Amazon Elastic Load Balancer: Definition, Benefits and Features

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Last updated on
31st May, 2022
06th Sep, 2019
Amazon Elastic Load Balancer: Definition, Benefits and Features

Elastic Load Balancing handles the varying load of your application traffic in a single Availability Zone or across multiple Availability Zones. It automatically distributes incoming application traffic across multiple targets, such as Lambda functions, IP addresses, containers, and Amazon EC2 instances.

Types of Elastic Load Balancer

Elastic Load Balancer Types in AWS

ELB consists of three diverse types of load balancer which help to achieve extensive cloud computing measures. These include:

  • Classic Load Balancer (CLB): This is the most fundamental way of load balancing which replaces the conventional physical hardware with virtual devices to provide an optimum level of experience. Classic Load Balancer is usually designed for the applications that are within EC2 classic networks. It functions both at the request and connection level.
  • Application Load Balancer (ALB): It functions to route advanced traffic to targets such as EC2 instances, IP addresses, containers, Lambda functions depending on the request. Application Load Balancer provides advanced request routing such that incoming traffic can be routed against multiple availability zones. Application Load Balancer contributes towards safeguarding the security of the applications by using designated protocols and ciphers. It can route the request on the basis of the content.
  • Network Load Balancer (NLB): Network Load Balancer operates at the connection level i.e Layer 4 when a target becomes slow or unavailable it routes the traffic to another target within Amazon Virtual Private Network based on IP Protocol suited for both TCP and UDP traffic. Network Load Balancer is capable of handling millions of requests per second while it grows and can handle sudden volatile traffic patterns using a single static IP address. It can maintain ultra-low latencies. It is an amalgamation of various recognized AWS services such as Auto Scaling, Amazon EC2 Container Service (ECS), Amazon CloudFormation and AWS Certificate Manager (ACM).

Benefits of Load Balancing in AWS environment:

Benefits of Load Balancing in AWS environment

1. Highly available: Electric load balancing can route traffic to multiple targets automatically and can also load balance across a region routing towards a proper target in multiple availability zones.

2. Secure: The TLS settings can be centrally managed and one can even discharge the workloads of the CPU while working with Amazon Virtual Private Network Cloud providing sustainable security, user authentication, integrated certificate management, and SLS/TLS decryption.

3. Flexible: The applications could interact among each other through a microservice-based architecture and one can customize the application targets by the use of IP address in Elastic load balancer. 

4. Elastic: It can manage rapid fluctuations in traffic and with the incorporation of auto-scaling, it can meet the various levels of measurable capacity with least manual involvement.

5. Hybrid load balancing: It is convenient to drift, switchover or migrate on-premises applications to the cloud since the elastic load balancer can balance load across AWS and on-premises using the same load balancer.

6. Robust monitoring and auditing: One can keep a track of activities of the applications, resolve the issues and know the cause of the problem by surveying the performance in real time with the assistance of Amazon CloudWatch metrics, logging and request tracing in Elastic load balancer.

Features of Elastic Load Balancing

Features of Elastic Load Balancing in AWS

  1. Security: It uses Amazon Private Virtual Network Cloud thus providing extra security to the load balancers and one can even create an internal load balancer.
  2. Health checks: It can track unfit targets and prohibits the flow of load towards and then balances the load towards the working targets.
  3. TLS termination: With the help of SSL/TLS decryption and integrated certificate management, the CPU is offloaded and the SSL settings are managed at the core. 
  4. High availability: It can automatically distribute traffic to multiple availability zones or single availability zone working on the same load balancer.
  5. Operational Monitoring: With Amazon CloudWatch metrics, logging and request tracking, one can overview the working in real-time.
  6. Layer 4 and Layer 7 balancing: HTTP/HTTPS  applications can be used to load balance for 7 Layer or strictly for layer 4 which depends on UDP and TCP controls.
  7. Product Comparisons: Being flexible in nature, one can make choices on the basis of the need of the applications; such as one using an EC2-classic network can use a classic load balancer or if a flexible application is needed, one can use the Application load balancer.

AWS is the present and the future. We hoped this article helped you get familiar with the services offered by the AWS. If you want to know more about AWS and get certified, you can try the  AWS certification course offered by KnowledgeHut.


Joydip Kumar

Solution Architect

Joydip is passionate about building cloud-based applications and has been providing solutions to various multinational clients. Being a java programmer and an AWS certified cloud architect, he loves to design, develop, and integrate solutions. Amidst his busy work schedule, Joydip loves to spend time on writing blogs and contributing to the opensource community.