The Dyn Anycast platform offers some great advanced features to help you accomplish your load balancing, disaster recovery, and geo-targeting solutions. Advanced services are attached to hostnames, and we quantify them for your scope in a number-of-instances model. So, if you need advanced features on a number of hostnames, having independent services on all of them might increase your scope.
Here at Dyn we believe in transparency and truly want you to have the right number of advanced features that fit your needs. The following will show how you can consolidate advanced features where applicable using a Canonical Name (CNAME).
CNAME records alias one hostname to another. For example, many customers make an alias for their domain to make it so visitors don’t have to type in the “www.” (www.example.com to example.com). This ensures that both www.example.com and example.com are utilizing the same endpoint with less management.
What you need to think about when determining the number of advanced features you may need is not necessarily the number of hostnames that you have, but the number of unique IP Address configurations or traffic patterns you have on these various hostnames.
Let’s look at an example scenario: you want to configure Active Failover on 5 hostnames in a zone that all share the same primary IP address (126.96.36.199) and you want them all to failover to the same secondary IP (188.8.131.52). CNAME records allow you to configure a single instance of Active Failover on one hostname and point the record back to the initial hostname for every similar configuration. You can see an example of this configuration on the Dyn platform below:
Since these hostnames have a CNAME record on it which is pointing to the host with the Active Failover, you will always get the same response for all of these hostnames whether Active Failover is serving its primary healthy address or the secondary “failover” address. To make this even better, DynECT collapses any request in the same authority, so the response is handed out in the initial look up (no extra DNS look up, and a lightning fast response time!).
For customers that have many advanced features and would like a central zone to manage them on, our clients will often look to making a management zone. In this, you don’t get the benefit of having the CNAME collapse, but you will have fewer places to manage your services and limiting access to your admin users is much easier. In the end, it comes down to being a trade off of what you value most for the project.
Ultimately, reducing your utilized services to the smallest possible count will make your management and scope much easier. If you ever have questions on how to do this, feel free to reach out to your friendly neighborhood Sales Engineer and we can hook you up.