Blog Posts by Miles Libbey

  • Flickr’s New Dynamic Content Acceleration

    Flickr recently finished a project that sped the html download of their pages to users by an average of 30%, by adding a proxy layer between the user request and the webservers. It seems counter-intuitive that you can actually improve the download time by adding an extra (non-caching) layer of machines. So, if the users and the Flickr webservers stayed in the same place, and we still use TCP and HTTP (and the speed of light didn't change), how could we affect the download time?

    Now, when a user connects to www.flickr.com, they first connect through a proxy/cache server instead of directly connecting to our webservers. Yahoo has set up a globally distributed system of proxy/cache servers, roughly based on the Apache Traffic Server. When a browser does a DNS lookup for www.flickr.com, Yahoo's DNS system attempts to find the closest available proxy/cache server to you. For instance, from my home in Mountain View, California, my request would likely be directed to a proxy/cache in

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  • Traffic Server graduates to top-level open-source project

    This week, the Apache Software Foundation Board promoted Traffic Server to a top-level project (TLP). This is a big step going forward, as it recognizes Traffic Server as an active and well-functioning open-source community. There is nothing to stop us now!

    Traffic Server is a fast, scalable, and extensible HTTP/1.1-compliant caching proxy server, which Yahoo! donated to the Apache Foundation. Since incubation inception last July, six new committers joined the project and the v2.0.0-alpha version was released. Some 170 Jira bug tickets have been resolved so far, and numerous new bugs and enhancement requests have been filed.

    The final 2.0.0 release is almost ready, and should be available soon. The v2.0.x releases are all very close to the same code Yahoo! has successfully been using internally for years. It's fair to say that it is well tested.

    In addition to the stable 2.0.x releases, we have a new developer-only release about to hit the download servers. We have adopted the HTTPD

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