How do I set up a CDN server?

Today, users consume more content than ever. That’s why website owners gradually switch to decentralized content delivery networks (CDN) that allow them to reduce the load on the main server and optimize the loading speed of static elements on the website. How can you set up a CND server? Let’s figure it out in the article below.

What is a CDN?

A CDN service is a decentralized storage system on servers placed around the world. It allows you to use various hosts for quicker content delivery, thus reducing the page loading time.

For example, if your primary audience is visitors from the United States while the origin server of the website is in Europe, the distance between two points increases the response time on the server.

By switching to servers located in the United States or South America, you can ensure a faster loading speed for visitors in Australia, making them more inclined to browse your website longer.

How to choose a CDN service provider?

Most CDN services offer nearly the same features, but not all of them can deliver. Here are the main factors to look for if you opt for a third-party provider:

  • Points of performance (PoP).  Choose a CDN that covers regions closest to the location of the origin server. This will help you increase the overall system performance and loading speed.
  • Availability. Unfortunately, no CDN service can guarantee perfect, 100% uptime. Before choosing a provider, make sure to look into your needs and consider a network with fallback options to support a stable connection.
  • Price. Most CDN services offer either a fixed price per month or subscriptions based on the number of features. Subscription-based CDNs, like G-Core Labs, allow you to choose the plan based on your needs and customize it as you expand.
  • Security. To avoid breaches and leaks of sensitive data, choose CDNs that offer DDoS and vulnerability protection and API security.

Step-by-step CDN server setup guide

#1 Pick the server configuration

You have to choose whether to use dedicated or virtual instances for both your origin server and your PoPs. You can combine the two and create a hybrid CDN that matches your needs.

#2 Decide where to locate the servers

For the origin server, you want it to be as close as possible to your geolocation. But when it comes to PoP servers, there are a few things to consider:

  • The location of your most important audience;
  • The latency between the origin server and your audience;
  • Global traffic patterns.

#3 Choose an internet provider

It’s better to pick a reliable Internet provider that covers the region you want to serve. Make sure the provider is capable of serving a stable connection during peak times and ensures 24/7 uptime.

#4 Install the CDN software of your choice

CDN software should be installed on your origin server and each PoP. Most CDN providers offer a quick setup sequence that allows you to configure the network and optimize caching settings.