Using a content distribution network to improve Web server performance

Using a content distribution network to improve Web server performance

By Linda Gail Christie

The scalability of Web servers to meet growing user demand is one of the biggest challenges faced by content providers. Content providers typically house server(s) at one location. So user requests from all over the world travel over the Internet to this location, eventually clogging bandwidth and slowing response times.

The "hub" model, though, is not the answer to Web availability. This model does not provide the shortest Internet path link; and should the hub fail, users will be cut off from their content. Therefore it's vital to distribute content to geographically dispersed locations via a content distribution network (CDN).

To reduce access latency and bandwidth usage, content distribution networks push content closer to the edge of the network--keeping frequently requested documents close to the location where they are accessed. Intelligent replication based on usage eliminates the need to reach the origin server(s). With caching, content providers can serve a larger client base without having to upgrade either their network or server infrastructure.

Caching has the added benefit of dramatically reducing the cost of storage and replication of content for mirrored servers, since caching stores only frequently accessed content. More importantly, caching provides improved connection and response times to end users.

Requires Free Membership to View

As more robust applications come online, the need for CDN infrastructure has become more imperative.

For additional information about CDNs read, "Exodus ReadyCache Content Distribution Service," by Dr. Mohan Sharma at http://www.exodus.net/pdf/whitepapers/ms_cd_ready_cache.pdf.

About the author: Storage management tips are written by Linda Gail Christie, a contributing editor based in Tulsa, Okla.

This was first published in January 2001

There are Comments. Add yours.

TIP: Want to include a code block in your comment? Use <pre> or <code> tags around the desired text. Ex: <code>insert code</code>

REGISTER or login:

Forgot Password?
By submitting you agree to receive email from TechTarget and its partners. If you reside outside of the United States, you consent to having your personal data transferred to and processed in the United States. Privacy
Sort by: OldestNewest

Forgot Password?

No problem! Submit your e-mail address below. We'll send you an email containing your password.

Your password has been sent to:

Disclaimer: Our Tips Exchange is a forum for you to share technical advice and expertise with your peers and to learn from other enterprise IT professionals. TechTarget provides the infrastructure to facilitate this sharing of information. However, we cannot guarantee the accuracy or validity of the material submitted. You agree that your use of the Ask The Expert services and your reliance on any questions, answers, information or other materials received through this Web site is at your own risk.