Smart UI type FlexBalancer

Guide to the "Smart UI" type FlexBalancer options

DNS load-balancing with "Smart UI" type FlexBalancer makes it easy to build your own logic with our simple to use interface.


FlexBalancer Creation

When creating "Smart UI" FlexBalancer you should fill such fields:
1) Name (mandatory field).
2) Description (non-mandatory field).
3) FlexBalancer Type = "Smart UI" (mandatory field) - this one is important, once selected can't be changed (please pay attention to this).
4) Fallback address (mandatory field) - the fallback response used if a FlexBalancer encounters a problem or your settings do not provide an answer for a specific request.
5) TTL (mandatory field) - the DNS time-to-live for FlexBalancer responses.

FlexBalancer Answers

Next step is to add additional answers. FlexBalancer will use them to respond to DNS queries. If you not add any additional answers, your FlexBalancer will respond with "Fallback address".
While adding a first answer you should fill in:
1) Hostname or IP-address (mandatory field).
2) Location or Subnet options (mandatory option).
3) Cloud platform (non-mandatory option).
4) Uptime failover (non-mandatory option).

 

"Hostname/IP"

This can be your CDN hostname or a custom one. You can also use IPv4 address for the response answer (will be responded as DNS A-record answer on DNS request). This hostname will be used as a response answer (DNS CNAME-record answer on DNS request).

"Location"
Determines the location answer "works" for. You also have ability to select location on map by clicking button: "Find on map". The values can be:

  • Global ('worldwide')
  • 23 Regions (Northern Europe, Australia and New Zealand etc.)
  • 7 Continents (Europe, Asia, Oceania etc.)
  • 250 Countries
  • 51 US States
  • ~ 14000 Cities

"Subnet"

You can select ASN or IP-range or IP/mask values at this tab, for example:

  • AS1000 - ASN number format.
  • 127.0.0.1/24 - IP/mask format.
  • 127.0.0.1-127.0.0.5 - IP-range format.

Enter an ASN or an IP-range or IP/mask and all queries coming from them will be linked to this answer.

"Cloud platform"
Associate the performance and uptime data of a cloud provider (like a CDN service) with this answer. You can use one of 19 public CDN providers or one of 4 Cloud Providers (with 62 different locations totally) at your answer.

"Uptime failover"
Connect an uptime monitor to associate it with this answer. If the monitor reports downtime, the answer will not be used until your service starts working again.

Answer sorting rules

The rules are processed from top to bottom and are automatically sorted from smallest location to largest. This means that countries will be higher than continents, and Global rules will always be last. Once a user matches a rule, the processing will stop and will not go further.

You can also config values for next additional options after new FlexBalancer instance with "Smart UI" type creation:

  • Geo Proximity
  • Geo Proximity Threshold (100 km by default)
  • RUM Uptime Threshold  (90 % by default)
  • Performance Threshold (1000 ms by default)


"Geo Proximity"

When this option has enabled we will route traffic to the geographically closest location that you set in your answers. For example: With 1 answer in Germany and "GEO Proximity" On, a user from France will get routed to Germany as its the closest location to him. With "GEO Proximity" Off a user from France would get a fallback answer because the Germany location is considered as reserved only to German traffic. This feature also allows you to easily build your own CDN!

"Geo Proximity Threshold"
Disabled by default and will result in 100% of your traffic GEO-routed based on distance between answers and users. When enabled all users located at a distance from the closest answer higher than the threshold will instead use the most appropriate Global answer or Fallback value. As an example you can use a CDN provider for a Global answer

"RUM Uptime Threshold"
The option is used to determine when to avoid a Cloud platform usage if 'RUM Uptime Data' is enabled for one or more answer groups that contain two or more answers. Anything below the threshold will be considered as 'down' and will remove that platform from consideration.

"Performance Threshold"

Used to determine when to avoid a Cloud platform usage if 'Performance Data' is enabled for one or more answer groups that contain two or more answers. Anything above the threshold will be considered as 'down' and will remove that platform from consideration.

In order to use the DNS load-balancing at full power you should fit the following condition:
once you associate two or more answers (with the same location or with the same ASN/[IP/mask]/IP-range values) with Cloud platforms, FlexBalancer will be able to perform DNS load-balancing operation (with the traffic based on real-time performance and uptime data) for each individual request:

Grouped answers with the same "Location" sample:


Grouped answers with the same "Subnet" sample:


As you can see, after combining two simple answers into one grouped answer (with the same "Location" or "Subnet" option) additional options appear at the user interface :

  • Use Performance data (by default has 'turned off' state)
  • Use RUM Uptime data (by default has 'turned off' state)
  • Weight (by default equal to '1')


"Use Performance data"

Used to enable routing based on RUM Performance that we collect from billions of benchmarks. The FlexBalancer will use the real-time performance data for each platform like a CDN and route the traffic to the fastest ones.

"Use RUM Uptime data"
Used to enable routing based on RUM Uptime that we collect from billions of benchmarks. The FlexBalancer will use the real-time uptime data for each platform like a CDN and stop traffic if it goes below the configured uptime threshold.

"Weight" option
Weight sets the priority and frequency of the answer. 2 answers in the same location with weight 1 will be used 50/50%. But if an answer has weight 2 then it will be used twice as frequently than the answer with weight 1.

When you have finished the configuration of your FlexBalancer (set options values, created necessary answers list etc) you should apply changes by clicking on button: "Test and Publish".



To start using your FlexBalancer in production you need to point your domain name to the FlexBalancer hostname using a DNS CNAME record.

You can check how your DNS-load balancing works with any type of DIG tool (console / online) by sending DIG-request to your main domain name.

For example, you can do it by sending DIG-request via our PerfOps Network Utilities "DNS resolve" service: