Geographic Proxy Bandwidth Usage

Marcus Clyne maccaday at
Fri Jul 31 23:56:37 MSD 2009

Cliff Wells wrote:
> On Fri, 2009-07-31 at 12:42 -0400, ktwalrus wrote:
>> This is probably a stupid question, but when I use nginx to proxy and
>> HTTP request to a server in another geographic location, does the HTTP
>> response go directly to the requester's IP address or does it route
>> back through the nginx proxy server?
> It goes back through the proxy.  It would seem rather odd to your
> browser to request something from a server and suddenly get a response
> from some other random server, wouldn't it?
You can do that with IP tunneling.

Normally, though, the trafficking algorithms don't permit checking the 
IP for geo information - at least none of the implementations I know of 
allow for that, so it's probably not appropriate for you.
>> I'm getting ready to split my site into two locations (West Coast and
>> East Coast of the US) and I want to redirect requests to the closest
>> geographic server, but don't want the bandwidth for the response to go
>> through the original request server.
> You'd have to redirect, or use some other method of geographic load
> distribution method such as DNS, for example: 
> I don't use either of these services, so I'm not recommending them in
> any way, other than to the extent that they do what you need.
Alternatively, you could use a different domain for each, e.g.
>> I think the bandwidth from the response server would be direct to the
>> requester and not the request server, but I just want to make sure.
>> Otherwise, geographic load serving woulldn't be very useful.
> It isn't terribly useful in the scenario you seem to be suggesting.
> Cliff
I agree.

Is there a compelling reason why you'd want to have two servers / 
clusters on opposite sides of the US?  The difference in speed between 
them would be minimal, and unless you're dealing with very large 
clusters of servers, I would think it more of a disadvantage than an 
advantage having two clusters in different geographical locations, 
though fairly close to each other in cyberspace.

I don't know who your service providers are, but you may get a faster 
response from a good host on the opposite side of the US than a slower 
one on 'your' side, anyway.  You might even get a faster response from a 
good host in the UK than a slower one in your own region.



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