Start Planning

Here are some steps and recommendations designing and configuring your Riak cluster.


Backends are what Riak KV uses to persist data. Different backends have strengths and weaknesses, so if you are unsure of which backend you need, read through the Choosing a Backend tutorial.


Cluster Capacity Planning outlines the various elements and variables that should be considered when planning your Riak cluster.

If you have chosen Bitcask as your backend, you will also want to run through Bitcask Capacity Planning to help you calculate a reasonable capacity.

Network Configuration / Load Balancing

There are at least two acceptable strategies for load-balancing requests across your Riak cluster: virtual IPs and reverse-proxy.

For virtual IPs, we recommend using any of the various VIP implementations. We don’t recommend VRRP behavior for the VIP because you’ll lose the benefit of spreading client query load to all nodes in a ring.

For reverse-proxy configurations (HTTP interface), any one of the following should work adequately:

  • haproxy
  • squid
  • varnish
  • nginx
  • lighttpd
  • Apache