per day, a 1-second page delay could potentially cost you $2.5 million in lost sales every year

Source: Kissmetrics 

Lost revenue due to a site being too slow can have quite an impact. For a small startup, even a single lost sale could be devastating. Every second you save in loading time can help increase sales, so it is certainly a good idea to make sure your site or app loads a quickly as possible.

DNS load balancing can help with this by distributing the request load across numerous servers, thus helping to speed up the all-important response times that can get a sale completed or lose the sale entirely. With more and more IT resources being moved to the cloud today, it is easier than ever to commission additional servers, and you can take advantage of this to provide additional web servers, implement DNS load balancing, and enjoy the increased performance or your website or app.

Notable Examples

Imperva Incapsula

Source: Imperva Incapsula 

Imperva Incapsula noted in a study that improved performance was a great deal of help to a company's bottom line. At the end of the study, they noted the top three things that helped them improve their own web site's performance. Included among these was the use of a load balancing solution, showing that this can indeed be an important and helpful technique in the search for better performance.

ThoughtFarmer

ThoughtFarmer found that there were potential users of their app who just needed it sped up a bit so that it would have faster response times. In 2013, they sent out a mandate to significantly improve the speed of the app. Between caching, load balancing, and some other improvements, they were able to make their page load speeds up to 35 times faster.

ThoughtFarmer was able to use load balancing in conjunction with other techniques to significantly improve the speed of their web app. Source: ThoughtFarmer 

The Morpheus Difference

If you are looking to add load balancing to the mix to help improve the speed of your website or app, then Morpheus offers an incredible service for this. First, Morpheus allows you to provision additional servers quickly so that scaling up is a breeze. When you have the number of machines you need, the process of adding load balancing is extremely simple.

For example, to add a load balancer from Morpheus, you simply need to click Infrastructure in the main navigation panel, go to Load Balancers, and click the Morpheus Load Balancer button. This will open up an easy-to-use wizard that will help you select the appropriate cloud, input some setup information, and save the new load balancer. Once done, load balancing is in place and you can simply enjoy the improved performance!

The Morpheus Load Balancers interface is clean and easy to use. Source: Morpheus.

If you have an existing external load balancer, you can also use that with Morpheus. The process to add is very similar, by simply selecting External Load Balancer instead. The ensuing wizard will ask a few additional questions for the setup, which will allow the external load balancer to communicate with your Morpheus setup.

In addition to all of this, Morpheus automatically collects system, database, and application logs for all provisioned IT systems, and each newly provisioned system is automatically set up for uptime monitoring. With this, you can be sent alerts proactively when it is determined that an issue may occur. You can also customize how alerts are distributed so that you receive only the alerts you need when you need them.

Morpheus also provides ease of use for developers with APIs and a CLI. In addition, backups are also automatic, and you can have redundancy as needed to avoid potentially long waits for disaster recovery to take place.

To request a demo and find out what Morpheus can do for you, visit Morpheus website.

Learn tips and best practices for optimizing your capacity management strategy with the Market Guide for Capacity Management, brought to you in partnership with BMC.

Topics:
dns load balancing ,performance ,enterprise

Published at DZone with permission of Darren Perucci, DZone MVB. See the original article here.

Opinions expressed by DZone contributors are their own.

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