Virtualization Technology News and Information
Cloudflare Releases Workers Unbound, the Fastest, Most Affordable, Flexible, Secure Serverless Computing Platform

Cloudflare, Inc. announced the release of Cloudflare Workers Unbound, offering a serverless platform for developers with unparalleled flexibility, performance, security, ease of use, and pricing. Cloudflare Workers Unbound allows developers to run complicated computing workloads across the Cloudflare network and pay only for what they use. In addition to being more flexible, Cloudflare Workers Unbound can save users up to 75 percent for the same workloads running on legacy, centralized serverless platforms such as AWS Lambda.

"Cloudflare Workers Unbound is the most compelling serverless platform available," said Matthew Prince, co-founder and CEO of Cloudflare. "I challenged our team to build a platform that didn't just compete with niche edge computing solutions, but would provide developers the fastest, most secure, most flexible, and most cost-effective general-purpose serverless offering - period. I'm incredibly proud of Cloudflare Workers Unbound and can't wait to see what developers will build with it."

The Cloudflare Workers edge computing platform has been available to developers since September 2017. Last quarter, more than 20,000 developers created new applications running on Cloudflare Workers. Today, more than 10 percent of traffic through Cloudflare's global network is powered by Cloudflare Workers. Cloudflare Workers Unbound opens the platform to even more use cases, allowing developers to access the power of edge computing but with better flexibility and cost than even legacy, centralized serverless platforms.

Cloudflare Workers Unbound provides a broad set of benefits to developers:

  • Limitless: Developers can run heavy workloads without having to worry about overly restrictive CPU constraints and pay only for what they use.
  • Cost-Effective: For the same workload, Cloudflare Workers Unbound can be 75 percent less expensive than AWS Lambda, 24 percent less expensive than Microsoft Azure Functions, and 52 percent less expensive than Google Cloud Functions.
  • No Hidden Fees: Developers don't pay for hidden extras like API gateway or DNS request fees.
  • No Cold Starts: Cloudflare Workers Unbound is the first serverless platform to offer out of the box support for 0 nanosecond cold start times, compared with cold starts on other platforms that can take seconds and add unpredictable variability.
  • Unthrottled CPU: Other serverless platforms throttle CPU, resulting in workloads that take longer. The efficiency of the Cloudflare Workers isolates architecture lets Cloudflare run CPUs unthrottled so users can get more done per second of compute time.
  • Fast Globally: Workloads run across the Cloudflare network, spanning more than 200 cities in more than 100 countries, reducing average network latency for users everywhere in the world.
  • Instant Updates: Developers can update their code and have it live globally in 15 seconds, compared with the minutes it can take to update on other serverless platforms.
  • Broad Language Support: Developers can write code in the languages they know and love, including JavaScript, C, C++, Python, Go, Rust, Scala, Kotlin, and even COBOL.
  • Automatic Scaling: Cloudflare Workers Unbound automatically scale to meet demand without developers needing to worry about spinning up new instances.
  • Robust Debugging Tools: Developers can achieve more productivity with new tools to simplify debugging and diagnosing problems.
  • Secure By Design: The platform is built to withstand the latest security threats, including sophisticated timing attacks, and was reviewed by the team that discovered the Spectre class of vulnerabilities.

Cloudflare will continue to offer the original Cloudflare Workers model, now known as Cloudflare Workers Bundled, with its radically simple pricing for basic workloads. Cloudflare Workers Unbound now allows the hundreds of thousands of developers using the Cloudflare Workers platform to create even more complex applications without having to worry about overly restrictive limits.

"Serverless promises both a radical new economic model for compute, and a radically simplified programming model, with the developer focusing on orchestration and composition of rich back end services. Autoscaling, performance, observability, built-in security and support for a range of modern programming languages are all provided by the infrastructure," said James Governor, RedMonk co-founder and analyst. "Cloudflare Workers Unbound is designed to provide best in class performance, taking advantage of a global edge network, competing directly with existing cloud serverless platforms on a cost for cost basis."

"Cloudflare Workers has quickly proven itself to be a key part of providing a best-in-class user experience," said Mark Smith, Director of Infrastructure at Discord. "We use Workers extensively for core application delivery, download authentication, spam and abuse mitigation, and more. Our engineers now reach for Workers first to solve many kinds of challenges."

"Optimizely uses Workers to deliver a personalized, targeted response for every request," said Michael Hood, Senior Staff Performance Engineer at Optimizely. "Cloudflare's global network, and the consistent low latency of their edge compute platform, leveled the playing field and let us ship products previously out of reach."

"We have been using Cloudflare Workers and Workers KV at the edge of our stack for about a year now," said Frank Sharpe, Product Developer at ProPublica. "We appreciate the degree of control these tools have given us. Performant and malleable, Workers has improved our platform stability while giving us enormous flexibility."

Workers Unbound is currently a private beta. Developers can sign up for details here.

Published Monday, July 27, 2020 9:08 AM by David Marshall
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