Load balancing is quite an important aspect of any cloud environment with a prominent contribution to ensuring the availability of cloud-based applications for customers, end-users, and business partners. The process ensures the distribution of workloads throughout various servers, which is known as a server cluster. As the name indicates, load balancing prevents overloading of any particular server and the risks of breaking down.
Therefore, load balancing is a vital requirement for ensuring limited downtimes and better service availability. So, many people are doubtful regarding the better option in Amazon Elastic Load Balancer vs Azure Load Balancer. Both the load balancing alternatives bear the marks of top names such as AWS and Microsoft, thereby creating further confusion. Let us find out more about them and the differences between them to identify the better alternative.
Why is Load Balancing Important?
Load balancing not only provides the assurance of high availability but also profound support for scalability. Cloud infrastructures are generally favored for the benefits of scalability, and scaling up generally involves spinning up various virtual servers alongside running different application instances. Load balancers serve as the primary network component for the distribution of traffic throughout the new instances.
They can also detect unavailable servers and redirect traffic from them towards the operational servers. Furthermore, advanced load balancing algorithms could ensure improved functionalities in a basic load balancer. For example, load balancers could determine the likelihood of a server getting overloaded.
Therefore, you can clearly notice how load balancers contribute value to the cloud computing infrastructure of an organization. Now, it is important to know which load balancer can offer credible advantages for your cloud infrastructure needs. This is where most people arrive at the Amazon Elastic Load Balancer vs Azure Load Balancer debate. Let us take a look at both of them individually to draw out a viable comparison.
Definition of Amazon Elastic Load Balancer and Azure Load Balancer
Azure Load Balancer is the first entry in our debate on the choice of a standard load balancer for your cloud infrastructure. It is operational on layer 4 in the Open Systems Interconnection or OSI model and also serves as the sole point of contact for clients. The Azure Load Balancer helps in the distribution of inbound traffic arriving at the front end of the load balancer towards the instances in the backend pool.
The flow of traffic follows the pre-configured rules as well as health probes for load balancing. Interestingly, the instances in the backend pool could include instances featured in a virtual machine scale set or simply Azure VMs.
The most important player in the debate for the best basic load balancer, AWS Elastic Load Balancing, is also commendable. The facility of different load balancers in Amazon Elastic Load Balancing services is a confusing fact. However, a comparison of Amazon Elastic Load Balancer vs Azure Load Balancer would bring the Amazon classic load balancer into account.
Basically, AWS Elastic Load Balancing or ELB ensures automatic distribution of incoming application traffic throughout multiple targets, including containers, virtual appliances, Amazon EC2 instances, Lambda functions, and IP addresses. AWS ELB could support the management of continuously fluctuating load of application traffic in specific or multiple Availability Zones. Elastic Load Balancing on AWS presents four distinct variants of load balancers with automatic scaling, high availability, and inherently formidable security for better fault-tolerance of applications.
Types of Load Balancer Tools
In addition to Azure Load Balancer in the Amazon Elastic Load Balancer vs Azure Load Balancer debate, Microsoft also provides other load balancing options. You can find tools such as Front Door, Application Gateway, and Traffic Manager.
- Front Door basically serves as an application delivery network providing global load balancing alongside services for accelerating web applications.
- Traffic Manager is basically a DNS-based traffic load balancer that supports optimal distribution of traffic.
- Application Gateway delivers an application delivery controller or ADC as a service with different load balancing capabilities tailored for layer 7.
Azure Load Balancer includes two types of balancers for serving as the basic load balancer. The two balancers include a public load balancer and an internal load balancer.
Public Load Balancer
Public load balancer could offer connections going outward for virtual machines of (VMs) inside the virtual network. It is possible to achieve the outbound connections through the translation of private IP addresses to the public. Furthermore, public load balancers are generally useful for load balancing of internet traffic moving towards virtual machines.
Internal Load Balancer
On the other hand, an internal load balancer serves useful in cases where private IPs are required only for the frontend. Private or internal load balancers also work well for load balancing traffic in virtual networks. It is also possible to access the front end of the internal load balancer through the on-premises network. The following image shows the working of Azure Load Balancer through public and internal load balancer.
The four specific types of load balancers in Amazon Elastic Load Balancing include application load balancer, network load balancer, gateway load balancer, and classic load balancer. The distinct functions of Amazon Elastic Load Balancing make it a winner in Amazon Elastic Load Balancer vs Azure Load Balancer comparison.
- Classic load balancer works as the basic load balancer for multiple Amazon EC2 instances. It also operates at the connection level as well as request level and is suitable for applications developed in the EC2-Classic network.
- Application load balancer is suitable for load balancing HTTP and HTTPS traffic alongside advanced request routing for delivering modern application architectures.
- Gateway load balancer offers comprehensive transparency regarding traffic source and destination. Therefore, it is suitable for the deployment, scaling, and operations of third-party virtual networking appliances.
- Network load balancer is also one of the reasons for favoring the former in Amazon Elastic Load Balancer vs Azure Load Balancer comparison. It helps in load balancing TCP, TLS, and UDP transmissions with the assurance of high performance.
Reasons to Use
Azure Load Balancer comes out strong in the Amazon Elastic Load Balancer vs Azure Load Balancer comparison for its high performance and low latency load balancing capabilities. It supports all TCP and UDP protocols and could manage almost millions of requests every second while ensuring high availability. Furthermore, it also offers zone redundancy, thereby supporting improve availability throughout different Availability Zones.
The Amazon Elastic Load Balancer vs Azure Load Balancer comparison can turn in favor of the latter with an impression of its benefits. Azure Load Balancer can help you achieve the following tasks,
- Configuration of outbound connectivity for Azure virtual machines
- Load balancing for internal as well as external traffic to Azure VMs
- Enabling load-balancing support for IPv6
- Improving availability through the distribution of resources in and throughout zones
- Utilization of health probes for monitoring load-balanced resources
- Load balancing of TCP and UDP flow across all ports in parallel to each other by using HA ports
- Multi-dimensional metrics functionality through Azure Monitor
- Utilizing health probes for monitoring load-balanced resources
- Implementation of port forwarding for accessing virtual machines through public IP address and port
- Azure Standard Load Balancer follows the zero-trust network security model and offers default security for your virtual network
So, is it reasonable to declare Amazon Elastic Load Balancer as the winner because it has more load balancing tools? Well, Amazon Elastic Load Balancing definitely extends additional functionalities than a standard load balancer. However, users have the option of choosing load balancers according to their requirements for different use cases. Amazon Elastic Load Balancing could help users in achieving the following tasks and value advantages.
- ELB has the ability to support load balancing capabilities needed for migrating infrastructures to AWS. The ease of use and configuration helps in ensuring a seamless migration experience.
- Interestingly, Amazon Elastic Load Balancing presents the ability for load balancing throughout AWS and on-premises resources by leveraging a single load balancer.
- The capabilities of Amazon Elastic Load Balancing can also help you deploy applications from your preferred vendors while taking advantage of the scalability and flexibility of operating on the cloud.
- Amazon Elastic Load Balancer vs Azure Load Balancer comparison turns towards the former, especially with its adaptability to modern trends in application development such as containers, serverless computing, and agile development processes.
- Among all the important traits of AWS ELB as a basic load balancer, the integration with all AWS services and operational tools serves profound advantages.
You can find a detailed overview of Amazon Elastic Load Balancer vs Azure Load Balancer in the following difference table.
|Amazon Elastic Load Balancer
|Azure Load Balancer
|Complete assortment of load balancing services for distributing application traffic throughout multiple targets.
|One of the load balancing solutions offered by Microsoft Azure is a layer 4 load balancing service for all inbound and outbound UDP/TCP protocols.
|Users can access four different load balancers such as,
Application load balancer
Gateway load balancer
Classic load balancer
Network load balancer
|Users could use two types of load balancers such as,
Public load balancer
Internal load balancers
|Reasons to Use
|Ease of scalability
Hybrid cloud support
Multiple load balancer functionalities
Integration with AWS services
Zero trust network security model
Doesn’t store customer data
The flexibility of selecting backend pool instances
On a final note, you can clearly identify a massive contrast between AWS and Azure Load Balancer. As a matter of fact, Azure Load Balancer is a singular solution for load balancing by Microsoft Azure. You can think of it as the standard load balancer for your cloud infrastructure. On the other hand, Amazon Elastic Load Balancer or AWS ELB brings the capabilities of four different load balancers.
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In the case of Azure, you would have to turn towards other load balancing solutions such as Front Door, Traffic Manager, and Application Gateway. So, AWS ELB definitely becomes a better choice in Amazon Elastic Load Balancer vs Azure Load Balancer comparison. Learn more about them and optimize your cloud infrastructure right now.
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