Alibaba Cloud CDN

In this blog I’m going to deep dive into the Alibaba Cloud CDN, describing the service, how does it work, what are the common scenarios and the benefits.

What is CDN?

Content Delivery Network (CDN) is an easy and cost-effective way to distribute content with low latency and high data transfer speed. CDN has been applied in multiple scenarios including site acceleration, on-demand streaming, and live streaming.

Why do I need a CDN?

If you are a user in the Asia region and you are uploading a video or any content in any other region, then you will be facing a problem regarding latency, distribution, bandwidth, and server performance issues. CDN helps you to resolve this problem and it distributes the content to the nodes that are nearest to the end-user and provides low latency delivery of the content to the end-user.

How does Alibaba Cloud CDN work?

Alibaba Cloud Content Delivery Network (CDN) is a distributed network built over the bearer network and contains edge nodes deployed in different regions. It speeds up the distribution of your static & dynamic web content such as image files, HTML files, flash files, CSS files, and JavaScript files.
You can select the Image and Small File workload type to your users.

CDN delivers your resources or content through a worldwide network of data center called CDN nodes.

When a user requests resources that you are serving with Alibaba Cloud CDN, the user is routed (via CNAME  record) to the nodes that provide the lowest latency so that the content is delivered with the best possible performance.

If the resources are already in the CDN nodes, the low latency CDN delivers it immediately. In case it is not in the CDN nodes, then the CDN retrieves it from your origin server.

Alibaba Cloud nodes distribution

Alibaba Cloud Content Delivery Network (CDN) has more than 2,800 nodes deployed across the world. More than 2,300 nodes are deployed across 31 provincial regions in mainland China. Among these nodes, a large number of them are deployed in first-tier cities and provincial capitals. More than 500 nodes are deployed across 70 countries and regions outside Mainland China, including China (Hong Kong), China (Macao), and China (Taiwan).  The throughput of the entire content delivery network reaches up to 130 Tbit/s.

Common Scenarios

One common scenario:

The Image and Small File workload types are suitable for accelerating the distribution of a large number of static resources. Your Image and Small File workload type may contain images, small CSS files, and small JavaScript files.

The figure below shows the architecture of Alibaba cloud CDN which is used to accelerate images and small files.

Another common scenario:

If your file is greater than 20 MB in a variety of formats then Alibaba Cloud recommends you to use Alibaba Cloud CDN with Object Storage Service (OSS) to accelerate the back-to-origin process.

The figure below shows the architecture of downloads of large files with the Alibaba Cloud CDN.

What are the benefits?

  • Easy to use: Alibaba Cloud provides a CDN console with a graphical overview and features for simple management. Suitable for small and large files, on-demand video and audio streaming, live streaming media, Dynamic Route for CDN (DCDN), and Secure Content Delivery Network (SCDN).
  • Pricing: Alibaba Cloud Provide four types of billing methods:

               1. Pay-by-bandwidth

      2. Pay-by-data-transfer

               3. Billing of value-added services

               4. Subscription outbound data transfer plan

  • Stability & High Speed
  • High Efficiency and Intelligence
  • Cost-effectiveness

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