Inferring the Deployment of Top Domains over Public Clouds using DNS Data

Quentin Jacquemart, Clement Pigout, Guillaume Urvoy-Keller
TMA Conference 2019


    Cloud technologies are becoming pervasive and available for private companies or public institutions in different flavors, mostly public cloud or private clouds. Our focus in this work is on the usage of public cloud technologies by the most popular sites in the Internet. While some studies have described the nascent landscape of public cloud computing 5 years ago, surprising little effort has been put to study the recent evolution of this domain. Using DNS data that enables us to map domains (e.g., and their subdomains (e.g., with the cloud providers actually used, we refresh our understanding of this ecosystem. We focus on the dominant four cloud providers, namely Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Computing and IBM Bluemix. We demonstrate that cloud penetration has clearly increased since 2013, reaching almost 50% of the top 1000 domains, from the Alexa list. Furthermore,a significant fraction of domains use multiple cloud providers simultaneously. Still, domain owners remain cautious when it comes to choose which subdomain is actually hosted in the cloud and only 17.8% on average of the subdomains are actually hosted in the cloud. In terms of performance, preliminary results indicate that hosting a subdomain in the cloud pays off as compared to private hosting with a decrease of application level latency of 28%.

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