Global Accelerator (GA) uses stable BGP lines and the congestion-free global network of Alibaba Cloud to accelerate Internet-facing applications. GA can reduce network latency, network jitters, and packet loss when your business system is deployed across regions or accessible to global users. Users can access your business system by connecting to the nearest access points worldwide. GA ensures the high availability and high performance of web applications.

GA overview–the Alibaba Cloud International site

GA assigns an accelerated IP address to each region in an acceleration area. Clients in these regions can connect to the access point that is closest to the clients through the accelerated IP address. The access point receives client requests and forwards the requests to the Alibaba Cloud global network. GA then automatically selects routes to distribute client requests to the optimal endpoints. This helps avoid network congestion and reduce network latency. The endpoints of GA can be Server Load Balancer (SLB) instances, Elastic Compute Service (ECS) instances, Alibaba Cloud public IP addresses, or IP addresses or domain names of origin servers.

You can purchase cross-border acceleration bandwidth plans for GA. This allows you to accelerate service delivery between regions in mainland China and regions outside mainland China.

Components

Component Description
Acceleration area The area where you want to accelerate data transfer. The following acceleration areas are supported: China North, China South, China East, China Southwest, Asia Pacific, Europe, and North America.

To accelerate data transfer in a specific area, you must specify the area as an acceleration area. You can also specify regions in each acceleration area. For more information about areas and regions, see Overview.

Accelerated IP address After you add a region to an acceleration area, GA assigns an accelerated IP address to the region. Clients can connect to the access point that is closest to the clients through the accelerated IP address. The access point receives client requests and forwards the requests to the Alibaba Cloud global network.
Access point An access point serves as an ingress through which network traffic is routed to Alibaba Cloud. Each access point is a point of presence (PoP) or a region of Alibaba Cloud.
Listener A listener listens for connection requests and distributes the requests to endpoints based on the port and protocol that you specify. Each listener is associated with an endpoint group. You can associate an endpoint group with a listener by specifying the region to which you want to distribute network traffic. After you associate an endpoint group with a listener, network traffic is distributed to optimal endpoints in the endpoint group.
Endpoint group After you add a listener, you must create an endpoint group for the listener. This way, network traffic can be distributed to the endpoint group. Each endpoint group is associated with a specific region. An endpoint group contains one or more endpoints in the associated region.
Endpoint Endpoints are destinations of client requests. Endpoints can be SLB instances, ECS instances, Alibaba Cloud public IP addresses, or IP addresses or domain names of origin servers.
Note
  • You can specify ECS or SLB as the backend service type only if your account is added to the whitelist. To specify ECS or SLB as the backend service type, submit a ticket.
  • Only an ECS instance or SLB instance in a virtual private cloud (VPC) can be specified as an endpoint.

You can specify a weight for each endpoint. The weight specifies the proportion of traffic that is forwarded to the endpoint.

Endpoint group IP address After you add endpoints to an endpoint group, GA allocates at least four endpoint group IP addresses to each endpoint. You can view the actual number of endpoint group IP addresses allocated to each endpoint in the console. After GA receives a client request, GA converts the client IP address to an endpoint group IP address that is used to access the specific endpoint.
Note The IP addresses of endpoint groups associated with each GA instance must be globally unique and not conflict with those of other GA instances.
Basic bandwidth plan A basic bandwidth plan provides bandwidth for data transfer over the Internet and within internal networks of Alibaba Cloud. However, the basic bandwidth plan is not applicable to data transfer between mainland China and areas outside mainland China.

The following types of basic bandwidth plans are supported: basic, enhanced, and premium. The resources, acceleration type, and acceleration scope vary based on the bandwidth type. For more information, see Overview.

Cross-border acceleration bandwidth plan If you require data transfer acceleration between mainland China and areas outside mainland China, you must purchase a cross-border acceleration bandwidth plan.

Benefits

  • High performance
    GA uses stable Border Gateway Protocol (BGP) lines, the global transmission network of Alibaba Cloud, and worldwide access points to reduce network latency, network jitters, and packet loss. This greatly improves user experience.
  • High availability
    GA allows you to manage network traffic that is routed across regions and distributed to endpoints. This prevents service disruptions caused by failures of individual regions or connections and improves network stability. GA continuously monitors the health status of all endpoints and automatically schedules network traffic to ensure service continuity.
  • Security and reliability
    GA allows you to set network access control lists (ACLs) and use Alibaba Cloud security services to protect applications and endpoints from attacks.
  • Ease of deployment
    GA is easy to configure and can be deployed within a few minutes. Resources are monitored and maintained in a centralized manner. This mechanism simplifies the deployment process.

Apply for a free trial

First-time users can apply for a one-month free trial of GA with their Alibaba Cloud accounts from April 1, 2021 to April 1, 2022. The Alibaba Cloud accounts must have passed enterprise real-name verification. To apply for a free trial, visit the GA Free Trial Application page.

For more information about the free trial and the supported instance types, see Time-limited one-month free trials.