Category Archives: CDN

Google upgrades Cloud SQL, promises managed MySQL offerings

Google officeGoogle has announced the beta availability of a new improved Cloud SQL for Google Cloud Platform – and an alpha version of its much anticipated Content Delivery Network offering.

In a blog post Brett Hesterberg, Product Manager for Google’s Cloud Platform, says the second generation of Cloud SQL will aim to give better performance and more ‘scalability per dollar’.

In Google’s internal testing, the second generation Cloud SQL proved seven times faster than the first generation and it now scales to 10TB of data, 15,000 IOPS and 104GB of RAM per instance, Hesterberg said.

The upshot is that transactional databases now have a flexibility that was unachievable with traditional relational databases. “With Cloud SQL we’ve changed that,” Hesterberg said. “Flexibility means easily scaling a database up and down.”

Databases can now ramp up and down in size and the number of queries per day. The allocation of resources like CPU cores and RAM can be more skilfully adapted with Cloud SQL, using a variety of tools such as MySQL Workbench, Toad and the MySQL command-line. Another promised improvement is that any client can be used for access, including Compute Engine, Managed VMs, Container Engine and workstations.

In the new cloud environment databases need to be easier to stop and restart if they are only used on occasion for brief or infrequent tasks, according to Hesterberg. Cloud SQL now caters for these increasingly common cloud applications of database technology through the Cloud Console, the command line within Google’s gCloud SDK or a RESTful API. This makes admin a scriptable job and minimises costs by only running the databases when necessary.

Cloud SQL will create more manageable MySQL databases, claims Hesterberg, since Google will apply patches and updates to MySQL, manage backups, configure replication and provide automatic failover for High Availability (HA) in the event of a zone outage. “It means you get Google’s operational expertise for your MySQL database,” says Hesterberg. Subscribers signed up for Google Cloud Platform can now get a $300 credit to test drive Cloud SQL, it announced.

Meanwhile in another Google blog, it announced an alpha release of its own content delivery network, Google Cloud CDN. The system may not be consistent and is not recommended for production use, Google warned.

Google Cloud CDN will speed up its cloud services using distributed edge caches to bring content closer to users in a bid to compensate for its relatively low global data centre coverage against rivals AWS and Azure.

Comcast, Lenovo join OpenDaylight SDN effort

Comcast and Lenovo have thrown their weight behind the OpenDaylight Project

Comcast and Lenovo have thrown their weight behind the OpenDaylight Project

Comcast and Lenovo have thrown their hats into the OpenDaylight Project, an open source collaboration between many of the industry’s major networking incumbents on the core architectures enabling software defined networking (SDN) and network function virtualisation (NFV).

The recent additions bring the OpenDaylight project, a Linux Foundation Colalborative Project, to just over the fifty member mark. The community is developing an open source SDN architecture and software (Helium) that supports a wide range of protocols including OpenFlow, the southbound protocol around which most vendors have consolidated.

“We’re seeing more end users starting to adopt OpenDaylight and participate in its development as the community sharpens its focus on stability, scalability, security and performance,” said Neela Jacques, executive director, OpenDaylight.

“Comcast has been testing ODL and working with our community since launch and the team at Lenovo were heavily involved in ODL’s foundation through their roots at IBM. Our members see the long-term value of creating a rich ecosystem around open systems and OpenDaylight,” Jacques said.

Igor Marty, chief technology officer, Lenovo Worldwide SDN and NFV said: “We believe that the open approach is the faster way to deploy solutions, and what we’ve seen OpenDaylight achieve in just two years has been impressive. The OpenDaylight community is truly leading the path toward interoperability by integrating legacy and emerging southbound protocols and defining northbound APIs for orchestration.”

The move will no doubt give the project more credibility in both carrier and enterprise segments.

Since Lenovo’s acquisition of IBM’s low-end x86 server unit it has been pushing heavily to establish itself as a serious player among global enterprises, where open standards continue to gain favour when it comes to pretty much every layer of the technology stack.

Comcast is also placing SDN at the core of its long-term network strategy and has already partnered with CableLabs, a non-profit R&D outfit investigating technology innovation and jointly owned by operators globally, on developing southbound plugins for OpenDaylight’s architecture.

“Like many service providers, Comcast is motivated to reduce the operational complexity of our networks. In the near-term this involves significant improvements to network automation under what we call our Programmable Network Platform. This framework outlines a stack of behaviors and abstraction layers that software uses to interact with the network,” explained Chris Luke, senior principal engineer, Comcast and OpenDaylight Advisory Group member.

“Some of our key objectives are to simplify the handoffs from the OSS/BSS systems, empower engineers to rapidly develop and deploy new services and to improve the operational support model. It is our hope that by harmonizing on a common framework and useful abstractions, more application groups within the company will be able to make use of better intelligence and more easily interact with the network.”

Luke said the company already has several proof-of-concepts in place, including an app that provides network intelligence abstraction in a way that allows it to treat its internal network like a highly elastic CDN, and mechanisms to integrate overlay edge services with legacy network architectures like MPLS.

“When ODL was launched we were excited to see that the industry was moving to a supportable open source model for SDN. There were a growing number of proprietary SDN controllers at the time and that had service providers like us questioning the direction of the market and whether it made sense to us. We were pleased to see an open source platform come forward aiming to provide a neutral playing field with support for more than just OpenFlow.”

MaxCDN Now Accepting Bitcoin

NetDNA LLC, a content delivery network (CDN) provider, today announced that MaxCDN is the first CDN to accept payment via Bitcoin.

Bitcoin, a decentralized digital currency, enables instant peer-to-peer transactions, worldwide payments with low or zero processing fees. The community-driven software operates with no central authority – managing transactions and the issuing of bitcoins is carried out collectively by the network.

“Developers are a core part of our customer base and have been requesting this payment model,” said Justin Dorfman of NetDNA. “We’re strong believers in open source and part of that commitment is being responsive to developer requests. Bitcoin as the emerging “coin of the realm” for this community and we’re excited at the opportunity to be accepting Bitcoins.”

NetDNA, YC’s Leftronic Partner on Real-Time CDN Monitoring

Content delivery network provider NetDNA today announced its partnership with Y-Combinator-funded Leftronic, to develop high-performance, secure and real-time data visualization dashboards for its CDN services.

Now, NetDNA or MaxCDN customers can get a bird’s-eye view of their traffic, including daily, weekly or monthly statistics on popular files, popular file types, status codes, cache hit percentage, statistics by location and more.  All of which are presented in a Web browser using Leftronic’s real-time, large screen metric dashboard platform.

The companies also worked together to provide dashboards measuring traffic on NetDNA’s Bootstrap CDN project, samples of which are available online.

“We’re excited to be partnering with Leftronic because monitoring traffic is a critical step to receiving the full benefits of our CDN service.  Now they can do that in a big and beautiful way using only a browser,” said Justin Dorfman, NetDNA’s Developer Advocate.

“We could see an immediate synergy between our two companies when NetDNA shared with us the demand for better CDN reporting it saw in its customer base,” said Rajiv Ghanta, CEO of Leftronic. “The company is truly developer friendly with its well-supported API and fast customer support.  We’re looking forward to a lasting relationship with the company.”

Leftronic has created a data visualization platform that helps companies monitor and track their business metrics. The platform has no software to download, instead everything is shown in a Web browser for easy accessibility and organization. The technology is combined with a simple-to-use front-end interface for visualizing the data and has an API for integrating custom company data.

With more than 10,000 customers trusting its content delivery services, NetDNA provides simple, efficient and affordable web performance optimization solutions that help customers to increase and improve their website speed. Most recently, NetDNA’s MaxCDN service has been its leading, popular solution among businesses because of its easy sign up system and versatile web performance acceleration.


NetDNA EdgeRules Gives Websites Control over CDN Content

NetDNA today announced EdgeRules, an instantaneous HTTP caching rules service, giving site managers rapid and granular control over their web content for a better user experience, improved security, lower bandwidth costs and the ability to better monetize content by preventing hotlinking.

EdgeRules is an add-on service to NetDNA’s EdgeCaching and EdgeCaching for Platforms.  Both of these HTTP caching services place site content in NetDNA’s worldwide network of edge servers and peering partners for superior web performance optimization.

Using the EdgeRules control panel, site managers can make changes to their content rules and see them enacted in less than one minute – with no review needed from the NetDNA engineering team. This makes it possible for the first time to test, tweak and deploy very granular controls over how and when content is served.

“EdgeRules truly gives website manages the ability to manage their CDN services their way and to finely tune their pull zone content in a way that they never could before,” said David Henzel, NetDNA vice president of marketing.  “NetDNA is well known for giving site managers unprecedented control over their CDN service through our Control Panel.  With EdgeRules, we are at the forefront of CDN self provisioning again.”

A site manager can use EdgeRules to keep certain files from being proxied and thus protecting them from exposure on the Internet. For example, EdgeRules can prevent the exposure of directory indices due to misconfiguration, which is a common problem on cloud services such as Amazon’s S3 service.

The service allows different rules to be set for different files or classes of data so that frequently updated files can be classed differently from more static data.  This reduces calls to the origin server, which lowers bandwidth charges.

Site managers can also use the service to blacklist certain IP addresses, for example blocking web robots that are scraping data from the site.

The EdgeRules service can also read the operating system of a device and serve up optimized content for that device.  For example a smartphone-optimized image can be served up instead of a large image when the service detects a request from an Android or iOS device.

EdgeRules is now available for all NetDNA EdgeCaching customers.  For more information email or go to:

Le Nouvel Observateur Digital Uses Openmix Hybrid CDN Strategy for News Cycle Load Balancing

Sudden traffic load bursts following the news is business as usual for an online news provider. When the news is hot, interruptions and heavy slow-downs are common things on various websites; which can mean loss of audience and consequently loss of revenues, forcing technical teams to constantly anticipate any possible incident.

The third most read news & politics media in France, as per a September 2012 Nielsen study, with almost 8 million unique visitors every month, Le Nouvel Observateur recently chose the Cedexis “Openmix” load balancing solution to roll out and manage its own hybrid CDN — a mix of their infrastructure at origin and their own cache servers spread among various webhosting providers with third parties CDNs.

Rolled out during the second quarter of 2012, Le Nouvel Observateur’s hybrid CDN strategy now includes two content origins, backed by Varnish cache servers, located at two French hosting providers whose performance had been previously measured with Cedexis Radar as being optimum for serving their French audience. A global CDN is also used, mostly to deliver content to their international audience.

Details can be found in a case study published by Cedexis.