Cloud-Based Load Balancing – An Overview

What is Cloud-based Load Balancing?

Information Technology is one of the fastest growing industries, thanks to cloud computing, which helps enterprises in managing a large volume of data.

Load balancing is relatively a new concept introduced in Cloud Computing, which is very important for all those are considering to switch to Cloud Computing.

Cloud load balancing is the method of distributing workloads across multiple computing resources in a cloud environment.

It allows enterprises to manage the workload of their application by distributing among multiple networks.

Let’s take an example of an e-commerce website. During the festive season, the e-commerce sites attract more traffic than the usual.

When thousands of users access your website at the same time, it will be challenging for the website to manage such load.

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In a worst-case scenario, the website may crash. This is where load balancing plays an important role.

Key Advantages of Cloud-based Load Balancing

Cloud load balancing helps the system to increase the performance of the application and its reliability. The primary advantages over the traditional load balancing of on-premises resources (through data centres) are

  1. Cloud-based load balancing is comparatively cheaper
  2. The ease of scaling the application up or down on demand basis

Most of the Start-up companies and Small and medium scale enterprises are running applications of all sorts in the cloud.

A company would be requiring cloud-based HRMS software to store employee information. Generally, it is a best practice to provide load balancer server in the same environment where the web/app servers reside for load balancing.

In recent times, most of an enterprise level company is computing infrastructure is hosted in the cloud, it makes sense to run the load balancer in the cloud-based setup.

Cloud-based Load Balancer provides dynamic traffic management that reacts to heavy user loads and maintains consistent availability and web performance.

By providing load balancing at the DNS level, content delivery networks can provide traffic management without major investment in complex hardware and software. 

Cloud-based Load Balancer also offers failover and blacklisting services to ensure availability and to support Denial of Service (DOS) protection and fight over other threats.

The following are some of the known and commercial cloud-based Load Balancer providers

  • AWS
  • Azure
  • Google Cloud
  • Cloudflare
  • DigitalOcean

The following are some of the open source based virtual Load Balancer

  • Seesaw
  • LoadMaster by KEMP
  • HAProxy
  • Neutrino
  • Nginx

Overall Benefits of load balancing in a Cloud-based environment

  • Limited Energy Consumption Load balancing reduces the amount of energy consumption by avoiding overheating of nodes or virtual machines due to excessive workload.
  • Limited Energy Consumption Load adjusting decreases the amount of energy utilization by abstaining from overheating of hubs or virtual machines because of excessive workload.
  • Reducing Carbon Emission Energy consumption and carbon emission are interconnected to each other since both are directly proportional. Hence, load balancing helps in reducing energy consumption it will automatically reduce carbon emission helping in achieving Green Computing

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In a nutshell, cloud-based load balancing means, distributing the user requests across a couple of web/application servers that are running in cloud-based setup for better response time, reliability and stability of the application.

Author: Saisowri S
Sai has 15 years of global experience in the field of software testing. He heads the Performance and Security testing center of excellence.