CloudFlare is a recently developed web service designed with a noble purpose: to protect and improve the performance of your website the way that unreasonably expensive solutions protect the large corporate websites.
Often when a small-scale website begins to get popular, it will get a surge of internet traffic that its server simply can’t handle.
As a result of the heavy traffic, the server will go offline, typically at the worst possible time. Search engines punish the site when the site loads too slowly. Possibly worst of all, the prized new visitors might just be a mixed bag of good and evil.
CloudFlare’s introductory video on their homepage accurately describes the advantages that large websites have over small ones. “The big guys have their expensive solutions. They’re covered. With CloudFlare, you can be covered too.”
CloudFlare describes their service as open and usable by anyone with a website and their own domain, regardless of platform. It offers your website a line of defense in the form of a growing globally distributed network. They boast of a 5 minute or less startup, easy to use setup, and the easy option to turn the service off or on.
How does the free CloudFlare service help protect and improve your website? It offers broad security protection (such as hotlinking protection and a threat control dashboard), stats about your visitors, and “peace of mind about running your website.” For the low price of free, CloudFlare makes a compelling case to pick up this product.
CloudFlare Pro intends to take the basic CloudFlare service experience and raise the level a bit. for Twenty dollars a month (plus five for each additional website), you receive faster site performance, what they call ‘advanced’ security protection (which includes a web app firewall and posted content analysis), and the highly coveted feature of virtual real-time stats. The Pro version also gives you full control and insight into what’s happening on your site.
CloudFlare is currently ‘hard at work’ building an enterprise service with your web business in mind.