I am attempting to set up a test Nginx load balanced environment. So far I have sucessfully configured a load balancer nginx-balancer1 and 3 servers to serve webpages nginx1, nginx2 & nginx3.

I want to balance the load by region depending on the visitor's IP. I have configured my Nginx nginx-balancer1 to use the Maxmind GeoIP Country data.

So here is my configuration to the upstream servers:

# Check where the user is coming from
server {
  location / {
    if ($geoip_city_continent_code = "EU") { proxy_pass http://ams1; }
    if ($geoip_city_continent_code = "NA") { proxy_pass http://sfo1; }
    if ($geoip_city_continent_code = "AS") { proxy_pass http://sgp1; }
# Define upstream servers
upstream ams1 { server server1.example.com; }
upstream sfo1 { server server1.example.com; }
upstream sgp1 { server server1.example.com; }

This seems to work well, however if I shutdown nginx on say ams1 (server1.example.com) and try to go to the main page I receive a 502 Bad Gateway error.

What I want to figure out is if a server is down, how can I get nginx-balancer1 to redirect to another server, either the next closest or the next functioning server.

Can anybody help?



It sounds like what you're looking for is proxy_next_upstream and proxy_connect_timeout. So you'd then do something like:

proxy_next_upstream     error timeout invalid_header http_500;
proxy_connect_timeout   2;

Basically if a failure is detected the backend will be marked as down for x seconds and it will try again. Nginx will try the next entry in the upstream block, so yonce the downed upstream comes back up it should automatically be re-enabled in the upstream pool.

  • Thanks for your answer sadly it doesn't work with my configuration as I am still seeing 502 errors. These directives should be added inside my server { location / { #HERE }} correct? – Daniel Pilch Feb 26 '14 at 17:12
  • correct on the location in your nginx conf. What version of nginx are you on? If your upstream is returning a 502 make sure you're using --> http_502 (instead of http_500 from my example earlier). – xxdesmus Feb 26 '14 at 18:07
  • Yeah I tried with http_502 but it hasn't worked :/ I'm using nginx version: nginx/1.1.19. Here is a pastebin of my 'default' file in sites-available if it helps: pastebin.com/mi45hUXU – Daniel Pilch Feb 26 '14 at 21:29
  • I don't have this kind of setup in place on my side so it's kinda hard to make a definitive suggestion for a fix, but might be worth reviewing: andrewparisio.com/2011/02/… based on that they seem to show you should specify max_failes and fail_timeout per server such as --> max_fails=3 fail_timeout=31s; – xxdesmus Feb 26 '14 at 22:36
  • So yeah I had a look at the link and attempted to change my configurations to use max_fails & fail_timeout but I'm still getting the 502 error. Very strange indeed. I've checked the nginx logs but nothing screams out at me failed (111: Connection refused) while connecting to upstream. – Daniel Pilch Feb 27 '14 at 11:01

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