Since my last post, I got some questions and concerns from admins and users of Masto.host hosted instances and as I was also having second thoughts about the testing, I decided to take a couple more days to think about it.
About the DNS provider, it was simple. I just ended up moving to ClouDNS and I am happy with that decision. The cost is reasonable, the service has good reviews/recommendations and their support has been responsive. This will only affect the Masto.host website, instances using a Masto.host subdomain and instances using the CNAME DNS record ‘vip.masto.host’. Still, nothing should be really noticeable except hopefully a faster and more redundant DNS response.
Now the tricky part is the CDN for media files.
In the end I had 4 options:
1) not using CDN
This would leave everything like it was up until today. It wouldn’t be terrible but as more people have joined and more countries are accessing content served by Masto.host (and in locations far from Europe noticing the media files slower load time) I want to improve their experience.
2) create my own CDN
This would be possible and I would need to test it but think I could build something reasonably affordable that would act as a CDN for Masto.host. Still, it would be one more think for me to manage and currently I want to use my time to improve other issues on Masto.host that cannot be solved by a third party service. I will revisit this option in the future.
3) using BunnyCDN
From the CDNs I have considered, the one that looked to be the best fit for Masto.host would be BunnyCDN. The pricing is closer to what I would like, it provides a nice set of features and the service has good reviews. From the testings I have done and from all the information I got, it looked like a good fit.
4) using CloudFlare
This was the initial solution and the one that I am still going to test in production. Again, this is only for media files, nothing else will go through CloudFlare. I have registered the domain ‘mastohost.com’ and I will be using ‘cf.mastohost.com’ as the subdomain that will be used for CDN through CloudFlare and ‘*.mastohost.com’ will be the only point of touch with CloudFlare.
Again, this was not an easy decision or an obvious one. I needed to take many things into account and I do understand that different people will put different weight on some of those things but I really think that if this works well it could be the best solution for Masto.host right now. Still, you have the option of not using a CDN if you don’t want your instance media files to go through CloudFlare. If this is your case, please let me know.
This CDN test will be starting today for all instances hosted in shared hosting (that don’t request to be excluded) and a less than 30 second downtime is to be expected to allow for configuration changes.
At any time this decision can be reverted if I notice that it is causing problems or that it doesn’t provide a good solution to the problem. So, please let me know if you notice anything out of the ordinary.
If you have questions, suggestions or requests, do let me know. Thank you all for your help.