Likelihood to Recommend
Excellent for managing server loads and site speed for our clients. Most would have to buy bigger hosting packages to handle their busy days, but CloudFlare picks up the traffic and reduces the burden on the server. Most clients can rely on smaller hosting accounts to keep their sites up.
Nginx is well suited for serving any static content - whether that be images, JS files, HTML files, CSS files, videos, etc. If you have a high-traffic website, Nginx will be a great fit because it handles large number of requests extremely efficiently. Nginx has full support on Unix systems, but only has limited support on Microsoft Windows machines.
- Security: Cloudflare keeps our website safe from DDoS attacks and other malicious traffic.
- CDN: Cloudflare caches our website content, increasing our website's reliability and reducing server load. This saves on bandwidth costs from web servers.
- Registrar: We can migrate domains to Cloudflare, though they don't currently allow the purchase of new domain names. The benefit of this is cheaper renewal fees and fewer systems involved in managing our domains.
Manager in Information TechnologyRestaurants Company, 501-1000 employees
- Straight-forward configuration format that users of all skill levels can learn, and yet is powerful enough for the huge breadth of features that Nginx provides.
- Massive scale right out the box. We've never had a Nginx instance overwhelmed by requests, and if we did it would be trivial to spin up more Nginx instances to handle the load.
- SSL termination means that we can deliver content over HTTPS without needing our individual services to require TLS support. This saves us a lot of time and headache while keeping us secure.
- Nginx is open-source and free, meaning that anyone can use it to power their services, from individual projects to billion-dollar websites.
- Multiple Users - It would be great to be able to have multiple users on one account.
- Itemized Cache - Would love to see a list of files that have been cached by CloudFlare's CDN and when they will expire. Also nice to optionally remove one or more files from the cache.
- Customer support can be strangely condescending, perhaps it's a language issue?
- I find it a little weird how the release versions used for Nginx+ aren't the same as for open source version. It can be very confusing to determine the cross-compatibility of modules, etc., because of this.
- It seems like some (most?) modules on their own site are ancient and no longer supported, so their documentation in this area needs work.
- It's difficult to navigate between nginx.com commercial site and customer support. They need to be integrated together.
- I'd love to see more work done on nginx+ monitoring without requiring logging every request. I understand that many statistics can only be derived from logs, but plenty should work without that. Logging is not an option in many environments.
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Based on 1 answer
Front end proxy and reverse proxy of Nginx is always useful. I always prefer to Nginx in overall usability when you have application server and database or multiple application servers and single database i.e. clustered application. Nginx provides really good features and flexibility which helps the system administrator in case of troubleshooting and also from the administration perspective. Also, Nginx doesn't delay any request because of internal performance issues.
Engineer in Information TechnologyInformation Technology and Services Company, 10,001+ employees
Based on 11 answers
- We've been using a free plan, so we know that we aren't a priority on their list, but we had a severe issue in just one project, and they weren't able to help us with that.
- We had to remove that website from Cloudflare and use another service since they couldn't help us, and they took a long time to respond to our inquiries.
Based on 10 answers
I'm explicitly rating the open-source version of NGINX here. The open-source version has good documentation and useful examples. As one of the most web servers in the world, there is a wide range of tutorials and examples to learn from. This does have the drawback of potentially using older documentation, but NGINX has excellent default behavior, and the official documentation is easy to use. Their paid support seems excellent as well, though we haven't taken advantage of it yet.
Professional in Information TechnologyHuman Resources Company, 51-200 employees
Cloudflare and CloudFront are both great tools. I would recommend Cloudflare for sites that are not hosted on Amazon, and CloudFront for sites using Amazon Web Services. The pricing and features are comparable. Overall, Cloudflare's free tier offers more services, which gives it a slight edge over the competition.
Manager in Information TechnologyThink Tanks Company, 11-50 employees
Nginx struck the right balance for us of raw speed, power, convenience, and simplicity.
- I don't like the idea of hosting all of our open source PHP-based websites on Microsoft Windows servers with IIS, so that option was out first.
- Next, we had experience with Apache already, and were initially considering sticking with that, however it was decided that it would take too much administration time to properly configure and tune the server, especially considering it would need to occur on an ongoing basis.
- I've personally had experience with Litespeed Web Server, but we wanted something a little bit lower level--we don't need to actually manage our virtual hosts within an admin UI, and we wanted to stick with open source as much as possible. One huge benefit of Litespeed, however, is that it's .htaccess-compatible, meaning it's a much smaller transition from Apache in some cases.
- LightTPD was the closest contender to Nginx when all was said and done. We chose Nginx because some of us were more familiar with it or had some experience with it, and Nginx seemed to have more documentation and resources online for finding assistance at the time.
Return on Investment
- Our business has online presences to reassure our customers, not to gain new ones, so the actual ROI is smaller than for most other people.
- CloudFlare is super easy to use so I can make adjustments on the fly.
- Safety and security is important and I don't have to worry about a lot of things due to CloudFlare.
- Improved the reliability of our site. Before using Nginx, with Apache as our app server, there were times when we had to manually go in and restart Apache to bring the site back online. We've never had to do that with Nginx.
- Made our web server more memory efficient -- Nginx has a very small memory footprint, on the order of under 100 MB. This makes it suitable even for cheap VPS machines.
- The Nginx community provides online examples of configurations, so it saves us time in writing the config files from scratch.
Premium Consulting/Integration Services—
Entry-level set up fee?
Cloudflare Editions & Modules
Additional Pricing Details—
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
Entry-level set up fee?
NGINX Editions & Modules
|NGINX Plus - Basic||$2,5001|
|NGINX Plus - Professional||$3,5001|
|NGINX Plus - Enterprise||$5,0001|
|NGINX WAF - Add-on||$2,0001|
- per instance