Beforehand, we introduced the general public preview launch of Gateway Load Balancer (GWLB), a brand new SKU of Azure Load Balancer focused for clear NVA (community digital equipment) insertion supported by a rising record of NVA suppliers. At the moment, inserting NVAs within the path of site visitors is a rising want for purchasers as their workloads scale. Widespread use instances of NVAs we’ve seen are:
- Permitting or blocking particular IPs utilizing digital firewalls.
- Defending purposes from DDoS assaults.
- Analyzing or visualizing site visitors patterns.
And GWLB now presents the next advantages for NVA situations:
- Supply IP preservation.
- Move symmetry.
- Light-weight NVA administration at scale.
- Auto-scaling with Azure Digital Machines Scale Units (VMSS).
With GWLB, bump-in-the-wire service chaining turns into straightforward so as to add on to new or current architectures in Azure. This implies prospects can simply “chain” a brand new GWLB useful resource to each Commonplace Public Load Balancers and particular person digital machines with Commonplace Public IPs, masking situations involving each extremely out there, zonally resilient deployments and less complicated workloads.
Determine 1: GWLB could be related to a number of shopper sources, together with each Commonplace Public Load Balancers and Digital Machines with Commonplace Public IPs. When GWLB is chained to the front-end configuration or VM NIC IP configuration, unfiltered site visitors from the web will first be directed to the GWLB after which attain the configured NVAs. The NVAs will then examine the site visitors and ship the filtered site visitors to the ultimate vacation spot, the patron software hosted on both the load balancer or digital machine.
What’s new with Gateway Load Balancer
GWLB borrows a majority of the identical ideas because the Commonplace Load Balancers that prospects are conversant in at this time. You’ll have many of the similar parts akin to frontend IPs, load balancing guidelines, backend swimming pools, well being probes, and metrics, however you’ll additionally see a brand new element distinctive to GWLB—VXLAN tunnel interfaces.
VXLAN is an encapsulation protocol utilized by GWLB. This permits site visitors packets to be encapsulated and decapsulated with VXLAN headers as they traverse the suitable information path, all whereas sustaining their unique supply IP and stream symmetry with out requiring Supply Community Deal with Translation (SNAT) or different complicated configurations like user-defined routes (UDRs).
The VXLAN tunnel interfaces are configured as a part of the GWLB’s back-end pool and allow the NVAs to isolate “untrusted” site visitors from “trusted” site visitors. Tunnel interfaces can both be inside or exterior and every backend pool can have as much as two tunnel interfaces. Sometimes, the exterior interface is used for “untrusted” site visitors—site visitors coming from the web and headed to the equipment. Correspondingly, the inner interface is used for “trusted” site visitors—site visitors going out of your home equipment to your software.
Contoso case research
To raised perceive the use case of GWLB, let’s dive deeper into instance retail firm Contoso’s use case.
Contoso is a retail firm that makes use of Azure Load Balancer at this time to make their net servers supporting their retail platform regionally resilient. Previously few years, they’ve skilled exponential progress and now serve over 20 million guests per 30 days. When confronted with the necessity to scale their retail platform, they selected Azure Load Balancer due to its excessive efficiency coupled with ultra-low latency. On account of their success, they’ve begun to undertake stricter safety practices to guard buyer transactions and scale back the chance of dangerous site visitors reaching their platforms.
What does Contoso’s structure appear like at this time?
One in every of their load balancers supporting the eastus area is named contoso-eastus and has a front-end IP configuration with the general public IP 101.22.462. At the moment, site visitors headed to 101.22.462 on port 80 is distributed to the backend cases on port 80 as nicely.
What’s the issue?
The safety group not too long ago recognized some doubtlessly malicious IP addresses which have been trying to entry their retail platform. In consequence, they’re seeking to place a network-layer digital firewall to guard their purposes from IP addresses with poor reputations.
What’s the plan?
Contoso has determined to go together with a third-party NVA vendor whose home equipment the group has utilized in different contexts akin to smaller scale purposes or different internal-facing instruments. The safety group desires to maintain the creation of extra sources to a minimal to simplify their NVA administration structure, in order that they resolve map one GWLB with an auto-scaling backend pool of NVAs utilizing Azure VMSS to every group of load balancers deployed in the identical area.
Deploying Gateway Load Balancer
The cloud infrastructure group at Contoso creates a GWLB with their NVAs deployed utilizing Azure VMSS. Then, they chain this GWLB to their 5 Commonplace Public LBs for the eastus area. After verifying that their Knowledge Path Availability and Well being Probe Standing metrics are 100% on each their GWLB and on every chained Commonplace Public LB, they run a fast packet seize to make sure every little thing is working as anticipated.
What occurs now?
Now, site visitors packets whose vacation spot are any of the frontend IPs of the Commonplace Public LBs for eastus will likely be encapsulated utilizing VXLAN and despatched to the GWLB first. At this level, the firewall NVAs will decapsulate the site visitors, examine the supply IP, and decide whether or not this site visitors is secure to proceed on in direction of the tip software. The NVA will then re-encapsulate site visitors packets that meet the firewall’s standards and ship it again to the Commonplace LB. When the site visitors reaches the Commonplace LB, the packets will likely be decapsulated, that means that the site visitors will seem as if it got here instantly from the web, with its unique supply IP intact. That is what we imply by clear NVA insertion, as Contoso’s retail platform purposes will behave precisely as they did earlier than, with out ever understanding that the packet was inspected or filtered by a firewall equipment previous to reaching the appliance server.
Gateway Load Balancer companions
Gateway Load Balancer helps a wide range of NVA suppliers, you may be taught extra about every of our companions on our companions web page.
- Examine Level
- Palo Alto Networks
Site visitors observability
- cPacket Networks
- Development Micro