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When we make a delivery to our LIVE webservers we like to test they are working. As we have several load balanced webservers in LIVE we need to browse to each one individually. These are Windows Server 2008 webservers. To check the websites are OK on each webserver we currently browse to the website locally through IIS.

This process is painfully slow.

Is there a way to speed up this process?

Note: If we try to browse the webservers externally we end up on one webserver - and then seem to always hit that same webserver afterwards: which means the others go unchecked.

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If you are using a unix-based machine, add an entry to /etc/hosts pointing the domain to an IP of the server you want to hit. Syntax is as follows:

$ip $domain

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It depends on how the load balancing is done, and the accessibility you have to the machines from your workstation.

We have the following setup:

  • 1 public IP (loadbalanced to the internal IPs)
  • 2 internal IPs to the servers
  • 1 VPN from the office, which gives us access to the servers on their internal IPs extra bindings with hostnames that resolves to each internal IP.

Which means that the site has an additional binding:

  • sitename.web01.domain.com -> 10.0.0.1
  • sitename.web02.domain.com -> 10.0.0.2

This can even be a shared config, doesn't matter if all servers have all bindings, it's the resolve that will define which server you'll hit

That way, I can browse from my workstation on each individual web server, over VPN. If you have public IPs on each servers, you wouldn't require the VPN-part, or if your office net has direct access to the servers.

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