Koha Hacks: Why You Should Use Content Delivery Network (CDN) For Koha Library System

Is your Koha server taking too long to catalog or checkout items? Before you break the bank and purchase a bigger server with bucket-loads of RAM and processing power, you should try setting up a content delivery network (CDN) using a free service like CloudFlare instead – you might just save yourself a lot of time and money!

The cheapest, fastest way to send money internationally

Full disclosure: We may receive commissions through affiliate links contained on this page.

Koha Hacks: Why You Should Use Content Delivery Network (CDN) For Koha Library System

Is your Koha server taking too long to catalog or checkout items? Before you break the bank and purchase a bigger server with bucket-loads of RAM and processing power, you should try setting up a content delivery network (CDN) using a free service like CloudFlare instead – you might just save yourself a lot of time and money!

The cheapest, fastest way to send money internationally

Full disclosure: We may receive commissions through affiliate links contained on this page.

Why You Need A Content Delivery Network (CDN) for Koha

The cheapest, fastest way to send money internationally

Full disclosure: We may receive commissions through affiliate links contained on this page.

The cheapest, fastest way to send money internationally

Full disclosure: We may receive commissions through affiliate links contained on this page.

The server on which are running your Koha instance is located in a single, specific geographic region, even if it is a “cloud” server. This means it will take users who are located in another different geographic location longer to access your Koha library. While this may not be an issue if you are hosting Koha on a local server or using a host who is in the same city or country as your patrons, it may be a bigger problem if you are using a cloud service like Amazon AWS.

Say you are a library located in Zimbabwe and you choose to launch your server in the US-East (Ohio) region instead of the Africa (Cape Town) region, which would be the one closest to you. This saves you money since US-based servers are cheaper (a t3.xlarge server located in Cape Town costs $0.217 per hour vs. $0.1344 per hour for a comparable server in the US) but it comes at the cost of speed for your users. Instead of doubling your server costs and switching regions, you can use a content delivery network (CDN) to serve content faster.

A CDN does the same thing as Apache and Memcached caching does, but on a much larger scale.  It uses proxy servers that are located closer to end users than origin (i.e. your main) servers. The CDN will cache the content from your Ohio-based server and distribute the cache to its own servers scattered around the world, which will likely include your own geographic location. So when a patron logs on to your OPAC, they will likely see cached content served from the CDN’s proxy servers than from your main server. This improves speed of access, security, and the overall reliablity of your servers. I recommend you use Cloudflare – it has a free tier which should be more than enough for most libraries. Setting up a Cloudflare CDN is beyond the scope of this article but I will write a separate one soon so make sure you subscribe to stay up to date with the latest tips and tricks!

The cheapest, fastest way to send money internationally

Full disclosure: We may receive commissions through affiliate links contained on this page.

Speed is of the essence in today’s world so it’s important you optimize your Koha library system server to ensure your patrons and staff can do their work quickly and efficiently. Let me know how implementing these hacks went for you in the comments. And if you need help, don’t hesitate to get in touch. 

Koha Support provides hassle-free Koha installation and cloud hosting as well as training, data migration, customization and technical support. Check out our packages and start your free trial today!

7 Reasons Why You Need an Integrated Library Management System

7 Reasons Why You Need an Integrated Library Management System

Running a library isn’t as simple and straightforward as many people I have encountered think. It’s more than just checking out books and putting them back on the shelf when they are returned. Librarians have to deal other complex, time-consuming responsibilities like acquisitions, cataloguing, inventory, budgets, reports and interlibrary loaning. Pen and paper won’t cut it, and using an excel spreadsheet is only marginally better than digging a trench using a caviar spoon.

read more
The Top 10 Biggest Libraries in the World

The Top 10 Biggest Libraries in the World

Libraries comes in all types and sizes, from small community libraries that open for a few hours once a week to mega institutions that operate 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. So which are the biggest, most impressive libraries in the world - by catalog size of course;...

read more
Cage Match: Koha Library System vs Athenaeum

Cage Match: Koha Library System vs Athenaeum

If you are shopping around for a new library software, you may have come across Koha and Athenaeum in your web searches. I hope you will find this article helpful as you compare the two and try to make a decision. Despite the Greek sounding name of Athenaeum, both...

read more
Z39.50 Server Directory

Z39.50 Server Directory

Copy cataloging is one of the most useful tools your library system has (or should have). It works by importing ready made MARC records from external sources like the Library of Congress. This will make cataloging much faster and easier, saving you time and money in...

read more

0 Comments

Submit a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.