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CloudFront versus CenturyLink

Easily compare CloudFront and CenturyLink for POP locations, products, pricing, features & support. We hope this helps you better understand the similarities and differences between these content delivery networks.

CloudFront logo CenturyLink logo

Company

Company CloudFront CenturyLink
Short profile CloudFront is the CDN of AWS (Amazon Web Services), the world's largest cloud services provider. CloudFront offers a mature set of content delivery products and has a big network of POPs on many continents. Solid documentation and APIs make CloudFront a developer-friendly CDN. CenturyLink owns and operates a global Tier-1 network and - logically - their CDN runs on top of it. CenturyLink CDN has POPs on all continents and their product focus is on video and large object delivery. CenturyLink CDN is part of the Google Cloud CDN Interconnect.

Products

  • Yes = Yes
  • Sortof/partially = Sort of/partially
  • No = No
  • Unknown = Unknown
Product CloudFront CenturyLink
Dynamic content deliveryNon-cacheable content delivery. User login, shopping cart ... Yes Dynamic Content Delivery No
Small file deliveryStatic object delivery; caching of small files (file size <1 MB) Yes Yes
Large file deliveryStatic object delivery; caching of large files (file size >1 MB) Yes Yes
Live videoDelivery of live video. RTMP? Transcoding/transmuxing? Yes Streaming Media Yes CDN Mesh Delivery
Video on demandDelivery of on demand video Yes Yes CDN Mesh Delivery
Image OptimizationAutomatic image transformation/compression/optimization No No
DNSAuthoritative DNS for customer domain Yes AWS Route53 No
WAFWeb Application Firewall Yes AWS WAF No
Anti-DDoSDDoS attack protection. Specific product(s) for this. Yes AWS Shield Yes
Private CDNDedicated edge resources & custom configs No No
Edge ComputeRun your code on CDN edge servers Yes Lambda@Edge Unknown

Network

Region CloudFront CenturyLink
North America 24 29
Latin America 6 9
Europe 26 36
Russia & CIS 0 0
Asia excl. China 14 7
China 4 0
Oceania 4 4
Middle-East 4 4
Africa 3 3

Pricing

Pricing & contract duration CloudFront CenturyLink
Minimum contract term None 12 months
Minimum monthly costs None Unknown
Requests costsCustomers pay for client to CDN requests $0.0075 - $0.022 per 10k requests None
Ingress costsCustomers pay for origin-to-CDN bytes transferred $0.02 - $0.16 per GB (free if origin is AWS) None
NA/EU traffic (low volume) $0.085 per GB Unknown
APAC traffic (low volume) $0.14 per GB (India: $0.17) Unknown
LATAM traffic (low volume) $0.11 per GB Unknown

Features

  • Yes = Yes
  • Sortof/partially = Sort of/partially
  • No = No
  • Extra costs = Extra costs
  • Unknown = Unknown
Web acceleration CloudFront CenturyLink
Instant setupSign up, configure, start testing. Yes No Can't sign up and get started. Must talk to sales.
Change propagation delayHow fast do config changes propagate to all POPs? Sortof/partially ~10 minutes Unknown
Apex/root domain OK Blog: Root domain on CDN and performanceNo performance degradation when using http(s)://domain.com Sortof/partially Only if used together with AWS Route53 No No global Anycast
HTTP/2 Yes HTTP/2 announcement (Sep 2016) No
IPv6Do the edge servers have IPv6? Yes IPv6 support announcement (Oct 2016) Unknown
Compression CDN Guide: CompressionReduce file size for faster delivery Yes Resend from origin, or compress on edge
tooltip CloudFront can compress many content types on the edge
Sortof/partially Resend from origin only
tooltip Does not compress on the edge
Origin pull - protocolHTTP only or HTTPS possible too? Yes HTTP and HTTPS Yes HTTP and HTTPS.
Origin pull - Host headerUse client > edge value? Set specific value? Sortof/partially Can't configure specific other Host header Yes Configure specific other Host header
tooltip CDN can also forward client request Host header to origin
Origin ShieldOne POP pulls from origin, other POPs pull from the shield POP Extra costs Origin Shield docs Extra costs
Push / uploadStore your content directly on CDN, no customer origin No Extra costs FTP, SFTP, rsync. Storage costs apply
Cache control - CDN caching Unknown Sortof/partially
Cache control - client caching Unknown Sortof/partially
Serve Stale CDN Guide: Serve StaleCDN serves cached but expired content in case origin is in trouble Yes No Cache-Control extensions support Unknown
Purge CDN Guide: PurgeInvalidate or delete cached objects on CDN Yes 1 minute or faster Yes Instant
Purge - capabilities Sortof/partially Purge all and by directory/file type (wildcards) Sortof/partially Purge all but not purge by directory or tag or header
Analytics Yes Amazon CloudFront Reports & Analytics Yes
Log files Sortof/partially Only delivered to S3
tooltip CloudFront delivers access logs for a distribution up to several times an hour
Yes
tooltip Logs are 24h delayed
API Yes Purge, analytics, configuration Sortof/partially Purge, analytics, configuration (but limited)
HTTPS & Content Protection CloudFront CenturyLink
CDN domain HTTPSUse the CDN's domain, like cloudfront.net Yes Free (not SNI) No
Customer domain HTTPSYour domain in the CDN's certificate No Extra costs
Customer cert HTTPSYour certificate on the CDN Yes Free (SNI) or $600/m for non-SNI Extra costs
Token authentication Yes Serving Private Content through CloudFront Extra costs
Geo blocking Yes Restricting the Geographic Distribution of Your Content Extra costs
Hotlink protectionThird parties cannot deeplink to your content Extra costs Use AWS WAF for Referer Checking Unknown
Basic authenticationUser logs in on the CDN to get content No Unknown
IP white/blacklisting Extra costs Use AWS WAF to Block IP Addresses Unknown

Support

Customer support CloudFront CenturyLink
Documentation Yes Yes, public. API docs Sortof/partially Yes, but not public
Humans Extra costs Community support is free. Email and phone support (AWS Support) available at extra costs Yes All customers get 24/7 email and phone support