CloudFlare designed its CDN (Content Delivery Network) without the legacy of the last 15 years. Our proprietary technology takes advantage of recent changes to hardware, web server technology and network routing. In other words, we’ve built the next-generation CDN. The result is a CDN that is easier to setup, more affordable, and performs better than any legacy CDN you’ve tried before.
We build our hardware from the ground up, which means that we choose the hardware components down to the chip level. Our proprietary software allows us to process millions of requests per second efficiently. We run our own network, so we choose the exact location of our edge nodes—the most strategic points on the Internet. This is essential to ensure your visitors get the fastest page load times and best performance.
CloudFlare’s CDN reduces hops and lowers latency. On average, a request is fewer than 10 hops and takes less than 30ms. The result? Your website gains a global presence on an affordable budget.
Since becoming a CloudFlare customer, Luxury Link has seen a 42% decrease in the average time it takes to download a dynamic web page and has seen, on average, a 40% reduction in bandwidth usage. Read our case study to learn more.
CloudFlare makes your site faster
CloudFlare operates out of 79 data centers around the world. Our CDN automatically caches your static files at our edge nodes so these files are stored closer to your visitors while delivering your dynamic content directly from your web server. CloudFlare then uses a technology called Anycast to route your visitors to the nearest data center. The result is that your website, on average, loads twice as fast for your visitors regardless of where they are located.
On average, a website on CloudFlare loads twice as fast for its visitors, sees 65% fewer requests and saves 60% of bandwidth. You’ll be able to see the exact speed benefits and savings with your personalized analytics report for your site.
We never charge for bandwidth
CloudFlare will never bill you for bandwidth usage. We believe if your site suddenly gets popular or suffers an attack, you shouldn’t have to dread your bandwidth bill. CloudFlare charges a flat rate per plan, which is based on functionality.
No configuration necessary
You do not have to spend time designating which files to cache. CloudFlare’s technology builds the cache for you based on your traffic and what objects on your site are safe to serve from the edge.
Works with static and dynamic content
WebSockets enables you to build real-time web applications with features like social feeds, multimedia chat, collaborative editing, multiplayer gaming, or stock updates.
Page Rules provide you with fine-grained control of CloudFlare on each page of your site. You can enable full HTML caching, individually customize CloudFlare’s features on a page by page basis or enable edge network forwarding to improve page delivery even further.
If your server ever goes offline, CloudFlare will serve a limited copy of your cached website to keep it online for your visitors. CloudFlare builds the Always Online™ version of your website, so your most popular pages are represented.
Protect against traffic surges
If you get a surge in traffic, CloudFlare’s CDN will absorb the effect so your server stays online. On average, you'll see 65% fewer requests to your servers and save 60% of your bandwidth, even with CloudFlare's free plan.
Make your site available to visitors on IPv6 networks with the click of a button. No need to rush to upgrade your infrastructure. Keep your IPv4 infrastructure until you're ready, we'll make it seem to the world you're running a modern dual-stack. Learn more about our IPv6 support.
HTTP/2 and SPDY
HTTP/2 is the latest update to the HTTP protocol and brings advancements in efficiency, security, and speed. HTTP/2 is based largely on Google’s own protocol SPDY, which will be deprecated in 2016. CloudFlare provides automatic HTTP/2 and SPDY coverage for your visitors. When a browser supports HTTP/2, our edge network will take full advantage of HTTP/2 performance benefits. If the browser supports SPDY but not HTTP/2, we’ll respond in SPDY. For older browsers or non-HTTPS requests, we’ll fall back to HTTP/1.1. You don’t need to choose between better performance and backwards-compatibility. Get HTTP/2 support with a single click.
Rock Solid Reliability
With CloudFlare’s distributed network, if there is an issue in one of the data centers, visitors to the other data centers are unaffected. If the issue persists, our system can easily reroute visitors to the next closest data center. The end result is a seamless experience for your visitors. Check out our network map to learn more. For more information about CloudFlare’s reliability and uptime guarantees, visit our Enterprise page.
How can CloudFlare offer a free service?
CloudFlare believes that every website should be fast. Because of CloudFlare’s technology, we’ve been able to build a CDN that is available to any website online. From the beginning, we worked to minimize the costs of serving every byte. Wherever possible, we use our own custom-built systems that are designed for this purpose. We buy our bandwidth through the wholesale market, which means we’re paying for the size of our pipe, not for each byte we serve through it. We also peer with other networks wherever possible in order to drive the cost of bandwidth as close to zero as possible. We never charge for bandwidth and are committed to always offering a FREE version of CloudFlare with at least today’s feature set. CloudFlare offers additional plans and services which offer even better services at reasonable prices. We hope you love the service and choose to upgrade.
CloudFlare’s pre-fetching will automatically identify and then optimize the delivery of your most requested resources. Your most popular assets get preloaded into your visitor’s browser so that your second, third and fourth page loads are extra fast.
No matter how heavy your server load is, your traffic will never slow down. CloudFlare prioritizes requests for Pro customers' websites for maximum performance.
Business and Enterprise features
Railgun helps eliminate the speed-of-light latency and cache the uncacheable by using a combination of compression techniques to achieve, on average, 99.6% compression of previously non-cached web objects. This results in a 730% performance increase on average, for web traffic from a web server to CloudFlare's network.
Truly get the most out of your network.
Signing up is easy
To get access to CloudFlare’s CDN, you do not need to change your hosting provider or registrar. CloudFlare works in conjunction with any underlying technology platform including Apache, NGINX, WordPress, Joomla!, and Windows. To sign up for CloudFlare’s CDN, you make a simple change to your authoritative DNS. On average, it takes less than five minutes to sign up.