Google Cloud Load Balancing

Google Cloud Load Balancing

  • Cloud Load Balancing distributes user traffic across multiple instances of the applications and reduces the risk that the of performance issues for the applications experience by spreading the load
  • Cloud Load Balancing helps serve content as close as possible to the users on a system that can respond to over one million queries per second.
  • Cloud Load Balancing is a fully distributed, software-defined managed service. It isn’t hardware-based and there is no need to manage a physical load balancing infrastructure.

Cloud Load Balancing Features

  • External load balancing
    • for internet based applications
    • requires Premium Tier of Network Service Tiers
    • Types
      • External HTTP/S Load Balancing
      • SSL Proxy Load Balancing
      • TCP Proxy Load Balancing
      • External TCP/UDP Network Load Balancing
  • Internal load balancing
    • for internal clients inside of Google Cloud
    • can use Standard Tier
    • Types
      • Internal HTTP/S Load Balancing
      • Internal TCP/UDP Network Load Balancing
  • Regional load balancing
    • for single region applications.
    • supports only IPv4 termination.
    • Types
      • Internal HTTP/S Load Balancing
      • External TCP/UDP Network Load Balancing
      • Internal TCP/UDP Network Load Balancing
      • External HTTP/S Load Balancing (Standard Tier)
      • SSL Proxy Load Balancing (Standard Tier)
      • TCP Proxy Load Balancing (Standard Tier)
  • Global load balancing
    • for globally distributed applications
    • provides access by using a single anycast IP address
    • supports IPv4 and IPv6 termination.
    • Types
      • External HTTP/S Load Balancing (Premium Tier)
      • SSL Proxy Load Balancing (Premium Tier)
      • TCP Proxy Load Balancing (Premium Tier)

Pass-through vs Proxy-based load balancing

  • Proxy-based load balancing
    • acts as a proxy performing address and port translation and terminating the request before forwarding to the backend service
    • clients and backends interact with the load balancer
    • original client IP, port and protocol is forwarded using x-forwarded-for headers
    • automatically all proxy-based external load balancers inherit DDoS protection from Google Front Ends (GFEs)
    • Google Cloud Armor can be configured for external HTTP(S) load balancers
    • Types
      • Internal HTTP/S Load Balancing
      • External HTTP/S Load Balancing
      • SSL Proxy Load Balancing
      • TCP Proxy Load Balancing
  • Pass-through load balancing
    • does not modify the request or headers and passes to unchanged to the underlying backend
    • Types
      • External TCP/UDP Network Load Balancing
      • Internal TCP/UDP Network Load Balancing

Layer 4 vs Layer 7

  • Layer 4-based load balancing
    • directs traffic based on data from network and transport layer protocols, such as IP address and TCP or UDP port
  • Layer 7-based load balancing
    • adds content-based routing decisions based on attributes, such as the HTTP header and the URI
  • Supports various traffic types including HTTP(S), TCP, UDP
  • For HTTP and HTTPS traffic, use:
    • External HTTP(S) Load Balancing
    • Internal HTTP(S) Load Balancing
  • For TCP traffic, use:
    • TCP Proxy Load Balancing
    • Network Load Balancing
    • Internal TCP/UDP Load Balancing
  • For UDP traffic, use:
    • Network Load Balancing
    • Internal TCP/UDP Load Balancing

Google Cloud Load Balancing Types

Refer blog post @ Google Cloud Load Balancing Types

Load Balancing Components

Backend services

  • A backend is a group of endpoints that receive traffic from a Google Cloud load balancer, a Traffic Director-configured Envoy proxy, or a proxyless gRPC client.
  • Google Cloud supports several types of backends:
    • Instance group containing virtual machine (VM) instances.
    • Zonal NEG
    • Serverless NEG
    • Internet NEG
    • Cloud Storage bucket
  • A backend service is either global or regional in scope.

Forwarding Rules

  • A forwarding rule and its corresponding IP address represent the frontend configuration of a Google Cloud load balancer.

Health Checks

  • Google Cloud provides health checking mechanisms that determine if backends, such as instance groups and zonal network endpoint groups (NEGs), are healthy and properly respond to traffic.
  • Google Cloud provides global and regional health check systems that connect to backends on a configurable, periodic basis.
  • Each connection attempt is called a probe, and each health check system is called a prober. Google Cloud records the success or failure of each probe
  • Google Cloud computes an overall health state for each backend in the load balancer or Traffic Director based on a configurable number of sequential successful or failed probes.
    • Backends that respond successfully for the configured number of times are considered healthy.
    • Backends that fail to respond successfully for a separate number of times are unhealthy.

IPv6 termination

  • Google Cloud supports IPv6 clients with HTTP(S) Load Balancing, SSL Proxy Load Balancing, and TCP Proxy Load Balancing.
  • Load balancer accepts IPv6 connections from the users, and then proxies those connections to the backends.

SSL Certificates

  • Load balancer must have an SSL certificate and the certificate’s corresponding private key.
  • Communication between the client and the load balancer remains private – illegible to any third party that doesn’t have this private key.
  • Google Cloud uses SSL certificates to provide privacy and security from a client to a load balancer. To achieve this, the
  • Allows multiple SSL certificates when serving from multiple domains using the same load balancer IP address and port, and a different SSL certificate for each domain is needed

SSL Policies

  • SSL policies provide the ability to control the features of SSL that the SSL proxy load balancer or external HTTP(S) load balancer negotiates with clients
  • HTTP(S) Load Balancing and SSL Proxy Load Balancing uses a set of SSL features that provides good security and wide compatibility.
  • SSL policies help control the features of SSL like SSL versions and ciphers that the load balancer negotiates with clients.

URL Maps

  • URL map helps to direct requests to a destination based on defined rules
  • When a request arrives at the load balancer, the load balancer routes the request to a particular backend service or backend bucket based on configurations in a URL map.

GCP Certification Exam Practice Questions

  • Questions are collected from Internet and the answers are marked as per my knowledge and understanding (which might differ with yours).
  • GCP services are updated everyday and both the answers and questions might be outdated soon, so research accordingly.
  • GCP exam questions are not updated to keep up the pace with GCP updates, so even if the underlying feature has changed the question might not be updated
  • Open to further feedback, discussion and correction.

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