What is MaxCDN?
Who uses MaxCDN?
Why developers like MaxCDN?
Here are some stack decisions, common use cases and reviews by companies and developers who chose MaxCDN in their tech stack.
The following will be a series of decisions we made that took BootstrapCDN from 0 to over 74 billion requests a month (and growing).
Initially, I didn’t want to do BootstrapCDN. I have attempted a few projects like it before and they always failed to gain any traction. In June of 2012, my boss at the time (and good friend today), David Henzel got a BuzzSumo Alert coming from an #OpenSource project on GitHub called Bootstrap and someone mentioned that MaxCDN was always looking for projects to sponsor. Long story short, David registered the domain and told me to get to work.
The first version of the site was written in PHP. It was quick and dirty but met the scope. We beta tested it for a month then people started to use it after searching for “bootstrap cdn” on Google.
I was still skeptical until, well, that’s for the next decision.
AMA below. 👇
This is the second Stack Decision of this series. You can read the last one to catch up (link below). Bootstrap, Jacob Thornton aka @fat tweeted about #BootstrapCDN and according to Google Analytics, that sent 10k uniques to the site in 24 hours. Now I was pumped but I knew I was way over my head and needed help. Fortunately, I met my co-maintainer Josh Mervine at the 2013 O’Reilly Velocity Conference and we hit it off immediately. I showed him the MaxCDN and Amazon S3 stats and his eyebrows went up. When I showed him the code, he was very polite, “well, I mean it works but I really want to try Node.js out so I’m just going to rewrite everything in Node and Ruby for the S3 scripts.
I didn’t know what to expect from Josh, to be honest. In the next decision (part 3), I will go over how he completely transformed the project.
AMA below 👇
This is the fourth Stack Decision of this series. Read the last one to catch up.
My friend and I were driving up to northern California, I got a tweet saying that their corporate anti-virus software was reporting that certain files on BootstrapCDN contained malicious code that installed Java malware on Windows XP workstations. The hackers were clever, using MaxCDN's #API they found a way to update the origin server URL & port (
8080) to their server and only updated a few files to fly under the radar.
I thought it was over, who was going to use BootstrapCDN after this? Well, like earlier I was wrong again. After the postmortem was written people left comments and emailed us saying “thanks” which I can’t thank those who did, it kept me going. Which was needed because the next wave of issues are coming in part 5.
AMA below. 👇
When my SSL cert MaxCDN was expiring on my personal site I decided it was a good time to revamp some things. Since GitHub Services is depreciated I can no longer have #CDN cache purges automated among other things. So I decided on the following: GitHub Pages, Netlify, Let's Encrypt and Jekyll. Staying the same was Bootstrap, jQuery, Grunt & #GoogleFonts.
What's awesome about GitHub Pages is that it has a #CDN (Fastly) built-in and anytime you push to master, it purges the cache instantaneously without you have to do anything special. Netlify is magic, I highly recommend it to anyone using #StaticSiteGenerators.
For the most part, everything went smoothly. The only things I had issues with were the following:
- If you want to point
wwwto GitHub Pages you need to rename the repo to
- If you edit something in the
_config.ymlyou need to restart
bundle exec jekyll sor changes won't show
- I had to disable the Grunt
htmlminmodule. I replaced it with Jekyll layout that compresses HTML for #webperf
Last but certainly not least, I made a donation to Let's Encrypt. If you use their service consider doing it too: https://letsencrypt.org/donate/
This is the fifth Stack Decision of this series. Read the last one to catch up.
One thing that happens when your service gets really popular is that you start running into server capacity issues. From day 1 we launched with #SSL, which might seem like “well duh” today, but it wasn’t that common in 2012. Jump to circa 2015 and the service is doing ~4k request per second (on average) and over 75% of those are SSL, puts a lot of stress on the CPUs.
At the time, MaxCDN deployed a custom build of nginx and we optimized the hell out of it. What we ended up having to do was basically dedicating a server in the busiest datacenters (PoPs) just for BootstrapCDN. Most enterprise customers didn’t even get their own (because they didn't need it). The engineering team did some other cool optimizations but I honestly can’t remember verbatim. Hopefully, they can comment on this. I’m lucky because this allowed me to work with some really great engineers, inside and outside of MaxCDN. Specifically an engineer by the name of XhmikosR. That’s in part 6.
AMA below. 👇
The reports and controls were also considerably better.
- We Make You Fast- With our fast-growing network of multiple PoP locations in all parts of the globe, we mirror your content and deliver it to the neared location to your visitors. It isn't just our network that is fast, but with our state-of-art hardware, fast RAM and SSD storage, content is served at lightning fast speeds.
- We Have Your Back- To ensure that you do not have any downtime, we have deployed redundant networks and intelligent routing that ensures selecting an alternative route if a network pathway is down.
- We Help You Rank- Using MaxCDN will help you improve your website speed, and since this is now a ranking factor used by Google and other search engines for deciding search results, deploying MaxCDN will help you rank better, giving you more traffic.
- We Help You Track- Our flexible and configurable reporting tool will allow you to track bandwidth usage, cache hits and multiple other parameters on an overall as well as per zone-basis.
- HTTP Referrer Protection to prevent hot-linking, customizable caching of query strings, and the ability to use a custom robot.txt are supported.
- MaxCDN also supports SSL with instant SSL setup of shared, custom, as well as wildcard SSL and other SSL-related features