Elastic Load Balancing
Application Load Balancers

Getting Started with Application Load Balancers

This tutorial provides a hands-on introduction to Application Load Balancers through the AWS Management Console, a web-based interface. To create your first Application Load Balancer, complete the following steps.

Alternatively, to create a Network Load Balancer, see Getting Started with Network Load Balancers in the User Guide for Network Load Balancers. To create a Classic Load Balancer, see Create a Classic Load Balancer in the User Guide for Classic Load Balancers.

Before You Begin

  • Decide which two Availability Zones you will use for your EC2 instances. Configure your virtual private cloud (VPC) with at least one public subnet in each of these Availability Zones. These public subnets are used to configure the load balancer. You can launch your EC2 instances in other subnets of these Availability Zones instead.

  • Launch at least one EC2 instance in each Availability Zone. Be sure to install a web server, such as Apache or Internet Information Services (IIS), on each EC2 instance. Ensure that the security groups for these instances allow HTTP access on port 80.

Step 1: Select a Load Balancer Type

Elastic Load Balancing supports three types of load balancers. For this tutorial, you create an Application Load Balancer.

To create an Application Load Balancer

  1. Open the Amazon EC2 console at https://console.aws.amazon.com/ec2/.

  2. On the navigation bar, choose a region for your load balancer. Be sure to select the same region that you used for your EC2 instances.

  3. On the navigation pane, under LOAD BALANCING, choose Load Balancers.

  4. Choose Create Load Balancer.

  5. For Application Load Balancer, choose Create.

Step 2: Configure Your Load Balancer and Listener

On the Configure Load Balancer page, complete the following procedure.

To configure your load balancer and listener

  1. For Name, type a name for your load balancer.

    The name of your Application Load Balancer must be unique within your set of Application Load Balancers and Network Load Balancers for the region, can have a maximum of 32 characters, can contain only alphanumeric characters and hyphens, must not begin or end with a hyphen, and must not begin with "internal-".

  2. For Scheme and IP address type, keep the default values.

  3. For Listeners, keep the default, which is a listener that accepts HTTP traffic on port 80.

  4. For Availability Zones, select the VPC that you used for your EC2 instances. For each Availability Zone that you used to launch your EC2 instances, select the Availability Zone and then select the public subnet for that Availability Zone.

  5. Choose Next: Configure Security Settings.

  6. For this tutorial, you are not creating an HTTPS listener. Choose Next: Configure Security Groups.

Step 3: Configure a Security Group for Your Load Balancer

The security group for your load balancer must allow it to communicate with registered targets on both the listener port and the health check port. The console can create a security group for your load balancer on your behalf, with rules that specify the correct protocols and ports. If you prefer, you can create and select your own security group instead. For more information, see Recommended Rules.

On the Configure Security Groups page, complete the following procedure to have Elastic Load Balancing create a security group for your load balancer on your behalf.

To configure a security group for your load balancer

  1. Choose Create a new security group.

  2. Type a name and description for the security group, or keep the default name and description. This new security group contains a rule that allows traffic to the load balancer listener port that you selected on the Configure Load Balancer page.

  3. Choose Next: Configure Routing.

Step 4: Configure Your Target Group

Create a target group, which is used in request routing. The default rule for your listener routes requests to the registered targets in this target group. The load balancer checks the health of targets in this target group using the health check settings defined for the target group. On the Configure Routing page, complete the following procedure.

To configure your target group

  1. For Target group, keep the default, New target group.

  2. For Name, type a name for the new target group.

  3. Keep the default target type (Instance), protocol (HTTP), and port (80).

  4. For Health checks, keep the default settings.

  5. Choose Next: Register Targets.

Step 5: Register Targets with Your Target Group

On the Register Targets page, complete the following procedure.

To register your instances with the target group

  1. For Instances, select one or more instances.

  2. Keep the default port (80) and choose Add to registered.

  3. When you have finished selecting instances, choose Next: Review.

Step 6: Create and Test Your Load Balancer

Before creating the load balancer, review the settings that you selected. After creating the load balancer, verify that it's sending traffic to your EC2 instances.

To create and test your load balancer

  1. On the Review page, choose Create.

  2. After you are notified that your load balancer was created successfully, choose Close.

  3. On the navigation pane, under LOAD BALANCING, choose Target Groups.

  4. Select the newly created target group.

  5. On the Targets tab, verify that your instances are ready. If the status of an instance is initial, it's probably because the instance is still in the process of being registered, or it has not passed the minimum number of health checks to be considered healthy. After the status of at least one instance is healthy, you can test your load balancer.

  6. On the navigation pane, under LOAD BALANCING, choose Load Balancers.

  7. Select the newly created load balancer.

  8. On the Description tab, copy the DNS name of the load balancer (for example, my-load-balancer-1234567890.us-west-2.elb.amazonaws.com). Paste the DNS name into the address field of an Internet-connected web browser. If everything is working, the browser displays the default page of your server.

  9. (Optional) To define additional listener rules, see Add a Rule.

Step 7: Delete Your Load Balancer (Optional)

As soon as your load balancer becomes available, you are billed for each hour or partial hour that you keep it running. When you no longer need a load balancer, you can delete it. As soon as the load balancer is deleted, you stop incurring charges for it. Note that deleting a load balancer does not affect the targets registered with the load balancer. For example, your EC2 instances continue to run.

To delete your load balancer

  1. Open the Amazon EC2 console at https://console.aws.amazon.com/ec2/.

  2. On the navigation pane, under LOAD BALANCING, choose Load Balancers.

  3. Select the checkbox for the load balancer, and then choose Actions, Delete.

  4. When prompted for confirmation, choose Yes, Delete.