We just turned up our newest data center (#20) in Prague, Czech Republic. This comes hot on the heels of new data centers in Vienna, Toronto, Seattle, Atlanta, and Sydney. Vienna, which came online last week, is already handling a high volume of traffic from Eastern Europe. Prague will take some of this load, decrease the traffic to Frankfurt and Amsterdam, and improve performance for web visitors in the area around the Czech Republic. Our network map will be updated soon to show all 20 of our data center locations worldwide.
Tom & Terry
At the same time we turned on CloudFlare's Vienna facility, we also enabled a new network provider for in-bound traffic. CloudFlare makes wide use of Anycast. The protocol allows routers in multiple different facilities to announce the same IP addresses. The network then chooses the route that is shortest when transiting the Internet. This both helps us ensure visitors reach the data center that is closest to them and also allows us to better mitigate DDoS and other attacks.
The challenge of Anycast is the network routing. It takes significant work to make sure that traffic for a particular region stays in the right place and that connections don't "flap" between multiple facilities. Tom and Terry, who head our network ops team, have been working hard over the last few weeks to ensure that as we continue to add more data centers and transit providers our network remains rock solid. Tom even wore an appropriate t-shirt to celebrate today's launch of Prague. "Czech" it out below.