JucoTech

What is CDN? CloudFlare Free CDN For WordPress/Blogger (Setup Guide)

August 19, 2017
CloudFlare Free Cdn
CloudFlare Free CDN For WordPress

👉 Have you ever heard of CloudFlare CDN?
👉 Are you looking for a free CDN service?
👉 Does your site load slow?

Okay See :

Here I will tell you how to use CloudFlare Free CDN for WordPress/Blogger sites. In fact, you can use this CDN on any platform.

Before we move on to the setup guide, we should be aware of what does a CDN mean, how it works and its uses.

What Is A CDN: Content Delivery Network?

Generally, a CDN(Content Delivery Network) is a collection of distributed servers that deliver web pages and other website content to users across the world, based on the geographical locations of the CDN server, user and the origin of the web page.

CDN is a backbone of the internet responsible for fast content delivery.

How Does A CDN Work?

Literally speaking, if you are using sites like WordPress other than Blogger(Blogger blogs are self-hosted by Google.) your site must be hosted on a remote server placed in a particular location.

Suppose, think that Jucotech.com is hosted in California with an IP "98.93.35.56". The location where your site is hosted is known as Data Center.

CDN caches your web pages and they are distributed over their data servers. These data centers of a CDN company are placed at some parts of the world.

Whenever a user opens jucotech.com your browser will send a request to the nearest data center DNS and gets the result '98.93.35.56' and the user will be able to access your site.

As the CDN sends a request to the nearest data center so your site load speed will be maximum. This the main use of a CDN service.

what is CDN

Image Credit: Infographic By KeyCDN

What if you are not using a CDN:

If you are not using a CDN service then whenever the user opens your site your browser will send a request to the data center where your site is hosted and your web pages are always loaded from that server.

Suppose the user opens your site from Australia and your data center is located in California then it takes some amount of time to fetch the web page content. So your site speed will be some what slow as compared to using a CDN service.

Why should we use CDN?

At present site speed is one of the important factors in terms of SEO and user experience. If your site speed is slow then you will lose 8% of your organic traffic. This site speed depends on various factors like page size, web-hosting etc.

In WordPress, you might have been using cache plugins like W3 cache or follow some optimizing techniques like reducing page size, optimizing images etc to increase your site speed. These will increase your site speed to a little extent but not as much as CDN.

After using CloudFlare CDN...

...my website speed has increased 7% more. So, I am highly recommending it to you as it is free to use and best in performance.

What Is The Best CDN Service To Use?

Truly, the best CDN is the MaxCDN service. It is the flexible and fastest CDN service. But the only thing is you can use it only if you can afford it.

Whereas CloudFlare CDN is a free CDN service to use and it works as fast as MaxCDN. It also offers free SSL security for all the websites hosted on CloudFlare.

There are some other CDN services to look at - Incapsula, EdgeCast, CacheFly, Amazon CloudFront, Swarmify, Google App Engine etc.

Benefits Of CloudFlare CDN Service:

  • It is free to use and it also offers a free SSL(https).
  • It protects your site from spam attacks at the Name-Server Level so that such requests won't hit your server.
  • It protects your site from DDOS attacks, SQL injection and Comment spams.
  • It pre-caches your web pages/website content.
  • Boosts your site load speed.
  • It reduces the load on the server and saves the bandwidth.
  • Data will be served based on the user location.

How To Setup CloudFlare Free CDN In WordPress/Blogger

Do you think CloudFlare setup is difficult?

Not at all. CloudFlare setup on WordPress and for any other site is very very easy. Here I have listed CloudFlare setup guide and you can simply follow the steps below.

1. Create CloudFlare Account:

If you are already a member then it is fine else create a CloudFlare account. Be sure to enter a valid email address as you will receive a verification email to test whether you are a bot or not.

create cloudflare account

2. Add Your Website To CloudFlare:

Now:

It's time to add your site to CloudFlare. After you have added your site, CloudFlare will check for the availability of your website. It might take 40 -60 seconds for scanning.

image2

3. DNS Management

After the scan completes you are now moved to DNS settings. There you can check and edit your DNS files or you can add missing files if any. Probably, I think CloudFlare might fetch your files correctly.

Here orange cloud determines that the request is passed through CloudFlare whereas the silver cloud determines that the request is hitting the web server directly.

image3

4. Choose A Plan

After you have done with DNS settings it is the time to choose a correct plan that suits you. I would recommend you to go with the free plan as I am using it personally. This plan gives basic functionality and features with the best performance.

For new websites like blogs, free plan is good enough or you can upgrade your plan if your site really needs it.

image4

5. Changing Nameservers

This is the last step...

...Here CloudFlare will provide you two nameservers. You should replace your domain provider nameservers with CloudFlare nameservers. So that they always point to CloudFlare.

Now:

You are successfully moved to CloudFlare. It might take up 4-10 hours for domain propagation don't be discouraged.

image5

CloudFlare Settings

After the completion of setup, you should change some settings to avoid errors and to get a better performance from CloudFlare.

  • Keep SSL security as Flexible. Go to Crypto -> SSL and change the setting.
  • image6
  • Change your Security level to Low. Go to Firewall -> Security Level to change it.
  • image7
  • If you are using HTTP then you should add some page rules to redirect to HTTPS.
      • Go to page rules section and click on add a page rule. If you are using a free plan then you add at most three page-rules.
      • 1) http://*yourdomain.com/* and select ALWAYS USE HTTPS option.
      • 2) https://yourdomain.com/* and select Forwarding Url, 301-permanent redirect. After that forward it to https://www.yourdomain.com.
      • 3.http://yourdomain.com/* and select Forwarding Url, 301 permanent redirects. After that forward it to https://www.yourdomain.com.
      • Replace yourdomain.com with your domain.

    My Personal Review About CloudFlare

    I have been using this CloudFlare free CDN since a year and I haven't faced any problem. So, I am recommending it to you.

    May be three or two years back CloudFlare performance a bit bad with 504 errors and HTTP to HTTPS redirections errors. Now, these errors are fixed by CloudFlare and they only occur in rare cases due to a huge amount of traffic.

    The thing which I like from CloudFlare is they provide a free SSL for free plans. They have been providing website apps like NoAdBlock, Social Icons, Live Chat, Twitter This etc which you can find at Apps section in CloudFlare website.

    If you want more protection from DDOS attacks you can upgrade your plan. Keep Secure!!!


    Don't Miss An Update