Flexible Network Load Balancer FAQ


General questions

What is Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI) Flexible Network Load Balancer (Network Load Balancer)?

The Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI) Flexible Network Load Balancing (OCI Network Load Balancer) provides automated traffic distribution from one entry point to multiple back-end servers in your virtual cloud network (VCN). It operates at the connection level and load-balances incoming client connections to healthy back-end servers based on Layer 3/Layer 4 (IP protocol) data.

When should I use OCI Network Load Balancer?

You should use OCI Network Load Balancer when you require a low-latency, high-throughput, layer-4 (TCP/UDP/ICMP) load balancing solution.

How can I get started with OCI Network Load Balancer?

You can create a network load balancer in the networking section of the Oracle Cloud Infrastructure management console. Click "Load Balancers" and then "Create Load Balancer” and Choose type “Network Load Balancer." Alternatively, you can use the CreateNetworkLoadBalancer API.

To learn more about network load balancers, see the flexible network load balancer overview section of the Oracle Cloud Infrastructure documentation.

Technical questions

How does the network load balancer distribute incoming traffic across multiple compute instances?

The load balancer checks for incoming traffic on its IP address and distributes that traffic to a list of back-end servers, based on the load balancing and health check policies that you have defined in a logical entity called a back-end set. The back-end set determines how the network load balancer directs traffic to the collection of backend servers.

What load balancing policies can I define?

You can define the policies that tell the load balancer how to distribute incoming traffic to the back-end servers. Currently, we support the following load balancing policies:

  • 5-Tuple Hash
  • 3-Tuple Hash
  • 2-Tuple Hash

For more information, see How Load Balancing Policies Work in the documentation.

What incoming protocols does OCI Network Load Balancer support

The network load balancer listener, which is a logical entity that checks for incoming traffic on the load balancers IP address. You configure a listener's protocol and port number.

Currently supported protocols include:

  • TCP
  • UDP
  • ICMP

Can the load balancer handle TCP, UDP, and ICMP traffic at the same time?

Yes, the load balancer can handle TCP, UDP, and ICMP traffic at the same time. To do so, you must configure multiple listeners or configure wildcard listener (TCP/UDP/ICMP) with port 0 to match all protocols and port numbers.

What TCP ports can I load-balance?

You can load-balance for any port between 1-65535.

Can I specify a range of TCP ports to load balance?

No. Currently, you need to specify the individual TCP port you want to load-balance. You can alternatively specify port 0 to listen for all TCP ports.

Does the load balancer support IPv6 traffic?

No. The network load balancer currently only supports IPv4 traffic.

Does the network load balancer support SSL termination?

No. You can use the OCI flexible load balancer to terminate SSL at the load balancer.

Can I limit access to the network load balancing service via an IAM policy?

Yes. You can limit access to the network load balancing service via a policy written by an administrator.

Do the public and private network load balancers support regional load balancing?

Yes. Both the public and private load balancers can be deployed as regional services using the VCN regional subnet option. Regional subnets in a VCN span the entire region, which can include multiple ADs. A regional subnet enables you to create a regional private or public load balancer that supports AD failover in the event of an AD outage in an Oracle Cloud Infrastructure multi-AD region. Since a regional load balancer requires only one regional VCN subnet, it reduces the configuration and management overhead required by multiple AD-local subnets.

* OCI Flexible Network Load Balancer requires a paid OCI account, either as a pay-as-you-go or Universal Credits contract.