NGINX, the company delivering a comprehensive application delivery solution in use on more than 120 million websites worldwide, has announced the availability of NGINX Plus R8 – the latest release of its application delivery platform. This latest update provides an initial release of OAuth-based authentication, the industry standard for authentication and authorization.
OAuth enables ‘Single Sign On’ capabilities for applications, as well as access controls for APIs. Organizations can use NGINX Plus to offload OAuth processing from application servers, allowing for more efficient utilization of infrastructure, as well as developer time.
Many of today’s most popular sites and applications, like Spotify and Airbnb, use OAuth authentication to allow users to easily leverage existing credentials from an authorization server, such as Facebook or Google.
For end users, OAuth would greatly improve the user experience by eliminating the need to maintain separate usernames and passwords for a multitude of websites. It would also mean more seamless and rapid access to applications, which is crucial for obtaining and keeping users in today’s fast-paced web environment. NGINX Plus is ideally placed to handle the burden of authenticating requests and simplifying the identity implementation in the business logic.
In addition to OAuth authentication, the latest NGINX release also adds several new and updated features to ensure organizations can deliver their applications with the performance, security, and reliability required for modern enterprise applications:
- OAuth Technology Preview – As a reverse proxy and load balancer, NGINX Plus sits in front of the application and would be ideally positioned to simplify application development by offloading the OAuth processing from application servers. In this technology preview in R8, NGINX is sharing a candidate implementation of OAuth to help users offload and streamline complex authentication tasks from micro-service application components.
- Production-Ready HTTP/2 – In its previous release from September 2015, NGINX Plus R7, NGINX introduced support for HTTP/2. This support came less than seven months after the protocol was ratified. Since then, the company has continued working hard to improve the implementation. With the latest release, NGINX now provides a fully production ready and hardened implementation of the new HTTP/2 web standard. HTTP/2 would improve performance of websites by up to 30%. With NGINX Plus R8, organizations can continue to add HTTP/2 support to their new and existing sites with no changes required to their application.
- Persistent On-the-Fly Reconfiguration API – With the on-the-fly reconfiguration API in NGINX Plus, organizations are able to add or remove upstream servers without restarting NGINX Plus. This would be a nice feature for auto-scaling and service discovery, enabling customers to modify the load balancing pool on demand. Starting with R8, the changes customers make on the fly persist across a restart or configuration reload. This update to the API lets organizations make permanent changes to their NGINX Plus load-balancing configuration, adding and removing servers and changing their load balancing priorities. Using this “easily-secured” API, changes can be made as frequently as needed.
- Scalable Caching for Large Video Files – With NGINX Plus R8 also comes an improved scalable content cache to better handle large video files, such as HTML5 video. Rather than store the entire video file as a single cache entry, NGINX Plus breaks it up into smaller fragments and then caches those fragments. Structuring the cache in this way would better align to how users consume video on the Internet (fast forwarding, ending early, etc.), and reduce user latency as well as network traffic to and from origin servers.
Many of the Internet’s largest websites rely on NGINX, including Airbnb, Box, Instagram, Netflix, Pinterest, SoundCloud, Zappos, and more. The company is headquartered in San Francisco with offices in Moscow and London.