Starting VarnishΒΆ

I assume varnishd is in your path. You might want to run pkill varnishd to make sure varnishd isn't running. Become root and type:

# varnishd -f /usr/local/etc/varnish/default.vcl -s malloc,1G -T -a

I added a few options, lets go through them:

-f /usr/local/etc/varnish/default.vcl
The -f options specifies what configuration varnishd should use.
-s malloc,1G
The -s options chooses the storage type Varnish should use for storing its content. I used the type malloc, which just uses memory for storage. There are other backends as well, described in :ref:tutorial-storage. 1G specifies how much memory should be allocated - one gigabyte.
Varnish has a built-in text-based administration interface. Activating the interface makes Varnish manageble without stopping it. You can specify what interface the management interface should listen to. Make sure you don't expose the management interface to the world as you can easily gain root access to a system via the Varnish management interface. I recommend tieing it to localhost. If you have users on your system that you don't fully trust, use firewall rules to restrict access to the interface to root only.
I specify that I want Varnish to listen on port 8080 for incomming HTTP requests. For a production environment you would probably make Varnish listen on port 80, which is the default.

Now you have Varnish running. Let us make sure that it works properly. Use your browser to go to (obviously, you should replace the IP address with one on your own system) - you should now see your web application running there.

Whether or not the application actually goes faster when run through Varnish depends on a few factors. If you application uses cookies for every session (a lot of PHP and Java applications seem to send a session cookie if it is needed or not) or if it uses authentication chances are Varnish won't do much caching. Ignore that for the moment, we come back to that in Achieving a high hitrate.

Lets make sure that Varnish really does do something to your web site. To do that we'll take a look at the logs.

Previous topic

Backend servers

Next topic

Logging in Varnish

This Page