What is Load Balancing? Load Balancing is a method for distributing global and local network traffic among several servers. It helps the overall resource processing be more efficient, speeds up performance and reduces latency. Load balancing can optimise the response time and avoid overloading computer nodes while leaving others idle.
All major cloud providers offer load balancing features, such as AWS Elastic Load Balancing, Azure Load Balancer, and GCP Load Balancing, among others. A load balancer performs the following functions:
- Distributes client requests or network load efficiently across multiple servers
- Ensures high availability and reliability by sending requests to resources that are online
- Provides flexibility to scale by adding or subtracting servers according to demand.
Multi-Cloud Load Balancing
Today’s enterprise applications are often assembled across distributed environments. This includes the integration of services across multi-cloud, multi-SaaS and on-premises environments. In such circumstances, load balancing across servers won’t optimally deliver the same core functions, often compromising performance and driving up costs with uneven distribution. In contrast to traditional load balancing, which is hardware-based, multi-cloud balancing relies on underlying platform infrastructure and is software-based:
- Platform reliant: An efficient multi-cloud load balancer can distribute network traffic across cloud providers, regardless of which underlying infrastructure is used.
- Software-based: A load balancer that runs in software can run anywhere. Load balancers evaluate client requests by examining application-level characteristics (i.e. IP addresses, request content and HTTP header data). The load balancer then looks at the server pool to determine which server to send the request to. Software-based load balancing can be located on-premise or off.
Load Balancing Methods
Load balancers have a variety of algorithms to send network traffic to:
- Least connection: Load balancers send requests to the least busy servers or servers processing the least workloads. This assumes all connections require roughly equal processing power.
- Weighted least connection: Similar to Least connection load balancing, though with the assumption that some servers can handle more connections than others. It gives administrators the ability to assign different weights to each server.
- Weighted response time: This algorithm ensures faster service for users. Load balancers average the response time of each server and combine the number of connections of each server to determine where to send traffic. The application server that is responding the fastest receives the following request.
- Resource-based: Distributes load based on what resources each server has available. Each server has an ‘agent’ software to measure CPU capacity and memory. The load balancer queries the ‘agent’ for availability before distributing traffic to that server.
- Hash-based algorithm: Load balancing assigns a hash key to the client and server's source and destination IP address. This ensures that if the user returns and makes another request, the user will be redirected to the same server they were using before.
- Round-robin: The most straightforward and most commonly used load balancing algorithm. It simply moves requests through a list of available servers in the same order, making it the most appropriate for predictable client requests.
In conclusion, multi-cloud load balancing is crucial in distributed environments, ensuring efficient resource processing, optimised response time and flexible scaling. Choosing the right load balancing method is essential for maximising application performance in a multi-cloud infrastructure.
Set up with Ori Global Cloud!
Ori Global Cloud can help you set up multi-cloud networking and load balancing fuss-free. Simply package your applications and deploy them intelligently across multiple clouds, all on the same platform. The process is seamless, with enhanced security and multi-tenancy. Let us take care of the details, and you can focus on your projects.