Content Delivery Network Explained

Content Delivery Networks are a crucial part of today’s internet.  It is predicted to become even more important as time goes on. Every internet user interacts with CDN on a daily basis, CDNs are part of every internet services. From online games, streaming videos, eCommerce websites and even on social media feeds.

Content Delivery Network Explained

Content Delivery Network Explained

Now more than ever. Companies are working day and night. Trying to figure out the fastest way to move more of their functionality to edge servers. As a result, their users can enjoy the fastest experience as possible.

So, what’s a CDN?

CDN (Content Delivery Network) is a globally distributed network of web servers. Whose sole purpose is to provide faster distribution and delivery of online content.  CDN improves the user’s experience and offers a more efficient network resource utilization.

The location of a group of servers is usually referred to as Point of Presence (PoP). Each CDN PoP handles the provision of services. To users in a specific geographical location.

The globally distributed network of servers. Work together to improve the efficiency and speeds at which content is being delivered. By transmitting data over a private global background. Thus, bypassing the congestion caused by public and internet service provider networks.

Key Components of CDN

  • Delivery Nodes: Their main role is the delivery of data to users. Comprises of caches running one or more applications. Usually, deployed as close to the customers as possible.
  • Storage Nodes: They provide data to the caches. Also, their deployment is in a hierarchical model to permit tiered caching. Also, protect any original servers.
  • Origin Nodes: They are the master sources of content. Are deployed within the operator’s network.  Many origins servers provide resilience and scale.
  • Control Nodes: Main role is to host the management, routing and track components of a CDN. They are an integral part of any OSS/BSS systems and Network Operations Centers.

CDN nodes deployment occurs from multiple locations usually over backbones. The nodes numbers and servers making up a CDN varies, depending on the architecture.

Benefits of CDN Nodes

  • Reduce bandwidth costs
  • Improves page load time
  • Increase the global availability of content

Types of CDN contents

  • Streaming Content– it includes videos or audio files played via a web browser control.
  • Static content – this content does not change very often and does not need generation. Such as images, JavaScript, CSS, etc.
  • Dynamic Content – this is content generated on the fly by server. It’s a result of several programming languages such as Java, PHP, and ruby.

Here is where the issue of “Latency” comes in.  Latency is how long individual data travel from the server at the point of origin to the end user. It is usually measured in milliseconds(ms).  Latency factor plays a key role when it comes to mobile web browsing.

Why? Because mobile content delivery requires better and aggressive optimization strategies.  Furthermore, CDN development was for solving the latency issue. Integration of CDN resulted in latency reduction. And also the achievement of increased content delivery in a more optimal fashion.

How Does CDN work

When a user visits a website or an application and request for a certain file such as images, pdf, CSS files or JavaScript. Instead of the hosting server responding to this request with the required objects. The CDN takes charge and serves them.

CDNs take the geo-location of users into account. Hence,  serving the file from the caching node closer to the users. What does this mean?  It means data will become available to the user at lightning speed, independent of the location of the application or website.

When the object requested isn’t found in the serving caching-node.  Then the node will ask other nodes on the CDN first.  If the object isn’t found, then the nodes will request for the object from the original server.  The original server is where source files reside.

Benefits of Using CDN

Reduces Network Load

Lower network loads are associated with higher performance. High network loads results from the high number of visitors on a server during peak times.  When a high number of users consume resources form the same server. The server’s performance reduces.

CDN helps in re-directing visitors to edge servers, balancing the network load. Less network disruption results in more conversation and better user experiences.

Increases content availability, reliability, and redundancy

CDN can handle more traffic and withstand hardware failure better than many original servers. So, hardware failures and a large amount of traffics cannot interrupt the normal website functions.

The main goal of CDN is to make everything faster. By utilizing advanced technology which accelerates the performance and reliability of all content within a system. Resulting in better customer satisfaction.

Cost Saving

Integration of websites and application with CDN results in reduced overhead costs.  CDN will reduce the cost by removing the need to pay for high priced foreign hosting. Additionally, CDN offers a single platform, that works across all the regions at reasonable prices.

This works perfectly for small web-based companies, blogs, and e-commerce websites. It is a cost-effective way to enhance web performance around the world in a single platform. Furthermore, all traffic is not placed on a single platform. The distribution loads are distributed to different servers for optimization. Resulting in reduced content delivery costs.

Provides Security against DDoS Attacks

DDoS attacks inflict huge economic losses. It also impacts the reputation and image of the victimized organization.  A CDN cloud solution is designed to stop a DDoS attack before it ever reaches your data centers.  Thereby, there is no need for any concern when it comes to DDoS or any other online attacks on your data center.

Less Latency

The placement of CDN servers across popular locations around the globe and feature duplicate content. Has lowered latency levels because users are always near those servers.  In addition, lower latency has resulted in delivery and distribution of packets of information faster.

 

 

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