CloudFlare CDN Features, Pricing and Performance Review

Anil AnveshHow To, SEO6 Comments

CloudFlare Data Centers

In our previous post we explained how to setup Google PageSpeed Service to boost your Website speed. Now we will walk through CloudFlare CDN services. We want to remind you once again what a CDN is? A CDN (Content Delivery/Distribution Network) gets a copy of your website from origin server (Host Server) and keeps it on servers located across the globe. So when a user requests for your website then it will be served from the nearest server (Local Host). CDN reduces server response time, improves website speed and security. Below is the map of 24 CloudFlare data centers across the globe. So whenever user requests for your website it will be served from the nearest CloudFlare server.

CloudFlare Data Centers

CloudFlare CDN Features

CloudFlare CDN features varies from plan to plan. Below is the complete list of CloudFlare CDN features.

1. Fast site performance
2. Broad security protection
3. Powerful stats about your visitors
4. Mobile optimizations
5. Web application firewall (WAF)
6. SSL
7. Virtually real-time statistics
8. Insight into what’s happening on your site
9. Advanced DDoS attack mitigation
10. Railgun™ web optimization
11. 100% uptime guarantee
12. Dedicated account manager
13. 24/7 phone support
14. 2500% service level agreement (SLA)

CloudFlare CDN Pricing

CloudFalre CDN pricing is low compared to other CDN providers in the market. CloudFlare won’t charge for bandwidth usage. Below are the CloudFlare pricing details for different plans.

1. CloudFlare Free – It’s free.
2. CloudFlare Pro – $20/month for first website and $5/month for subsequent websites.
3. CloudFlare Business – $200/month for each website.
4. CloudFlare Enterprise – $5000/month on an average.

 CloudFlare CDN Features & Pricing Comparison

Below is  CloudFlare features and pricing comparison table.

CloudFlare Features and Pricing

CloudFlare CDN Setup

So far you just had a walk through of CloudFlare CDN services. Now we will explain how to setup your domain on CloudFlare for free. CloudFlare free plan boosts your website performance and protects from security attacks. You can also access website analytics. Just follow below steps to setup your first domain on CloudFlare.

1. Signup for CloudFlare account.
2. After completing signup email verification under Add Website enter your domain url (Ex: etechknol.com) and hit enter.

Add Website to CloudFlare

3. Then CloudFlare scans your DNS records. After scanning hit Continue Setup.

CloudFlare Continue Setup

4. Cross check whether CloudFlare listed all your DNS records are not. If any record is missing you can add it below the list. Finally hit continue.

CloudFlare Add DNS Records

5. Now CloudFlare redirects you to settings page. Choose free plan, Performance CDN+Basic Optimizations, security medium, Automatic IPv6 and SmartErrors On.

CloudFlare Basic Settings

6. Finally you have to change your DNS name servers to CloudFlare name servers. As I’m using Bluehost hosting account I got a recommendation like below.

CloudFlare Name Servers

Once you changed name servers your website will be automatically added to CloudFlare. Then you can access analytics, DNS settings and CloudFlare settings for the domain.

Domain on CloudFlare

CloudFlare CDN Settings

We will discuss optimal settings for CloudFlare free plan. Don’t change any setting which is not discussed in this post because some features work with only premium plans.

Settings Overview

Security Profile – Medium
Performance Profile – CDN+Basic Optimizations
Cache Purge – Purge Cache
Development Mode – OFF
Automatic IPv6 – Safe
Always Online – ON
IP Geolocation – ON

Security Settings

Security Profile – Medium
Basic Protection Level – Medium
Change Passage TTL – 1 hour
E-mail address obfuscation – ON
Server side exclude – ON
Browser Integrity Check -ON
Hotlink Protection – ON

Performance Settings

Performance Profile – CDN+Basic Optimizations
Caching Level – Basic
Minimum expire TTL – 1 day
Auto Minify – JS CSS HTML
Rocket Loader – Off

CloudFlare for WordPress

“Unfortunately W3 Total Cache plugin has removed this feature from recent updates”

WordPress users can easily integrate CloudFlare into their blog via W3 Total Cache plugin. Under W3 Total Cache plugin General Settings you can find a separate section as “Network Performance & Security powered by CloudFlare“. In that section Enable CloudFlare, enter account email, API Key and Domain. Choose Security level to Medium, Minification to CSS, JavaScript and HTML, turn off Rocket Loader and Development Mode.

W3 Total Cache CloudFlare Settings

In addition there is a CloudFlare CDN plugin for WordPress which protects you from spam comments using reverse proxy ip lookup. Below is the configuration of CloudFlare CDN plugin. Just enter your API Key and email.

Conclusion

CloudFlare is one of the best CDN providers in the market. The free plan can do wonders for You. Even if your origin server is down it will serve the cached copy of your website and protects from security attacks. WordPress users can easily integrate CloudFlare with W3 Total Cache and CloudFlare CDN plugins.

Hope now you know about CloudFlare CDN and how to setup your domain on CloudFlare. If you enjoyed this post please do us a favour by leaving a comment and sharing this post on your social Facebook and Twitter 🙂


6 Comments on “CloudFlare CDN Features, Pricing and Performance Review”

  1. Pingback: Best Web Hosting - Bluehost vs Hostgator vs Godaddy - Tech Knol

  2. Shuaib Shahzan

    Hi,

    I have my domain on godaddy.co.in and my WordPress website is hosted on hostgator.in, can I setup Cloudflare?

    If it’s possible, please let me how do I set it up?

    Also let me know which is better Cloudflare or Google PageSpeed Insights?

    Thanks in Advance !

    1. Anil Anvesh

      Shuaib, Google PageSpeed Service is in it’s beta version and that too I heard that Google is planning to make it as a paid service. You can setup CloudFalre for your domain. The procedure is same as I discussed in the post, just enter your domain in CloudFlare and change your NameServers in HostGator 🙂

  3. Rezan Ferdous

    I don’t know why but there is no “Network Performance & Security powered by CloudFlare” in my W3 Total Cache plugin. Should I use their (CloudFlare) wordpress plugin to do this ?

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