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UnixReview.com: A Look at Squid

Sep 30, 2001, 14:07 (10 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Joe 'Zonker' Brockmeier)
"This month, I'd like to talk about a fun package that goes by the lovely name of Squid. I've always thought "squid" was a fun word, although restaurants are apparently ashamed of the tentacled delicacy and prefer to call it "calamari."

If you haven't heard of Squid before, it's a package that handles proxy caching for Internet objects. Note that I didn't say "Web pages," because Squid can handle more than just HTML files. Squid can be used for a number of things, including saving bandwidth, handling traffic spikes, and caching sites that are occasionally unavailable. Squid can also be used for load balancing.

Essentially, the first time Squid receives a request from a browser, it acts as an intermediary and passes the request on to the server. Squid then saves a copy of the object. If no other clients request the same object, you'll see no benefit. However, if multiple clients request the object before it expires from the cache, Squid can speed up transactions and save bandwidth. If you've ever needed a document from a slow site, say one located in another country, hosted on a slow connection, or both, you can see the benefit of having a document cached. The first request may be slower than molasses, but the next request for the same document will be much faster, and the originating server's load will be lightened."

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