Every website owner opts for a higher speed to connect with the viewers. The faster they can connect to them, the more reliable the websites appear to the users. So, more and more website owners are rushing after the best content delivery network (CDN) for better dependability and speed.
But speed is not the only factor that's important to the website owners. Web-security and performance have always been on the stage. So, what could be the solution to all the problems? The answer is - Cloudflare!
What is Cloudflare?
Cloudflare is a company primarily providing the Content Delivery Network. But it's not only that.
It has been serving the website owners with faster site load time, less bandwidth consumption, better security against DDoS attacks, and many more.
Do you know what the best thing about Cloudflare is? It’s free! Yes, you have read it right.
It was about time we shared an honest Cloudflare review with you guys. Let’s hop on!
Cloudflare mainly seeks to provide two major services - reduced latency and safeguard against cyber-attacks. And to achieve that, you need a bunch of things.
So this Cloudflare review, let’s look through the products offered:
Content Delivery Network (CDN)
While some people think of Cloudflare as a CDN, it is much more than that. In fact, CDN is just a feature of this project - a big one of course!
Cloudflare has 152 data centers placed in more than 74 countries across the globe. Its Anycast cache out the static contents and reduce latency throughout every geographic location.
The whole world is after this one specific target - optimization. To optimize the websites, Cloudflare has adopted technologies like HTTP 2, TLS 1.3, etc.
Moreover, they are trying to enhance the images and other contents for desktop as well as mobile device users. They even have an enhanced Mobile SDK to increase the performance and reduce load times for all the mobile carriers.
Domain Name System (DNS)
38% of all the traffic routed over the DNS are using Cloudflare. Undoubtedly, Cloudflare is the king if we are talking about the DNS traffics.
Stay Available Always
With advanced technologies like load balancing and geo-steering, Cloudflare thrives on ensuring enhanced performance and availability.
Argo and Railgun
Argo routing method is the trademarked technology of Cloudflare. With this technology, a visitor is routed through the least clogged path to the content using their private network. Argo Tunnel will encrypt the path between the visitors’ server and the nearest data center.
Railgun, on the other hand, can compress uncacheable contents up to 99.6% and increase the performance by 200%.
So, if you have a website that has rich quality images or videos, Argo and Railgun can help you connect more easily with your precious visitors.
Who doesn't hate buffering while watching an intense video? For better user experience, Cloudflare has introduced the Cloudflare Stream™ that can load high-quality videos in no time.
Anycast Network and Spectrum
DDoS is one of the most feared threats to websites these days.
The Anycast network will defend the websites from DDoS attacks. The network has a capacity of 15Tbps speed. It absorbs such attacks and disperses it geographically across the world. To deal with the DDoS attacks, they have introduced Spectrums to protect the TCP applications.
People are always afraid of thieves who can steal their data. The DNSSEC puts a stop to such spoofs and ensures safety from the hackers who acts as the middleman.
Web Application Firewall (WAF)
We all are familiar with firewalls. It protects us from the application vulnerabilities. Cloudflare has WAF to safeguard the web applications.
Cloudflare can detect unusual requests from users and allow the legitimate requests only. No attacker can crash your website with unusual traffic requests.
The concept of Internet-of-Things (IoT) is not theoretical anymore. Cloudflare’s Orbit technology solves the security issues with IoT.
Cloudflare Access and Workers
Cloudflare has four different plans including the free option, and paid plans begin with Pro at $20/mo per domain, for small eCommerce, there's the Business plan for $200/mo and as for big businesses there is flexible Enterprise plan.
It offers the most cutting-edge technology regarding website performance and security. Here's a detailed table with features included in all Cloudflare plans:
|Argo Smart Routing||Paid ($5/mo.)||Paid ($5/mo.)||Paid ($5/mo.)||Custom Price|
|Tiered Caching||Included with Argo Smart Routing||Included with Argo Smart Routing||Included with Argo Smart Routing||Free|
|Health Checks||Every 60 seconds||Every 60 seconds||Every 60 seconds||Every 5 seconds|
|Global Load Balancing||Paid ($10/mo.)||Paid ($10/mo.)||Paid ($10/mo.)||Included|
|Enterprise-grade mitigation of DDoS||No||No||No||Included|
|Client maximum upload size||100 MB||100 MB||200 MB||500+ MB|
|Customer Support||Phone, email, and chat|
|Rate Limiting Rules||1||10||15||100|
Regarding the response time, Cloudflare is a bit disappointing. The server response time ranks 9th place among the 24 contenders in the USA.
But if you are looking at the performance in other regions, it's a different story. With the ranking of second in Europe and Africa, third in Latin America, fourth in Australia, and sixth in Asia, they are still one of the giants of CDNs.
Regarding consistency, Cloudflare ranks third place in the world. Currently, jsDelivr is at the top of the list.
But no other company has such a vast network across the globe. Moreover, the user-friendly nature of the service makes it even more lucrative compared to its competitors. Although, if your users are mainly coming from the USA and the UK, you might consider going for other options.
Cloudflare is ranked as a mid-level service provider in these two regions. In the UK Cloudflare has the 12th position and in the USA it is ranked 13th.
Concluding Thoughts on Cloudflare Review
Cloudflare has tons of features to amaze you. And it is exceptional to provide so many features for free. Although to enjoy the full facility, you have to spend a lot more than a dime!
But as it is a complete package of easy, feature-rich CDN and security solution, we will definitely give it an up-vote in our Cloudflare review. For those of you who want a global presence and reliable performance machine, Cloudflare is the answer you are looking for!