DNS load balancing is a handy feature for load distribution. This method is used by an increasing number of businesses, both large and small. But how does it work, and what are the benefits? We’ll get to that later in the article.
DNS load balancing – what is the meaning?
To begin, we will define this method. As we already know, DNS is a system that connects a domain name to its IP address. A domain is stored on a single server by default. However, if your site receives a lot of traffic, this can cause it to crash. To prevent this, we use load balancing. To put it another way, this feature redirects DNS queries to multiple web services.
How does DNS load balancing work?
The fundamental principle is that for a given hostname, the user will use the first IP it receives. This method is based on a circular system. What does this mean? An ABC company sets up their domain to redirect to multiple different web servers by specifying three Internet Protocols – 184.108.40.206, 220.127.116.11, and 18.104.22.168, for example. Note that this system works randomly. That means the first user comes in and connects randomly for IP 22.214.171.124. Then, a second user comes in. It also randomly connects for IP 126.96.36.199. Be aware that if it generates a new request, it may again be directed to IP 188.8.131.52, but it may also be IP redirected to 184.108.40.206. Each next user on your domain is treated the same way if you have DNS load balancing.
DNS is not set up to regulate traffic. This is why load balancing was created and is still in use today. We reduce the possibility of being overloaded by using it. As you may have already deduced yourself, having it has its benefits – for protection against server failure or for dealing with high volumes of traffic.
What are the popular load balancing methods?
There are different approaches to traffic balancing. We will focus on two of the more popular ones, which are:
- Round Robin
Round robin is the most extensively used load balancing technique because it is simple to create and understand. Client requests are cyclically forwarded to access servers using this mechanism. Round robin balancing works greatest when servers have nearly equal storage and compute capabilities. It works in the following way:
Request number 1 is sent to server C
Request number 2 is sent to server B
(it is done randomly)
This is the simplest way to understand how it works: requests are routed to multiple servers.
As the name implies, Geo or Geographical DNS load balancing is based on geo locations of users. For highest security and efficiency, traffic is distributed equally among data centers in different places. Let’s imagine that a user makes a request from America, the state of Virginia. If you have GeoDNS, then the user will be redirected with the American version of your site.
Furthermore, this method is highly secure as the risk is distributed over several locations. It is most commonly used in companies that target customers from different countries.
From the above, we can conclude that this method is beneficial if we want to minimize the risk of overloading our domain. No one wants their site to crash and customers unable to access it. To prevent this from happening, you can implement load balancing DNS.