When COVID-related lockdowns were introduced, and people started living their full lives at home, digitally connecting to everything, it became clear that bandwidth could pose a problem. Network limitations took the spotlight, and major streaming companies like Netflix and YouTube voluntarily reduced streaming quality of their services in a bid to keep the internet from collapsing. Mostly, the internet remained resilient in what consulting firm Deloitte has called a period of “Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity and Ambiguity (VUCA)”.
In this blog series, we’ve been looking inside Varnish to see what’s under the hood. There’s a lot more going on than meets the eye, beyond simple caching, beyond even Varnish Configuration Language.
Content delivery networks (CDNs) can be much more than just the workhorse of content delivery. Sure, that’s what they are designed for, but you can get much more from them if you’re able to extend their functionality -- everything from being able to create separate ‘tenants’ in your own CDN setup (for internal use or to sell CDN services on to external customers) to building in web application firewalls, cache replication, and load balancing functions, and much more.
Until recently, most users of private CDN solutions have had unique use cases, requiring flexibility and customizability without the costs and challenges of building from scratch or relying solely on public/commercial CDNs. And in fairness, the features of a private CDN, such as custom PoP placement and custom configuration, aren’t for everyone. After all, commercial CDNs deliver what they promise: efficiency and performance in content delivery at large scale.
Until they don't.