Cloudflare suddenly using PoP thousands of miles away

I’ve read many threads about why you might not always connect to the Cloudflare PoP closest to where you are. Generally, it sounds as though your ISP determines where to route your request.

I am in the UK and often the PoP used will be London or Manchester. Quite often it will switch to AMS, France and sometimes Germany which are not too far away.

Today I noticed a lot of latency with our websites and it appears they are connecting to the PoP in Singapore which is over 6,000 miles away! Refreshing the cdn-cgi/trace page also shows the PoP changing frequently between Singapor and Melbourne, the latter of which is over 10,000 miles away!

I also switched from broadband to my mobile 4G connection and the PoP was still Singapore. I doubt very much that 2 different UK ISPs would route traffic 6,000 miles away. Also, I understand that sometimes if a PoP is in high demand you might not be routed to it, but it seems unlikely that every PoP in Europe is overloaded.

Do we just have to wait it out, or could there be something else wrong?

Are you on the free plan or the paid plan? CF randomly for 1-3 or 15 minutes to a few hours sends me all over the eastern USA. Static assets are always in my home city/home pop based on headers, same HTTP/2 connection, but my worker is 800 miles away half the day. So CF will do “Argo cheap routing” for free plan people. Your TCP connection is to the nearest CF pop but CF tunnels the decoded HTTP reqs (“host” header) over their private backbone to a cheaper/less used POP on free plan. EUR vs asia/aus I’d consider a bug/weird. Try other random CF sites and check which pop in the headers.

Hey @bulk88 thanks for your reply.

The reason I noticed is because images were loading slowly, so I believe the assets were coming via Singapore too.

I’m sure it’s entirely coincidental, but this started happening after we added a new site to our Cloudflare account where the origin is in the USA (all of the other sites in our account have their origin in the UK or Netherlands).

Paranoia got the better of me and I removed the USA webite from our account and moved it to a separate account. Overnight, all of our websites are now back to consistently using LHR (London Heathrow) as the PoP. We even had one site that had been stuck on AMS for weeks (which is not an issue) and that’s also showing as LHR now. Adding and then removing the USA based website from our CF account has got to be coincidental though, right?

We’re on the free plan, and unfortunately have lots of websites so don’t have the budget for the pro plan on every site. However, I’m thinking of taking out pro for at least one of them, which would help to support CF and also gives us access to support, at least for that particular website.

Certain POPs (India, Australia) are never available on free tier bc data costs/Ministry of Post and Telegraph drama. Some “developing nations” POPs don’t run workers ever free or paid (Saudi Arabia ppl complain about), probably I would guess they are a half empty single 42U rack worth of CF servers at an incumbent govt ISP and NOT connected to any “exchange” or “peering” or open access colo DC,, and the CF nameserver and HTTP front end/WAF being 1-2ms away from the ISP’s core router is enough benefit. And scientifically it says if you are on the free plan you do want all your origin IPs to be within the same country since CF doesn’t want to keep your billing information “hot” at all 200 pops at all times. It probably also means the anycast IPs for the free tier r different than the paid tier but this is proprietary/secret to CF. They could do a bgp update and push all the free tier eyeballs out of a POP to a distant POP if the tier 1/tier 2 allows it if a DDOS comes in before starting to push paid tier eyeballs to a distant POP. A cheap fix for you is to just have a proxy server as CF Origin sitting in Europe with a EUR IP that proxies to your USA origin under the ocean, so CF still bins you as a EUR account and not a “cheaper” USA account which triggers africa/red sea/pacific routing to your USA origin vs Atlantic.

So… does this mean the issues could have been caused by adding a non-european website to our CF account? Since the problem did go away once we removed that website, and put it in is own separate account. However, that website is also showing as the LHR PoP for me now, which is expected because although the origin is in the USA, I am in the UK.

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