Varnish Cache 3.0 review (video)

Varnish Software has just outted Varnish Cache 3.0, a business web accelerator that blows everything else away in its category.  They’ve also partnered with the leading cloud management provider RightScale to help businesses deploy Varnish Cache quickly in the cloud.

We’ve seen Internet traffic over the years move at an astounding rate, and research suggests that it will increase by 4-times over the next few years.  Varnish is positioning themselves to be able to deliver performance and scalability on the web at a competitive cost.

Varnish Cache is a web caching product that allows information to be cached in memory on off-the-shelf servers.  This saves business tons of money in hardware, power, software and services. Websites running Varnish Cache will be able to deliver content at close-to-network speeds and dramatically reduce the likelihood of crashing or being overloaded because of the number of visitors.

Varnishes main new feature of Varnish Cache 3.0 is the module support, which allows websites to move business and application logic onto the caching layer of the network. What in the hell does that mean, you ask? Basically, decisions such as what content to serve to what user is controlled by the software.


“This is perhaps the single most exciting feature we’ve ever developed,” says Per Buer, chief executive officer of Varnish Software. “It allows anyone to easily extend Varnish Cache to suit their needs.”

The Varnish Cache community is starting a module repository where Varnish Cache users will be able to share modules, which will provide a global user base.

Another major upgrade to Varnish Cache 3.0 is its compression standard.  Now 3.0 can compress content before storing it in cache, which will result in lightening-fast load times, better cache efficiency and reduced bandwidth requirements.  Cache 3.0 includes support for HTTP progressive streaming, which starts to deliver data as soon as it starts arriving in the cache.  This cuts down on latency induced when serving large pieces of data. The streaming support will start to ship in the 4th-quarter of this year.

Another major announcement has to do with Varnish’s partnership with RightScale Inc., a leading cloud management platform provider.  From June 2011, users will be able to deply and run Varnish Cache in the cloud. For existing RightScale users, this means they can deploy a fully supported cloud instance of Varnish Cache within minutes and instantly improve the speed and scalability of their websites.

“Internet users today demand simple, rapid web performance and they are not settling for less,” said Buer.

The anticipated 3.0 release will first be unveiled in the U.S. at the Velocity conference in Santa Clara, Calif, where Twitter will be speaking about how the company uses Varnish Cache. There will also be official parties in Oslo, Norway and UK, where BBC will present. The news will also be celebrated at 15 other global community events in 12 countries.

For more information, go to Varnish.