Viability of nginx instead of hardware load balancer?

Payam Chychi pchychi at
Thu Sep 24 21:04:04 MSD 2009

On Thu, Sep 24, 2009 at 8:46 AM, Gabriel Ramuglia <gabe at> wrote:
> My experiences with spread were less than stellar, but instead of
> going into that, I'll just give a piece of advice. Spread first tries
> to communicate using multicast, and then falls back to broadcasting.
> At my hosting provider, since their equipment didn't support
> multicast, this meant that, even though communications were only going
> between two computers and did not need to be broadcast to everyone,
> all communications were being broadcast to everyone on the subnet. It
> didn't take long before my hosting provider null routed my server. You
> can override this behaviour by telling spread to communicate using
> unicast, but this only works if there is only one destination for each
> source piece of information.
> Just something to keep in mind
> -Gabe
> On Thu, Sep 24, 2009 at 4:04 PM, Barry Abrahamson <barry at> wrote:
>> On Sep 17, 2009, at 5:49 AM, John Moore wrote:
>>> It certainly does, thanks! Could I trouble you to explain a little more
>>> about your use of Wackamole and Spread? I've not used either of them before.
>> There is a How-to here:
>> You are just using nginx instead of HAProxy, but the Wackamole and Spread
>> portion still applies.
>> Scalable Internet Architectures (
>> )
>> also has a section on how this works.
>>> Also, is there any reason why a hosting company would have problems with
>>> such a setup (i.e., this won't be running in our hardware on our premises,
>>> but we have full control of Linux servers).
>> Yes, you have to be a little careful here and ask questions up front.  A lot
>> of hosting companies segment their switches such that each port is it's own
>> VLAN which means you can't "float" IPs between ports which is what you need
>> for this to work.  If you tell your hosting company what you are trying to
>> do and tell them that you need to be able to have IPs which are
>> programmatically moved between switch ports they should be able to tell you
>> if this is possible or not.  Some hosts may require you have some sort of
>> "private rack" or other upgrade to make this possible.
>> Barry
>> --
>> Barry Abrahamson | Systems Wrangler | Automattic
>> Blog:

why not just ask for your own private vlan?  a private vlan will not
only create a boundry around your unciast/broadcast traffic but it
will also allow you to have your own ip unshared ip space (as appose
to shared vlan/shared ip space). Also, private vlan will give you the
frameworkf or moving your ip space anywhere you want inside the

In regards to floating ip, just hava them provision you on a layer2
segment, that will allow you to have multiple ports on their netowrk,
in the same private vlan, in different locations

Payam Tarverdyan Chychi
Network Security Specialist / Network Engineer

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