jgillman's Liquid Web Update Unofficial tips, tricks, and happenings from a Liquid Web sales engineer


Managed Dedicated Load Balancing: Right for your cloud?

One of the things that customers of Storm on Demand and Smart Servers (our public cloud offerings) may not realize is that Liquid Web's Managed Dedicated Load Balancing service works great not just for traditional dedicated servers, but for our public cloud offerings as well. In fact, we have a few customers who are utilizing our public cloud technologies with Managed Dedicated Load Balancing.

Why might you want Managed Dedicated Load Balancing?

You might be asking this question if you're currently, or planning, on using the load balancing features currently available with our public cloud products. Let's take a look at a couple of scenarios.

Customizability and API

Stingray, the software that powers our Managed Dedicated Load Balancing solution, offers many features that aren't' accessible with the shared load balancing available with our public cloud.

For example, we recently had a customer who needed to pass along custom headers to the load balanced web nodes running on Storm. This wasn't possible using the shared load balancing cluster.

Another feature that comes with having Managed Dedicated Load Balancing is an API that is native to the software. So just like you can interact with Storm on Demand via the API, you can interact with your load balancing cluster via a SOAP compliant API.

Cost effectiveness

Depending on circumstances, it may also be cost beneficial to go with a Managed Dedicated Load Balancing cluster.

Let's look at a hypothetical:

You are a platform as a service provider that offers your platform in a highly available environment utilizing load balancing between two front end nodes, file replication between these nodes, and highly available Percona technologies. This platform requires SSL.

You are looking to move over your infrastructure to Liquid Web's Smart Server Platform and currently have 20 customers, with expectations of significantly increased growth. You will be averaging throughput of 30Mbps.

In this case, the idea is that you would need 20 Virtual IPs (VIPs) to handle these customers, as each will require it's own VIP (yes, you can do SNI, however it's also dependent on the client browser to support it, so it's not a bad idea to have the domain on it's own IP).

With load balancing available to Smart Servers, you need to create a new "Load Balancer" for every VIP that you want to use. These run $100/month each. Then there is $25/month per node that you have being fed from that VIP.

So based on these figures:

20 VIPS * $100/VIP = $2,000/month
$25/Node * 2 Nodes/VIP * 20 VIPS = $1,000/month
Total: $3,000/month

So $3,000/month *just* in load balancing costs.

In comparison, we could potentially get you into a Managed Dedicated Load Balancing cluster for $1,198/month - a savings of $1,800/month! And of course the savings can keep going up as the client base increases in this hypothetical scenario.


There are many other benefits that Managed Dedicated Load Balancing has over shared public cloud load balancing, however, the above two are ones that I've seen most frequently cited so far as reasons for going with Managed Dedicated Load Balancing.

If you are interested in finding out if Managed Dedicated Load Balancing is right for your situation, give sales a call at 800-580-4985 today!

Comments (4) Trackbacks (0)
  1. Jason – this makes total sense to me!

  2. I am guessing your “Managed Load Balancing” is exactly the same as Load Balance on SOD website?


    Just wondering how many concurrent connections per node can it handle?

    • Ed,

      The load balancing offered by Storm on Demand does indeed use the same technology. However, given that it’s a shared environment, the customer won’t have full access to it like they would if they had their own cluster.

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