Cloud load balancing refers to distributing client requests across multiple application servers that are running in a cloud environment. Cloud load balancing enables you to maximize application performance and reliability; its advantages over traditional load balancing of on-premise resources are the lower cost and the ability of scaling the application up or down as required. An ever-growing number of organisations– especially small businesses– are running applications of all sorts in the cloud. It is considered best practice to provision the load balancer server in the same environment as the resources it is load balancing. So when most of a company’s computing infrastructure is hosted in the cloud, it makes sense to run the load balancer in the cloud too.
Types of Load Balancing Prior to the popularity of cloud computing, traditional load balancing solutions relied on proprietary hardware housed in a data center, and require a team of sophisticated IT personnel to install, tune, and maintain the system. The operational budget required for such activities could only be afforded by large companies. In the age of cloud computing, hardware-based solutions have another serious drawback: they do not support cloud load balancing, because cloud infrastructure vendors typically do not allow customer or proprietary hardware in their environment. Software-based load balancers can deliver the performance and reliability benefits of hardware-based solutions at a much lower cost.
They are affordable even for smaller companies because they run on commodity hardware. They are ideal for cloud load balancing, as they can run in the cloud like any other software application. Benefits of Cloud Load Balancing The benefits of cloud load balancing in particular arise from the scalable and global character of the cloud itself. The ease and speed of scaling in the cloud means that companies can handle traffic spikes without sacrificing performance by placing a cloud load balancer in front of a group of application instances, which can quickly grow and shrink in reaction to the level of demand. The ability to host an application at multiple cloud datacenters around the world can boost reliability. If a power outage hits a datacenter in Turkey after a flood, for example, the cloud load balancer can direct traffic away from cloud resources hosted there to resources hosted in other parts of the globe.
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