i have received the task to load balance multiple icecast server for an internet radio. But after researching for a couple of hours i have come to a complete dead end and have no idea how to load balance them.

I have tried to redirect the user to different streams but some of the software our listeners use do not support redirects.

Another option i had in mind was to Round Robin DNS, but this does not seem like a great idea since some clients don't respect TTL and cache the servers for multiple days

If anyone could send me the right direction, that would be awesome! Thanks for any help in advance.


RR-DNS is the simplest and reasonably efficient solution for this.

The fact that some of the clients will cache the result a bit longer is statistically irrelevant. You will end up with a roughly even distribution. You don't want to max out the server connectivity anyway.

BTW: I hope that internet radio has good reasons for balancing. A single Icecast instance scales easily to beyond 10000 listeners (only limited by the server network bandwidth). I keep seeing radios with an average of <200 listeners being concerned about this and that's just wasted effort.

PS: I'm a bit surprised that there are still clients that break on 301/302, care to name them? We might want to approach them as Xiph.org / the Icecast project.

  • Thanks! We'll go further in RR then. The clients are mostly games, we are a radio that has listeners that use in game radios (Like farming sim) – Pieterjan Van Saet Feb 16 '18 at 21:03

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