8 uses for Cloud Load Balancing or Failover
As we talk to people during the week, we periodically make suggestions for using Cloud Load Balancing or Failover that are often met with surprise, such as “Oh, I didn’t know it could be used for that”. So we thought it might be helpful to compile a list of 8 potential uses. Of course, it works with just about everything under the sun, but maybe this list will give you some ideas.
Websites & Applications – This is probably the most obvious one. Everyone understands how important it is to ensure your website is always available. For an e-commerce site, downtime results in lost revenue, and even if you simply have a static corporate website, users may question the viability of your brand if your website is down. So use Cloud Load Balancing to create active/active or active/passive availability. But don’t stop with public facing websites or even e-commerce sites, how about support portals, CRMs, APIs and mobile applications? If it is web-based and requires a high level of availability, Cloud Load Balancing will come to the rescue.
Desktop & Application Virtualization – Do you use virtual desktops to provide users access to apps and desktops wherever they are? If you do, this is a critical one. Whether you use Microsoft Remote Desktop Services, Citrix XenApp or something else, Cloud Load Balancing can help ensure availability via two ISP links to the same site, to completely redundant sites, or any combination in between including routing users to a site closest to them! When you increase Desktop & Application Virtualization availability, you increase productivity (and decrease complaints, of course).
Mail Servers – If you think the built-in MX record redundancy feature in DNS has you covered, sadly you’re mistaken. MX records only ensure that mail can be delivered to one of your servers, but what about your ability to retrieve email? Cloud Load Balancing works beautifully with most mail platforms, including Microsoft Exchange ensuring ActiveSync, OWA and everything else remains accessible, and if you’re lucky to have a multi-site Exchange deployment, it can even route users to the closest site for enhanced performance.
SSL VPNs – If you remote into your corporate network to access applications, servers or other devices, Cloud Load Balancing (or Failover) can ensure your VPN can also deliver five 9’s of availability. Cloud Load Balancing can handle VPN devices in multiple locations or even a single site with a dual WAN/ISP connection to ensure uninterrupted access. (If VPN is critical to your organization where even moments of downtime wreak havoc, inquire about our Cloud VPN.)
Single Sign-on – Whether you use Microsoft ADFS, SAP, Symantec or any other on-premise Single-Sign-On server, ensuring your workforce can authenticate day or night is vitally important to the sanity of the IT department. Cloud Load Balancing works seamlessly with them all and for multi-site deployments, can even direct users to the server closest to them.
VoIP Servers – If you have an offsite or branch-based workforce where phones must connect to your central VoIP server, Cloud Load Balancing can save the day. We can load balance traffic active/active or route to a backup VoIP server in an alternate location to seamlessly ensure your phones remain online. We can even route traffic for mobile VoIP apps too! And if you’re a VoIP service provider, nothing can increase service availability better than Total Uptime.
Instant Messaging – Jabber, Lync, Jira, and everything in between. Ensuring your workforce can continue to chat internally or even with customers is critical. Cloud Load Balancing can seamlessly ensure availability to your users wherever they are.
Cloud Storage and File Transfer – Beyond simple FTP and even SFTP, have you considered Backup or Cloud Storage servers? If you host storage internally or offer backup-as-a-service, ensuring your clients can always reach the data center to access their files is critical. Take it one step further and use Cloud Load Balancing to direct users to the closest file server for peak performance!
Of course, there are many more things you could do with Cloud Load Balancing, but hopefully these give you some ideas. If you’re curious about whether it will work for your application, contact us!
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