Welcome!

@DevOpsSummit Authors: Yeshim Deniz, Pat Romanski, Mehdi Daoudi, Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan

Related Topics: @DevOpsSummit, Linux Containers, Containers Expo Blog

@DevOpsSummit: Blog Feed Post

The Impact of Web Caching | @DevOpsSummit #DevOps #Storage #WebPerf

Caching is a way of temporarily storing the contents of a webpage in locations near the user, similar to the way memory works

The Impact of Web Caching
By Alva Yashaswi

Try to remember something that happened on your last vacation. How long did it take you to recall? Now, try to remember it again. You were probably able to recall it faster the second time — but, why? This is because as soon as you recalled the event the first time, your brain saved the information to your recent memory.

The same concept applies to caching. Caching is a way of temporarily storing the contents of a webpage in locations near the user, similar to the way our memory works. There are several types of caching options available like database caching, application caching, and distributed caching. In this article, we’ll talk about web caching and how it affects user experience.

What is web caching?
Website developers use different techniques to optimize performance and improve speed. One such method is web caching, which involves downloading the shared page elements (JavaScript, CSS, images, etc.) and storing it closer to the user so the browser can retrieve this data from the stored location, rather than querying the web server again.

Web caching minimizes network traffic and improves the perceived performance of the web page. Caching can be implemented at different levels along the network path. The following are the possible caching entities between the origin server and the browser:

  • Local browser: Your browser maintains a place on your hard disk where it stores content that is being requested frequently.
  • ISPs or caching proxies: Servers along the network path can cache the content. These servers can belong to either ISPs or any other third party.
  • Content Delivery Network (CDN): CDNs make use of multiple networked servers to distribute the web content from locations closer to the users.
  • Proxy for your back-end server: You can have your infrastructure built on top of your backend servers, which can cache all your content and act as a focal point for reducing the load on your backend server.

How do the caching entities know what to cache?
Caching is implemented through an HTTP headers directive named “Cache-Control,” which is sent out in instances of HTTP response headers. If the request is allowed to cache, entities will keep a copy of the page for a specified period, which helps the content owner determine the caching behavior. Cache control lets the entities identify the response/request that can be cached and for how long.

Syntax Cache-Control: public

Here is an example of an HTTP Response with Cache-Control header

How does caching help in improving user experience?
User experience can have a direct impact on your brand; it can either build your online business or hinder its growth. There are several components that contribute to a satisfactory user experience. Caching is an important factor to consider when optimizing website performance. It has the following advantages:

1. Reduced latency
The load time of a website can be a cause for user frustration; pages that takes long time to load usually results in higher bounce rates, let us look at some of the stats:

  • 51% of online shoppers in the US say that site slowness is the top reason they’d abandon a purchase
  • A 2-second delay in load time during a transaction results in abandonment rates of up to 87%

The speed at which the webpage loads is crucial in ensuring a good digital experience and caching can reduce load time as it serves content from a location nearest to the users – either on the user’s hard disk or a nearby server.

The above image illustrates the impact of caching. As you can see, the page loads 50% faster when cached. Caching reduces latency in the roundtrip time by retrieving the content much faster. The time taken to retrieve the resource from the cache will be lower than the time it takes from the origin server and this speeds up the content delivery process.

2. Content availability
Content availability is a key component in user experience as users from across the globe can access the website. A site may not load for a user due to several reasons – the network may be prone to frequent interruptions or the site may be experiencing intermittent outages. In such cases, caching will save the day by serving end users the cached content, making the website robust.

3. Avoids network congestion
The internet handles huge amounts of data and manages heavy traffic through the day; as a result, bandwidth congestion can be an issue on major networks.

To understand this better, let’s use a restaurant as an example. Assume that there is only a single location for this restaurant in the city, making it a crowded spot with customers coming in every few minutes. If the restaurant ends up exhausting all of its resources trying to manage everyone, service could be delayed as they are working above their existing capacity, resulting in a long line of customers waiting to be served. The restaurant would be able to manage better if they had more than one location in the city to help distribute the customers and balance the load.

The same logic applies to the Internet as well. Network congestion can be greatly reduced with caching, as the path traveled in fetching the content is cut short when it’s cached. Since all the requests are not directed towards the origin, it frees up the network and reduces the load on the origin server, helping it serve non-cached content faster.

The image above demonstrates the difference in the number of requests with or without cache on the wire.

Disadvantages of Caching
The best practices for implementing a cache strategy are not strictly defined, so if caching is not set up correctly, then the browser will not be able to validate the cached content and the page may load outdated content, which can have a negative impact on the user experience.

Caching entities include third-party proxy servers shared by multiple users which are always at risk of being compromised. If caching servers are hacked then it impacts all users connected to this server.

Troubleshooting Caching Issues
A performance monitoring solution has proven to be a very effective way of mitigating issues associated with caching. One of our own customers reported an issue in which users from certain locations were unable to use the search feature on their website. In this instance, the search results were blank.

While troubleshooting the issue, we found that one of the CDN servers was fetching a zero-byte JavaScript from cache. The cache was not updated at the CDN level, which resulted in the search error. This incident taught us two vital lessons:

  • Continuous evaluation of caching policies is important
  • Always have CDN monitoring in place

Implementation of caching will help grow your business positively by being a vital cog in ensuring business sustenance. But at the same time, it is very important to ensure optimal caching policies are in place to suit your business. Tailored solutions are the way to go because there is no one-size-fits-all solution. Caching may not be the talisman, but it will ensure that your business stays afloat and affluent with minimal exertions.

The post The Impact of Web Caching appeared first on Catchpoint's Blog - Web Performance Monitoring.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Mehdi Daoudi

Catchpoint radically transforms the way businesses manage, monitor, and test the performance of online applications. Truly understand and improve user experience with clear visibility into complex, distributed online systems.

Founded in 2008 by four DoubleClick / Google executives with a passion for speed, reliability and overall better online experiences, Catchpoint has now become the most innovative provider of web performance testing and monitoring solutions. We are a team with expertise in designing, building, operating, scaling and monitoring highly transactional Internet services used by thousands of companies and impacting the experience of millions of users. Catchpoint is funded by top-tier venture capital firm, Battery Ventures, which has invested in category leaders such as Akamai, Omniture (Adobe Systems), Optimizely, Tealium, BazaarVoice, Marketo and many more.

@DevOpsSummit Stories
After more than five years of DevOps, definitions are evolving, boundaries are expanding, ‘unicorns’ are no longer rare, enterprises are on board, and pundits are moving on. Can we now look at an evolution of DevOps? Should we? Is the foundation of DevOps ‘done’, or is there still too much left to do? What is mature, and what is still missing? What does the next 5 years of DevOps look like? In this Power Panel at DevOps Summit, moderated by DevOps Summit Conference Chair Andi Mann, panelists looked back at what DevOps has become, and forward at what it might create next.
For organizations that have amassed large sums of software complexity, taking a microservices approach is the first step toward DevOps and continuous improvement / development. Integrating system-level analysis with microservices makes it easier to change and add functionality to applications at any time without the increase of risk. Before you start big transformation projects or a cloud migration, make sure these changes won’t take down your entire organization.
21st International Cloud Expo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Meanwhile, 94% of enterprises are using some form of XaaS – software, platform, and infrastructure as a service.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Ayehu will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on October 31 - November 2, 2017 at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara California. Ayehu provides IT Process Automation & Orchestration solutions for IT and Security professionals to identify and resolve critical incidents and enable rapid containment, eradication, and recovery from cyber security breaches. Ayehu provides customers greater control over IT infrastructure through automation. Ayehu solutions have been deployed by major enterprises worldwide, and currently, support thousands of IT processes across the globe. The company has offices in New York, California, and Israel.
With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing Cloud strategies, now is the perfect time to attend 21st Cloud Expo October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center, CA, and June 12-14, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is on the right path to Digital Transformation.
SYS-CON Events announced today that MobiDev, a client-oriented software development company, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place October 31-November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. MobiDev is a software company that develops and delivers turn-key mobile apps, websites, web services, and complex software systems for startups and enterprises. Since 2009 it has grown from a small group of passionate engineers and business managers to a full-scale mobile software company with over 200 developers, designers, quality assurance engineers, project managers in house, specializing in the world-class mobile and web development.
SYS-CON Events announced today that GrapeUp, the leading provider of rapid product development at the speed of business, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place October 31-November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Grape Up is a software company, specialized in cloud native application development and professional services related to Cloud Foundry PaaS. With five expert teams that operate in various sectors of the market across the USA and Europe, we work with a variety of customers from emerging startups to Fortune 1000 companies.
"We are a monitoring company. We work with Salesforce, BBC, and quite a few other big logos. We basically provide monitoring for them, structure for their cloud services and we fit into the DevOps world" explained David Gildeh, Co-founder and CEO of Outlyer, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps Summit at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Enzu will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st Int\ernational Cloud Expo®, which will take place October 31-November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Enzu’s mission is to be the leading provider of enterprise cloud solutions worldwide. Enzu enables online businesses to use its IT infrastructure to their competitive advantage. By offering a suite of proven hosting and management services, Enzu wants companies to focus on the core of their online business and let Enzu manage their IT hosting infrastructure.
DevOps at Cloud Expo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 21st Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait for long development cycles that produce software that is obsolete at launch. DevOps may be disruptive, but it is essential.
New competitors, disruptive technologies, and growing expectations are pushing every business to both adopt and deliver new digital services. This ‘Digital Transformation’ demands rapid delivery and continuous iteration of new competitive services via multiple channels, which in turn demands new service delivery techniques – including DevOps. In this power panel at @DevOpsSummit 20th Cloud Expo, moderated by DevOps Conference Co-Chair Andi Mann, panelists examined how DevOps helps to meet the demands of Digital Transformation – including accelerating application delivery, closing feedback loops, enabling multi-channel delivery, empowering collaborative decisions, improving user experience, and ultimately meeting (and exceeding) business goals.
While DevOps most critically and famously fosters collaboration, communication, and integration through cultural change, culture is more of an output than an input. In order to actively drive cultural evolution, organizations must make substantial organizational and process changes, and adopt new technologies, to encourage a DevOps culture. Moderated by Andi Mann, panelists discussed how to balance these three pillars of DevOps, where to focus attention (and resources), where organizations might slip up with the wrong focus, how to manage change and risk in all three areas, what is possible and what is not, where to start, and especially how new structures, processes, and technologies can help drive a new DevOps culture.
Cloud Expo, Inc. has announced today that Andi Mann and Aruna Ravichandran have been named Co-Chairs of @DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo Silicon Valley which will take place Oct. 31-Nov. 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. "DevOps is at the intersection of technology and business-optimizing tools, organizations and processes to bring measurable improvements in productivity and profitability," said Aruna Ravichandran, vice president, DevOps product and solutions marketing, CA Technologies. "It's this results-driven combination of technology and business that makes me so passionate about DevOps and its future in the industry. I am truly honored to take on this co-chair role, and look forward to working with the DevOps Summit team at Cloud Expo and attendees to advance DevOps."
SYS-CON Events announced today that Cloud Academy named "Bronze Sponsor" of 21st International Cloud Expo which will take place October 31 - November 2, 2017 at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Cloud Academy is the industry’s most innovative, vendor-neutral cloud technology training platform. Cloud Academy provides continuous learning solutions for individuals and enterprise teams for Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform, and the most popular cloud computing technologies. Get certified, manage the full lifecycle of your cloud-based resources, and build your knowledge based using Cloud Academy’s expert-created content, comprehensive Learning Paths, and innovative Hands-on Labs.
What's the role of an IT self-service portal when you get to continuous delivery and Infrastructure as Code? This general session showed how to create the continuous delivery culture and eight accelerators for leading the change. Don Demcsak is a DevOps and Cloud Native Modernization Principal for Dell EMC based out of New Jersey. He is a former, long time, Microsoft Most Valuable Professional, specializing in building and architecting Application Delivery Pipelines for hybrid legacy, and cloud native applications.
SYS-CON Events announced today that IBM has been named “Diamond Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 21st Cloud Expo, which will take place on October 31 through November 2nd 2017 at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, California.
In the world of DevOps there are ‘known good practices’ – aka ‘patterns’ – and ‘known bad practices’ – aka ‘anti-patterns.' Many of these patterns and anti-patterns have been developed from real world experience, especially by the early adopters of DevOps theory; but many are more feasible in theory than in practice, especially for more recent entrants to the DevOps scene. In this power panel at @DevOpsSummit at 18th Cloud Expo, moderated by DevOps Conference Chair Andi Mann, panelists discussed the patterns and anti-patterns of DevOps, and what it means to ‘do the right thing’ in a DevOps way, but in the real world.
SYS-CON Events announced today that CA Technologies has been named "Platinum Sponsor" of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place October 31-November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. CA Technologies helps customers succeed in a future where every business - from apparel to energy - is being rewritten by software. From planning to development to management to security, CA creates software that fuels transformation for companies in the application economy. With CA software at the center of their IT strategy, organizations can leverage the technology that changes the way we live - from the data center to the mobile device. CA's software and solutions help customers thrive in the new application economy by delivering the means to deploy, monitor and secure their applications and infrastructure.
Both SaaS vendors and SaaS buyers are going “all-in” to hyperscale IaaS platforms such as AWS, which is disrupting the SaaS value proposition. Why should the enterprise SaaS consumer pay for the SaaS service if their data is resident in adjacent AWS S3 buckets? If both SaaS sellers and buyers are using the same cloud tools, automation and pay-per-transaction model offered by IaaS platforms, then why not host the “shrink-wrapped” software in the customers’ cloud? Further, serverless computing, cloud marketplaces and DevOps are changing the economics of hosting and delivering software.
"When we talk about cloud without compromise what we're talking about is that when people think about 'I need the flexibility of the cloud' - it's the ability to create applications and run them in a cloud environment that's far more flexible,” explained Matthew Finnie, CTO of Interoute, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Wooed by the promise of faster innovation, lower TCO, and greater agility, businesses of every shape and size have embraced the cloud at every layer of the IT stack – from apps to file sharing to infrastructure. The typical organization currently uses more than a dozen sanctioned cloud apps and will shift more than half of all workloads to the cloud by 2018. Such cloud investments have delivered measurable benefits. But they’ve also resulted in some unintended side-effects: complexity and risk. End users now struggle to navigate multiple environments with varying degrees of performance. Companies are unclear on the security of their data and network access. And IT squads are overwhelmed trying to monitor and manage it all.
It is ironic, but perhaps not unexpected, that many organizations who want the benefits of using an Agile approach to deliver software use a waterfall approach to adopting Agile practices: they form plans, they set milestones, and they measure progress by how many teams they have engaged. Old habits die hard, but like most waterfall software projects, most waterfall-style Agile adoption efforts fail to produce the results desired. The problem is that to get the results they want, they have to change their culture and cultures are very hard to change. To paraphrase Peter Drucker, "culture eats Agile for breakfast." Successful approaches are opportunistic and leverage the power of self-organization to achieve lasting change.
In 2014, Amazon announced a new form of compute called Lambda. We didn't know it at the time, but this represented a fundamental shift in what we expect from cloud computing. Now, all of the major cloud computing vendors want to take part in this disruptive technology. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Doug Vanderweide, an instructor at Linux Academy, discussed why major players like AWS, Microsoft Azure, IBM Bluemix, and Google Cloud Platform are all trying to sidestep VMs and containers with heavy investments in serverless computing, when most of the industry has its eyes on Docker and containers.
@DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo taking place Oct 31 - Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center, Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with the 21st International Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait for long development cycles that produce software that is obsolete at launch. DevOps may be disruptive, but it is essential.
SYS-CON Events announced today that CA Technologies has been named "Platinum Sponsor" of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place October 31-November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. CA Technologies helps customers succeed in a future where every business - from apparel to energy - is being rewritten by software. From planning to development to management to security, CA creates software that fuels transformation for companies in the application economy. With CA software at the center of their IT strategy, organizations can leverage the technology that changes the way we live - from the data center to the mobile device. CA's software and solutions help customers thrive in the new application economy by delivering the means to deploy, monitor and secure their applications and infrastructure.