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Cloudflare Workers

Apr 2019

Most modern server-side or serverless code execution platforms are centered around containers or VMs. Cloudflare Workers, however, takes a different approach to hosting a serverless computing offering. It uses V8 Isolates, the open source JavaScript engine developed for Chrome, to run functions as a service (FaaS) on their extensive CDN network. Code can be written in JavaScript or anything that compiles to WebAssembly and data can be accessed from Cloudflare's cache or key-value store. The major benefit for developers is performance: by being on the edge network, close to end users, cold-starts take only five milliseconds. For the provider the benefits include both the ability to densely pack isolates because of their lower memory overhead and faster performance through reduced process context switching. This is definitely an intriguing approach to monitor and assess.