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DNS failover

DNS failover

(also DNS backup, DNS fallback, DNS failsafe)

DNS failover definition

DNS failover is a technique used to ensure the high availability and reliability of a website or web service by automatically redirecting traffic to a backup or secondary IP address or server if the primary server fails or becomes unreachable. This technique is part of a broader set of failover methods, which are crucial for maintaining the uptime of critical online services.

See also: DNS server

DNS failover examples

  • Website hosting: If a website’s primary server goes down, DNS failover can redirect traffic to a backup server, preventing the website from going offline.
  • Cloud services: In a cloud-based application, DNS failover can be used to switch traffic between different cloud instances in case of a failure.

Preventing DNS failover issues

  • Ensure that your secondary server or IP address is always ready to take over the traffic in case of a primary server failure.
  • Keep your DNS records updated to ensure that the failover process happens smoothly.
  • Use a VPN to prevent DNS leaks that could expose your real IP address during a failover situation.

DNS failover benefits

DNS failover offers numerous advantages for organizations and individuals relying on the internet for critical services. Some of these benefits include:

  • Improved reliability: By automatically redirecting traffic to a backup server or IP address in case of primary server failure, DNS failover ensures that your website or online service remains accessible to users.
  • High availability: DNS failover helps maintain high uptime for critical online services by quickly switching traffic to a secondary server or IP address when necessary, minimizing downtime and disruption for users.
  • Better user experience: With DNS failover in place, users experience minimal interruptions to their access to your online services, contributing to better overall user satisfaction and a positive brand reputation.
  • Enhanced disaster recovery: In the case of natural disasters or other unforeseen events that could affect the primary server’s availability, DNS failover provides a safeguard by allowing a seamless transition to a secondary server or IP address, ensuring continuity of service.
  • Load balancing: DNS failover can also be used in combination with load balancing to distribute traffic evenly across multiple servers, improving performance and reducing the risk of server overloads.
  • Easy scalability: As your online services grow and demand increases, DNS failover allows you to easily add more servers or IP addresses to handle the additional traffic, ensuring smooth scalability.

Further reading

Ultimate digital security

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