Anycast DNS – Why start using it today?

Have you heard about Anycast DNS? You haven’t? No worries, here it is everything you need to know about it. Why it is really an important tech that should not be missed. Together will explore, other types of communication too. So, buckle up, and let’s start! 

Here, I won’t go deep, explaining what DNS is. DNS is the solution that we use to facilitate the Internet. It helps us resolve domain names, and we don’t need to remember countless IP addresses.  

Types of communication/routing methods 

When you want to send or receive data, you have a few options. Each has its specifications and can be used for a different purpose. 

Unicast

Unicast is one-to-one communication. It is the simplest method; the traffic is directed to a single host. The rest of the hosts will just ignore the traffic. When we talked about DNS, the request must go all the way to the single host who has the information. The host (DNS server) can be far away, and this will create high latency. 

Broadcast

Broadcast is a term that we all know from TV and radio. It means that the information is sent from one point to all. As you probably guessed, if DNS was using the broadcast method, the whole Internet would be impossible to use.

Multicast

Multicast is also one-to-many, not to all, but the group who is interested in the traffic. It is useful when there are no local nameservers. If a computer from this type of group needs a new IP address, it will send a query, and the answer will get back to all of the connected devices to that group. The IP address will be saved in the mDNS cache on the devices. 

Anycast

It can be seen as similar to Unicast, but with one very big difference, there are multiple hosts. A query will travel, searching for the host, but it will be redirected to the closest host (sever). That way, the query will get resolved a lot faster

What is Anycast DNS?

In the Anycast DNS scenario, there are multiple servers with the same IP address. A DNS query will start its journey, hopping from a server to another. But contrary to the Unicast DNS, there are a lot more servers who can answer the query. The closest server will resolve the DNS query and give a fast result. In case that the closest server is down, there are many other servers that can answer. Anycast DNS can also be used as a load-balancing method to distribute the traffic and lower the precision of a single server, which is located in a busier area. 

Setting it up is fast too. You need a single IP address that you will put in a DNS record and share it among the servers. 

So Anycast DNS is fast, provides redundancy, and it is easy to set up. 

Why start using Anycast DNS today?

If you have an international website, app, or service, you want speed and reliability in each location. You don’t want angry customers, do you? Anycast can provide excellent performance at different locations and manage the traffic more efficiently. Better network performance can translate into happier customers and probably more sales. If you have suffered from bad DNS performance in the past, you should check it now!

If you want to learn more about Anycast DNS, I recommend you to check this article – What is Anycast DNS and how does it work?

Conclusion:

So, what do you think about Anycast DNS now? It sure has advantages and can boost network performance significantly. It is also easy to set up and practical for scaling. Definitely, a tech that you must check!

Sources:

https://serverfault.com/questions/279482/what-is-the-difference-between-unicast-anycast-broadcast-and-multicast-traffic

https://ma.ttias.be/address-types-unicast-multicast-anycast

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anycast

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