What do I need a CDN (Content Delivery Network) for and when do I have which advantages of a CDN?

The following explanations should help to answer the basic question of what advantages and disadvantages there are by using a CDN and whether there are alternatives.

Basically, a CDN follows the principle: "Bring content closer to the user". Leaving everything else aside, everyone should be using a CDN because, in theory, the proximity of a host directly affects connection time. However, the distance is relative and does not guarantee that a CDN will immediately improve the loading time. There are therefore also factors that speak less for using a CDN.

Leaving aside quic.cloud, a special CDN for Wordpress and the cache plugin for WP, the advantages of a CDN are systemic. This means that the CDN node used must actually be closer to the user location. This means that there is little to no point in using a CDN if the vast majority of visitors are from your own country, although this is mostly relative. Everyone has to decide that for themselves in individual cases, but you have to take into account that access to the origin host is faster than access to the CDN node. In the worst case, i.e. if most visitors come from their own country, they will be disadvantaged. It is therefore important to weigh up the need for a CDN.

QUIC.cloud takes on a special role among all CDNs because it not only provides the typical advantages of a CDN, but also supports LScache. In a certain respect, QUIC.cloud masks the weaknesses of the origin host, but only if a requested URL is in the cache, since there is no automatic synchronization of the cache in the quic.cloud node with the origin host to date. The cache status in the quic.cloud node therefore does not necessarily have to match the cache status in the origin host. A comparison is therefore made at the earliest when the cache status on the Quic.cloud host is "miss". Apparently, this circumstance reduces the advantages of quic.cloud. However, LiteSpeed is planning an automated comparison of the cache status between the node and the origin host, so that the respective node also benefits from a cache warmup.

Regardless of this, QUIC.cloud offers special services that are not yet available from any other CDN or through any WP plugin. These include VPI, the webp replacement feature with simultaneous use of an HTTP cache, image optimization, UCSS, critical CSS and LQIP without requiring another plugin.

But the further question arises whether there are alternatives for a CDN?

This question is absolutely justified if you are able to qualify the problem when establishing the connection between server and client. At first it sounds logical that the distance between client and host must have a direct impact on the loading time. However, the distance is also relative here, if you keep in mind that the transmission time on the Internet almost corresponds to the speed of light. Therefore, a distance only plays an almost immeasurable role. Why this is so is a result of the nature of how the Internet works.

If every browser knew under which IP a requested URL is located, there would be no need for a router. Since this is not the case, the request for a URL follows the principles of the Internet. If the closest DNS server does not know the IP, the DNS server closest in the hierarchy is queried, etc. etc. It is precisely this procedure that contributes significantly to why requests from URLs that are located abroad usually take much longer than requests to servers from your own country. However, well-known hosts that are accessed very often benefit from this circumstance. On the other hand, hosts that are rarely accessed are disadvantaged by this.

Anycast offers a way out of this dilemma. Anycast is very similar to the functional principle of CDN, but it is not about bringing the content closer to the user, but about the information about where the IP of the requested URL is resolved. Using anycast, the browser therefore receives the information under which IP the requested URL is resolved much faster and the transport of the request saves querying the routers that are otherwise involved. This peculiarity of the Internet has a considerable influence on the establishment of the connection and consequently the perceived loading time.

You too can benefit from our experience and knowledge. We have been specializing in optimizing the loading time of websites for 20 years now. Since 2012, i.e. for more than 10 years, we have also specialized in LiteSpeed and are therefore rightly the only authorized LiteSpeed Support Partner. Soon also solution partner. https://www.cachecrawler.com

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