A Practical Guide to Content Delivery Networks  book cover
2nd Edition

A Practical Guide to Content Delivery Networks

ISBN 9781138382022
Published September 27, 2018 by CRC Press
304 Pages 78 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Following in the tradition of its popular predecessor, A Practical Guide to Content Delivery Networks, Second Edition offers an accessible and organized approach to implementing networks capable of handling the increasing data requirements of today's always on mobile society. Describing how content delivery networks (CDN) function, it provides an understanding of Web architecture, as well as an overview of the TCP/IP protocol suite.

The book reports on the development of the technologies that have evolved over the past decade as distribution mechanisms for various types of Web content. Using a structural and visual approach, it provides step-by-step guidance through the process of setting up a scalable CDN.

  • Supplies a clear understanding of the framework and individual layers of design, including caching and load balancing
  • Describes the terminology, tactics, and potential problems when implementing a CDN
  • Examines cost-effective ways to load balance web service layers
  • Explains how application servers connect to databases and how systems will scale as volume increases
  • Illustrates the impact of video on data storage and delivery, as well as the need for data compression
  • Covers Flash and the emerging HTML5 standard for video

Highlighting the advantages and disadvantages associated with these types of networks, the book explains how to use the networks within the Internet operated by various ISPs as mechanisms for effectively delivering Web server based information. It emphasizes a best-of-breed approach to building your network to allow for an effective CDN to be built on practically any budget. To help you get started, this vendor-neutral reference explains how to code Web pages to optimize the delivery of various types of media. It also includes examples of successful approaches, from outsourcing to do it yourself.

Table of Contents

Introduction to Content Delivery Networking
The Modern Content Delivery Network 
     Client-Server Computing
     Use of Video Servers
     Server Network Architecture
     The Road to Push Technology
     Pull Technology
     Push Technology
Content Delivery Networking
     Client-Server Operations on the Internet 
     Client Server Operating on the Same Network 
     Client-Server Operations on Different Networks 
     Peering Point 
     Video Considerations

Client-Server Models 
Client Operations
     Browser Programs
Server Operations
Distance Relationship

Understanding TCP/IP
The TCP/IP Protocol Suite
     Protocol Suite Components 
     Physical and Data-Link Layers
     The Network Layer
     The Transport Layer
The Domain Name System
     Need for Address Resolution 
     Domain Name Servers 
     Top-Level Domain 
     DNS Operation 
     Configuring Your Computer 
     Root Name Servers 
     The NSLookup Tool 
     Expediting the Name Resolution Process 
     DNS Resource Records

The CDN Model
Why Performance Matters 
     Economics of Poor Performance 
     Customer Loyalty 
     Company Perception 
Examining Internet Bottlenecks 
     Entry and Egress Considerations 
     Access Delays
     Egress Delays 
     Benefits of Edge Servers 
     Peering Points
Edge Operations 
     CDN Operation 
     The Akamai Network
     Edge Side Includes
     Edge Side Includes for Java 
The Akamai HD Network 
     Using the HD Network with Flash

Caching and Load Balancing
     Browser Cache 
     Other Types of Web Caches
     Application Caching 
     Cache Operation 
     Cache Control Methods
     Windows DNS Caching Problems 
     Viewing HTTP Headers 
     Considering Authentication 
     Enhancing Cacheability
     Load Balancing 
     Types of Load Balancing 
     Load Balancing Technique
     DNS Load Balancing 
     DNS Load-Sharing Methods
     Managing User Requests

The CDN Enterprise Model
Traffic Analysis 
     Using Web Logs
     Using Logging Strings 
     Web-Log Analysis 
     Top Referring Domains
     Considering Status Codes 
     Web-Log Statistics 
     Reverse Mapping 
     SOA Record Components 
     Origination Country 
      Originating Time Zone 
     Other Statistics 
     Other Analysis Tools 
     Other Logging Information 
     Microsoft’s Performance Monitor
     Using a Network Analyzer 
     Other Tools to Consider
Content Delivery Models 
     Single-Site, Single-Server Model
     Single-Site, Multiple-Server Model
     Multiple-Sites, Single-Server per Site Model
     Multiple-Site, Multiple-Server per Site Model
     An In-Between Model

Web-Hosting Options 
     Cost Elements and Total Cost
     Performance Elements 
     Server-Side Language Support 
     Web-Service Tools 
     The Importance of Images 
     Back-End Database Support 
     Facility Location(s)
     Types of Web-Hosting Facilities 
     Dedicated Hosting 
     Shared Server Hosting
     Colocated Hosting 
     Evaluation Factors

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Gilbert Held is an award winning author, lecturer and educator. Gil graduated from Pennsylvania Military College, earning a BS in Electrical Engineering. In 1966 Gil earned a MSEE degree from the New York University School of Engineering and Science, and received an MSTM and MBA degrees from The American University in Washington, DC.

Gil was Chief of Data Communications for the US Office of Personnel Management for 20 years, until a reorganization and consolidation of data centers resulted in the closing of the Macon Data Center. Gil remained on staff in Macon and was tasked with developing OPM’s Web presence on the Internet and was responsible for designing, acquiring and constructing OPM’s presence on the Internet for which he received the Directors Award.

Between 1977 and the present Gil has authored over 100 technical books covering personal computing, data communications and business In addition, Gil authored over 500 technical articles and for 17 years has served as the Editor in Chief of the Wiley International Journal of Network Management. In recognition of his excellence in writing Gil twice was awarded the Interface Karp award. Gil has also received a variety of awards ranging from various charities to different publishers, such as Federal Week which considered him as one of the top 50 persons in Government and Academia.

In addition to authoring books, Gil has taught 14 different graduate level courses and was selected by the Vice President to represent the United States at the Popov Conference in Moscow and represented the United States at the Jerusalem Conference on Information Technology. Gil has appeared on the NBC Evening News and his technical book sales have exceeded a million copies.


Held, a networking expert and lecturer, presents this guide to the principles of content delivery networks (CDN). Built to provide multiple, easily accessible nodes for dispensing high bandwidth content (web video for instance) without overloading internet backbone capacities, CDNs help reduce the bottlenecks that occur when popular content resides on a single over-accessed server. This volume begins with an overview of client and server models of information networking and the TCP/IP Internet protocols and proceeds through an examination of the CDN model, caching and load balancing and concludes with a discussion of CDN in an enterprise setting and web hosting options with CDN. Intended for network architects and server administrators, this second edition includes extended information on web video including Flash and new HTML 5 standards.
—In Research Book News, booknews.com, February 2011