Contents


Overview

GoGrid provides Dynamic Load Balancing (DLB) services using state-of-the-art distributed architecture that was built from the ground up by our engineering team. Using a unique algorithm, the DLB distributes traffic across all the real servers based on assigned weights and on the logic used by the algorithm. Using intelligent health checks, you can monitor all servers in the pool so in the event a server or the application on the server fails, requests are automatically and seamlessly forwarded to other servers.

If you're looking for information on our legacy F5 Load Balancers, you can find the user manual here: F5 Load Balancer

The DLB is designed on an "object model" meaning it is composed of independent objects the end user must define and then configure to build a load balancer. The individual objects that comprise a load balancer are the VIP, Listener, Health Checker and Real IP.

The relationship of the objects is detailed below.


DLB Relationship.jpg

Deploying a Load Balancer

Pre-Requisites

  1. You should already have web servers available that you'll use as “real servers” for load balancing. They can be dedicated or virtual (cloud) servers; however, they all need to have a public IPv4 address. These are the servers to which the load balancer will forward traffic.

Real IP and Health Checker

  1. Log in to the GoGrid management console.
  2. From the Grid or List tab/view, click the Add button.

    Add grid view c.jpg Add list view c.jpg

  3. An Add a New Object dialog box appears. Select the data center where you wish to deploy your load balancer from the drop-down list, then click Dynamic Load Balancer.

    DLB add a.jpg

  4. The Networking tab will appear. Alternatively, you can click on the Networking tab directly.

    Networking.JPG

  5. Although the default view is the VIP object, you'll want to start by selecting the Real IP view from the left-hand menu if you're deploying a DLB for the first time. You will note that the Real IP is the first option in the left-hand menu.

    NOTE: The DLB will only know to send traffic to your servers if you create a real server object, so you need to create that first.

    Real IP.JPG

  6. On the Real IP page, you can add GoGrid IPs as well non-GoGrid (external) IPs. What you're adding is an object that references the underlying server IP. If you plan to create your DLB in a particular data center like EU-West-1, then you want to set your Real IP filter for that same data center. For latency reasons, you'll want the real servers to be in the same data center as your DLB - both in EU-West-1, for example.

    Real IP add.jpg

  7. Click the "Add" button to define a Real IP. Give your Real IP a descriptive name.
  8. You can also assign it a weight. If you don't update the field, it will default to 100. Learn more about the impact of setting a weight to a server.
  9. After defining your Real IPs, define a Health Checker first by clicking on the Health Checker link.
  10. Click on the "Add" button to create a Health Checker.

    Health Checker c.jpg

  11. You'll want to select the same data center as your DLB (EU-West-1, for example).
  12. Give the Health Checker a descriptive name.
  13. You have the option of selecting from three different Health Checker types. See the Load Balancer Overview for details on these types.
  14. After you click "Save", the Health Checker will be displayed in the list view.

VIP and Listener

  1. After defining your Real IPs and Health Checker, you'll need to add a VIP and Listener.
  2. Click on the VIP link in the left-hand menu to return to the VIP page.
  3. You can create a new DLB by clicking on the "Add" button. When creating a new DLB, make sure to select the data center where you want to create it. The Name field is required.

    VIP c.JPG

  4. When you click on the Real IP drop down you'll see the Real IPs you defined on the Real IP page. You'll only see GoGrid Real IPs that are in the same data center as your DLB. You'll also see all your non-GoGrid external IPs if you defined any. Click "Assign" to assign each Real IP to the pool.
  5. After clicking "Save" your DLB will be displayed in the list view and a VIP will be assigned to it.
  6. Next you'll want to create a Listener. Click on the Listener link.
  7. The Listener is important because it forwards the traffic from the VIP port to the Real port. You can define more than one Listener per VIP if you want to forward more ports to your real server pool. Click the "Add" button to create a Listener.

    Listener c.jpg

  8. Create the Listener in the same data center as your DLB.
  9. Give it a descriptive name and associate it with the VIP you created.
  10. You can choose from two Protocol options. We pre-populate the port for the HTTP protocol, for example HTTP is for web traffic on port 80. You can use the TCP protocol to balance any port at Layer 4, including for encrypted traffic on port 443 (this is NOT SSL termination!). You can change the Listener and Real ports on all protocols. The Listener and Real ports don't have to be the same.

    Listener top.jpg

  11. Next you'll want to attach the Health Checker you created earlier. You'll see it available in the drop-down. The Health Checkers that you can select will depend on the Protocol selected.

    Listener bot.jpg

  12. This is also where you can define the Persistence and Algorithm your DLB will use.
  13. Note that Cookie Name is only available if you select the "Session Cookie" Persistence option.
  14. After you click "Save", the Listener will be displayed in the list view.

Back to the Load Balancer Overview

Disabling a Load Balancer

  1. You have the ability to disable a DLB so that it no longer receives traffic.
  2. Log in to the GoGrid management console.
  3. From the Grid view, click on the image and you'll see several options appear to the left of the load balancer. Click on the "Status" icon.

    Grid disable c.jpg

    From the List view, select the load balancer you wish to disable and then click on the "Enable/Disable" button.

    DLB List c.jpg

    You can also disable the DLB from the Networking tab by going to the VIP page, selecting the DLB, and clicking the "On/Off" button.

    VIP e.jpg

  4. A pop-up message will appear asking to confirm that you want to change the status of the DLB. Click on "Yes, Change" to continue.

    Disable DLB.jpg

  5. The status of the Load Balancer changes to "Disabled".
  6. Follow the same steps to enable a DLB that has been disabled.


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NOTE: Even if a DLB is disabled you'll still be billed for usage because you're still consuming resources. To stop billing for the DLB, you must delete it.

Deleting a Load Balancer

  1. Log in to the GoGrid management console.
  2. From the Grid view, click on the Dynamic Load Balancer image and you'll see several options appear on the Action Bar. Click on the "Delete" icon.

    Grid delete c.jpg

    From the List view, select the load balancer you wish to delete, and then click on "Delete" in the Action Bar.

    DLB List d.jpg

    You can also delete the DLB from the Networking tab by going to the VIP page, selecting the DLB, and clicking on the "Delete" button.

    VIP d.jpg

  3. A pop-up message will appear asking you to confirm the deletion. Click on "Yes, Delete" to continue the deletion.

    DLB delete message 1.jpg

  4. Another pop-up message will appear informing you that all data will be lost and is irrecoverable. Click on "Yes, Delete" again to complete the deletion.

    DLB delete message 2.jpg

  5. A message will appear at the top of screen informing you that the load balancer has been successfully deleted.

Listeners

  1. On the Listeners page, select the Listener you want to delete.
  2. Click on the "Delete" button.
  3. A pop-up message will appear asking you to confirm this deletion. Click on "Delete".
  4. Note that this change is permanent.

Health Checker

  1. On the Health Checker page, select the Health Checker you want to delete.
  2. Click on the "Delete" button.
  3. A pop-up message will appear asking you to confirm this deletion. Click on "Delete".
  4. You can't delete a Health Checker that is associated with a Listener. You must either delete the Listener first or edit the Listener to point to a different Health Checker before deleting the Health Checker.
  5. Note that this change is permanent.

Real IP

  1. On the Real IP page, select the Real IP you want to delete.
  2. Click on the "Delete" button.
  3. A pop-up message will appear asking you to confirm this deletion. Click on "Delete".
  4. Note that this change is permanent.


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NOTE: If you delete the underlying real server, the Real IP object will remain. Make sure you delete any Real IP objects if the underlying server no longer exists or you will end up with orphaned objects. Since there is no underlying server, any orphaned Real IP objects will fail the health check and will not be available to load balancing traffic.

Editing a Load Balancer

Users can edit all the objects of the DLB in GoGrid's management console or the API. As a rule, you can't change the data center in which an object resides once you've created it. You also can't change the Object ID that is automatically created for you. If you use the API, you'll need to use the Object ID (not the "Name") to reference your objects in the URI.

VIP

  1. On the VIP page, select the DLB you want to edit.
  2. Click on the "Edit" button.
  3. On this screen you can modify the properties of the DLB.
  4. In addition, you can add or remove Real IPs from the DLB.

    VIP edit.jpg

  5. Select the Real IP you want to remove from the pool. Click on the "Remove from VIP" button.
  6. In addition, you can add more Real IPs to the pool by selecting them from the drop-down and then clicking the "Save" button.

Listeners

  1. On the Listeners page, select the Listener you want to edit.
  2. Click on the "Edit" button.
  3. On this screen, you can modify the properties of the Listener.

Health Checker

  1. On the Health Checker page, select the Health Checker you want to edit.
  2. Click on the "Edit" button.
  3. On this screen, you can modify the properties of the Health Checker.

Real IP

  1. On the Real IP page, select the Real IP you want to edit.
  2. Click on the "Edit" button.
  3. On this screen, you can modify the properties of the Real IP.
  4. You can only change the properties of the Real IP object and not the server with which it's associated. The server selected is fixed once it's created so the object is then associated with that real server. If you need to add another real server to be load balanced, you'll need to create it with a new Real IP object. Click on "Add" to create a new one.
  5. You can also change the weight of the Real IP. For the Weighted Round Robin and Weighted Least Connect algorithms, this change is dynamic and it will take the new weight into account immediately in its calculations. Note that changing the weight impacts the Real IP regardless of which VIP it is associated with, so be careful about making this change.

Back to the Load Balancer Overview

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